Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles

Located in Westside of L.A., California, Pacific Palisades is a neightborhood positioned between Topanga and Malibu (west) and Brentwood (east), with Santa Monica (southeast), Santa Monica Bay (southwest), and Santa Monica Mountains (north). The current population is roughly 27,000, mainly being a residential region with a combination of small (often older) houses, large private homes, apartments and condominiums. The Chamber of Commerce is the sponsor for the community’s 4th of July all day events, including 5k runs, 10k run, fireworks display located on the football field of Palisades High School, and a parade on Sunset Blvd. There are various hiking trails and large parklands provided in the district.


Within 1911, the Western film factory was built by director Thomas Ince, called ‘Inceville’ had reached almost 600 employees. The land was purchased 10 years alter by the Southern California Methodist Episcopal Church and Rev. Charles H. Scott. The Pacific Palisades was founded in 1922, with the vision of having a religious-intellectual commune. During its construction, believers had grabbed lots and lived within tents. There were 100 homes in Palisades by 1925, within one of the subdivision, streets had been named after Methodist missionaries. Eventually the tents had been replaced first with cabins, with bungalows afterwards. In time, multimillion dollar homes would be constructed. The area’s climate had been a large selling point. The temperatures within the region are cooler compared to inland areas of Los Angeles throughout the summer, but it is often less foggy and sunnier compared to southern regions along the coast, such as Santa Monica.

During exile during the 1930s and 1940s in Nazi Germany, many Austrian and German artists and intellectuals settled within Pacific Palisades who were associated with Exilliterature, which included: Lion Feuchtwanger, Thomas Mann, Vicki Baum, Theodor W. Adorno, Emil Ludwig, and Oskar Homolka. The Paseo Miramar’s Villa Aurora, home of Feuchtwanger is a Spanish colonial style home that would later become a focal point for the expartriate community, being dubbed ‘Weimar by the Sea’.

Within the district, for decades an alcohol drinking ban was established, with the only liquor license being held by House of Lee, a Chinese restaurant. A Chautauqua Conference Grounds was created by the Methodist Church within Temescal Canyon. In 1943, the property was purchased by the Presbyterian Synod with the purpose of using it for a private retreat center until the 1994 purchase of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, becoming Temescal Gateway Park.

Areas or Neighborhoods

The neighborhoods and areas around Pacific Palisades includes:

  • Via Mesa & Huntington Palisades
  • The Village
  • Castellammare
  • The El Medio Mesa
  • Rustic Canyon
  • Palisades Highlands
  • The Riviera

 Loomis, Jan (2009). Pacific Palisades. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 9780738569482.