Rancho Palos Verdes
Rancho Palos Verdes is a city in Los Angeles County, California, that was incorporated on September 7, 1973. Rancho Palos Verdes is translated as “Ranch of Green Trees” or “Ranch of Sticks”, probably referring to the willows in the northeastern part of Bixby Slough (now known as Machado Lake) shown on earlier maps. Rancho Palos Verdes is an affluent suburb of Los Angeles. Sitting atop the Palos Verdes Hills and bluffs of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, it is known for large tracts of open space and expansive views of the Pacific Ocean. The city’s most notable geographic features are the Palos Verdes Hills and cliffs, with grand vistas of the Pacific Ocean and of Santa Catalina Island.
Wayfarers Chapel, designed by Lloyd Wright and built between 1949 and 1951, is on the National Register of Historic Places. The Point Vicente Lighthouse was built in 1926 and is also on the National Register of Historic Places. The Point Vicente Interpretive Center opened in 1984 with a mission to present and interpret the unique features and history of the Palos Verdes Peninsula. The almost 10,000-square-foot expanded Interpretive Center, reopened on July 15, 2006, features exhibits on the natural and cultural history of the peninsula, with a special emphasis on the Pacific gray whale. This premier whale-watching site provides spectacular opportunities to view the annual migration of the Pacific gray whale from December through April. The site of the former Marineland of the Pacific (1954–87) was redeveloped and is now occupied by the Terranea Resort, which opened in June 2009.
The city is also home to Trump National Golf Course, one of eleven in the Trump portfolio of courses. The Portuguese Bend landslide, one of the largest continuously moving landslides in North America, is located along the southern coastal area. Together with the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, in 2009 the city completed the acquisition of a total of two square miles of open space, the Palos Verdes Nature Preserve, the largest preserve of coastal open space north of San Diego and south of Santa Barbara. The Salvation Army’s School for Officer Training is located in Rancho Palos Verdes.
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