Redondo Beach is one of the three Beach Cities located in Los Angeles County, California, United States. The city is located in the South Bay region of the greater Los Angeles area. Redondo Beach was originally part of the 1785 Rancho San Pedro Spanish land grant that later became the South Redondo area. The city’s territory has an unusual shape including an area along the beach (South Redondo Beach) and another strip inland from Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach (North Redondo Beach). The primary attractions include Municipal Pier and the sandy beach, popular with tourists and a variety of sports enthusiasts. The western terminus of the Metro Rail Green Line is in North Redondo Beach.
Redondo Beach is the focus of many who want to be in the sun and near the ocean. Although a vibrant community in its own right, much of the Redondo Beach lifestyle is a blend of the neighborhoods, activities and people of the three Beach Cities of Southern California’s South Bay. Like its sister cities of Hermosa Beach and Manhattan Beach, Redondo’s key lifestyle draw is the vast beach that links these three cities. Redondo was described as “The Gem Of The Continent” in the Los Angeles Daily Herald on December 22, 1887.
Surfing is a key element of the South Bay lifestyle year-round; it is common to see locals catching waves on both Christmas and New Year’s Day. Powerful winter storms in the Pacific ocean can turn typically placid and rolling South Bay waves into large and occasionally dangerous monsters, a natural draw for the local surfing population. Local wave heights in December 2005 were some of the largest on record and were reported to top 15 feet (4.6 m) to 20 feet (6.1 m) in some instances; at least one surfer required resuscitation when he was thrashed against the ocean bottom after trying a particularly large wave.
The beach lifestyle comes at a price: According to public data from the Los Angeles Times, real estate prices increased almost 20% per year between 1999 and 2005. Properties within short walking distance of the ocean routinely sell for well over $1 million. Those with direct, unhindered views routinely ask in excess of $2 million. Money Magazine ranks communities in the area as some of the most expensive places to live in the U.S. The average three-bed, two-bath home costs about $1,000,000 in South Redondo as of 2006 and $875,000 in North Redondo. The 2007 “credit meltdown” has affected home values in the area to a lesser extent than the rest of Southern California.