Pacific Palisades is a coastal neighborhood in the Westside of the city of Los Angeles, California located among Brentwood to the east, Malibu and Topanga to the west, Santa Monica to the southeast, the Santa Monica Bay to the southwest and the Santa Monica Mountains to the north. It is about 9 miles northwest of the UCLA campus and is primarily a residential area with a mixture of large private homes, small (usually older) houses, condominiums, and apartments.
In 1911, film director Thomas Ince created his Western film factory, "Inceville" which at its peak employed nearly 600 people. A decade later, the Rev. Charles H. Scott and the Southern California Methodist Episcopal Church bought the land in 1922. Scott founded Pacific Palisades envisioning an elaborate religious-intellectual commune. Believers snapped up choice lots and lived in tents during construction.
By 1925, the Palisades had 100 homes. In one subdivision, streets were named for Methodist missionaries. The tents eventually were replaced by cabins, then by bungalows, and ultimately by multi-million dollar homes. The climate of the area was a big selling point. Temperatures are much cooler than inland Los Angeles during summer, but usually sunnier and less foggy than areas south along the coast (e.g. Santa Monica).
For many decades there was a virtual ban on drinking alcohol in the district and a Chinese restaurant, House of Lee held the only liquor license. The Methodist Church created a Chautauqua Conference Grounds in Temescal Canyon. The Presbyterian Synod purchased the property in 1943 and used it as a private retreat center until the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy purchased the property in 1994 to become Temescal Gateway Park.
The Via Mesa and The Huntington Palisades are the neighborhoods that border the "village" proper to the south of Sunset Boulevard, overlooking the ocean. The Via Mesa is located between Temescal Canyon on the west and Potrero Canyon on the east. The Huntington Palisades is located between Potrero Canyon on the west and Chautauqua Boulevard on the east. Both of these neighborhoods are within walking distance to The Village and sit upon high bluffs that look out over the Pacific Ocean.
This area is home to the largest park of the Palisades - the 117-acre Palisades Park. It has four baseball diamonds, eight tennis courts, two indoor basketball courts, a hockey rink, dog parks, and a number of playgrounds.
The El Medio Mesa is located south of Sunset Boulevard beginning about a quarter mile west of The Village across Temescal Canyon – just past Palisades Charter High School. The El Medio Mesa extends for a long distance from Temescal Canyon all the way to where Sunset Boulevard meets the Pacific Coast Highway. As with The Via Bluffs and The Huntington Palisades, The El Medio Bluffs are located on a high ridge overlooking the Pacific Ocean
Castellammare is located along the Pacific Coast Highway on small bluffs much closer to sea-level, north of where Sunset Boulevard meets the PCH. This is the home of the Getty Villa and the narrow, winding streets in this neighborhood have Italian names and ocean breezes.
Palisades Highlands is a community near the end of Sunset Blvd., bordering Topanga, about five minutes away from the center of Pacific Palisades (The Village). The Highlands could almost be considered its own separate community high up the hill overlooking the ocean, up Palisades Drive.
Rustic Canyon is the neighborhood east of Chautauqua Boulevard that dips into Santa Monica Canyon and includes the Will Rogers State Historic Park. The neighborhood features post-war homes located on the former polo field of The Uplifters, the original site of The Uplifters clubhouse (now a city park) and "cabins" developed as second homes and weekend retreats. This area is also known as Uplifter's Ranch.
The Riviera is a Palisades neighborhood located approximately two miles east of The Palisades Village and features The Riviera Country Club, a club and streets named after various locations in the French and Italian Riviera.
Residents are zoned to Los Angeles Unified School District schools and is within Board District 4. Some residents are assigned to Pacific Palisades Elementary School, some are to Canyon Elementary School and some to Marquez Elementary School. All residents are zoned to Revere Charter Middle School and Palisades Charter High School.
Canyon Elementary School opened in 1910.
Pacific Palisades Elementary opened in 1922.
Marquez Elementary School opened in 1955.
Paul Revere Middle School first opened as Palisades-Brentwood Junior High School in 1955 and chose its current name during its first year of operation. It became an internal charter in 1994.
Palisades High School opened in 1961 and received a charter in 1994.
Every Fourth of July, the community's Chamber of Commerce sponsors day-long events which include 5K and 10K runs, a parade down Sunset Boulevard, and a fireworks display at Palisades High School football field. The district also includes some large parklands and many hiking trails.
The Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks operates several recreational facilities in Pacific Palisades.
Palisades Park, at 851 Alma Real Drive has 117 acres of land. The Palisades Recreation Center also at that address has barbecue pits, four baseball diamonds (two lighted, two unlighted), lighted basketball courts (indoor and outdoor), a children's play area, a football field, an indoor gymnasium (no weights are offered), picnic tables, lighted tennis courts and lighted volleyball courts.
The Pacific Palisades Tennis Courts, also at that address, has eight courts. Rustic Canyon Park is located along Rustic Canyon Road. The Rustic Canyon Pool is located at 601 Latimer Road. The Rustic Canyon Recreation Center located at the same address, has a multipurpose with a capacity of 150 people that can be used as an auditorium, a gymnasium, or a volleyball court.
The center also has barbecue pits, an unlighted baseball diamond, basketball courts (lighted indoor and unlighted outdoor), a children's play area, an indoor gymnasium (no weights are offered), picnic tables, and volleyball courts (lighted and unlighted).
Temescal Canyon Park is a non-staffed "pocket park" located along Temescal Canyon Drive from Pacific Coast Highway to Sunset Blvd. The park has barbecue pits, a children's play area, picnic tables, hiking trails, a native garden, and toilets. Santa Ynez Canyon Park is located at Palisades Drive and Avenida de Santa Ynez. Rivas Canyon Park is located at the east terminus of Oracle Pl. The California Department of Parks and Recreation also has locations in Pacific Palisades.
Will Rogers State Beach extends one and three-quarters mile along the shore. The beach features swimming and skin diving. Facilities include volleyball courts, playground and gymnastic equipment, as well as a bike path and walkway.