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Traditionally a small, isolated bedroom community on the beach and hills over looking the southern end of Los Angeles’ once extensive marshes, Playa del Rey is the smallest, and most unassuming of the beach cities. Many excellent values can be found here.
Playa del Rey also marks the beginning of the low hills which line the coast from the airport all the way south to the landmark promontory of the Palos Verdes Peninsula. L.A.’s beach cities to the north of LAX are flat and properties offer views only when they are on the sand or have rooftop decks. Homes and condos from Playa del Rey to Redondo Beach can offer panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean for many blocks inland.
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Housing in the Marina itself consists entirely of high density apartments and condos dating from the late 1960’s to the present. There are several high rise residential towers in the Marina as well offering full services, amenities, and incredible views of the city and coastline .
The Marina Peninsula is without a doubt the most interesting feature of Marina del Rey. This is a narrow spit of land between the Marina and beach, separated by the Grand Canal which feeds the Venice Canals to the north . The Marina Peninsula was originally backwater bordering the extensive Marshlands and oil fields that once reached five miles inland to the center of Los Angeles. A scattering of original beach cottages from the turn of the last century can be found here along with later unpretentious houses and apartment buildings dating to the 1960’s when the enactment of Coastal Commission regulations imposed a near ban on building in the area for 20 years. Playa del Rey is directly south of the main Marina boat channel and is the last of Los Angeles’ beach cities the north of the formidable, man-made barrier of L.A. International Airport (LAX.)
Marina del Rey is by far the newest of Los Angeles’ beach communities. Santa Monica and Venice to the north of Marina del Rey and Manhattan, Hermosa, & Redondo Beaches to the south were all founded in the early 1900’s. Marina del Rey is an unincorporated part of Los Angeles County and the Marina itself wasn’t dedicated until 1965.
Marina del Rey’s boundaries include several tracts of modest Ranch style homes from the 1940’s and 50’s along with several newer developments of townhomes and single family residences to on the north side of the Marina. The district’s boundaries to the east across Lincoln Blvd. also include several more very reasonably priced mid-century tracts of ranch style homes and a number of new contemporary loft style condominium complexes which are very popular.
Marina del Rey is the biggest small boat harbor in the country. Its also in an unincorporated part of Los Angeles County which was once part of a large coastal estuary that’s been the epicenter of newer development by the beach for the last fifty years. Marina del Rey is actually collection of very different areas including the beach front and canal houses and luxury condos of the Marina Peninsula, the mega-complexes, lofts, and sparkling residential towers of the Marina itself, and the mid-century suburban neighborhoods to the north and east.
Playa del Rey is just south of the main boat channel and is part of the unincorporated area as well. This modest village and consists mostly of post-war tract homes on the beach and hillsides overlooking the ocean. Playa del Rey is now enjoying the same redevelopment and restoration that’s been occurring on the Marina Peninsula for years.
Marina del Rey is dominated by the Marina itself and the surrounding high-density developments so there are generally far fewer single-family homes available.
The Marina Peninsula (or Silver Strand) is known for its premium beach front homes on the sand and amazing newer properties on the Grand Canal. The more affordable alternatives in Marina del Rey are the older tract houses to north of the Marina in the Golden Triangle and by the Venice Canals, along with some really spectacular deals that can be found east of Lincoln Blvd. Many properties are available in these areas for under $1M... some for substantially less.
There are usually as many homes listed for sale in Playa del Rey as there are in Marina del Rey just to the north, but the two lifestyles are very different.
Playa del Rey is much smaller, more isolated, and relaxed than the Marina. Many of the propertiesare post-war tract homes and small apartment buildings built in the 1940’s and 50’s.
Many of the homes on the hills overlooking the Pacific Ocean have been expanded and redesigned while much newer homes with views of the entire city from Downtown L.A. to Malibu line the north facing hills.
Since many of Playa del Rey’s multi-unit properties have been converted into condominiums there are lots of units available from the affordable to the luxurious... many of them right on the beach.
Marina del Rey has had much more redevelopment than any of Los Angeles’ other urban beach towns so there’s a wealth of condominiums available here at every price point. As with all beach properties, listings closer to the ocean demand a premium, but there are enough older properties left on the Marina Peninsula that good deals are still available. There are also a number of much larger, high-density developments in and around the Marina itself so there’s usually a huge inventory of condos available here ranging from older units built in the 1960’s & 70’s to much newer luxury units, lofts, and residential towers with full amenities.
Though Marina del Rey may seem to have quite a few smaller and mid-sized multi-unit income properties, many have been converted into condominiums over the last thirty years leaving an ever-shrinking inventory of investment properties for sale at any given time.
The same thing is happening in Play del Rey to the south, but there are usually more multi-unit properties available in this quaint sea side village than around the much more populated Marina at present . Many listings here are right on the beach which is particularly interesting.
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