- About Us
- Short Sales
San Marino is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. Incorporated on April 12, 1913, the city was designed by its founders to be uniquely residential, with expansive properties surrounded by beautiful gardens, wide streets, and well maintained parkways. The city is located in the San Rafael Hills. The population was 13,147 at the 2010 census. In 2010, Forbes Magazine ranked the city as the 63rd most expensive area to live in the United States, with the median list price of a single family home at US$1,987,500.
Origin of name
The city takes its name from the ancient Republic of San Marino, founded by Saint Marinus who fled his home in Dalmatia (modern Croatia) at the time of the Diocletianic Persecution of Christians. Marinus took refuge at Monte Titano on the Italian peninsula, where he built a chapel and founded a monastic community in 301 A.D. The state, which grew from the monastery, is the world's oldest surviving republic.
The seal of the City of San Marino, California is modeled on that of the republic, depicting the Three Towers of San Marino each capped with a bronze plume, surrounded by a heart-shaped scroll with two roundels and a lozenge (of unknown significance) at the top. The crown representing the monarchy on the original was replaced with five stars representing the five members of the City's governing body. Beneath the city's seal are crossed palm fronds and orange branches.
The site of San Marino was originally occupied by a village of Tongva (Gabrieleño) Indians located approximately where the Huntington School is today. The area was part of the lands of the San Gabriel Mission. (The "Old Mill" was the Mission's grist mill.) Principal portions of San Marino were included in an 1838 Mexican land grant of 128 acres to Victoria Bartolmea Reid, a Gabrieleña Indian. (After her first husband, also a Gabrieleño, died in 1836 of smallpox, she remarried Scotsman Hugo Reid in 1837). She called the property Rancho Huerta de Cuati. After Hugo Reid's death in 1852, Señora Reid sold her rancho in 1854 to Don Benito Wilson, the first Anglo owner of Rancho San Pascual. In 1873, Don Benito conveyed to his son-in-law, James DeBarth Shorb, 500 acres, including Rancho Huerta de Cuati, which Shorb named "San Marino" after his grandfather's plantation in Maryland, which, in turn, was named after the Republic of San Marino located on the Italian Peninsula in Europe.
In 1903, the Shorb rancho was purchased by Henry E. Huntington (1850–1927), who built a large mansion on the property. The site of the Shorb/Huntington rancho is occupied today by the Huntington Library, which houses a world-renown art collection, research and rare-book library, and botanical gardens.In 1913 the three primary ranchos of Wilson, Patton, and Huntington, together with the subdivided areas from those and smaller ranchos, such as the Stoneman, White, and Rose ranchos, were incorporated as the city of San Marino.
The first mayor of the city of San Marino was George S. Patton, Senior. The son of a slain Civil War general, Patton graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1877, just before moving west. He married Ruth Wilson, the daughter of Don Benito Wilson. Their son was the World War II general, George S. Patton, Junior.
To a prior generation of Southern Californians, San Marino was known for its old-money wealth and as a bastion of the region's WASP gentry. By mid-century, other European ethnic groups had become the majority; in recent decades, immigrants of Chinese (especially Taiwanese) ancestry have come to represent more than half of the population, perhaps due to its close proximity to the San Gabriel Valley, known to be a popular place of residency amongst Asian Americans and Asian immigrants.
San Marino is the location of the Huntington Library and gardens. In 1919 Henry Huntington provided limited access to the art collections, and to the rare books and historical documents, housed in the library and in his large Neoclassical–Palladian mansion, as well as to the surrounding botanical gardens, all collectively known as "The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens", or "The Huntington", to the public.
El Molino Viejo ("The Old Mill"), completed about 1816 as a grist mill for Mission San Gabriel Arcángel, is in San Marino. The original two-story structure measured 53 feet by 26 feet. It is the oldest commercial building in Southern California. The town is located on the former lands of the historic Rancho Huerta de Cuati.
The Edwin Hubble House: From 1925 to 1953, this two story stucco home was the residence of one of America's greatest 20th-century astronomers, Edwin Hubble, who, among other accomplishments, discovered extragalactic nebulae and their recession from each other. It is a National Historic Landmark.
The Michael White Adobe House, is located on the high school campus and houses the San Marino Historical Society archives.
The University of Southern California owns a house in San Marino which is used as the residence of the President of the University. The residence and grounds are often used for University Presidential events.
In the middle of San Marino lies Lacy Park, a huge 30-acre (120,000 m2) expanse of grass and trees. Originally named Wilson Lake in 1875, the land was purchased by the city in 1925 and dedicated as a park. Families in San Marino have enjoyed the park for years. A picnic area is often the site of musical concerts, civic events and pancake breakfasts. Within the park are two walking loops: an inner loop of approximately 3/4 mile in length, and an outer loop of approximately 1-mile in length. Dogs are welcome with their owners, providing they are on a leash. The park includes six championship tennis courts and a pro shop, administered by the San Marino Tennis Foundation. At the west entrance of the park is the Rose Arbor, which is of special significance for the people of San Marino. It is sixty years old and has long been a source of beauty and tranquility to many residents. In recent years the care and upkeep of the RoseArbor itself has been augmented by private donations from residents who have chosen to sponsor individual posts. Additionally, the park receives funding from admission fees charged to nonresidents. The park recently built a memorial to General George S. Patton (a native of San Marino) and also a large memorial to the Armed Forces along with a statue of a sad soldier. The memorial includes the names of all military personnel from San Marino.
The city's local newspaper office is located near the city's most prominent street, Huntington Drive. "The San Marino Tribune" has been the official newspaper of the city since 1929. There are two sections of the weekly paper, an "A" section and a "B" section, the distinction being that it covers not only San Marino news but also the Pasadena, San Gabriel, Alhambra, Arcadia and South Pasadena news.
Governing the City of San Marino is a city council of five members, elected by the people for a four-year term, at elections held in March of odd calendar years. These five Council members serve without any financial compensation and elect one of their own members as Mayor. The current Mayor is Dennis Kneier. The Vice Mayor is Eugene Sun and council members are: Dr. Richard Sun, Richard Ward and Dr. Allan Yung.
The San Marino City Council page states: "San Marino was formed to protect your personal rights and to control the growth and activities of the City in such a way that each individual resident will be guaranteed a pleasant place in which to live with a minimum of nuisance, with assurance that his property values will be protected by stringent zoning regulations. It is your City Council's desire to acquaint the old and new residents with the history and background of San Marino, its many advantages and some of your responsibilities as a citizen. "
This community consists only of single family residences: there are no apartment buildings, condominiums or townhouses in the city. All homes must have a 2-car garage. No fast food or drive-through restaurants are allowed in San Marino.
The 2010 United States Census reported that San Marino had a population of 13,147. The population density was 3,483.4 people per square mile. The racial makeup of San Marino was 5,434 (41.3%) White (37.1% Non-Hispanic White), 55 (0.4%) African American, 5 (0.0%) Native American, 7,039 (53.5%) Asian, 2 (0.0%) Pacific Islander, 198 (1.5%) from other races, and 414 (3.1%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 855 persons (6.5%).
The Census reported that 13,066 people (99.4% of the population) lived in households, 81 (0.6%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 0 (0%) were institutionalized.
There were 4,330 households, out of which 1,818 (42.0%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 3,220 (74.4%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 367 (8.5%) had a female householder with no husband present, 143 (3.3%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 42 (1.0%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 22 (0.5%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 531 households (12.3%) were made up of individuals and 359 (8.3%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.02. There were 3,730 families (86.1% of all households); the average family size was 3.28.
The population was spread out with 3,422 people (26.0%) under the age of 18, 712 people (5.4%) aged 18 to 24, 2,353 people (17.9%) aged 25 to 44, 4,351 people (33.1%) aged 45 to 64, and 2,309 people (17.6%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45.3 years. For every 100 females there were 92.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.7 males.
There were 4,477 housing units at an average density of 1,186.2 per square mile (458.0/km²), of which 3,959 (91.4%) were owner-occupied, and 371 (8.6%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 0.5%; the rental vacancy rate was 6.5%. 11,834 people (90.0% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 1,232 people (9.4%) lived in rental housing units.
According to the 2010 United States Census, San Marino had a median household income of $139,122, with 4.6% of the population living below the federal poverty line. 
As of the census of 2000, there were 12,945 people, 4,266 households, and 3,673 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,430.5 per square mile. There were 4,437 housing units at an average density of 1,175.8 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 51.98% White, 0.15% African American, 0.05% Native American, 47.7% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 1.04% from other races, and 2.30% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.25% of the population. More than one-third of the city's population, 33.3%, is Chinese.
There were 4,266 households out of which 42% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 75% were married couples living together, 8.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 13.9% were non-families. 12% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.29.
In the city the age distribution of the population shows 26.5% under the age of 18, 6.4% from 18 to 24, 21.5% from 25 to 44, 29.4% from 45 to 64, and 16.2% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 43 years. (this is older than average age in the U.S.). For every 100 females there were 93.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $147,267, and the median income for a family was $155,708. Males had a median income of $98,928 versus $51,853 for females. The per capita income for the city was $59,150. About 3.7% of families and 5.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.8% of those under age 18 and 3.0% of those age 65 or over. The vast majority, 69.7% of persons, had a Bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 27.2% at the national average.
The city is divided into seven zones, based on minimum lot size. The smallest lot size is about 4,500 square feet, with many averaging over 30,000 square feet. Because of this and other factors, most of the homes in San Marino, built between 1920 and 1950, do not resemble the houses in surrounding Southern California neighborhoods (with the exception, perhaps, of neighboring portions of Pasadena). San Marino has also fostered a sense of historic preservation among its homeowners. With minor exceptions, the city's strict design review and zoning laws have thus far prevented the development of large homes found elsewhere in Los Angeles. No apartment buildings or townhouses exist in the city.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 3.8 square miles, virtually all land.
San Marino is highly restrictive of commercial operations in the city. It is one of the few cities that requires commercial vehicles to have permits to work within the city.
On September 9, 1913, the first San Marino school was opened at the corner of Monterey Road, (then called Calle de Lopez) and Oak Knoll, in what was known as the Old Mayberry Home. There were three teachers and thirty-five pupils, grades kindergarten through the eighth; High School students attended South Pasadena High until San Marino High School was founded in 1955 after 50 years of utilizing South Pasadena High School in nearby South Pasadena. San Marino High School graduated its first class in 1956. The high school's nickname, "The Titans", comes from Mt. Titano, in the Republic of San Marino.
San Marino High School is situated on the former site of Carver Elementary School. In 1996, the high school reconstruction was begun and the school is now equipped with new laboratories, classrooms, and ethernet connections, supported mainlyly by bond issues and rigorous fund-raising by the San Marino Schools Endowment. The new buildings include a brand new cafeteria, orchestra and band room, dance studio, journalism lab, and renovated auditoriums, as well as a renovated baseball field and a brand new football field/track.
San Marino High School is part of the San Marino Unified School District. Its public funding is supplemented by private donations raised through the San Marino Schools Endowment Foundation. Each year, the Foundation raises funds necessary to balance the District's budget. To date, the San Marino Schools Foundation has contributed $18,268,485 to our schools since their inception in March 1980.
The 2013 California Academic Performance Index report named San Marino Unified School District as the top performing unified school district in California for the 11th consecutive year, with a score of 953 points out of 1,000 possible. Each of its public primary schools has also been honored as a California Distinguished School and a National Blue Ribbon School.
There are four public schools in San Marino Unified School District:
The two elementary schools offer instruction for grades K-5, the middle school for grades 6-8 and the high school for grades 9-12. The middle school was named Henry E. Huntington School, after San Marino's "first citizen." In 1953, a new K. L. Carver Elementary was completed at its current location on San Gabriel Boulevard and was named after a school board member of 19 years – K. L. Carver. Stoneman Elementary School, named for Governor George Stoneman, who had resided in San Marino, is no longer used for instruction by San Marino School District. The former school is now leased by the San Marino City Recreation Department and houses San Marino Unified School District special education staff.
In November 2007, San Marino High School was ranked 82nd on a list of the best high schools in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report.
When the City of San Marino was first incorporated in 1913 it did not have its own police department. During its early years, the only police protection provided was a City Marshal. However, as the City began to grow and crime made its way into the community, two deputy City Marshals were added in October 1918. In 1924, then Deputy Marshal Ben Parker was appointed the Cities first police chief. He served until 1934. Currently, The Field Services Division, or Patrol Bureau, is the largest component of the Police Department division with a staff of 22, including 1 Lieutenant, 4 Sergeants, and 17 patrol officers. The San Marino Police Department's core values are Integrity, Hard Work, Support/Teamwork and Pride in Service. Their motto is "Pride in Service."
The Crowell Public Library, opened in 2008, is the site of many and varied activities. Lectures, workshops, storytimes, and an assortment of classes, including those on health related issues, are offered at the library. Hours: Mon-Thurs 10-9, Fri - Sat 10-5, Sun 1-5
San Marino may be recognizable to many Americans for the prevalence of movies and television shows filmed in the city. Location scouts turn to San Marino when they wish to make a film in southern California set elsewhere. Certain neighborhoods resemble the Atlantic seaboard because of the atypical housing stock in the city, including Georgian and faux antebellum mansions. Yet the design of many homes is inspired by California Spanish architecture. Television shows such as The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and movies such as Father of the Bride have been filmed in San Marino and Pasadena.
The city of San Marino played a prominent role in Edward Bunker's 1996 novel Dog Eat Dog. The movie Father of the Bride with Steve Martin, although filmed in neighboring Pasadena and Alhambra, takes place in San Marino. The movie Carbon Copy ('1981 movie featuring Denzel Washington and George Segal) was also based in San Marino. Scenes for the movie Mr. & Mrs. Smith were filmed in San Marino, as were scenes from many other movies (including Memoirs of a Geisha, The Holiday, Monster-in-Law, Anger Management, The Wedding Singer, The Wedding Planner, Starsky & Hutch, Intolerable Cruelty, Beverly Hills Ninja, One Hour Photo, Legally Blond, American Wedding, Mystery Men, S1m0ne, Enough, Men in Black II, Charlie's Angels, and The Sweetest Thing). In the film Mask, Rocky Dennis (played by Eric Stoltz) has a girlfriend from San Marino.
The city is served by the 85-year-old broadsheet San Marino Tribune and the La Canada-based tabloid San Marino Outlook (first published in September 2013), both of which publish once a week, on Thursdays. Although they both cover local news, sports, business, service clubs, social events and community events only the adjudicated Tribune publishes legals (including the city's legal notices) and takes strong editorial stands on key issues affecting the city's residents. The Tribune has been the only official subscriber newspaper in the city since 1929. It has a circulation of almost five thousand copies with the community supporting the Tribune with paid subscriptions. The San Marino School Board unanimously approved a resolution on Tuesday, August 17, 2010 declaring Friday, September 24, 2010 as San Marino Tribune Day throughout the district
[lifestyle_finder bookmark="/areas/overview/neighborhood%3A1fc77f4ac507d80019c8c48d0b7a3658" width="100%" height="800px"]
[recent_sales market="itech" coords="34.123347:-118.114702" hide_search_form="1"]