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From "Holey" to "Jewel" - The History of La Jolla

In 2009, La Jolla was the most affluent neighborhood in the United States; living up to the "jewel" name Spanish explorers gave it. La Jolla came from humble beginnings, being called "holey" by the Native American and lacking accessible drinking water. Some of the first La Jolla residents were tricked into buying land there.

However, it didn't take investors long to realize La Jolla's potential, leading to the land's development. In the next 30 years, the La Jolla real estate market would become one of the most sought after housing markets in Southern California.

The recorded history of La Jolla began when it was incorporated as part of San Diego in 1850. Its first residents didn't come until 1869 when the Sizer brothers purchased two plots there. La Jolla was not developed until 1886 when Frank Botsford subdivided and auctioned off land plots.

La Jolla became a growing suburb in the 1890s with the railroad connecting it to other areas of San Diego leading developers to make it into a resort town for San Diegians. The La Jolla Hotel was built and the Scripps Institute of Oceanography and the Grande Colonial Hotel were built shortly after.

By the 1930s, La Jolla became a travel destination for Hollywood stars that came to enjoy its luxurious resorts and beautiful beach views. Some celebrities began producing and creating plays in the 1940s and 1950s at The La Jolla Playhouse.

In the 1940s, older La Jolla communities like Bird Rock, Soledad South La Jolla and La Jolla Shores were developed. Nearby UCSD was built in the 1960s spurring an increased demand for homes in La Jolla.

La Jolla's legacy of luxury lives on today, keeping it one of the most highly desirable communities to live in and has also become popular among families and college students. The real estate market in La Jolla has options for every lifestyle and budget, featuring homes, condos and apartments. Residents also enjoy a variety of exclusive shops, five-star restaurants, luxurious spas and eclectic museums and art galleries in La Jolla. If you are thinking about moving to La Jolla, browse through our directory and reach out to a La Jolla real estate agent today.


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