Santa Monica History Spotlight: Santa Monica Pier

February 14, 2019 12:58 PM
by Robyn Carmichael

The History Spotlight focuses on the landmarks, residents and stories that have shaped Santa Monica into what it is today. Content is being produced in partnership with the Santa Monica Landmarks CommissionSanta Monica History Museum and the Santa Monica Daily Press.

The article below originally appeared in the Santa Monica Daily Press on February 11, 2019.


The Santa Monica Pier is California’s oldest pleasure pier, built in 1909 by Charles Looff.

Looff, the amusement entrepreneur who built Coney Island’s first carousel in Brooklyn, New York, constructed amusement and food establishments along the pier, including the exotic Hippodrome building to house the Pier’s carousel.

By 1953, the City took over the Pier and leased it to a private operator. The entire Pier was designated as a County Historical Landmark in 1975. After the 1983 storms destroyed the west end of the Santa Monica Pier, its structure became strengthened.

The City continues to operate the pier which functions as a recreational and entertainment venue.

Read more about the history of the Pier on the Santa Monica Conservancy website.

Images courtesy of the Santa Monica Public Library Archive.

Authored By

Robyn Carmichael
Marketing and Communications Assistant