Have you been to the Annenberg Community Beach House? It’s one of the best things about Summer in Los Angeles, and since Summer is right around the corner, it’s time to plan those family trips to the beach. You’ll find everything you need to know right here, from parking to dining to special activities, in our Guide to the Annenberg Community Beach House.
The Annenberg Community Beach House began as the Marion Davies Estate and was built for her by William Randolph Hearst. The Estate included a mansion of more than one hundred rooms and a marble swimming pool. Mr. Hearst and Ms. Davies entertained many famous Hollywood legends including Greta Garbo, Clark Gable, and Charlie Chaplin to name a few.
Over the years, the site has been a hotel and a limited-membership beach club. It was after the devastation of the Northridge Earthquake in 1994, that the City of Santa Monica, with the help of Wallis Annenberg, re-envisioned the site as “an important public gathering space.” Today the site is truly a community gem and is used for special events, summer fun, casual beach get-togethers, and more.
Annenberg Community Beach House
415 Pacific Coast Highway, Santa Monica, CA 90402
November – March: 8:30 am to 5:30 pm
April: 8:30 am to 6:30 pm
May – September: 8:30 am to 8:30 pm
October: 8:30 am to 6:30 pm
The pool schedule is seasonal, meaning the pool is open each year between Memorial Day and Labor Day. This year the pool opens on May 26th.
Pool Hours are: May 26-28 and June 2-3 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
June 9 – September 3 10:00 am to 7:00 pm
Sept. 8-30 (weekends only) 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Younger children will also enjoy the on-site Splash Pad. During the off-season (October through April) the Splash Pad is open on Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. Mondays through Fridays 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.
May through September 4th, the Splash Pad is open daily from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm.
September through October 1st, hours are Monday through Friday 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
About the Annenberg Community Beach House
If you’ve never been, the Annenberg Community Beach House is a special place. It is located on 5 acres of Santa Monica State Beach. The grounds include a playground, courtyard, view deck, beach areas, and volleyball courts and are open to all with no membership required.
The swimming pool is open seasonally; however, throughout the year, there are Pop Up Pool Days when the pool is open. (You can sign up online to receive notifications about such dates). Be sure to click here to read the pool rules before visiting.
The Beach House Pool is one of the remaining elements from the historic Marion Davies Estate. It features marble around the deck and beautiful tiles that were restored by hand. Because it is an historic pool, please be aware that it isn’t as shallow as modern day pools.
Special Activities and Events at the Annenberg:
In addition to the usual beach-side activities, families can take advantage of the history of the site by going on a free docent-led tour of the Marion Davies Guest House. Tours are offered Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. Tours are about 30 minutes long. (Be sure to check the website before visiting for a tour. Tour hours are subject to change with short notice).
Families may also choose to visit the Gallery which is the site of different exhibitions throughout the year. The Gallery is generally open daily from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, but again, be sure to confirm the hours before visiting.
A variety of special events are held throughout the year including classes (such as yoga, youth and adult volleyball, and swimming), lectures, and more. Be sure to check the website for upcoming events, dates, and fees where applicable.
Admission Price to the Annenberg Community Beach House
Admission to the Annenberg Community Beach House is free. The only fee applies to the swimming pool. $10 for adults, $4 for youth (ages 1-17), and $5 for seniors (60+). On Mondays, excluding holidays, families can visit for half-price.
Parking at the Annenberg Beach House
Parking is generally available on a first-come, first-served basis; however, during the summer pool season there are a limited number of parking reservations available. Parking rates vary depending on the month, but are generally $3/hour and either $8 or $12 per day. Check the website for details before visiting.
Dining Options at the Annenberg Beach House
Back on the Beach Café is the on-site eatery at the Annenberg Beach House. Enjoy local and seasonal cuisine while you dine on the beach enjoying views of the ocean, pier, and Catalina Island. Indoor and outdoor seating are available. Reservations may be made for indoor tables for groups of 6 or more. Hours do change seasonally, so be sure to call ahead to confirm the current hours. (310-393-8282)
Families will find lots of things to do near the Annenberg Community Beach House. Pacific Park, located on the Santa Monica Pier, the 3rd Street Promenade, and the Santa Monica Public Library are all close by. Click here to read our post “18 Things To Do In Santa Monica With Kids” to give you more ideas on what to see and do while in Santa Monica.