Riviera Palisades Street Names

By Michael Edlen
Special to the Palisades News

(In 1990 Randy and Betty Lou Young published a limited edition book titled Street Names of Pacific Palisades & Other Tales. This short series of summaries of these names is based on that book.)

In 1927, the Riviera Country Club was opened for play by the Los Angeles Athletic Club. The Club had wanted a “country home” in the Santa Monica Canyon area large enough for a golf course and other sports facilities.

As part of the arrangement made with Alphonzo Bell to obtain that land, two Riviera tracts were subdivided and residential lots were sold.

The Riviera was designed to be an exclusive community with European charm and Mediterranean-style estates. The street names were drawn from the Bell family’s travels to Italy and Spain, with most of the names being inspired by the Amalfi Coast near Naples.

Alta Mura: “high wall” or “lookout point” in Spanish. This is appropriate as it is above the Riviera tract.

Amalfi: a town south of Naples considered one of the most beautiful resorts in Italy. Capri: a picturesque island in the Gulf of Naples.

Casale: named after Casale Monferato, an old town near Florence.

Corsica: a large French island in the Mediterranean.

D’Este: a famous villa and water garden at Tivoli.

Fermo: an ancient town in central Italy. Lucca: a famous Italian walled city west of Florence, from where most of the olive oil is imported into the United States.

Minorca: an island in the Spanish Mediterranean.

Monaco: a small principality and resort on the French Riviera with the famous Monte Carlo Casino.

Napoli: an Italian port city, also known as Naples.

Parma: an Italian city, province and river, known for its Parmesan cheese

Pavia: a city near Milan, in northern Italy.

Ravoli: although not technically in the Riviera tract, it was named after the town of Rivoli in northern Italy.

Riviera: the narrow strip of land along the southern Mediterranean coast of France and Italy.

Romany: named after the collective name for gypsies and their language.

San Onofre: derived from the Spanish “St. Humphrey,” a 4th century hermit in northern Egypt for 70 years.

San Remo: named for either “St. Remis” (Spanish) or “St. Remus” (Italian), it is a popular winter resort in northern Italy.

Sorrento: named for one of the best- known resort towns along the Amalfi Drive, near Naples.

Spezia: the chief naval harbor for Italy.

Spoleto: historic town near Rome which is known for its summer arts festival.

Toulon: a major seaport and city on the French Riviera.

Umeo: not technically in the Riviera tract, this short street may be named after a town in Sweden.

Michael Edlen has been ranked in the top one percent of all agents in the country with over $1.5 billion in sales. He has tracked Pacific Palisades sales and historic events for 30 years. Call Michael at (310) 230-7373 or email michael@michaeledlen.com.

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