Prior to its dedication in 1965 as the largest man-made small-craft harbor in the United States, Marina del Rey was an estuary frequented by duck hunters and fishermen. Marina del Rey means “Harbor of The King” in Spanish. A portion of the marsh at the Marina’s southern border is now a preserve called the Ballona Wetlands. Between 1887 and the 1930s, various developers envisioned plans for the marshland, but it wasn’t until 1954 that President Eisenhower green-lit a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposal to dredge the area and create a small-craft harbor. The Marina was dedicated on July 10, 1965, and the surrounding community became identified as Marina del Rey.
Click Image to view a video on the history of Marina del Rey.
The approximate borders include the area west of Lincoln Boulevard, east of Via Dolce, north of Ballona Creek, and south of Washington Boulevard/Oxford Basin. This area above and below water is entirely owned by the County of Los Angeles and is leased out to private leaseholders on long-term agreements. The community is surrounded on three sides by the City of Los Angeles. (The greater Marina del Rey area has different boundaries.) According to the 2020 U.S. Census, Marina del Rey has a population of 11,373.
Marina del Rey is a recreational destination that welcomes millions of visitors annually. The tourism and hospitality industry generates 3,000 jobs and has an economic impact of over $400 Million annually. Watch the Power of Tourism video to learn more about our local tourism industry and the overall impact the Marina has on the Los Angeles economy. Get to know some of our local tourism businesses and ambassadors, the heart and soul of L.A.'s Marina!
Click Image to view "The Power of Tourism" video.
Marina del Rey is the largest man-made small-craft harbor in North America with more than 4,600 boat slips and the second largest man-made small-craft harbor in the world next to Dubai.
Marina del Rey spans an area of 1.5 square miles (3.9 km 2 ), half of which is water.
Marina “Mothers” Beach is man-made, with flat water and no waves, making it the best spot in So Cal to learn how to SUP (stand up paddleboard) or practice yoga on the water.
A popular filming destination for movies and TV shows over the last few decades, Marina del Rey can be viewed in scenes of Frank Sinatra in Assault on the Queen to Robert Dinero and Ben Stiller in Meet the Fockers and popular TV shows including Arrested Development, Modern Family and NCIS, to name a few.
The late Florence Henderson, famous for her role as the mother in popular TV show, The Brady Bunch, was an ardent sailor and member of the California Yacht Club; Henderson lived on her boat in Marina del Rey for many years.
"Marina del Rey" is a song recorded by American country music artist George Strait in which he recalls a past love affair that took place on the beaches of Marina del Rey.
LA's Marina is loved by Los Angeles locals who come to the Marina to enjoy recreation on the water and access to the coast. Whether spending time at "Mother's Beach", grabbing a bite to eat at a local waterfront restaurant, cycling along the 19.5-mile Marvin Braude bike trail, or simply enjoying fun activities on the water or free concerts and movies at the park, Marina del Rey is a welcoming urban waterfront playground enjoyed by Angelenos throughout the County!
SNAPSHOT OF LA COUNTY VISITORS:
• Majority come from households with 1-2 people and are in the Gen-X group (45-64).
• 36% Caucasian, 33% Hispanic, 13.5% Asian, 11% African American, and Other 5%. (In 2021, LA County's population was 49.1% Hispanic, 25.3% Caucasian, 16% Asian, 9% African American, 1.5% Other. Source: 2021 Census)
• Annual household income (HHI) for 41% of local visitors is under 50K.
• 62% have no degree. 38% have a Bachelor’s degree or higher.
• The top drive markets visiting Marina del Rey are LA County, Orange County, Ventura County, San Bernadino County, and Riverside County.
*Source: Marina del Rey Tourism Board
Marina del Rey is governed and serviced by the County of Los Angeles and rests under the management of the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches & Harbors. Citizens are represented by their elected local Supervisor to the Second District of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.
Stay up to date on where to eat, play, and stay in Marina del Rey. The Marina del Rey Tourism Board is the official Destination Marketing Organization for Marina del Rey and provides the community and visitors with resources and information on events and activities happening in Marina del Rey as well as a comprehensive list of restaurants, hotels, yacht charters, and event venues. For more information, please go to www.VisitMdR.com.