South Pasadena

South Pasadena is a picturesque neighborhood located about six miles from Downtown Los Angeles.

Welcome to South Pasadena

A highly desirable suburb in the San Gabriel Valley with a rich history and small-town charm

South Pasadena is a picturesque neighborhood located about six miles from Downtown Los Angeles. The city spreads out over just 3.44 square miles of flatlands and hillsides on the western side of the San Gabriel Valley. Nicknamed The City of Trees, it is renowned for its beautiful green spaces teeming with over 21,000 trees. More than 100 acres of parks and playgrounds dot the terrain. Intricate architecture, eclectic local shops, and excellent educational opportunities are all found here. South Pasadena is one of the most popular places to live in California because of its charming small-town vibe.

South Pasadena is a historical treasure trove and one of Los Angeles's earliest suburbs, founded in 1888. The calm, historic character of its appealing communities attests to local efforts to preserve its architectural and environmental beauty. Despite its rich history, modern-day South Pasadena is home to a thriving arts community, great eateries, and a wide variety of shopping opportunities.

South Pasadena's neighborhoods, vegetation, and architecture have a traditional American aesthetic, which has made it a favorite stand-in for Midwestern and Northeastern communities in film, television, and commercial projects. The Terminator, Halloween, Gone with the Wind, Legally Blonde, and Back to the Future are some famous films filmed in South Pasadena.

What to Love

  • Gorgeous vistas
  • Proximity to Downtown LA
  • Mission Street
  • Home to a Gold Line Metro Stop
  • Tight-knit community

Local Lifestyle

Affluent and close-knit, South Pasadena is a wonderful place to live. It is the perfect place for anyone who values an active on-the-go lifestyle. The city has over 90 acres of parks. In addition, there are tennis courts, a children's playground, and several barbecue pits. 

South Pasadena is unrivaled when it comes to educational opportunities. Each of its three elementary schools has been recognized as a California Distinguished School, and the high school and middle school have also been awarded the California Gold Ribbon.

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

Many of South Pasadena's unique shops, eateries, and galleries can be found on and around Mission Street. One particular favorite is Adobe Design, whose small yet character-filled shop offers a carefully curated selection of gifts, homemade goods, and more. 

In addition to being a South Pasadena mainstay for decades, Hi-Life Burgers' brand-new patio has made it a top contender for the best dining spots in the neighborhood. Many locals consider their breakfast sandwiches and burritos the greatest in town.

Head to Gus's BBQ for South Pasadena’s most flavorful barbeque. Everything, from the rubs to the sauces, is created from scratch daily, and the meats are seasoned overnight and smoked over whole pecan logs to perfection. The outcome is delicious mouthwatering food.

Other notable eateries include Piccolo, Mike & Anne's, Twohey's Restaurant, Bistro De La Gare, Café X2O, Communal Food and Drink, and Fiore Market Café. 

Things to Do

On Thursdays, from 4 to 8 p.m., you can visit the South Pasadena Farmer’s Market. This walkable marketplace not far from Orange Grove Park features numerous vendors selling local wares and products, from fresh fruit and vegetables to flowers, cheese, honey, farm-fresh eggs, and more. 

The South Pasadena Public Library is a true classic regarding community hotspots in Los Angeles County. It is warm and quiet, with plenty of seating, making it a great place to study or read a good book. There is even an outdoor patio with chairs and tables where you can work on your laptop or read.

The tranquility and natural beauty of Garfield Park make it a favorite destination for both locals and tourists. Its garden spots, tennis courts, playground, and paved walking trails provide plenty of fun. However, there are plenty of other places to stay active in and around town, such as Arroyo Seco Park, which has 22 miles of trails and several recreational opportunities.

Arroyo Seco Golf Course is a public, 18-hole golf course. A line of trees separates the 18-hole course from surrounding communities. The immaculately manicured course is lit until 10 p.m. and remains open late. In addition to the executive course, Arroyo Seco offers a nine-hole miniature golf course ideal for families and features a famous signature hole with a rotating Dutch windmill. 

The South Pasadena Arts Crawl is an annual summer event that benefits the city's creative community and small businesses. There is live entertainment, food trucks, and activities for the whole family. The event also features vendors selling jewelry, paintings, baked goods, and more.


South Pasadena falls under the South Pasadena Unified School District. Top schools in this area include:

  • Arroyo Vista Elementary School, Grades K-5
  • Marengo Elementary School, Grades K-5
  • Monterey Hills Elementary School, Grades K-5
  • South Pasadena Middle School, Grades 6-8
  • South Pasadena Senior High School, Grades 9-12
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