Long Beach is California's fifth largest city. Founded in 1880 and incorporated in 1888, Long Beach is one of the most unique cities in America. At the turn of the last century, the city had already established itself as a major tourist destination, its large amusement park known as The Pike, drew thousands of visitors each year. New residents poured in, making the city the fastest growing in the nation from 1902 to 1910.
After the discovery of vast oil pockets in the city, a million-dollar-per-month building boom began which included the city's first high-rises. Many tall buildings (including the second tallest in LA County at the time) dotted the skyline. The boom ended in 1933, year of the Long Beach earthquake, which claimed many lives and caused major destruction. The city rebuilt in the art-deco style, creating a bohemian feel downtown.
Today, Long Beach is enjoying a renaissance with new towers that have dramatically altered the skyline. The city boasts five miles of sandy beaches with a new aquarium and a large convention center that drives toursim.