That’s the boardwalk
Santa Cruz is a lovely place, famous for its boardwalk, its gritty street life (it is the Bay Area bookend to San Francisco after all), its surfing (Steamer Lane and the Surfing Museum) and of course UCSC whose mascot is the banana slug.
makeshift memorials at Steamer Lane
The history of Santa Cruz begins of course with a mission, and indeed Santa Cruz has the oldest surviving building from a mission, although it is NOT the mission church.
But what always strikes me in Santa Cruz are the Victorian homes. The place is lousy with them and there are several landmark districts.
This Second Empire just down from the mission is one of the classics, but the modest ones create a wonderful streetscape….
Of course, many have new uses, like Dr. Miller’s, which would be the epitome of hipsterdom if the world were ironic enough to allow such to exist:
And this awesome 1880 Italianate that sells vaping supplies (It’s Santa Cruz!)
I guess flowers too. Anything green. Or green-like.
And of course B & Bs…
The beachfront, which is obviously primo property, also features many Victorians, although I sometimes have to look twice to see what is actually 120 years old and what is a modern addition or detail. Can you spot these below?
This one is a little easier because you can see the concrete foundation – the whole left half is modern. That precious turret is a bit harder to figure, though.
Ah, and the classic garage underneath – this is actually a Bay Area-wide phenomenon, seen in the Italianates of San Francisco, the Shingles of Berkeley, and every post-1900 rowhouse you can find
I will finish with this little church, one of several from the era. Why do they always have two doors? I mean, if it were a Quaker meeting house from the 18th century in Southern New Jersey I could see it, but….