Your Destination Guide to Los Angeles

Destination Guide LA - Your Destination Guide to Los Angeles, CA

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Aptly named the "City of Roses" by many Southern California natives, this satellite city is the 6th largest city in Los Angeles County and the main cultural center of the San Gabriel Valley. Officially incorporated in 1886, Pasadena was originally part of the Mexican land grant named Ranch del Rincon de San Pascual, which comprised the lands of today's current Pasadena, Altadena, and South Pasadena communities.

Roughly 10 miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles, Pasadena is home today to many scientific and cultural institutions including the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is the leading robotics and spacecraft design center for NASA, the Art Center College of Design, which has been consistently ranked as one of the top five art schools in the United States, the famed Pasadena Playhouse, California School of Culinary Arts Pasadena, Fuller Theological Seminary, which is one of the largest multi-denominational seminaries in the world, and the Norton Simon Museum of Art.

Pasadena is also world-famous for hosting the annual college Rose Bowl football game, America's oldest bowl game, as well as the accompanying Tournament of Roses Parade (Rose Parade), both of which are held on New Year's Day and considered "America's New Year Celebration." One of the city's main freeways, the Pasadena Freeway (SR 110) was the first freeway in California, connecting Los Angeles with Pasadena alongside the Arroyo Seco and providing primary access to downtown Los Angeles.

Pasadena also hosts a strong performing and visual arts presence, with world-class annual performances by the Pasadena Symphony at the Pasadena Civic Center, and seasonal performances by the residential Furious Theatre Company at the Pasadena Playhouse. Historically, the California Philharmonic also performs two series in Pasadena in the Ambassador Auditorium at Marantha High School overlooking the world-famous Rose Bowl.

The city also boasts world-class shopping, specifically in the revitalized old downtown Pasadena district that spans 21 blocks and provides an upscale variety of boutiques, retail shops, restaurants, nightclubs, outdoor cafes, and pubs. There is also an impressive upscale shopping mall called Paseo Colorado, and the treasure-laden Rose Bowl Flea Market, which has been held every Sunday of the month since 1967.

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