If you have driven around San Clemente
then you will notice the original 1920's historical San Clemente homes built in the quiant Spanish style. As an owner of a "Ole Hanson," a phrase used for someone who owns a historical home, I can tell you there is a lot of pride in owning one of these rare properties. The dream all started In 1925 when Ole Hanson purchased and designed a 2,000 acre community. Ole Hanson is considered to be the founder of San Clemente and hence the histrocial homes here in San Clemente are called after his name. Hanson believed that the area’s warm climate, beautiful beaches and fertile soil would serve as a haven to Californians who were tired of “the big city”. He named the City “San Clemente” after San Clemente Island which was named by the explorer Vizcaino in 1602 after Saint Clement, the patron saint of November 23, the day of Vizcaino’s arrival on the island.
Ole Hanson was a smooth negotiator and was able to sell the concept of "San Clemente" to numerous buyers. His pitch was to create a village, a "Spanish Village by the Sea" where all you would see is white stucco homes with red roofs built in the classic Spanish Colonial style. Most of the homes that were built in the 1920's here in San Clemente were simple single level homes but Ole Hanson did build several large two story homes. However, a lot of these homes were destroyed in the 1970's. San Clemente officially become a city in 1928 and hundred of "Ole Hanson" homes were built.
San Clemente is probably most well known for the Nixon San Clemente Ranch La Casa Pacifica which is often referred to as the "Western White House," a home originally owned H.H. Cotton, a democratic backer to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The home is located in the ultra-exclusive Cotton Pointe Estates behind the Cyprus Shore gated community in San Clemente. The home is privately owned now but most people associate San Clemente with Nixon's former San Clemente vacation residence. Today a lot of historical buildings still stand. The "Casino San Clemente" building on the north side of San Clemente has just recently opened after being closed for many years. It is located just steps to the pacific ocean and the Ole Hanson Beach Club and historic Miramar theater. It's great to see these historical buildings preserved and put back to modern use again.