California’s Santa Monica has a team of colourful individuals who work behind the scenes to keep the wheels of this chic little city by the sea turning. Tourism in the area supports nearly 12,000 jobs so everyone’s contribution – from the beach groomers to the mixologists – make a vital contribution to the city’s mystique and prestige. Here’s a snapshot of just some of these everyday heroes.
Perry’s Café Co-owner, Richard Chacker – Richard likes to think he is a host to everyone that comes down to the beach, with everything from food to beach rentals. One of the city’s premier residents, he loves how the beach is so close and central to the community in Santa Monica – it shows a slice of life in the area of LA, with everything from the arts, food and entertainment. It’s no chore for him to come to work and to meet and greet people – he considers himself an ambassador to Santa Monica. (So do we!).
Bartender at The Lobster, Mark Daviau – Mark enjoys the ‘great places, great people and great food’ of Santa Monica. Having lived in the area for over ten years, he enjoys chatting about the city to the customers who frequent The Lobster. It’s the social side to his job that he enjoys the most.
Bike Valet, Luis Morris – Luis is a transportation management specialist who supplies parking for visitors and residents bicycles all over the city. Santa Monica is an eight square mile city with 34 miles of bike lines – Luis says it is fantastic how visitors don’t have to hire a car in the area, they can simply hire a bike and park it for free. The part Luis likes most about his job is the love and respect from everyone in the community who use the initiative. We personally love the fact that most of the city is flat!
Aquarium Director of Santa Monica Pier Aquarium , Vicki Warwerchak – Vicki works hard on all aspects of the aquarium, everything from administration to going out and about to collect specimens for display. She thinks is great how the aquarium is an education – it shows people what is going on in their backyard (the Pacific Ocean!) At only USD2 for adults and kids under twelve free – it is a great educational adventure for all.
Owner, Santa Monica Power Yoga, Bryan Kest – ‘Santa Monica is the ultimate place to live and work. The air is clean, the people are nice, this place is buzzing with creative energy. Anything that you could need is a short walk aware and with ocean, mountains and a temperate climate what more could you want from where you live of work’.
Starline Tours, Philip – Philip helps organise hop on hop off service from Santa Monica to downtown LA, with drop offs in various popular destinations such as the pier and Montana Avenue, he is proud of Santa Monica and thinks it is the ultimate beach location!
Segway LA Associate, David Goldberg – David organises Segway transportation and tours to anyone that needs it, from tourists to businesses. Segway’s are the perfect transportation method in the city – you can experience everything in the city without taking an entire day – and it is really fun!
Travel Counsellor, Logan Lemberger – Logan’s job is to ensure every visitor to the city knows where to go and what to do. He is placed at one of four locations in the city and is responsible for helping everyone who passes by. He enjoys personalising his recommendations to each individual he chats to and working out what will make it their perfect trip!
Chef, FIG Restaurant, Ray Garcia– ‘As a chef, one of the best things about Santa Monica is its Farmers’ Markets. They are located throughout the city on varying days. My personal favourite is the Wednesday market on Arizona. It is a gathering spot where the city’s best chefs get inspiration from the country’s best farmers’.
Beach Groomer, Debra Billingsley – Debra is very enthusiastic about the city of Santa Monica, she lovingly takes her tractor onto the beach every morning to ensure the beach is clean and ‘groomed’. She is proud of the city of Santa Monica – it is one of the cleanest and most environmentally friendly cities.
Director of Marketing and Event Planning, Fred Segal Santa Monica, Kirsten Segal – ‘Living and working in Santa Monica is a dream come true. It is the combination of a laidback, yet innovative atmosphere which creates the perfect lifestyle full of excitement, relaxation and fun. Santa Monica makes me feel alive and yet I also feel a sense of tranquility – it is the perfect balance’.
Taxi Driver, Sandy Clair – Sandy works for environmentally conscious company Taxi! Taxi! He always asks visitors to the city what their plans are and where they are staying – he loves how Santa Monica has something for everyone, from a great beach, central location to having great food.
Trapeze School New York, Jonathan Conant– Jonathan is a trapeze instructor and also the owner of the company. He likes Santa Monica for its easy-going vibe – people respect the environment and they are always laughing and smiling. He sees his purpose as helping people have an unusual life experience to remember on the Santa Monica Pier, to encourage people to want to come back and bring their kids to the destination one day.
Downtown Walking Tours, Docent – Kay Pattison – Kay’s favourite part of the job is interacting with the people she is with. She thinks it is very important to experience the culture of Santa Monica, with its lovely community by the ocean, friendly people, wonderful restaurants and all of its various activities.
Steel Drummer, Desmond Bedlow – Desmond chose to play his steel drum on Santa Monica pier – he loves all the different cultures and nationalities he sees visit the pier each day. He enjoys making people smile with him when he places his drums and enjoy the fantastic view. He works hard to ‘spread the love’ with visitors!
Surf Instructor, Das Jesson, Islands Surf Camp – Das helps a lot of tourists learn how to surf in Santa Monica, he thinks it is a very memorable experience for them and something which is a strong part of the beach culture in the city.
To hear more about all the great personalities working behind the scenes in Santa Monica, visit their YouTube Channel.
Contributor: Ali Bedford
Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau is a client of Magellan PR. For more information, please visit www.santamonica.com , follow them on twitter @GoSantaMonica or on Facebook/visitsantamonica.
Magellan PR is on twitter: @MagellanPR / on Facebook: MagellanPR / on Pinterest: Sue Lowry / on Google+: Sue Lowry & MagellanPR and on Flickr: Sue Lowry. For more information on our company, visit www.magellan-pr.com. Follow our other blog focussing on travel in the South of England – A3 Traveller.