In 1827, Don Dolores Sepulveda received an original land grant to Rancho de los Palos Verdes that supported several thousand heads of cattle and a flourishing hacienda. In 1913, the founding father of the Peninsula, Frank Vanderlip, bought the 16,000-acre Palos Verdes Peninsula and embarked on a grand vision to develop the "Palos Verdes Project" into the most fashionable and exclusive residential colony in the nation. The first homes appeared in the region in 1924, two years before the historic Point Vicente Lighthouse was built.
Then, nearly 30 years later, Marineland of the Pacific opened in Palos Verdes in 1954. Marineland was the world's largest oceanarium, featuring sea life, entertainment, and research facilities. Opening one year before Disneyland, many consider Marineland to be California's first major theme park, and it remained a major attraction to the area until it closed in 1987.
One of the guiding principles in the creation of Terranea was to weave it into the cultural, historical and social fabric of the Peninsula. In addition to embracing the classic Mediterranean architecture that defines the area, the Palos Verdes resort pays homage to the rich heritage of the site through the names of many amenities, such as The Catalina Room, Marineland Ballroom and The Vanderlip Suite. Nelson's was named after Mike Nelson - the character played by Lloyd Bridges in the television series Sea Hunt, which was filmed at Marineland in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Rancho Palos Verdes takes its name from Cañada de Palos Verdes, or "canyon of green trees," and was originally inhabited by the Gabrielino-Tongva Tribe.
Years later, the land would pass to a consortium of New York investors led by Frank A. Vanderlip, by way of Don Dolores Sepulveda. Vanderlip built the first homes on the land in 1924 with a plan for a magnificent Italian village that would hug the coast.
Lowe Enterprises became involved with the 102-acre Palos Verdes resort in 1998 and thus began a 10-year development project which has now become a Southern California luxury resort of choice, Terranea Resort.