Cottage #23 – La Casita del Mar

Perched amongst seaside cliffs along the north beach is Cottage #23, often referred to as La Casita del Mar. Christine Shirley, who purchased the cottage back in 1967, was the last resident to stay in this cottage and was among a group of passionate Coveites instrumental in getting Crystal Cove listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Built in 1932, Cottage #23’s total lack of insulation sometimes made for a challenging seaside living experience. Warm days hovered around the 80s and 90s, and on chilly nights, the living room’s fireplace made it the place to be.

Today, Cottage #23 is one of a handful of cottages waiting to be restored. Crystal Cove Alliance and California State Parks are currently working on restoration plans and permitting for the final 17 cottages along the north beach. The projected $26 million dollar project will mark the culminating achievement that CCA has been striving towards for the past 16 years. As with all major endeavors at Crystal Cove, the timing of the project will be driven by the success of CCA’s fundraising initiatives.

If you’re interested in becoming a part of a special community devoted to preserving the historical and cultural assets of Crystal Cove, we invite you to make a donation today or sign up to become a CCA member. Donations can be made in any amount and are completely tax-deductible.

Then: La Casita del Mar (white cottage on the right) in the early days of Crystal Cove
Photo courtesy of: Douglas Miller
Now: Cottage #23 awaiting a new lease on life


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