Palos Verdes’ Neighborhood Church is one of the most historic buildings located here on the Peninsula. With it’s beautiful Mediterranean charm, it’s history extends through decades. It originally was built by businessman JJ Haggarity in 1927, as a summer residence since he owned homes in Los Angeles and New york. He hired an Italian architect who was inspired by Villas along the Mediterranean, and the property was built at a cost of $750,000. The original property consisted of formal gardens (where west side parking lot sits) green house behind the cottage, a reflecting pool, swimming pool, bath house and a 30 foot thick sea wall. He also brought in fully grown olive and palm trees. However, later Haggarty had to sell the property because of hard times. It was at that time that financier Harry Wheeler purchased the property to hold his art collection. Once again due to finances and after years of this property sitting there on the cliffside, he put the property on the market in 1949 for $250,000, and it sat there for years as a white elephant.
During this time a group of mothers had been holding bible class at Malaga Cove School since 1937 because there was no church in the area. They approached the owners of the property since they were in need of a larger facility, and in 1961 they were able to purchase the church for $60,000, thus later becoming the United Church of Christ which the Neighborhood Church still follows to this day.
The holiday season is a great time to take advantage of viewing this beautiful property. Starting December 1 & 2, 2017, they will be presenting their 61st Annual Yule Parlor which consists of an afternoon tea, holiday music and shopping in their boutiques with home made goodies and collectibles. The cost for the tea is $25, and takes place from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The Christmas Pagaent takes place on Sunday, December 10, 2017, at 5:30 & 7:30. This is a wonderful opportunity for residents to enjoy an evening together watching children and adults performing in various scenes which depict the story of the First Christmas (including live animals). The prelude is set in the sanctuary of this beautifully decorated historic Church which overlooks the ocean.This is a free event and open to the public.
The Neighborhood Church is located at 415 Passeo del Mar, Palos Verdes Estates, Ca. 90274
Photo courtesy of the Neighborhood Church.