"It’s the last bastion against Los Angeles! You know shit’s getting real in California when we summon up the bogeyman of Los Angeles."
The Canadian film director and deep sea explorer James Cameron is tossing the keys to his beachfront joint at The Ranch for thirty-three mill, saying he and his fifth wife spend most of the year in New Zealand so the joint is redundant etc.
Called Tranquility Base, Cameron bought 89 Hollister Ranch Road, Gaviota, in 1999 for a little over four mill. The parcel sprawls over 102 acres and includes an 8000 square-foot main house, 2000 square-foot guest house, two barns (one in which Cameron used to keep his helicopter), a tennis court and a divine swimming pool.
In the upstairs library, the Oscar-winning writer and director wrote a movie about blue lizard people called Avatar (Didn’t see, was it good or silly?), which eventually spawned a total of five movies thereby edging Cameron even close to billionaire status. (Currently he’s sitting on around 800 mill.)
“Other features of this exceptional offering include a solar power system, wind generator, theater, and a spacious gym. Tranquility Base is mere steps from Drake’s Beach and miles of the beautiful ‘Hollister Ranch Shoreline Preserve,’ with its world class surfing waves, fishing, diving, paddling, beach combing, and abundant ocean-related activities. For those who love horses, one can ride their horse directly to the beach and up the coastline, all while experiencing the natural beauty of the landscape and also the common area of approximately 125 miles of roads & trails Hollister Ranch offers.
“Developed with self-sufficiency and sustainability in mind, this property is solar powered with ample energy storage. Southern California Edison is available, if desired. There are sumptuous vegetable gardens and an assortment of numerous varieties of fruit trees.”
The big issue is that private beaches exist at all in a state that, decades ago, mandated “maximum public access” to California’s entire 840-mile coastline. Not helping things are all the fence-sitting surfers, like me, who have forever both-sided the public-private debate when it comes to the Ranch—everybody doing the same mental gymnastics, which is basically a version of how do I get in there while everybody else is locked out and not feel like an asshole. Which of course is where the “conservation” part comes into play—the Ranch is the last piece of undeveloped Southern California coast and must be preserved at all costs—and I won’t change anybody’s mind here by saying it, but I myself am giving up on this line of nonsense.
Open up the Ranch. Limit access, charge a fee, patrol the beaches—whatever has to happen in order to limit or mitigate the environmental wear and tear that comes with allowing people in.
But enough stalling. Let people in.
There will be more mess, and possibly some environmental damage.
But that’s us, that’s our low-budget democracy, and even if trashcans overflow at the end of the weekend or if some big-truck assholes go offroading now and then, that is so much better than fantasizing about Vahalla over the hill and behind the gate, and there you are stuck on the wrong side without a key.
All your arguments about keeping Hollister Ranch private make you sound like elitist assholes. There. I said it. I said that whole thing in my outside voice. I will probably get punched in the face at the coffee shop tomorrow. Live dangerously, is a thing I always say.
It’s the last bastion against Los Angeles! You know shit’s getting real in California when we summon up the bogeyman of Los Angeles. The Ranch will become another Trestles! Or Rincon! Filled with kooks!
Just listen to yourselves. Omg! Other surfers like me might surf where I want to surf! I mean, I hate the kooks as much as you do, but really, you are losing your minds here.