Crystal Cove’s Cherished Tradition
It’s been called the California of yesteryear. Once a coastal ranchland, Crystal Cove State Beach is beautiful, pristine, virtually untouched and one of the most picturesque beaches in the area. It’s also an area highly treasured by locals mostly because of its unlikely survival.
In 1979, the area was sold to the State of California for preservation as a State Park. The colorful beachside cottages dotting Crystal Cove were listed in the National Register of Historic Places, and residents were given a 22-year countdown before they would have to vacate. But rather than retain the cottages as part of the areas history, California awarded a private developer rights to turn the historic cottages into a high-end, luxury resort.
Long time residents were outraged and resisted the plan. One such resident, Laura Davick proposed an alternative plan that would keep Crystal Cove’s cottages completely intact. Rather than a resort, Davick pushed to turn the cottages into overnight rentals and educational facilities. Davick took her cause to Sacramento, and won, and thankfully so, as this is the only reason why today Crystal Cove remains largely unchanged.
In keeping with the history of Crystal Cove, the area has continued a long-standing tradition dating back to the 1940’s and first started by one Crystal Cove’s locals, Doc Shearer. Every Saturday at four o’clock Shearer gathered a group around the flagpole outside his cabana. Everyone stood and saluted as Doc blew reveille on his bugle and raised the flag his wife, Babe had sewn, a simple black flag bearing the outline of a martini glass. That tradition continues today, only now the flag is raised each evening at five, and is known as the raising of the martini flag!
Visit Newport Beach invites you to join the fun of this tradition at this year’s IMEX. Contact us to make an appointment or stop by booth 528. Come for a drink, and toast to the abundant offerings our destination has for your next group program. We look forward to sharing a bit of our iconic history and raising the martini flag with you.