Dana Point is a city located in southern Orange County, California. The population was 33,351 at the 2010 census. It has one of the few harbors along the Orange County coast, and with ready access via State Route 1, it is a popular local destination for surfing.
The city was named after the headland of Dana Point, which was in turn named after Richard Henry Dana, Jr., author of Two Years Before the Mast , which included a description of the area. Dana described the locale, including neighboring San Juan Capistrano, as "the only romantic spot on the coast".  Although Dana described the anchorage as poor, it is now a developed harbor and contains a replica of his ship, the Pilgrim . The Pilgrim is used as a classroom by the Ocean Institute, which is located at the harbor. This area is designated California Historical Landmark #189. 
Dana Point was a popular port for ships involved with the hide trade with nearby Mission San Juan Capistrano, with trading reaching its peak in the 1830s and 1840s. In 1818, Argentine sailor Hippolyte de Bouchard anchored here while conducting his raid on the mission. Richard Henry Dana then visited the area in 1835 while serving aboard the sailing brig Pilgrim on their voyage along the California coastline. 
In 1923, Los Angeles Times publisher Harry Chandler and General M.H. Sherman, director of the Pacific Electric Railway Company, created a major real estate group to develop what is known today as the Hollywood Hills. Sidney H. Woodruff, already a prominent Los Angeles homebuilder, was hired to lead the project. In 1926, Woodruff, Chandler and Sherman created the Dana Point Syndicate. They invited other heavy hitters, company presidents, movie producers and real estate investors to join them in purchasing 1,388 acres (5.6 km2) of land, some of which includes the "Headlands" of today. Promising tree-lined and paved streets, electricity, telephones, sidewalks, water mains, storm drains, sewers and other amenities, Woodruff built 35 homes and a number of commercial buildings.
Most of these "Woodruff" houses are concentrated in a Dana Point's historic core, also called Lantern Village (currently about 12,000 residents). The streets are named after the different colored lanterns, street of the Violet Lantern, Blue Lantern, etc. (colored lanterns were used by ships 200 years ago to advertise their fares when pulled into the Dana Point natural harbor).[ citation needed ] His crowning structure was to be the Dana Point Inn, a Mediterranean-like resort hotel. After a celebratory groundbreaking in 1930, a three-story foundation was poured and a 135-foot (41 m) elevator shaft was dug. However, the Great Depression caused construction to halt. Although Woodruff continuously sought financial support through the years, this project was abandoned in 1939. Subsequently, he sold the remaining holdings of the Dana Point Syndicate. Thirty-four of the original Woodruff residences are still occupied.
Dana Point Harbor
The Harbor is home to a Marina, shops and restaurants and is a point of departure for the Catalina Express, a transportation service to and from the City of Avalon on Catalina Island. The entire harbor of Dana Point, including the Embarcadero Marina shops and restaurants are set for complete demolition and redevelopment. The current vintage nautical style is being abandoned for a Tech Minimalist concept utilizing metal roofs as well as Minimalist landscaping.