Storms Unveil Vintage Shipwreck On California Beach

8 years ago

What was once called “the world’s greatest pleasure ship”, the Monte Carlo was the largest of a fleet of ships making up “Gambling Ship Row” that dotted the map between San Diego, Long Beach and Santa Monica. Starting her life as an oil tanker, she could later host around 15,000 people every week for evening filled with dining, drinking and all the best partying stuff for it’s age.

Monte Carlo’s owners unveiled their flagship at the best timing too, during the 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games. Along with two other gambling ships, the fleet of three brought in a whopping $3 million a year.

She came to a literal crashing halt in 1937. Monte Carlo was anchored 3 miles off Coronado Beach in San Diego, when during a storm on New Year's Day in 1937 the anchor lost its hold and the ship drifted onto the beach. Only two caretakers were on board at the time, and they had to brace the storm alone. Eventually, the ship came loose from her moorings three miles offshore and crashed into the beach, in front of what is now the Coronado Shores condos.

Because of the illegal activities that took place on the Monte Carlo, no one wanted to bother by claiming ownership and the ship was grounded for good. Today, some believe there is still treasure hidden inside the wreckage.

Thanks to storms and large surf, the “SS Monte Carlo” shipwreck is once again exposed at Coronado Beach! Not normally as visible, the wreckage can currently be seen at low tide until the surf slowly covers it with sand once again.

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