National Geographic ranked Santa Monica as one of the “Top Ten Beach Cities in the World” – putting Santa Monica in a class with Barcelona, Sydney and Rio de Janerio. Santa Monica is also known for its iconic pier and ferris wheel that lights up the sky at nights. In addition to being a well known beachside city, in recent years, a wave of tech and Internet start-up companies have ventured into town, earning Santa Monica the nickname of ‘Silicon Beach’. It’s home to tech companies like Facebook, Google, Yahoo!, Snapchat and YouTube. As for your neighbors, you can expect to find a good mix of a people, consisting of students, families, tech and industry people.