Just 21 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, you find a pleasant neighborhood characterized by convenience and warm, family living. Part of the San Gabriel Valley, West Covina sits alongside Interstate 10 where you pass two major shopping centers, numerous restaurants and retail areas. Residents enjoy the strong sense of community within the small city, finding everything they need locally. Even with its sister-city, Covina, lying just east, West Covina distinguishes itself with practical qualities all its own.
Driving through the residential streets, the houses may be small but each season you see festive decor adorning porches and roof tops. Children walk to school without a care, while weekends bring families out in scores for energetic soccer games, shopping and crowded gatherings at the best dining spots.
In a city with its own Walk of Fame, which honors local athletes, coaches and sport volunteers, you see that as West Covina grows, the community bond only strengthens with time.
Restaurants & Nightlife
With so many dining selections in West Covina, it's easy to choose a different restaurant for every day of the week. From the best mom-and-pop diners for pancakes after a little league game, to the hottest spots for loud music and ethnic dinners, you can find it all in this neighborhood. For over half a century, the family-owned Capri Deli has been serving up the area's best pasta, pizza, salads and sandwiches. Try the Feeney Pepperoncini salad piled high with chicken breast, Parmesan, lettuce, olives, pepperoncinis and roasted sesame seeds, topped off with the restaurant's own recipe of Italian dressing. Capri Deli also caters local events.
Don't let the name fool you. Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar won't make your taste buds yawn. This Asian Fusion hot spot combines the best of three worlds: incredible food, an electric social environment and a pet-friendly atmosphere. Sit outside with your pup, and enjoy the spinach and sun-dried tomato cheese dip. For dinner, try the barbecue chicken pizza or soy ginger salmon with a coconut mojito.
When night falls over the San Gabriel Mountains, party-goers head to 3 Vino's in Covina. If you saved your appetite, you can order a plate of Ropa Vieja from the Cuban fare, or jump right in with the live salsa band. The crowd consists of the young and trendy, favoring the DJ's igniting mix of freestyle, house music and Latin tunes for a long night of dancing. A popular bar for no cover charge and drinks served quickly, 3 Vino's serves as a neighborhood staple for sizzling entertainment.
Known as a city with something for everybody, families and easy-goers have a great choice for night-time outings in West Covina. Ask anyone about the best place for dessert and they direct you to The Ice Bar on Glendora Avenue. With delectable treats such as the Korean pear blueberry popsicle and Horchata ice cream, this dessert parlor stands out as one-of-a-kind. The Ice Bar lets you choose your ice pop or ice cream, then flavor and style it however you please. This place can't be missed on any visit to West Covina.
History & Culture
In 1923, West Covina incorporated to form a city separate from Covina. A total of 507 residents joined forces to prevent Covina from plotting a sewage farm on their land. Over the years, orange and walnut groves flourished throughout West Covina. After World War II, the area became the fastest-growing city in America.
The late 20th century showed tremendous growth as the City Hall, Los Angeles County Regional Library and Citrus Municipal Court buildings arose. Retail later boomed when The Plaza at West Covina and Eastland Shopping Center joined the neighborhood.
While the city holds cultural diversity common to Southern California, the area remains largely Hispanic, adding to its warm sense of community. Every December, residents gather at the Plaza West Covina for the holiday tree-lighting ceremony, and to celebrate literature, the L.A. County Library hosts a summertime outdoor book fair. The Hurst Ranch Historical Center remains a treasured museum.
In West Covina, residents use a combination of driving, walking and public transportation to get around. With convenient access to several major freeways, including Interstates 10 and 210 as well as state route 60, travel is simple. Southern California's Metrolink rail service carries many commuters, with the Covina Metrolink station close by. Metro's Silver Streak bus takes passengers from West Covina to downtown Los Angeles, stopping at several key locations: California State University, Los Angeles, University of Southern California Medical Center, and Union Station.
While taxis and Uber service the area, they are less common forms of transporation. Drivers find ample complimentary parking, especially in the retail areas. To make commuting simple, feel free to bike or walk safely in West Covina neighborhoods, but use caution on the busier thoroughfares without bike lanes. Locals frequently take their bikes on the Metro buses, where they provide convenient bike racks for commuters.
For a city with so many amenities, West Covina is very affordable for Southern California living. Since the average one-bedroom apartment costs $1,154.51 a month, you get a significant amount for your money. Drivers pay only about 3 percent above the national average for gas while a beer at a West Covina bar costs about $5.
A great benefit of living in West Covin is that residents enjoy close access to Los Angeles for those who crave the fast L.A. pace. By comparison, a one-bedroom apartment in downtown Los Angeles runs close to $1500. Along with the lower housing costs, residents of West Covina have a number of options for grocery shopping not found in Greater L.A. Locals frequently visit Hispanic markets for an amazing selection of fresh produce and low-cost groceries.
West Covina shoppers head to two main malls, located only 3 miles apart. The Eastland Center lies east of the Plaza West Covina and provides unmatched choices at its outdoor complex. Craft-lovers find inspiring treasures at Hobby Lobby, which is located near Target and Ashley Furniture. Stores like Ulta and Pier 1 Imports sit close by. Clothing mavens flock to Marshall's and Burlington Coat Factory while shoe fanatics indulge at DSW. Looking for trendy bargains? Check out Styles4Less, where you find the latest jeans, tops and cool accessories at low costs.
For a mix of unique shopping options, drive over to the Plaza West Covina. Here, you see popular favorites, such as Victoria's Secret and Forever 21, coupled with a few intriguing stores. Besides having a Best Buy at the indoor mall, you find a body jewelry kiosk and Amapola Deli & Market near the children's play land. This full-scale market features farm-fresh produce you don't want to pass up. Upstairs, shopping favorite Nordstrom Rack features luxurious designer clothing, such as Joe's jeans and Vince Camuto handbags at slashed prices - a perfect stop for the shopper with rich taste and a wise budget.
Being family-centered, West Covina gives vast choices for discounted grocery shopping. Nearby Hispanic supermarkets include, Superior, Vallarta, Northgate Gonzalez Markets and Baja Ranch Market. Shoppers may also stop in to Von's or Albertson's, or visit the Saturday farmer's market on Glendora Avenue.
With 42 acres, the Galster Wilderness Park sits on the north slope of the San Jose Hills on Aroma Avenue. A distinct venue for its rustic landscape, Galster is alive with native plant communities. This park attracts residents and visitors to its walking trails, nature center and peaceful atmosphere. Joggers can run in peace while groups may utilize the picnic shelters, barbecues and children's play area. Local baseball leagues enjoy annual tournaments on the field.
The West Covina Equestrian Center provides equestrian enthusiasts with a memorable experience in a calm setting. Grab a seat under the shaded bleachers or at one of the picnic areas, and enjoy a magnificent horse show. Located against the backdrop of the San Gabriel Mountains, this West Covina Park draws families and individuals out for a long, relaxing day of pristine beauty. Leave your dogs at home, but gladly bring children for free public entrance. Charges only apply for show participants, and you find restrooms and parking readily available.