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Tim Brown
Tim Brown

By San Clemente Councilman Tim Brown

With a projected opening coming in June of this year, the newly renovated Ole Hanson Beach Club will once again be available for our community’s enjoyment. Originally constructed in 1928 and given to the city by founder Ole Hanson, it experienced tremendous wear and tear over the years and needed an investment of time and money that was worthy of such a historic asset. It was an unprecedented project in our city’s history, but upon completion it will contribute to the ongoing enrichment of the North Beach area, bringing charm and historic character.

From the onset, the city conducted extensive public outreach, engaging groups such as the San Clemente Historical Society and North Beach Community Association to ensure the integrity of the historic architecture and the preservation of the area. This effort included selecting an architect with experience in historic restoration.

However, during construction, the city encountered a number of unforeseen conditions. Complications arose, such as finding two slabs atop one another that required a re-design, demolition and a new foundation to be poured, as well as a second pool found under the existing pool requiring additional efforts and costs for the proposed piping system under the pool. The city also discovered significant water damage and dry rot throughout the structure, which required replacement and design. In addition, contractors identified construction methods utilized in the past that are no longer acceptable and in need of correction and retrofit. These complications and other factors resulted in a construction timeline far longer than anticipated and a rehabilitation cost higher than expected.

Once completed, this project will improve the appearance, functionality and safety of the Ole Hanson Beach Club. To meet the Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, an elevator has been added so that all will be able to enjoy this treasured public resource. Major improvements have been made to the structural integrity of the building that are essential for its long-term health (foundation, framing, waterproofing etc.) The renovated facility will have a repaired and newly accessible second-floor balcony on the north side of the building, new stucco along the ground floor, restored historic features including replaced windows and repaired tile, an optimized floor plan, air conditioning and new landscaping throughout the grounds using recycled water.

Stay tuned for news of a grand opening later this spring, as the Ole Hanson Beach Club will be back in business and ready for another 88 years of service to our community!

I’d like to hear your comments on this subject or others and can be reached at

Tim Brown is a San Clemente City Councilman who was elected in 2010 and reelected in 2014. He served as mayor in 2014.

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comments (4)

  • Thanks for the helpful update Tim.

  • and not one square foot added for a building built for 1500 people not 70,000 or cost saving things like non wood windows . The historical society is a society we cant afford and effects health and safety threw out our community it has become wasteful selfish and mean up next decadent sidewalks and HS law suit against tax payers

    • @George Gregory: We love our Spanish Village by the Sea. History, like Ole Hanson Beach Club and places like it, are a important part. The history and character of the city is what makes San Clemente stand apart from other newer communities. San Juan Capistrano shares this in common with us. For people that do not value this it might be best to look towards Aliso Viejo or Irvine for the kind of modernization they seek.

  • We are moving to San Clemente in the late Spring from LA and are very much looking forward to a smaller town in terms of feel, livability and quality of life. Having lived inland (Eagle Rock) for the past seven years, we’ve really missed the beach lifestyle.

    This will be a first to live down in the OC, but we’re very excited and the charm and history of San Clemente is what attracted us. It’s great to restore the beach building – and as one commenter said, it would be nice to have expanded it, so that more folks in the community can take advantage of it’s services, but I’m sure there are plenty of other venues?

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