Capitola is a city in Santa Cruz County, California, United States, on the coast of Monterey Bay. The population was 10,033 at the 2000 census. Founded as "Camp Capitola" by Samuel A. Hall in 1874, Capitola was named for the heroine of The Hidden Hand, a novel by the popular author E.D.E.N. Southworth, favored by Hall's daughter Lulu. Capitola is known as the oldest beach resort on the West Coast. Capitola is a popular tourist town because of its trendy shops and restaurants on the shore directly connecting to a fishing wharf and its large, sandy beach. Capitola lies west of the census-designated area of Aptos and east of the census-designated place of Live Oak.