It is the home of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, where important Tennis players are commemorated, and several mansions dating back to the Gilded Age, including Belcourt Castle, The Breakers, Rosecliff, Marble House and The Elms.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.7 km² (11.5 mi²). 20.6 km² (7.9 mi²) of it is land and 9.2 km² (3.5 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 30.86% water.

There are 11,566 households out of which 22.9% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.3% are married couples living together, 13.6% have a female householder with no husband present, and 51.2% are non-families. 39.4% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.9% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.11 and the average family size is 2.86.

In the city the population is spread out with 19.6% under the age of 18, 14.6% from 18 to 24, 31.5% from 25 to 44, 21.4% from 45 to 64, and 12.9% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 35 years. For every 100 females there are 92.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 90.9 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $40,669, and the median income for a family is $54,116. Males have a median income of $37,780 versus $27,492 for females. The per capita income for the city is $25,441. 14.4% of the population and 12.9% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 23.8% are under the age of 18 and 8.3% are 65 or older.