Where Is The Young And The Restless' Genoa City?

"The Young and the Restless" takes place in a fictitious version of a real place called Genoa City. Longtime fans might remember that much of the midwestern town was a middle-class industrial area back when the show first began, but the bustling metropolis is now a hub of international business (via Fandom). Prominent family companies such as Newman Enterprises, Chancellor Industries, Jabot Cosmetics, and the Hamilton-Winters Group are all headquartered within Genoa City and employ many of its residents. Due to the successful business ventures of the companies' founders, there are many wealthy people who call this place home, including billionaires such as rivals Victor Newman and Jack Abbott, as well as Devon Hamilton who inherited a fortune from his grandmother, the late Katherine Chancellor.

Additionally, the city is home to a prestigious hospital, a university, and even an international airport — as any destination locale would. It also boasts many high-end tourist attractions and nightlife options such as the Genoa City Hotel and Genoa City Athletic Club, along with several nightclubs and restaurants — though the locals seem to favor one in particular. The city also has a large focus on the music industry, as it was formerly the home of rock star Daniel Romalotti, and continues to support up-and-coming stars. This all sounds like it would be suited to a major U.S. city such as New York or Los Angeles, doesn't it? In fact, the fictional Genoa City couldn't be more different than the real place it was named after. 

The real Genoa City is far more rural than its TV counterpart

Both the fictional and real Genoa City are located in Kenosha County in the midwestern state of Wisconsin, not far from Chicago, Illinois. "The Young and the Restless" creators Bill and Lee Phillip Bell had a vacation home in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and often drove through the small village of Genoa City to get there (via Chicago Tribune). In 1973, the couple decided to give a nod to the area by passing the name onto their newly created soap city and imagining it turned into a national hot spot.

However, despite the impression it gives on-screen, the real Genoa City only had a population of 5,298 as of the 2020 census. It's also quite rural — the nearest highway is located 15 miles out of town. According to the town's website, Genoa City was first founded in the 1840s with a single sawmill, before turning toward the railroad industry decades later. In stark contrast to the immense success of the "Y&R" families, the median household income for the real residents of Genoa City is just north of $67k (via Data USA). It is also a predominantly white area of the country, with 91% of the population identifying as Caucasian, whereas the fictional Genoa City is much more ethnically diverse.

If they ever find themselves in Chicago, fans of the long-running soap can easily travel to the real Genoa City, though it probably wouldn't be as exciting as it looks on TV. The Wisconsin town might be small and lacking in business titans and starlets, but it does have an exciting claim to fame.