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Jeff White and Lori Donahoo


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October Is Extra Spooky This Year With A Friday the 13th!

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

The scary, creepy and haunted October events have already started in earnest in Los Angeles, but a Friday the 13th just before Halloween? That makes us housesellers think that the rest of October is going to be extra spooky, and what better way to celebrate a rare Fall Friday the 13th than seeing Friday the 13th on the big screen? You'll have a bunch of opportunities to do so tonight all over the area. Rooftop Cinema at the Montalban Theatre on Vine Street in Hollywood has an 8 p.m. showing of the film tonight (they'll also be showing Carrie, The Shining, The Exorcist and Nightmare on Elm Street throughout the month). A few blocks away the vintage 1923 theater, The Vista, will be hosting a showing of the film that begins at 11:59. There’s a 9 p.m. screening at the Chinese Theater and Arclight Hollywood has a midnight showing. 

The Haunted Hayride at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park is back and this year the theme is "Clown", which is sure to creep out a lot of people with clown phobias. There are all kinds of world class special effects and a huge cast that goes overboard trying to scare the daylights out of those brave enough to take a hayride around 30 acres of the Old Zoo area (which can be kind of spooky even in the daytime!). The Hayride will will be open select nights until October 31st, 2017. Operating hours are Sundays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 7 p.m.-10:30 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m.-12 a.m.

BOO AT THE L.A. ZOO is another fun event that is happening all month right up until Halloween night and features daily activities such as an all-new “Nocturnal Adventure” maze, where guests can learn about nocturnal creatures, and the opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the Zoo's tarantulas, scorpions, snakes and more at “Animals and Boo” encounters. There will also be mazes, pumpkins carving, hands-on exhibits of creepy crawly insects and snakes and other animals, a Puppet show where audience members will help a lonely mad scientist create the ultimate trick-or-treating buddy by combining animal “super powers" and trick or treating at the Zoo on Halloween.

On Saturday, October 28th, there will be an overnight sleep over at the BOO AT THE ZOO event where campers will hear tales about various ghosts of the Zoo, make S’mores, and take a guided nighttime tour of the Zoo that includes the colorful history of Griffith Park and its spectral inhabitants, plus interactive activities, early morning tour, and an animal presentation. 


How A Famous Painter Created Hollywood's First Tourist Spot In 1901

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Los Angeles is one of the most popular tourist destinations on earth and the most popular spot for visitors coming here from around the world is arguably the Hollywood area. The draw for decades has centered around the entertainment industry and, specifically, film and television culture even if the reality is that "Hollywood" is actually a concept spread out all over the county. But in the actual place you can physically define as Hollywood, the Walk of Fame, the Chinese Theatre, Hollywood and Vine, wanna-be actors dressed as famous movie stars or characters, etc. have been world famous images around the globe for many years. Over a hundred years ago, however, a different kind of artistic culture and artist was responsible for the first major Hollywood attraction. 

“It would be useless to expand upon his history or his fame,” the Los Angeles Times wrote excitedly in the Spring of 1899, “both are known the world round". They were speaking of the French painter Paul De Longpre, famed during his lifetime for his exacting still life paintings of only the most perfect of floral specimens and done almost exclusively with watercolors. Moving to America after becoming wealthy from his works in Europe, his fortunes vastly increased when the J. Ottmann Lithographing Company used his delicate painting of a spray of yellow roses for souvenirs that they gave to the thousands of tourists who descended upon the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Soon De Longpre’s work was being exhibited at some of the finest galleries in New York City, but, tired of the flowerless winters in New York, he and his wife, Josephine, decided to move permanently to Los Angeles.  Daeida Wilcox Beveridge and her husband, H. H. Wilcox, the founders of the wholesome hamlet of Hollywood, were so eager to attract culture to the town that they gave De Longpre a piece of their property on Cahuenga Boulevard just north of Prospect to set up a homestead.

De Longpre soon set about designing a grand estate and studio where everyday people could come and enjoy his home and gardens. By 1901, a large Moorish mansion had been built on his property with an expansive flower garden that included over 4,000 roses. It was the talk of the town, and De Longpre its most famous resident. The home was quickly added as a stop to General Moses Sherman’s famed tourist trolley line called the Balloon Route that served as a moving advertisement for Los Angeles boosters and developers. The De Longpre estate soon became the route’s most popular attraction, with many people stopping first at the nearby Glen-Holly Hotel for one of its famed chicken dinners. At their height, the flower-covered grounds were toured by as many as 8,000 people every month (an extraordinary amount of visitors considering the population of Hollywood at the time was roughly 500 people). 

The gardens expanded greatly when De Longpre received more land from Beveridge in exchange for three paintings and consisted of meandering pathways and more than 800 varieties of roses and fields of orange poppies. Five fairy-tale-like cottages, which De Longpre called “embellishments,” were scattered across the property and visitors could buy refreshments and small souvenirs from a kiosk. We housesellers found the story of the man behind De Longpre Avenue in Hollywood (familiar to anyone who has ever visited The Arclight or Amoeba Music or tried to park near Hollywood and Vine!) quite fascinating and we invite you to check out this really entertaining story about his home and history.


LACMA Gets One Of The Biggest Donations In World Art History

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Last Spring, we housesellers wrote about the new changes at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, including a total overhaul designed by Pritzker Prize winner, Peter Zumthor (who envisions an S-shaped concrete building elevated off the ground that spans Wilshire Boulevard). Now we have gotten word that Billionaire philanthropist David Geffen has pledged $150 million to the LACMA campaign to construct a new building for its permanent collection. The single largest cash gift in the institution’s history comes as it prepares to break ground on the new building designed by Swiss architect Zumthor. The Geffen gift, the largest single cash gift from an individual in LACMA’s history, comes after more than three years of relentless fundraising. 

“At a time when federal funding for the arts is threatened, it’s important that we foster public-private partnerships, like this one, to support arts and cultural institutions,” said Geffen in a statement. “I am proud to partner with the county and other members of the community in helping LACMA move this remarkable project from vision to reality. Together, we can and must make sure every person has access to the arts.” In honor of the most recent gift, the new building, set to open in 2023 (with construction beginning in 2019), will be called the David Geffen Galleries. Including Geffen’s gift, the Building LACMA campaign has raised $450 million of the projected $650 million needed for the project.

Once the remaining $200 million portion is accounted for, LACMA will be able to move forward with building what the the Los Angeles Times describes as “arguably the most anticipated new piece of architecture in L.A. since Frank Gehry’s Walt Disney Concert Hall.” The goal for all involved in this massive project is that the new building will redefine what an art museum can be, with all time periods and cultures presented equally on a single level that will enhance people’s engagement with art.

For historical context, philanthropist Eli Broad, filmmaker George Lucas and Wal-Mart heiress Alice Walton have spent or pledged as much or more than Geffen but their museums were designed specifically to house their personal art collections. For a donation on par with Geffen’s, you would have to look back to 1937, when industrialist Andrew Mellon contributed $10 million for the construction of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. That gift, adjusted for inflation, equals about $174 million today.




What Will Become Of The Most Famous Home In Los Angeles?

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

When the Playboy Mansion sold for $100 million last year it made waves in the real estate industry across the country. Mostly, that was because it was the most expensive home ever sold in Los Angeles County, but also for the fact that the seller, the infamous founder of Playboy, Hugh Hefner, struck up a deal that would allow him to live and entertain in the house until he passed away. What will happen to the home and estate has been a great source of speculation among real estate professionals, but at the time of the sale the buyer, Daren Metropoulos (the co-owner of Twinkies maker Hostess) outlined his plans for when he takes possession of the home. He intends to combine his current property (he has lived next door to the Playboy Mansion since 2009) with the 5 acres on which the Playboy Mansion sits in order to restore the combined 7.3-acre property to the plans envisioned when it was originally developed in the 1920s. 

The massive home that eventually became the Playboy Mansion was designed in what has been described as a "Gothic-Tudor" style by architect Arthur R. Kelly, whose work included such iconic Southern California buildings as Huntington Beach High School in 1908, Hollywood's first luxury hotel, The Christie Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard in 1922 (the 8-story hotel was considered Hollywood's first skyscraper and is now owned by the Church of Scientology), the Harvard-Westlake School, and the Tufts-Frost House, which is now known as "Mariposa" and reportedly still owned by rocker Sheryl Crow. It was designed for Arthur Letts Jr., the son of the original developer of Holmby Hills, Arthur Letts, who was the owner of the Broadway Department Store chain and left his son a vast fortune when he died in 1923. 

The news reports and eulogies regarding the death of Hefner have focused a lot on the various fascinating aspects of his life and one of the more interesting that we housesellers have been reminded of is how he helped save the Hollywood sign--twice. The Hollywoodland, and then just Hollywood, sign was erected in 1923 and was a world famous symbol of the glamour of the Los Angeles film industry during the golden age of film. But by 1978 it had started to deteriorate after years of neglect and the Chamber of Commerce needed a quarter of a million dollars to revitalize the sign. Hef threw a lavish fund-raiser, auctioning off letters from the old sign for $27,000 each and buyers, including rock stars like Alice Cooper and Hollywood legends like Gene Autry, ended up giving enough to restore the Mount Lee plot with new letters. A more serious situation occurred decades later in 2010 when a conservationist group—the Trust for Public Land—was rallying to protect the 138 acres around the sign from developers who wanted to build luxury properties on Mount Lee. The trust was given a proposition to pay $12.5 million within a certain deadline period and the land would be theirs. As the deadline approached, the trust was able to raise nearly all the cash but ended up just under $1 million short with only about a week and a half remaining to raise the rest. Word got to Hefner that the deadline was nearly up and that development plans were set to begin, so he ponied up the $900,000 and change just in the nick of time.  

Santa Monica Goes Car-Free For COAST Festival This Weekend

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

On Sunday, two miles of car-free streets enlivened with music, dance, local food and a ton of great vendors will be the place to be to ring in October in Santa Monica. The COAST open streets event is designed to get people out walking, biking, skating and scooting and covers Ocean Avenue from Wilshire to Tongva Park and Main Street from Colorado to Pier Avenue. This free and engaging way to explore Santa Monica will feature live music and performances, locally farmed food, art installations, amazing restaurant deals, one-of-a-kind pop-up shops and a slew of great promotions on the Pier. There will also be a bunch of unique spots dotted along the area between the Third Street Promenade and the beach that will be promoting mobility, art and sustainability, and this is a wheelchair, skateboard and stroller-friendly event. This is definitely one of the Fall's most recommended events, especially now that you can take Metro right there (which we housesellers suggest you'll probably want to do) .

Local Foodies will definitely want to consider making the trek out to Ventura on Saturday for a rare culinary event that will feature Martha Stewart, Food Network superstar Duff Goldman and a bunch of celebrated chefs presenting a rich and colorful celebration of the Ventura County culinary scene, from trends to regional traditions. The highlight of the Ventura County Star Food & Wine Experience will be a Grand Tasting where you can savor unlimited samplings of chef creations from local restaurants along with tastings of fine wines, craft beers and distinctive spirits. You'll have access to chef demonstrations, seminars and panels from all of the local and national culinary talent, including Martha, who will be participating in multiple events. As an added bonus, all tickets include a copy of Stewart’s new cookbook, Slow Cooker (which costs $26 in stores or online and looks like it has some very easy killer recipes). Another added bonus for history/architecture fans is that the event will be held at the Olivas Adobe, Ventura County's only remaining Monterey-style adobe home from the Rancho era that was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. ​

If you are looking for a culinary event that is a little less upscale and closer to home, there is the 9th Annual LA Beer Festival at Los Angeles Center Studios in Downtown LA on Saturday. This event sold out last year, probably because of the world-class food trucks that upped the game, even in the food truck capital of the world, and the over 200 beers from around the world that are offered. A cool thing about the festival is that proceeds will benefit Noah's Bark, whose aim is to rescue dogs from shelters and find permanent homes for rescued pets. Proceeds from the event will go towards helping to fund food, shelter, and veterinary bills for these special pets.

Film fanatics are probably overjoyed that Beyond Fest is back at the Egyptian Theatre starting Friday. This massive, twelve-day film festival is the biggest genre festival in Los Angeles with a slate that features 23 west coast premieres and 32 events. This year is, as always, all over the map with an exceptional line up of indie and foreign films paired with tributes to such iconic action stars as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jean-Claude Van Damme, who will both be making personal appearances. Also look for cult hits like Night of the Living Dead, which will be presented in a restored version, along with a tribute to its director, George Romero, who started the Zombie craze with this film and who passed away recently. There are all sorts of ticket packages and prices but Beyond Fest will also be offering 14 screenings in their 90-seat theater that are free to film fans. 






Stylish Budget Home Decorating/Remodel Ideas For 2018

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Now that Fall is here, many of the trendy home design and renovation/decorating magazines, blogs and television shows are starting the big push on what they predict will be the hot new home looks for 2018. We have seen some great ideas from a number of various sources and, as is to be expected, they all have different ideas. But most seem to agree that geometric patterns on everything from tile on backsplashes to wallpaper to wall art, more use of natural wood accents in things like lamps, dishes and pots for plants and adding metallic touches to furnishings like coffee tables, sofas and dining tables will be popular holdovers from 2017. Surprisingly, some of the most creative and stylish ideas we housesellers have seen come from the 2018 IKEA catalogue. Whether or not you are a fan of IKEA is a debate that we would never get into with either loyal fans or detractors, but their catalogue sure does offer some cool decorating ideas for those on a budget.

Keep in mind many of these suggestions are also mentioned in the bunch of the other sources for ideas that we checked out for clues what will be hot design ideals in 2018. And, while the ideas we are going to highlight were chosen for those who want updated style on a budget, if you do have a more substantial decorating budget, the ideas themselves are still pretty neat and can be upgraded according to how much you have to spend. Here are the ideas that most caught our eye:

Install a Micro-Backsplash. You don't need a full wall of tile behind a bathroom or kitchen sink to make it functional. Add a few rows of your favorite material to both protect the wall from splashing water and add a serious style statement for a lot less money.

Combine Open & Closed Kitchen Storage. Open shelving is a popular trend these days, and this trend both looks cool and is affordable. However, some people don't want to totally lose their ability to stash stuff away out of sight. How about installing one stylish closed cabinet amidst all the shelves? It will still feel airy and light but will also still cost less than a full set of cabinets

Paint Instead of Replace. Okay, this common tip is as old as time but what about painting everything the same color? Create a bold experiment by painting all the things you feel comfortable actually painting in one muted shade (or, flashier color, if that is your style) and add objects to the room that mirror that color. Of course, before you decide your entire living room is going to look like a lemon, maybe try this experiment in the den or a porch or sunroom with furniture and objects you feel okay with altering. 

Save Space with Sliding Doors. Sliding doors--known in the world of home decor now as barn doors--are an increasingly popular addition to homes and are practical, as well. Tight spaces open up by converting regular doors with inexpensive sliding track hardware that's widely available these days.

Divide an Open Floor Plan. Many high-end homes have embraced a more modern idea of "the great room", glass walls that offer all the benefits of the wide open layout, without some of the drawbacks of noise and cooking smells. In many of these homes, however, you will usually see expensive steel-framed glass panels, but it is just as easily done with variety of much more affordable wood dividers you can find. Plus, you can do all kinds of things hanging curtains with quirky patterns or fabrics if you want even more privacy.

Use Temporary Wood Panels. For a quick and inexpensive update, we know artistic folks who have painted plywood panels they just leaned or propped strategically against the wall. It's a great way to define a space--especially for renters--and add some easy color. You can drill holes to hang organizers or paintings without having to risk your security deposit by messing with the actual walls.

Install Shiplap. What is shiplap, you ask? Well, first of all it is a wood plank accent thought to have its origins in Scandinavia, so no wonder IKEA promotes it. But it is also a type of wooden board used commonly as exterior siding in the construction of residences, barns, sheds, and outbuildings that has recently been made popular by HGTV's Fixer Upper show. They, and many of the design-trend sites, often promote its use indoors. Especially popular these days is to use the style as horizontal siding for your living/recreation rooms, kitchen or den, and it has long been a popular design of the more rustic homes and cottages of Southern California's beach communities. 




Higgins Home Highlight of Windsor Square Historic District

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Unlike the two other biggest cities in America, Chicago and New York, Los Angeles is still very much a "horizontal" real estate estate market. Where a much higher percentage of residential real estate deals involve high-rise condos and apartments in those cities than here, L.A.'s vast urban sprawl will probably, at least for the foreseeable future, always result in many more actual homes (with yards, garages and carports) being sold versus "units". That said, it is no secret that the vast amount of renters in Los Angeles can make us forget that we are second to none when it comes to historic single family residences that regularly come on the market. So, we housesellers love being reminded of how many great SFR neighborhoods there are in our sprawling metropolis, and the recent listing of the Higgins House in historic Windsor Square provides all of us with yet another fascinating example of a local residence with an amazing back-story and history. 

The Higgins House is an 8-bedroom Queen Anne style Victorian home designed by John C. Austin and built in 1902 for Chicago grain merchant Hiram Higgins. Austin was an important figure in early 20th century L.A., having also designed the iconic City Hall building as well as the Shrine Auditorium and the Griffith Observatory, three of the most praised pieces of architecture in Los Angeles. The home, which was named a Historical-Cultural Monument in 1988, has many turn-of-the-century luxuries such as a billiards room, a bar and huge den within its roughly 12,100 square feet of space, and a swimming pool, screening rooms and a lush landscaped garden can be found on the grounds. Set behind gates on a half-acre plot, the home’s period detailing makes it a prime example of early 1900s architecture and high ceilings, large public rooms and intricate woodworking on the panels, molding and columns are featured throughout. The home has played a role in many film and TV productions including Ben, Willard, and The Addams Family movies, as well as Beverly Hills 90210 and a recent episode of the hit show Scandal.

The house was originally built further east on Wilshire Boulevard at Rampart Street, where the Wilshire Royale apartments now stand, but was cut into 3 sections and relocated to Windsor Square by its new owner in 1924. As the bisected structure made its way west, the party's esteemed guests, including the mayor and his wife (according to an L.A. Times article from the time) kept the party going inside, singing along with a piano player and an opera singer. After the Great Depression, the home fell into disrepair and during the ensuing half century of neglect it was used as a retirement home for nuns, as a mission, then offices for various businesses and even as a rooming house for young aspiring actors. Finally, in 1986, Perry and Peggy Hirsch rescued the historic mansion and spent years renovating and restoring it to its former glory. Any of the links above will give you a more detailed history of this fascinating home, which is just one of the many unique and amazing historical houses that regularly get listed for sale in Los Angeles. 

Update Your Post-Earthquake Readiness

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

We housesellers like to stay up-to-date on how Los Angeles residences can be most current with their post-earthquake readiness, and there is always a steady stream of new information and data as we learn more about the causes, best ways to stay safe, and how to deal with the aftermath of the periodic seismic events that hit Southern California. In light of the recent earthquakes in Mexico and Japan, we thought now would be a good time to offer a refresher on the ways to best prepare for when a large scale earthquake hits our region and how to deal with the after effects.

The first thing you'll want to do is to make sure your post-earthquake supplies are in order and easily accessible in your home. We recommend keeping a large container such as a plastic 30 gallon trash can or some kind of receptacle or storage bin that you can store the various items you will need in the event of an earthquake. Keep the items in a cool, dry space and make sure that any storage bins are at least a foot or two off the ground in the event that you have any broken water pipes that could soil the contents. You'll want to pad the bottom level of the container with blankets, tarps, plastic bags, extra clothing (including sweaters/jackets, underwear, socks and shoes), personal hygiene items such as soap, toilet paper and deodorant and towels. You may also want to make sure you have some sort of portable GPS system (or better yet, a good, old-fashioned Thomas Guide) for if and when you have to make your way from an unsafe area to an unfamiliar area

On top of these items you will want to have a middle level that includes instant food items, bottled water, canned food, food and water for your pets, dry food such as pasta and rice, water purification tablets and a manual can opener. Many bulk item stores in the Los Angeles area sell easy to prepare food items similar to the military's MREs (meals ready to eat) so you may want to invest in a stockpile of these. You will want to make sure you have at least a gallon of water per person, per day, and plan to keep enough water to last 3-7 days. You may also want to keep a tent and sleeping bag handy if you are unable to remain in your residence or if you are without power for extended periods.

The top level should contain the items you will need in the immediate aftermath of an earthquake that causes power outages and other damage. You will want these things to be the most easily accessible: flashlights, batteries, first aid kits, fire extinguisher, a portable radio, a portable cell-phone charger, spare cash, medication, snacks and water (water is usually the most important survival item you will need in the worst-case scenario and should be stored in many places) and wrenches and other tools for turning of water and gas lines. Make sure you also have extra contact lenses and glasses easily accessible, as well.  

The above suggestions also apply to your work office and car. It is a good idea to spend a few hours soon making sure your trunk or back seat has the necessary items prepared in the event of a major quake. Keep in mind that if your home becomes uninhabitable, your office or car may be where you have to hunker down for awhile. Also keep in mind that these are our post-earthquake tips, for info on how to make your home safer and more prepared to with stand an earthquake, please see this link from our blog and the comprehensive online booklet from the Earthquake Country Alliance.




The Free Events You Need To Check Out This Weekend

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Even though Summer 2017 is pretty much a memory at this point, that doesn't mean that all of the wonderful free events Angelenos get to take advantage of (especially all of the free outdoor music and movie events) are ending anytime soon. In fact, the Fall months are offering up some great cost-free things to get you out and about in our great city and, even though Summer doesn't actually officially end until next Thursday, this weekend is a good example of the kind of free, fun events you can look forward to through the rest of the year.

We housesellers love that the La Brea Tar Pits is the happening place on Saturday due to TARFEST 2017, an all day, all-ages music, art and food festival. There will be the usual DJs, bands and food trucks, but also a huge drum circle and percussion workshop, light shows and creative art projections, a huge World Dance performance and tons of kids activities. There will also be a breakdancing and hip-hop dance shows, as well as breakdancing lessons for anybody interested (specifically, though, we know this is probably geared to the young ones). What will make this event really attractive to art lovers is the fact that a few of L.A.'s up-and-coming artists will be creating paintings and art live on site as the day goes on and you will be able to share in their artistic process. There will also be a beer garden for the over-21 crowd and a selection of gourmet sodas and other hydrating treats for younger folks.

Another great event showcasing music, culture and art is the San Pedro Festival of the Arts on Sunday. We have posted before about how San Pedro has been offering more and more events as it sees a sort of renaissance in recent years and this free family event prominently features a large variety of dance programs and exhibitions throughout the day, as well as music & crafts, to help foster an appreciation of the arts and showcase San Pedro as a center for art and culture.

If the Emmy Awards broadcast is must-see TV for you, there are a few Emmy viewing parties going on around Los Angeles Sunday evening but the one getting the most buzz seems to be the Awards Lounge Emmy Live Viewing and After Party at Esterel & Riviera 31 in the Sofitel Hotel in Beverly Hills. There will be plenty of red carpet and media coverage shown on the Lounge's 50 inch plasmas and projection screens, complimentary entry, a VIP area, multiple DJ's and more. This is the place to celebrate TV/film makers, actors, writers, producers and more with a professional business networking mixer where you can mingle and network with film and entertainment talent, agents, attorneys, directors, distributors, directors, financiers, producers, writers and members of the press. All with tons of music and dancing! 

The most far-reaching and ambitious art project of the year is by far from the Getty-led initiative known as Pacific Standard Time. Launched first from October 2011 through April 2012, and then from April through September of 2013, this multi-institution, multi-art form exhibit is unparalleled in its scope. Following the first exhibit's theme of Art in L.A. 1945-1980, and the 2013 theme of Modern Architecture in L.A., this new undertaking, LA/LA, is a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art and creative history in Los Angeles. This is a collaborative effort from arts institutions across Southern California that kicked off yesterday and will run through the end of January. Many of the exhibits staged over the next 5 months will require reservations and tickets, as well as varying fees, but on Sunday you can get an early taste of what to expect at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. There will be free admission and no RSVP required and you can view the museum's contribution to this exploration of Latin American and Latino art with installations such as Hollywood in Havana: Five Decades of Cuban Posters Promoting U.S. Films, E. Charlton Fortune: The Colorful Spirit and LA Redux: Reduction Linocuts by Dave Lefner. You'll also be able to enjoy some independent art-making activities in the museum's Project Room


Updates On The Newest HPOZs (Protected Historic Districts)

by Jeff White and Lori Donahoo

Since we housesellers last updated you back in January on the latest neighborhoods to be adopted into the Historic Preservation Overlay Zone program, we are excited to find that 3 new HPOZs have been added, with one new approval pending. For those not familiar with the program, HPOZs are areas of the city which are designated as containing structures, landscaping, natural features or sites having historic, architectural, cultural or aesthetic significance. The protections given these areas include providing for review of proposed exterior alterations and additions to historic properties within designated districts. While most districts are primarily residential, many have a mix of single-family and multi-family housing, and some include commercial and industrial properties. HPOZs are established and administered by the Los Angeles City Planning Department.

The Sunset Square HPOZ is bordered by Hollywood Blvd to the north, Vista Street to the east, Sunset Blvd to the south and Fairfax to the west, and is situated just north of the Spaulding Square HPOZ. The Sunset Square HPOZ comprises 348 parcels and is composed of single and multi-family residences constructed primarily in the first half of the 20th century, with most of the construction occurring between 1910 and the 1920’s. The dominant architectural styles are Craftsman, Spanish Colonial Revival, and American Colonial Revival. Other styles include Tudor Revival, Mediterranean Revival, French Revival, and Minimal Traditional. The Sunset Square HPOZ became effective on 3/18/2017. ​

The Oxford Square HPOZ became effective on 3/26/17 and is located in central Los Angeles, about five miles west of Downtown and is bordered by the Windsor Village HPOZ on the north, the Country Club Park HPOZ on the east, Pico Boulevard on the south, and Plymouth Boulevard to the west. It comprises 191 parcels on both sides of Windsor Boulevard and Victoria Avenue and is comprised mostly of one to two-and-a-half story single-family residences constructed primarily between 1900 and 1920, with some smaller residences from the 1930s. This HPOZ reflects styles associated with the Arts and Crafts and Period Revival styles of architecture, including Craftsman, American Colonial Revival, Spanish Colonial Revival, and Mediterranean Revival.

The Miracle Mile HPOZ is comprised of 1,347 properties and is located in the Mid-Wilshire community of central Los Angeles. Its boundaries are Wilshire Boulevard to the north, San Vicente Boulevard to the south, La Brea Avenue to the east, and Orange Grove Avenue to the west. Most buildings in the HPOZ reflect styles associated with the Period Revival mode of architecture, which includes Spanish Colonial Revival, Tudor Revival, Mediterranean Revival, French Revival, and American Colonial Revival. Minimal Traditional-style buildings and Mid-Century Modern apartment buildings are present as well. While construction dates for properties within the district range from 1921 to approximately 2015, the dominant period of development is the 1920s, ‘30s, and ‘40s.

The proposed 27th and 28th Streets HPOZ is a small neighborhood located off of Central Avenue in Southeast Los Angeles that includes a high concentration of turn of the century homes, built between 1893 and 1912, in the Victorian and Craftsman styles. The area is historically significant for its rich African American history in Los Angeles during the period from 1930 through 1958 and includes a number of buildings that housed prominent area African American institutions, including the 28th Street YMCA, built in 1926 and designed by famed African American architect (and native Angeleno) Paul Revere Williams. For its cultural significance, the neighborhood was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2009, and should be approved as an HPOZ early in the Fall.

For more detailed information about the historic preservation program for the City of Los Angeles and detailed descriptions of all of the current Historic Zones, please visit this link. Our Historic Districts section of our website also offers interesting details about the HPOZs, as well as detailed information on the many different architectural styles they represent. 




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