Los Angeles Attractions: A Definitive Guidebook to Los Angeles





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Los Angeles Attractions: A Definitive Guidebook to Los Angeles





The first permanent movie studio in Los Angeles was built in 1908, on a vacant lot behind a Chinese laundry downtown. (page 43)


The first motion picture studio in Hollywood was formed in 1911 by the short-lived Nestor Film Company. (page 43)


The first feature-length motion picture filmed in Hollywood was The Squaw Man (1914). (page 42)


Twelve movie palaces built between 1910 and 1931 comprise the first and still the largest Historic Theater District in the US, as listed in the National Register of Historic Places. (page 234)


Charlie Chaplin’s legendary screen character, the Tramp, who was born in Venice, first appeared in the short movie, Kid Auto Races at Venice, California (1914). (page 386)



Frank Lloyd Wright designed the following architectural landmarks in Los Angeles: Freeman House (page 152), Hollyhock House (page 157), Ennis House (page 161), Storer House (page 198) and La Miniatura (page 306).


The Case Study House program is considered Los Angeles’ single most important contribution to architecture. CSH No. 22 is one of the most photographed houses in the world. (page 198)


The six-block neighborhood in Pasadena features several hundred homes built between 1900 and 1931, one of the largest concentrations of intact Craftsman bungalows in the country. (page 296)


Often described as the “ultimate bungalow,” the internationally-renowned Gamble House is considered one of the five most beautiful houses in America. (page 304)



Legend has it that "Oscar" was born during a banquet in the Biltmore Hotel when Cedric Gibbons, MGM's art director, sketched the figure on a linen hotel napkin. (page 48)


Those who want to watch the arrivals to the Academy Awards ceremony from the bleachers must submit an application in advance and agree to a background check. (page 49)


From the early days of the silent screen, movies have had an enormous impact on fashion trends around the world. Among the iconic looks that Hollywood introduced were Jean Harlow’s tight satin gowns, Katharine Hepburn’s high-necked dresses, Marlene Dietrich’s trousers . . . (page 50)


During his long career, Max Factor came up with more makeup “firsts” than anyone else in the history of cosmetics. He devised many of the trademark looks that made movie stars famous: Jean Harlow’s platinum blonde hair, Joan Crawford’s “Hunter’s Bow Lips” . . . (page 53)


Los Angeles is the only major city fundamentally shaped by the automobile. It quickly established its reputation as a leader in automobile-related innovations. The word “motel” was first used in 1925 by a local architectural firm; the word “supermarket” was coined here in 1927. (page 54)


Los Angeles County’s 70 miles of coastline and 31 miles of life-guarded beaches attract more than 60 million people each year. The beach is the most enduring symbol of the relaxed, carefree lifestyle widely associated with Los Angeles. (page 60)



No place on earth is more strongly associated with celebrities than Beverly Hills. Its mother lode of the ultimate tourist draw—movie stars' homes—include some of the priciest and the most famous residences ever built: Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks’s Pickfair, Rudolph Valentino’s Falcon Lair, Harold Lloyd’s Greenacres, and Charlie Chaplin’s “Breakaway House” (pages 465-471). Also included are the homes of Tom Cruise (page 372), Jack Nicholson (page 472), Brad Pitt (page 474), Madonna (page 475), Marilyn Monroe’ Honeymoon Home (page 478), and many others.


Fashionable Whitley Heights was Hollywood’s first celebrity enclave. Movie star home tours originated here in the 1920s, with sightseeing buses and drivers announcing star home locations over their megaphones. (page 150)


Hollywood Forever Cemetery is the final resting place of Rudolph Valentino. (page 131)


Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills is the final resting place of Buster Keaton and Bette Davis (page 166)


Forest Lawn Glendale contains the remains of Jean Harlow, Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Humphrey Bogart, Mary Pickford, James Stewart and many other celebrities. (page 312)


Holy Cross Cemetery contains the remains of Bing Crosby, Rita Hayworth and Sharon Tate Polanski. (page 419)


Westwood Memorial Park is the final resting place of Marilyn Monroe, Natalie Wood, Burt Lancaster and Dean Martin. (page 444)



Walt Disney Concert Hall, the new home of the LA Philharmonic, was opened in 2003 and immediately took its place as Los Angeles’ premier cultural landmark and the city’s international symbol. (page 270)


With more than 1,500 public murals, Los Angeles has been proclaimed the “Mural Capital of the World” (page 82). The world’s longest mural is the half-mile-long Great Wall of Los Angeles (page 340).


The Getty Villa is a reconstruction and adaptation of the ancient Roman Villa dei Papiri, which was buried in the catastrophic eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79. (page 366)


The German émigré and Nobel Prize laureate for literature, Thomas Mann, conceived and wrote his masterpiece Doctor Faustus (1947) in his Pacific Palisades home. (page 372)


The J Paul Getty Museum is the world’s richest, as well as being one of Los Angeles’ most exciting cultural attractions. (page 429)



With its flashy club scene, the 1.7-mile-long "Sunset Strip" in West Hollywood is the rock and popular music capital of the world. (page 180)


Go-Go dancing was born at Whisky a Go Go, perhaps the most famous club in the history of rock music. (page 189)


Known as the “Riot House” during the 1970s, the Hyatt West Hollywood was the hotel where Led Zeppelin rented six floors for their orgies and roared motorcycles down the hallways. (page 186)


A drunken John Lennon in 1974 was kicked out of the legendary Troubadour club and onto the pavement. (page 190)


Hollywood’s Rock Walk honors famous musicians and innovators whose handprints and signatures are immortalized in concrete outside the Guitar Center Hollywood. (page 194)


The legendary rock group The Doors was formed on Venice Beach during the summer of 1965. (page 390)


Ray Charles and Ella Fitzgerald are interred in Inglewood Park Cemetery. (page 394)


Westwood Memorial Park is the final resting place of famous rockers Roy Orbison and Frank Zappa. (page 444)


Crime scenes/Death sites

Legendary rock singer Janis Joplin in 1970 was found dead in the Landmark Motor Hotel (now the Highland Gardens Hotel), room 105. (page 143)


As he scaled the wall of Madonna’s Castillo del Lago estate in 1995, the stalker, who claimed to be the Material Girl’s husband, was shot and wounded. (page 148)


Comedian John Belushi died in 1982 at Chateau Marmont from an injected overdose of cocaine and heroin called a “speedball." (page 183)


Actress Dorothy Dandridge died in 1965 at Palacio Apartments under mysterious circumstances (page 187).


Actor River Phoenix died in 1993 of a drug overdose outside the Viper Room nightclub. (page 188)


The Brooklyn rap star, Notorious B.I.G., was gunned down in 1997 after leaving a Soul Train Awards party at the Petersen Automotive Museum. (page 204)


Senator Robert Kennedy in 1968 was shot and killed in the Ambassador Hotel pantry, shortly after he announced victory in the California presidential primary. (page 215)


Marilyn Monroe died in 1962, reportedly of a drug overdose, in this simple, three-bedroom Spanish-style house. (page 428)


Actress Sharon Tate, who was eight months pregnant, in 1969 was savagely murdered by members of Charles Manson family in this Beverly Hills house. (page 473)


Mobster Bugsy Siegel in 1947 was murdered in this house, reportedly because he spent millions of Mafia money building the Pink Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. (page 476)


Lana Turner’s boyfriend Johnny Stompanato in 1958 was stabbed to death in her house, reportedly by her teenage daughter. (page 476)



The Hollywood Walk of Fame is the most famous sidewalk in the world. Stretching more than two miles, it is imbedded with more than 2,300 five-pointed stars, each containing the name of a human celebrity or fictional character. (page 106)


The legendary forecourt of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, with hand- and footprints of more than 160 movie stars, is one of Hollywood’s largest tourist attractions. (page 109)


The Egyptian Theatre opened in 1922 with the gala premiere of Robin Hood. It was the first-ever Hollywood premiere, a tradition originated by showman Sid Grauman featuring klieg spotlights, a red carpet and celebrities arriving in limousines. (page 111)


The famous Blossom Ballroom at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel was in 1929 the site of the first Academy Awards presentation. (page 115)


The Kodak Theatre is the permanent home of the Academy Awards presentations. (page 117)


Historic movie studios where cinema history was made include Paramount (page 138), Warner Bros. (page 330), Universal (page 334), Sony (page 416) and 20th Century-Fox (page 452).


The La Brea Tar Pits in Hancock Park is one of the world’s richest Ice Age fossil sites. (page 201)


A world-famous spectacle, the Tournament of Roses Parade has taken place in Pasadena every New Year’s Day since 1890. (page 300)


Van Nuys Airport appears in Casablanca (1942), in the scene of the arrival of Nazi Major Strasser. (page 348)


Malibu Colony is a world-famous celebrity compound. Since 1926, it has been home to Gloria Swanson, Lana Turner, Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Sting and many others. (page 364)


The 123-room home of Emmy-winning producer Aaron Spelling is allegedly the biggest house in Southern California. (page 438)


With a price tag estimated at $100 million, Fleur de Lys is the most expensive mansion in Los Angeles. (page 473)


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By Borislav Stanic

ISBN: 978-1-889224-11-4

512 pages, 5.1” x 8.75”

1,770 photographs; 40 maps; index

Price: $24.95, paperbound



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