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September 19, 2023

Photo Essay: Pasadena Heritage Throws Open the Doors to the Historic Blinn House

[Last updated 9/22/23 12:21 AM PT—Fixed inaccuracies about Blinn House Foundation and Frank Lloyd Wright]

When the Women's City Club of Pasadena dissolved in May 2020, it meant their clubhouse—the Blinn House—needed to go to a good caretaker.

The ladies gifted it to the preservation-oriented non-profit Pasadena Heritage—and now they've moved in, this historic home is once again bustling with events. 


Fortunately, it was also open for tours during California Preservation Foundation's Doors Open California 2023. 

September 17, 2023

Taking In the View of 'Smoke Spotters' at Keller Peak Fire Lookout Tower, San Bernardino National Forest

Two years ago, I ascended to the Ancient and Honorable Order of Squirrels at the Strawberry Peak Fire Lookout Tower in the San Bernardino Mountains, near Lake Arrowhead.

It was such a fun experience, I wanted to return to shoot one of the videos I've been producing for our local PBS station, KCET, and its digital series "SoCal Wanderer."


But my contact at the Southern California Mountains Foundation, the non-profit organization that oversees the fire lookout tower program in the San Bernardino Mountains, suggested I visit a different lookout tower this time: Keller Peak, near the town of Running Springs.  

September 11, 2023

Photo Essay: The Reunion House, in Silver Lake's Neutra Colony

I'd been booked for a tour of the Neutra-designed Reunion House back in 2018—but things happened, as they do, and I wasn't able to make it. 


That was the year before Dion Neutra, who was living there at the time, passed away.  

September 10, 2023

Photo Essay: The Nirvana Apartments, A Vivid Hollywood Version of the 'East'

I can't tell you how many times I've passed by The Nirvana on Orange Drive in Hollywood, either on my way to the parking structure at Hollywood & Highland (now Ovation) or heading home from The Magic Castle


But I never noticed its pagoda roofline—or any of the strange, eclectic decorative details that adorned the four-story, brick-clad apartment building.

September 05, 2023

Photo Essay: Hanging Out In 'Hangtown,' Or Maybe Getting Sick in Placerville

Now that I've got some distance from it, I've been thinking a bit about what happened in the days before I came down with COVID-19 last year. 

I'm still not sure where I caught it, or how—but since I was traveling and bopping around to a lot of different spots, I may never know.

 
It was 4th of July weekend, and I was headed up to the Great Western Steam-Up in Carson City, Nevada. But first, I made a pit stop at the tiki bar in Sacramento (a.k.a. The Jungle Bird) and spent the night in the "Gold Rush" town of Placerville, California.

September 03, 2023

A Nightmare Come True

Image by Marcela Bolívar from Pixabay  

Over the last couple of years, maybe a few years, I've had this recurring dream. Well, actually, it's two recurring dreams. 

In one, I've got a mouthful of glass shards that I'm trying to spit out. I haven't been chewing on the glass, so I don't know how the broken pieces got in there—but I'm desperate to get them out. I'm opening my mouth to let them fall out; I'm wriggling around my tongue and stretching out my lips to dislodge them; I'm reaching in with my fingers to pull them out. 

But with every bit of glass that's removed, more arrives in its place. 

September 02, 2023

Taken By the River

The last time I kayaked the Elysian Valley section of the Los Angeles River, I celebrated a certain victory—not falling in, despite some rocky patches and rough waters.

But at the time, I noted that the river might change its mind and have other plans for me the next time. 

And that ended up ringing true, when I returned a couple of weeks ago to shoot a video for KCET's SoCal Wanderer YouTube series
    

August 27, 2023

Looking for Gold at Hot Creek Geologic Site, the Eastern Sierra's Volcanic Hot Spring Gorge (Updated)

Update 9/2/23 12:44 AM PT—According to a press release from Friends of the Inyo, a federal appeals court reversed a prior decision from a lower district court and overturned the U.S. Forest Service’s 2021 approval that allowed gold-mining exploration Inyo National Forest’s Long Valley area. This may not be the end—but it's a victory for now.

In Mono County's Hot Creek Gorge in the Eastern Sierra, a colorful display of bright blue, green, and turquoise indicates where boiling water bubbles up—after percolating deep underground in a thermal aquifer near hot, subterranean magma located about 3 miles beneath the surface.

 
At the geological wonder known as Hot Creek Geologic Site, water heats up and is pressurized far beneath the earth in a literal hotbed of geothermal activity.

August 26, 2023

August 12, 2023

Photo Essay: Streamline Modernity in Silver Lake, Los Angeles

I'm a looky-loo, but I don't always like to be in people's homes while they're still living there. I'll make an occasional exception for a rare public tour—or if the house is listed for sale and lots of people are wandering through anyway. 

 
The "Silver Ridge" estate recently fit the bill on both marks—at the time, listed for $3.5 MM for five bedrooms, three baths, and a two-car garage below on a 13,900-square-foot lot. 

August 05, 2023

Photo Essay: Hollywood Post 43, A World War I Memorial Built By the Movies and Boxing Matches

It's been nicknamed the "Post of the Stars." 

 
Originally chartered in 1919 by Hollywood luminaries who'd returned from World War I, American Legion Hollywood Post 43 can count such luminaries as Clark Gable, Gene Autry, Mickey Rooney, Ronald Reagan, and Charlton Heston as its past members.

July 30, 2023

Photo Essay: Before the Guggenheim, There Was Frank Lloyd Wright's Anderton Court Shops in Beverly Hills

Architect Frank Lloyd Wright notoriously didn't see eye to eye with some of his clients, especially his female clients—perhaps most famously Aline Barnsdall, whose Hollyhock House is now a globally-renowned FLW design (and a UNESCO World Heritage Site).

 
Lesser known is the spat he had with Nina Anderton, a Bel Air socialite and philanthropist who commissioned him to build a shopping complex on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills—which was to be the architect's only commercial structure in Southern California, and his last design in all of LA.

July 23, 2023

Getting It Over With

I fall upon the thorns of life! I bleed! - "Ode to the West Wind" by Percy Bysshe Shelley

Image by Claudia from Pixabay

I've lived with both physical and emotional pain for most if not all of my life. So I don't shy away from things that might hurt me—maybe to a fault.

I've just always assumed that life is pain and that if I want to live fully, it's gonna hurt. 

But there is an exception: I have an unreasonable fear of getting stung by a bee

I've chronicled here some instances where I've literally turned around and aborted mission when I've encountered a swarm of bees, or when I was trapped and did the heebie-jeebie dance just to get away from bees trying to drink droplets of sweat off my shirt in the desert.

And I made it nearly 48 years without getting stung by anything—until yesterday. 

July 16, 2023

Photo Essay: Take the Red Elevator Through Space and Time at the Bonaventure Hotel

There are some buildings in LA I feel compelled to respect for their sheer audacity. 


The Bonaventure Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles is one of those.

July 04, 2023

Photo Essay: A Clubhouse of Benevolence Becomes the Hotel San Buena

The former Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks Ventura Lodge No. 1403 in Ventura, California is currently being converted into the Hotel San Buena (a truncated version of "San Buenaventura," the town's namesake)...

 
...and I recently got the chance to tour the nearly-finished boutique hotel facilities. 

July 02, 2023

Photo Essay: The 'Resurrection Church' of San Gabriel Mission, Reopened Three Years After the Fire

Mission San Gabriel Arcángel—known as the "Mother Church" of Los Angeles, founded by Spanish missionaries—just reopened to the public for the first time since an arson fire burned down the roof of its chapel nearly three years ago, in July 2020. 

 
I'd actually never been inside the church, the museum, or anywhere else on the grounds except the cemetery—so this seemed like a good occasion to finally take a tour with the Historical Society of Crescenta Valley. 

July 01, 2023

Photo Essay: Getting Baptized In Colored Light at St. Francis Episcopal Church, Palos Verdes Estates

Architect Walter Davis, of the venerated La Venta Inn in Southern California's Palos Verdes Estates, also designed the 1952 chapel at St. Francis Episcopal Church in PVE. That's the chapel that was advertised as part of Doors Open Peninsula a couple weekends ago. 


But when I got to the grounds, I was far more fascinated by a much more modern-looking, almost Googie-style chapel next door. 

June 27, 2023

Photo Essay: La Venta, The 100-Year-Old Inn That Once Helped Sell the Palos Verdes Peninsula

"Temperate climate, fertile black soil, and... sea air that contains just the right amount of moisture."

That's how a 1930 issue of the Palos Verdes Homes Association's Palos Verdes Bulletin described the conditions on the hilltop where La Venta Inn now stands, overlooking Malaga Cove, in present-day Palos Verdes Estates, California.

 

June 24, 2023

Photo Essay: LA Gets Three New Subway Stations (And An Alphabet Soup of Train Lines)

Yes, Los Angeles has a subway. And it's growing.

The above-ground Expo Line—much of which was built along an old Pacific Electric right-of-way—became the "Subway to the Sea" when it fully opened between Culver City and Santa Monica in 2016. (It's now, however, called the E line.)

The Purple Line Extension will put a subway station about a mile and a half away from where I live sometime in the next three or four years. (The Purple Line has also been renamed the D Line but I haven't fully committed to calling the lines by their letters instead of their colors yet.)

Until then, if I want to ride the subway, I've got to make a special trip.

 
Last weekend, I trekked downtown just to check out three just-opened subway stations that comprise  the Metro Regional Connector project—which allows seamless transit from Long Beach to Azusa and Santa Monica to East Los Angeles along the A and E lines. 

June 21, 2023

Photo Essay: A Stone Tower Gateway to the 'Riviera of America,' Palos Verdes

Palos Verdes Estates is one of four cities that comprise the Palos Verdes Peninsula in the South Bay region of Los Angeles, California. 

And at the entrance to the city on Vía Valmonte (formerly known as Vía Mirlo), there's a tower that marks its eastern border shared with the City of Torrance: the Mirlo Gate Tower, or the "Tower House."

 

June 20, 2023

Photo Essay: A Department Store Founder's Cliffside Summer Estate, Now The Neighborhood Church

One hundred years ago—on June 17, 1923—a real estate rally helped form what became known as the development of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, which is now comprised of four cities (Palos Verdes Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills, and Rolling Hills Estates). 

To celebrate, a bunch of cultural institutions, landmarks, historic sites, and other local attractions threw open their doors to visitors this past weekend, as part of "Doors Open Peninsula." 

 
My second stop of the day turned out to be one of the best: The Neighborhood Church, located in the former Haggarty House on Paseo del Mar in PVE. 

June 19, 2023

Photo Essay: A Wellness Check on the Old Trapper's Lodge Statues, Slated for Removal from Pierce College

In 2013, I reported on a collection of statues at Pierce College in Woodland Hills, California that had been handmade by amateur sculptor John Ehn. 

A descendent of pioneers, he'd dubbed himself "The Old Trapper" (or "O.T.") and built a motel (or "lodge") in the Sun Valley neighborhood of the San Fernando Valley in 1941.

Ehn had no training besides briefly shadowing Claude Bell (of Knott's Berry Farm/Cabazon Dinosaurs fame)—but he took it upon himself to tell stories of the Old West through his art, using his family members as models to portray scenes from pioneer family life. 

"O.T." died in 1981—and his heirs sold the motel property (or, more accurately, were forced to sell it) to the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority for the expansion of the airport runways. 

The statues were relocated to Pierce College in 1988. 

 
They were always a little bit hard to find—but now they're almost entirely hidden from view. 

June 05, 2023

Photo Essay: May Gray at UCR Botanic Garden, Riverside

May Gray has been the bane of my existence since I first discovered it on a business trip to LA in 2006, while I was still living in New York City and still thought that California was all sunshine and palm trees.
 
 
It was hard adjusting to the gloomy months of late spring and early summer when I first moved to LA in 2011—but now, after more than 12 years, I'm not just getting used to it. 


I'm embracing it. 

June 03, 2023

Photo Essay: Another LA River Bridge Tries to Unify Two Sides of the Same City

In early 2020, I was working on an article for KCET's SoCal Wanderer that brought me to Rio de Los Angeles State Park—one of three California state parks along the Los Angeles River, this one located in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Cypress Park. 

It’s a project first initiated nearly 30 years ago—and, having opened in 2007, it's now become part of the Los Angeles River Revitalization plan to restore 11 miles of the LA River between Griffith Park and Downtown Los Angeles.

But three years ago, there was no easy way to get from the park, formerly part of the Taylor Yard railyard, to the other side of the river (an area known as Elysian Valley/Frogtown).


That changed last year, when the Taylor Yard car-free bridge opened up in the Glendale Narrows section of the Los Angeles River. 

May 29, 2023

The Wrigleys' Timeless Gift of Timekeeping on Catalina Island: The Chimes Tower

In my last couple of visits to Catalina Island—the only developed tourist attraction in the Channel Islands archipelago off the coast of California—I've been trying to trace some of the remnants of the Wrigleys' time there.

But for all the looking I've done, there's been another clue to the Wrigley history on the island—and that can be found simply by listening

Every 15 minutes, you can hear the Westminster chimes of the Catalina Chimes Tower—a set of "cathedral chimes" (like those found at Westminster Abbey) ringing out from atop a hill. (They originally sounded four times an hour from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. — but now they're only between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.)

circa 2021, with some Photoshop magic

May 28, 2023

Photo Essay: Catalina Island's Miniature Hollywood Bowl, Abandoned

I first discovered that there were some ruins ripe for exploring on Catalina Island thanks to a KCET video on the former Island Mountain Railway, built by the Banning brothers who owned Catalina Island at the time. (You can watch the video at the bottom of this post.)

The funicular connected the town of Avalon to Pebbly Beach—which was necessary because Pebbly Beach Road hadn't been built yet. 

circa 1914 (Photo: California Historical Society, via USC Digital Libraries

I still haven't made it Buena Vista Point—where a Swiss chalet-style power house for the incline railway attracted tourists to Mount Buena Vista Park, at what was also known then as Avalon Summit.

Google Satellite view

There's apparently a concrete foundation and maybe some other rusty ruins left up there. But there's something else that can be seen, farther down the hill, right next to where one of two funicular cars used to run along the west side of the hill: the old Greek-style amphitheater. 

May 20, 2023

Photo Essay: Sleeping In NYC's Former Home For Shipwrecked Sailors

For my first trip back to NYC in five years, staying with a friend wasn't really an option—so I took the opportunity to stay in the weirdest and most historic hotel I could think of.

It's now a boutique hotel called The Jane, located in the westernmost environs of Greenwich Village, just steps from the East Bank of the Hudson River.

I remember its big reopening in 2008, with much fanfare. It then became a huge nightlife destination, though I don't recall ever drinking or dancing in its Victorian-style "ballroom." 

But my return visit would be very different—sleeping in a hotel room I vaguely knew had been built for sailors and that one of the Titanic survivors might've occupied in 1912.

Of course, it turned out I was actually going in a little blind—because there was so much I didn't know about The Jane. 

You see, it began its life at 507 West Street in 1908 as the American Seamans Friend Society Institute Building—built by the non-sectarian although decidedly religious (and even evangelical) Seamens Institute. 

circa 1909 (The Acts of the Apostles of the Sea, page 69) via Internet Archive Book Images (Public Domain)

According to the 1909 book The Acts of the Apostles of the Sea, the institute—whose president at the time was the Reverend Dr. Charles A. Stoddard—stood as "the largest distributor of the Word of God on the waters." Not only that, the book continues, the society "aided shipwrecked and destitute seamen of every race and nation, fed the hungry, clothed the naked, [and] buried the dead." 

circa July 2022 (Google Street View)

May 15, 2023

Yet Another Island Gets Added to New York's Five Boroughs

NYC is full of weird experiences—from swimming in a shipping container to picnicking on a former landfill to squishing your toes in the sand of a pretend beach on the East River. 

So, having been away for a while, I was tickled to spend part of my return visit checking out one of the weirder new additions to Manhattan,

It's Little Island, a manmade park that opened at the former Piers 54 and 55 off of Hudson River Park in May 2021.

 
Pier 54 was once the Cunard-White Star pier, where the RMS Carpathia dropped off Titanic survivors in 1912 and where the British RMS Lusitania departed in 1915 before being torpedoed on its way to London. In 1918, in the final year of WWI, the German U-boat U-55 also sunk the Carpathia

May 12, 2023

Photo Essay: NYC's High Line and Its Closed Hudson Yards Vessel

I can trace my current spirit of adventure back to New York City circa 2005, when the weekend program Open House New York debuted and I had the chance to access special places that hadn't previously been on my radar—mostly because I'd been otherwise occupied with nightlife and not the NYC I could explore during the day. 

 
But the shift in my interests really ramped up in 2006, when I had the chance to walk upon the abandoned, elevated rail line that once delivered goods to the meatpackers on the far west side of the island.

May 08, 2023

Photo Essay: Chasing Down Elvis in Vegas

It didn't really occur to me when I visited the then-Las Vegas Hilton back in the late 1990s (for Star Trek: The Experience, which ran there 1998 to 2008) that I so close to the legacy left by Elvis Presley at the former International Hotel.

 

May 05, 2023

Photo Essay: The Bellagio's Italian Garden of Love Brings A Touch of Romance to Spring

The Bellagio Hotel & Casino was added to the Las Vegas Strip in 1998...

 
...built by hotelier Steve Wynn to evoke the Mediterranean area of Lake Como, Italy. 


While the Bellagio may be best known for its fountain show, I'm drawn to its 14,000-square-foot Conservatory, where immersive, botanical experiences are installed for each season.

April 29, 2023

Photo Essay: Earth Day at Los Angeles Eco-Village

Some people live wherever they can find a place they can afford—even if they have nothing in common with their neighbors.

I have been that person my entire adult life, surrounding myself with strangers and mostly hiding from them inside my apartments and avoiding them in the hallways. We have not been bound to each other by a shared ethnicity, religion, or set of values. 

Just a similar budget and vague geographic preference. 

But other people live in intentional communities—where everybody's working towards the same goal and more or less living there for the same reason.
 
 
Is this a euphemism for "commune" or a modern-day version of a utopian community? I haven't quite figured that out yet. But it's the basis for the Los Angeles Eco-Village on LA's Bimini Place—a kind of co-op that reuses old buildings to provide affordable housing and eco-centric services and support to its residents. 

April 19, 2023

Photo Essay: The Mysteries of Bear Divide, LA's Newest Bird Migration Hotspot

They say that migrating birds have a natural urge to be on the move—one that's triggered by hormones that respond to fluctuations in light. (Think of how darkness triggers the natural release of the hormone melatonin in humans, which is what makes us sleepy at night.)

It's called "Zugunruhe"—and although it can be induced in a lab, we still don't know exactly why it happens. 

There are explanations of rising or dipping temperatures that could cause birds to fly north for the summer or south for the winter. Some theories suggest the migration is dictated by dwindling natural resources, like food and habitat (including nesting areas).

But beyond the question of why, there's an even bigger conundrum: How do they know when and how and where to migrate?

 
Those are some of the multitude of questions that researchers are trying to figure out the answers to at Bear Divide in California's Angeles National Forest. 

April 17, 2023

Photo Essay: A Condor Takes Flight at Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuge

They say that if you ever think you may have spotted a condor in the wild, it was probably a turkey vulture. Those are far more common than condors.

There are only 90-some-odd California condors in the SoCal "flock," which is composed of two main sites: Hopper Mountain and Bitter Creek. 

I got the chance to see some condors at Hopper Mountain in 2018. But I've been waiting almost five years to get to Bitter Creek. 

 
And this past weekend, I finally got my chance.

April 16, 2023

Photo Essay: Wildflower Boom Time in the Golden State's Carrizo Plain

"Have you been to Carrizo Plain?" he asked me. I answered, "Yup, a couple of times." (Actually it was three.)

"Of course you have," he said, because he knows me well enough. 

The last time I drove up to California's Carrizo Plain National Monument—the address says it's in Santa Margarita in San Luis Obispo County, but feels much more Central Valley/Kern County—was during the "superbloom" year of 2017. 

 
And although SoCal isn't technically experiencing a superbloom per se (although that term is entirely subjective), we've had a wet enough winter to warrant a return visit to see what kind of wildflowers had erupted this spring.

April 12, 2023

Photo Essay: How Disney Turned a 1920s Hollywood Playhouse Into a Spectacular Movie Palace

I remember early in my days of living in NYC, I'd hear complaints about the "Disneyfication" of Times Square—and, specifically, 42nd Street, where Disney had purchased and rehabbed the New Amsterdam Theatre to become the home of its Broadway stage version of The Lion King

From a business perspective, Disney brought a lot to that area of New York. 

circa 2019

And in LA, we've had a little "Disneyfication" of our own—right on Hollywood Boulevard.

April 09, 2023

Photo Essay: A Delightful Discovery at the End of a Failed Day

With no other plans Easter weekend, I set off on a vehicular adventure to try to find some wildflowers. It's not really a "superbloom" year—certainly not compared to previous years—but scattered reports have indicated some really nice areas to spot some blooms.

I, however, mostly failed. Unless you count hillsides full of the small yellow blossoms of black mustard plant, a dastardly invader of California native plant habitat, and a big contributor to nasty wildfire seasons.

But I'd driven relatively far, crossing into three other counties (besides the one I live in), so I wanted to make one last stop before I headed home in defeat.

And that's when I found a delightful surprise, hidden in the Anaheim Hills of California's Orange County. 

 

March 29, 2023

Photo Essay: The Quiet Elegance of the Wilshire Ebell Theatre


 
...I'd actually already been to its theatre, on its south wing facing 8th Street, to see a performance of orchestral Dr. Dre all the way back in November 2015.

March 26, 2023

Photo Essay: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Desert Tortoise Research Natural Area, California City

I haven't had much reason to return to California City since I first visited in 2010. 


 
 
But on a clear Saturday morning after the wettest winter weather I've experienced since moving to Southern California in 2011, it seemed like a good idea to drive a couple of hours north to the Mojave Desert...

 
...specifically to celebrate the Desert Tortoise Research Natural Area's 50th anniversary. 

March 21, 2023

Photo Essay: The Clubhouse of Sisterhood, The Ebell of Los Angeles

There's a somewhat secret brotherhood that characterizes Los Angeles—a city of private associations that go beyond just your run of the mill country club.

There are athletic clubs, breakfast clubs (the oldest of which, I am a proud member), camera clubs, adventurers' clubs, fishing clubs, writers' and directors' guilds, actors' unions, magical societiesfraternal organizations, and more.

And I hate being left out of any of 'em.
 
But it took me many years to explore LA's landmark house of sisterhood: The Ebell Club.


Now, in honor of Women's History Month, it feels like a good time to share my photos and what I learned about it.

March 18, 2023

Photo Essay: A Reimagining of LA's Century Plaza Hotel, the Centerpiece of a 'City Within a City'

I started driving past the Century Plaza Hotel, along Century City's Avenue of the Stars, pretty regularly sometime in the year 2020, during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

circa Dec. 2021

It was on my way home from the Santa Monica College swimming pool—but it wasn't the most convenient way home.

March 09, 2023

Photo Essay: All Saints Episcopal Church, Beverly Hills

I've visited churches of many different faiths all over Southern California—and even in Las Vegas—but somehow in the 12 years that I've lived in Beverly Hills, I'd never stepped foot inside any of the three historic churches that line Santa Monica Boulevard right in the center of town. 

 
This past Presidents' Day, I decided to maximize my day off and not only visit all three of those churches—but do so by attending the annual Presidents' Day Organ Festival, hosted by Los Angeles Chapter of the American Guild of Organists and the Los Angeles Theatre Organ Society (which I'd been wanting to do for several years but could never muster the energy nor the time to make it there).

March 04, 2023

Photo Essay: Beverly Hills Historic Cactus Garden, Restored

It's one of those places that I've driven past a hundred, maybe hundreds of times—and yet until recently, I'd never stopped and gotten out of the car to take a look around. 

 
It's the Beverly Hills Historic Cactus Garden, part of the Beverly Gardens Park, north of the area of Beverly Hills known as the "Golden Triangle"—and I finally took a stroll through on my way to the Church of the Good Shepherd on my day off on President's Day. 

February 27, 2023

Photo Essay: The End of the Line for the Last of Its Kind, Gardena Cinema

Large, opulent movie palaces aren't the only type of movie theatre that's nearly gone extinct in the advent of the multiplex cinema.

 
There's also the local neighborhood single screen theatre—smaller and more modest than the palaces, but crucial to a sense of community in suburbs, subdivisions, and other areas a little farther out from Los Angeles' downtown or, as development moved west, Hollywood.

 
An example of such is the Gardena Cinema, located in the tiny City of Gardena in the South Bay region of Los Angeles—once known for its greenery but now perhaps more famous as the site of a SpaceX facility.