Tuesday, October 12, 2010

L.A. Conservancy Presents "Strolling on 7th Street" Tour November 7

Strolling on 7th Street:
Downtown's Historic Thoroughfare
One-time-only tour of historic sites along L.A.'s Seventh Street
Sunday, November 7, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
$30 ($25 for Conservancy members, $10 for kids 12 and under)

Tickets on sale now!

Park your car and stroll with us down a mile of history! On Sunday, November 7, the Los Angeles Conservancy will hold a one-time-only tour exploring the rich history and architectural gems of downtown L.A.'s Seventh Street. The main shopping destination for Angelenos for half a century, the area is the latest frontier in downtown's revitalization, with loft-style residential conversions, fine restaurants, and great nightlife.

Spanning from Figueroa to Los Angeles Streets, the event is "open-house" style. You can stroll down Seventh at your own pace, stopping at eight sites for guided tours:
  • Fine Arts Building (Walker & Eisen, 1927) - Built to provide space for artists’ studios and workshops, this remarkable building features a lobby that served as exhibition space for the upstairs tenants. The lobby is a work of art in its own right, with its spectacular installation of Batchelder tile.

  • Broadway Plaza, now Macy’s Plaza (Charles Luckman Associates, 1973) - This plaza offers an interesting modern note on Seventh Street. The circular glass Polaris Room atop the Sheraton Hotel, with its spectacular views, was once a rotating restaurant known as Angel's Flight.

  • Brock & Co., now Seven Grand (Dodd and Richards, 1922) - Once dubbed the “Tiffany’s of California,” Brock’s provided jewelry and china to an elite clientele. The building later housed Clifton’s Silver Spoon cafeteria and now serves as home to the super-hip whiskey bar Seven Grand.

  • Coulter’s Dry Goods & Henning Building, now The Mandel (Architects unknown, 1917) - Coulter’s Dry Goods was Los Angeles’ oldest mercantile establishment when it moved to its sixth location in 1917. Now combined with its small neighbor to the west, the building offers loft-style housing with an amazing rooftop garden.

  • St. Vincent’s Court - A unique urban space, St. Vincent’s Court is at the heart of the former Bullock’s Department Store complex. The working alley has eclectic charm and a surprising history.

  • Hellman Commercial Trust & Savings Bank, now SB Spring (Schultze and Weaver, 1925) - This spectacular bank lobby, with beautiful ornamental ceilings by Giovanni Smeraldi, is a study in marble and bronze opulence.

  • Overell’s, now Dearden’s Home Furnishings (Architect unknown, 1906) - Celebrating 100 years as a downtown business, Dearden’s Home Furnishings eventually occupied a building originally built for the furniture store Overell’s. Dearden’s is a neighborhood icon and an old-school classic with four floors of merchandise and services.

  • Santee Court (Arthur W. Angel, 1911) - Located in the birthplace of L.A.’s fashion district, Santee Court’s vintage industrial buildings are now a thriving loft-style housing complex, centered on a pedestrian courtyard.

The tour materials will point out more than twenty other interesting sites along the route, as well as suggestions for local dining.

Tickets are $30 for the general public, $25 for L.A. Conservancy members, and $10 for children ages 12 and under. Tickets are available online at http://lac.laconservancy.org/7

See you on Seventh!

Vintage postcard from the collection of Marlene Laskey.

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