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Warner Huntington Park Theatre – First Look In 80 Years

November 24, 2014
1E WHP 1930 Bill Housos 4

When we heard the Warner Huntington Park Theatre was sold last year, we knew we had to see it. Whether it was being renovated or demolished, the current interior was a mystery as it’s proved nearly impossible to find any photos after 1930. After a wealth of patience, we finally had a rare opportunity to document the theatre both inside and out.

The theatre opened on November 19, 1930, with the attraction “The Life of the Party.” It was designed by B. Marcus Priteca, the same architect of the Warner Grand San Pedro and our favorite LA movie palace, the Pantages. Priteca’s work never fails to impress with his immense attention to Art Deco details and iconic starburst ceilings.

Warner Bros. divested control to Stanley Warner Corp., who ran the theatre until 1968. It was then operated by Pacific Theatres, but the Warner signage never changed. In its later years, it had a successful run showing Spanish language films. Sometime in the ’80s, the theatre was horizontally twinned (a floor was built at the balcony level, creating two smaller screens). It closed its doors in the early ’90s and has been abandoned ever since.

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In Danger: One of LA’s Best Streamline Moderne Buildings

October 23, 2014
SMB Streamline

At first glance it may not look like much, especially considering it has sat in neglect, hidden behind a line of trees for the last few decades. It isn’t until seeing vintage photos of the Dr. Eugene C. Jones Cat and Dog Hospital (now known as the Santa Monica Boulevard Streamline Moderne) that you realize it is one of LA’s best remaining examples of Streamline Moderne architecture.

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Hollywood’s Most Distinguished Address

October 6, 2014

Designed in 1929 by architect Leland A. Bryant, the Sunset Tower Hotel is one of greatest examples of Art Deco architecture in Southern California.

As advertised in a 1938 issue of the Screen Actors Guild magazine, the Sunset Tower was “Hollywood’s Most Distinguished Address.” As one would expect, residents were mainly the who’s who of the entertainment business including John Wayne, Marilyn Monroe,  Howard Hughes, Elizabeth Taylor, Billie Burke,  Paulette Goddard, Errol Flynn, Frank Sinatra, Clark Gable, and Bugsy Siegel.  While thoroughly stunning both the inside and out, the building surpassed the standard of living for its opulent residents by incorporating modern conveniences such as outlets in every bathroom for personal appliances and large, modern windows to take advantage of the glistening city lights.

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