DTLA BOOK 2018
Y O U R G U I D E / Y E A R B O O K O F D O W N T O W N L. A.
AR BOOK Cover artist Peter Greco is a local treasure with recognizable murals through out DTLA. Scan this QR code with your standard iPhone camera to launch our DTLA Book AR App and watch the image come to life!
Vol. 02 // 2018
COVER: The original cover art created by Peter Greco for DTLA BOOK. QUIZ: Can you find the word “DTLA”? See the answer in the AR video. More about the artist: page 50.
Features 4 5
AR Drone Video by Ian Wood Letter from the Publishers
6 5 ESSENTIAL RULES FOR TOTALLY ENJOYING DTLA New shops, restaurants, bars and art galleries pop up every week. Here’s how to take it all in.
14 DTLA’S 16 DISTRICTS Get to know each vibrant area of the hottest neighborhood in L.A.
16 20 BUILDINGS TO TREASURE From 1893’s Bradbury Building to 2017’s Wilshire Grand, a look at the most glorious architecture of Downtown’s last 125 years— and the reason why so much of it thankfully survived: “It got mothballed.”
24 SEASIDE VIBES Clothing designer Heidi Merrick chose the Fashion District to bring her beach-inspired, made-in-L.A. line to life. In 2016, she opened her own boutique here as well: “It’s a place where you can make things happen.”
28 DESIGNERS OF THE DISTRICT Ten of the most stylish brands to know in 2018 are all based in DTLA.
32 WHERE THE SILENT STARS FROLICKED
Downtown has been a favorite filming location for Hollywood since the 1910s and 1920s, when stars such as Charlie Chaplin, Harold Lloyd and Clara Bow made it their celluloid playground.
FROM LEFT: POUL LANGE; JOSHUA SPENCER
40 DIVINE DINING
66 FAST FORWARD
Located in a magnificent former Archdiocese cathedral, Redbird restaurant and Vibiana events venue are the delectable culinary province of Neal and Amy Fraser.
The future of transportation is taking shape in Downtown Los Angeles, thanks to the efforts of two ambitious rail startups.
68 THE CRAZIEST BAR IN DTLA 44 DTLA NOIR With real-life mummies, bodies in suitcases and secret tunnels—and a cursed building that inspired American Horror Story: Hotel—it’s no wonder Downtown birthed a whole new chilling genre. AR
50 MASTER OF MURALS
Peter Greco combines classical calligraphy with street art to create his signature “calligraffiti” works, generating some of DTLA’s most unforgettable public art.
In the ’80s and ’90s, the American Hotel and its former music club, Al’s Bar—the subjects of a fascinating new documentary—were where artists and bands were free to run wild: “It was social sculpture.”
FROM LEFT: HUNTER KERHART; CARLEY RUDD; COURTESY MELISSA ECKMAN
These five DTLA companies not only design stylish clothing and accessories—they also help communities from Skid Row’s homeless to Bangladeshi moms. Says the president of one company, The Giving Keys: “Giving people a purpose is critical.”
In the Arts District, painter Vanessa Prager and watch dealer Stephen Hallock create a home in the type of raw, soaring space that “doesn’t really exist anymore.”
Established 237 years ago, El Pueblo, founded as a Spanish mission, was reborn as a themed shopping area in the 1930s.
80 LAP OF LUXURY In the surprisingly dog-friendly urban jungle of DTLA, the go-to spot for all things upscale pet is Pussy & Pooch.
62 GO METRO! Seven Downtown train stations, all within easy walking distance of each other, give seamless access to the vast and diverse culture of Los Angeles, even the beach.
community and hosted a dinner prepared by Tuck Hotel founder and chef Juan Pablo Torre. AR
86 INSTANT KARMA
DTLA Book sent two photographers— Alexander Laurent and Poul Lange—out to shoot DTLA.
90 THE TASTE MAKERS Downtown L.A.’s brightest creatives and entrepreneurs dish on the restaurants, shops and art they love best right now.
72 UNICORN LOFT
76 L.A.’S BIRTHPLACE 56 GREATER GOODS
82 EAT AND GREET The DTLA Dinner Club, founded by political consultant Josh Gray-Emmer, is a way for residents to connect. DTLA Book joined the
102 POINTS OF VIEW A historic icon and two modern towers offer three takes on the city’s epic vista and beyond.
Our Faves 104 Eat 120 Drink 126 Wellness 129 Shop 136 Arts 142 Play
End Notes 144
Contributors, the Team and Acknowledgments.
DTLA BOOK 2018
The videographer’s mesmerizing footage captures the city’s essence and every nook.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Scan this QR code with your standard iPhone camera to launch our DTLA Book AR App and watch the image come to life! Powered by augmentmode.com
WATCH IAN WOOD’S DTLA DRONE VIDEO!
Letter from the Publishers
A DTLA MOMENT
ast year, when we put together our book about everything to know in Downtown Los Angeles, we thought it was a done deal—that we had created the indispensable look at our neighborhood. However,
almost the day that we published, it became clear that the Downtown renaissance to which we had dedicated our book was accelerating at such warp speed that an update would be essential. And here it is: The first edition now makes way for our second edition, DTLA Book 2018. In the space of a little over one year, Downtown has welcomed scores of restaurants, bars and shops and two new museums. Our latest guide is brimming with chic new shopping opportunities, adventurous new art galleries and lively new bars. Inside these pages, we bring you a look at the top DTLA-based designers who are influencing fashion today; introduce you to our cover artist, Peter Greco, whose murals you may have already seen on Instagram; and show you five stylish companies that are doing well by helping others. We also give the lowdown on two companies that may be creating the future of transportation—sci-filike hyperloop transport—from their Downtown offices. With all of this forward motion and the rapid pace of building throughout the district, inevitably some things are lost. As we get more coffee choices in the Fashion District, our options for buying from momand-pop stores dwindle. A new fashion outlet on Broadway opens; a Mexican botanica storefront closes. And with every chic little restaurant we get at Grand Central Market, it gets harder to find the cheap vegetable stands that dominated the hall not long ago. That’s why in the following pages we also celebrate the hidden treasures and colorful history that make up Downtown Los Angeles—the things that we dearly hope will be preserved for all time. DTLA Book pays homage to the past with a story about El Pueblo, the 1781 birthplace of Los Angeles (page 76); a look at 20 of the architectural wonders of the last 125 years (page 16); and movie stills that show where silent film stars were shot Downtown contrasted with present-day photos that reveal what remains there today (page 32). We hope that you will come to cherish these survivors from the past as much as we do. As you explore and enjoy Downtown, take a moment to look around and appreciate what we have right now. Remember, today will certainly be the good old days of tomorrow! —Kayoko & Shana
FOR TOTALLY ENJOYING
WALK IT! Welcome to the most walkable neighborhood in all of Los Angeles. By Degen Pener // Photography by Joshua Spencer
he phrase “Nobody walks in L.A.” is fast becoming dated. With a walk score of 95
Throughout the following pages, our model, Brianna Lopez, wears clothing by DTLA-based Venia Collection. Its designers—who keep their identity hidden, going by the names Eni and Nigma—use 3-D printing, sustainable materials and upcycled textiles to create their line. Brianna wears accessories by Kestan, a label with a commitment to ethical labor and environmental impact policies. Its flagship store is located in Costa Mesa, California, and they also sell at The Row’s Smorgasburg market. Styled by Chrstine Ko, hair & makeup by Lisa Lex.
DTLA BOOK 2018
(an increase of one point from the previous year), Downtown Los Angeles is a paradise for people who love experiencing a city on foot. People in DTLA can stroll
to an average of 33 restaurants, bars and coffee shops in five minutes—a welcome thing in a metropolis designed around car culture. According to a 2015 survey, 22 percent of DTLA locals live and work here, and 62 percent of that group walk to work every day. It’s a trend that’s sure to intensify. In the first nine months of 2017, Downtown saw a record 2,700 new apartments enter the market. Less than two decades ago—in 1999—the population of DTLA was just 18,700 people; it had more than tripled by 2016, hitting 65,185. New shops, restaurants, bars and art galleries pop up every week, inviting residents and visitors alike to hit the streets in search of the next great thing.
Brianna in front of Bunker Hillâ€™s The Broad museum, which, when it opened in 2015, attracted 820,000 visitors in its inaugural year.
SHOP TILL YOU DROP Buy local. Get eclectic.
rand department stores—now long gone—graced Downtown decades ago. Today, a retail
renaissance is animating the area, everywhere from Little Tokyo and the Arts District to lively developments FIGat7th, The Row and The Bloc. DTLA is also a bargain hunter’s dream, with its fabric, flower and toy markets all waiting to be explored.
JAPANESE VILLAGE PLAZA
B r i a n n a i n L i t t l e To k y o ’s i c o n i c s h o p p i n g a n d d i n i n g c e n t e r. Opened in 1984, it boasts 35 stores and restaurants. 3 3 5 E . 2 n d S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 1 7-1 9 0 0 // j a p a n e s e v i l l a g e p l a z a . n e t
DTLA BOOK 2018
EAT, DRINK, REPEAT
So many flavors, so little time.
he DTLA dining scene is so hot, it’s drawing chefs from all over, like Eleven Madison
Park’s Daniel Humm, David Chang of the Momofuku empire and James Beard Award-winning chef Jessica Largey (see page 90), who all have new restaurants opening here in 2018. It’s also a springboard for the latest Instagramworthy trends like taiyaki ice cream, traditional Japanese fish-shaped cakes served warm and stuffed with soft serve.
B r i a n n a s a m p l e s t h e s w e e t t r e a t s t o r e ’s t a i y a k i m a t c h a / m i l k swirl. Weller Court, 123 Astronaut E. S. Onizuka St., Ste. 103, L i t t l e To k y o // 2 1 3 -2 6 5 -76 3 7 // s n o w y a . c o m
GO UP HIGH
Enjoy a top-shelf drink or two on DTLA’s top floors.
owntown’s ever-growing skyline isn’t just something to be admired from below. Catch an elevator to one of the
neighborhood’s lofty bars, such as Spire 73 at Wilshire Grand Center; the BonaVista Lounge on the 34th floor of the Westin Bonaventure; rooftop bar Perch in the Historic Core; and Broken Shaker atop the new Freehand hotel. See page 102 & 104 for a look at other places to take in DTLA’s sweeping views.
The new lounge on the 73rd floor of the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown at the Wilshire Grand Center is the highest open-air bar in the United States. 900 Wilshire Blvd., 73rd Fl., F i n a n c i a l D i s t r i c t // 2 1 3 - 6 8 8 -7 7 7 7 // d t l a . i n t e r c o n t i n e n t a l . c o m
“1100 FEET” DRINK Spire 73’s signature cocktail with Glenmorangie scotch, Benedictine, Lillet Blanc, Creole bitters and dried apricot
BE AN EXPLORER! Revelations await around every corner.
erhaps no city in America has as many distinct neighborhoods in such close proximity as DTLA.
So taking a 15-minute walk means that you never know what you will encounter, whether it’s an under-the-radar art gallery in Chinatown, an unexpected mural by a world-famous artist or a surprising alley in the Toy District that sells everything under the sun for kids’ parties, including piñatas.
Brianna hunts down finds in an alley off Winston Street between Los Angeles and Wall streets.
DTLA BOOK 2018
GET IT NOW!
You can shop the looks from Brianna’s day exploring Downtown—and receive a special 10 percent discount on the Venia Collection and Kestan pieces she wears. Just enter the code “DTLABOOK” at online store checkout. Limited supply. Hurry!
Venia’s Vitis silk dress, $650 Raphanus silk top, $355
Kestan’s Aster ring in silver rhodium, $15 Comet bracelet in silver rhodium, $30
Lovell ring in sterling silver, $35
Archway ring in silver rhodium, $15
Lyra necklace in silver rhodium, $30
Mendenhall silk top, price upon request*, and Viola tencel culottes, $298
Scan these QR codes with your standard iPhone camera or Android QR code reader app to visit their online stores. Get 10% OFF by using special discount code DTLABOOK at checkout.
KESTAN Kestrel necklace in silver rhodium, $25
DTLA BOOK 2018
kestan.co The ethically sourced California company sells a chic mix of affordable dresses and jewelry.
VENIA COLLECTION veniacollection.com Based in DTLA, the line is produced with sustainable materials often using 3-D printing techniques.
Jasminium fish-leather jacket, price upon request*; Raphanus silk top, $355; and Iris leather leggings, $900 *All price-upon-request pieces will be produced by special request only.
I S EXCITE D TO AN NOUNCE OUR
IS NOW OPEN!
#LifeHappensHere #StyleHappensHere @FIGat7th · FIGat7th.com 735 S. Figueroa St. · Downtown L.A. Across from the 7th Street/Metro Center Station
DTLA’S 16 DISTRICTS Get to know each vibrant area of the hottest neighborhood in L.A. 6. BUNKER HILL
By Liz Ohanesian // Illustrations by Lulu
Once home to mansions, Bunker Hill is now known for office buildings, Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art, The Broad and Walt Disney Concert Hall. Use the 298-foot-long Angels Flight Railway for easy access to this district.
4. FINANCIAL DISTRICT Downtown’s skyscrapers will lead you to the Financial District. If you make it to the top of one of these buildings, you’ll get a phenomenal view of the city.
5. JEWELRY DISTRICT
SOUTH PARK 2
OR C IC
OR T S I 12 8 H ROW LITTLE Y ER 13 TOKYO L L GA TOY DISTRICT 3
INDUSTRIAL FASHION 14 DISTRICT PIÑATA DISTRICT DISTRICT
ARTS DISTRICT S R IVE R
Located within the Fashion District, the Flower District is a six-block floral marketplace. Consisting of nearly 200 wholesale flower dealers, it’s the largest flower market in the United States. The district is open to both the public and the trade.
Los Angeles’ Fashion District overflows with clothing and fabrics. Bargain hunters will want to head to Santee Alley, the large apparel marketplace that sits between Santee Street, Maple Avenue, Olympic Boulevard and 12th Street.
3. FLOWER DISTRICT
2. FASHION DISTRICT
You will find the bulk of Downtown’s crowds in South Park gathered along Figueroa Street, where the Los Angeles Convention Center, STAPLES Center and L.A. LIVE sit side by side.
1. SOUTH PARK
Los Angeles’ Jewelry District sits next to Pershing Square, where buildings like St. Vincent Jewelry Center and California Jewelry Mart glisten with stones and precious metals.
DTLA BOOK 2018
WALKING & BIKING
TIPS One of DTLA’s best qualities is that it’s easy to do on foot. It’s about two-and-ahalf miles from Chinatown to the Convention Center, essentially opposite sides of Downtown. Other districts are much closer in proximity. To take advantage of the neighborhood’s walkability, divide your excursions into groups of districts. You can travel through Chinatown, El Pueblo, Little Tokyo, the Arts District and Civic Center in an afternoon. The same goes for South Park, the Financial District, Bunker Hill and the Historic Core. If you prefer bicycles, get the Metro Bike Share app to find the bikes docked throughout Downtown.
7. CIVIC CENTER The Civic Center district is home to Los Angeles’ City Hall, the LAPD’s Police Administration Building and other official structures, but it’s not all business here. Enjoy live performances at The Music Center, tour Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels and find a moment of peace at Grand Park.
8. HISTORIC CORE Many of Downtown’s vintage buildings are clustered together within the Historic Core, including Grand Central Market, the Bradbury Building, The Last Bookstore and a number of renovated movie palaces.
9. GALLERY ROW Centered around Spring and Main streets, Gallery Row overlaps the Historic Core and is known as the home of Downtown’s Art Walk on the second Thursday of the month.
10. CHINATOWN Chung King Road, Chinatown
Chinatown connects Downtown with the northeastern portion of Los Angeles as well as Dodger Stadium. The neighborhood is an art hub thanks to the galleries on Chung King Road and has emerged as a foodie destination in recent years with a bounty of new restaurants (such as Chego) and old-school spots (like Yang Chow).
11. EL PUEBLO
12. LITTLE TOKYO This historically Japanese neighborhood draws multigenerational crowds for its mix of shopping and dining, as well as the Japanese American National Museum and MOCA’s Geffen Contemporary.
13. TOY DISTRICT The Toy District is a collection of predominately wholesale vendors neighboring Little Tokyo.
14. PIÑATA DISTRICT The Piñata District isn’t an officially recognized neighborhood, but this Fashion District– adjacent stop is locally known for its wealth of whimsical creations ready to be filled with candy.
15. INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT Los Angeles’ warehouse-heavy Industrial District—where must-visit spots include The Row and Smorgasburg—sits along Alameda Street, adjacent to the Arts District.
16. ARTS DISTRICT You’ll find murals throughout Downtown, but the collection inside the Arts District is bountiful. Restaurants, coffee spots and boutiques are found within the painted buildings.
El Pueblo de Los Angeles marks the oldest section of the city with a collection of small museums as well as shopping/dining destination Olvera Street. El Pueblo is host to frequent community events. Olvera Street, El Pueblo
The Row, Industrial District
E. 3rd Street, Arts District
20 BUILDINGS TO TREASURE From 1893’s Bradbury Building to 2017’s Wilshire Grand, a look at the most glorious architecture of Downtown’s last 125 years—and the reason why so much of it thankfully survived: “It got mothballed.”
By Degen Pener // Photography by Hunter Kerhart
hen architectural historian Laura Massino Smith gives tours of DTLA, she often hears the same thing. “People think L.A. is a new city. They have no idea how old it is,” she says, noting the city’s 1781 founding and that its oldest house, the
Avila Adobe, dates to 1818. Her tour, Architecture Tours L.A., covers “three centuries of wildly eclectic architecture, from the 19th century to the newest buildings from a few years ago.” Why so much of that architecture has been preserved is a tale itself. “Usually what you will see in a city is that some buildings would have been torn down to build high-rises,” says Linda Dishman, president and CEO of the Los Angeles Conservancy preservation group. “We
304 S. Broadway, Historic Core, thebradbury.com
The subdued Italian Renaissance Revival exterior of this five-story office building provides few clues to the wonders within. Built by gold-mining millionaire Lewis Bradbury, the National Historic Landmark welcomes visitors to its first floor, where they can take in a nearly 50-foot-high skylit atrium exquisitely dressed up with yellow and pink brick, opencage elevators, marble stairs and ornate Art Nouveau iron railings. The building memorably appears in 1982’s Blade Runner.
523 W. 6th St., Financial District, pacmutualdtla.com
“It’s incredibly inspiring to walk through the breathtaking marble-clad lobby every morning,” says Dishman of this building, where the L.A.
Conservancy offices are located and which in fact comprises three connected structures. The first, built in 1908, is a six-story Beaux Arts tower, the oldest remaining building on Pershing Square. Adjacent is a 12-story office tower added in 1921 and a parking garage built in 1926. While the façade of the original building was later redone in a Moderne style, the 1921 addition still retains its beautiful terra cotta tile exterior.
506 S. Grand Ave., Financial District, millenniumhotels.com
Host to eight Academy Awards ceremonies in the ’30s and ’40s, this imposing 11-story Beaux Arts hotel covers half a city block. The largest hotel west of Chicago when it opened, the building boasts a grand lobby with a beamed Moorish ceiling and function rooms with murals painted by Italian artist Giovanni Smeraldi.
DTLA BOOK 2018
have two really intact historic districts, Broadway and Spring, both listed in the National Register of Historic Places, which is unusual for a city the size of Los Angeles.” Another area of Downtown, however, was sacrificed for new high-rises. During the urban-renewal period of the 1960s, Bunker Hill, a neighborhood of spectacular Victorian homes, was razed for skyscrapers (and shortened by 30 feet). “We removed most of the housing in Downtown,” says Robert Jernigan, regional managing principal of architecture firm Gensler, which has offices Downtown. (Its DTLA projects include FIGat7th and Metropolis.) “Downtown became a business district and, in the ’70s, a business district was perceived as being for businesspeople and not a mixed-use city. We created the world’s largest office park.” Because the construcion action was elsewhere, the Historic Core largely survived through benign neglect and forgiving weather conditions. What lasted are some of the city’s most glorious Art Deco office buildings and movie palaces from the boom of
630 W. 5th St., Financial District, lapl.org
Topped by a tiled pyramid (itself topped by a handheld torch, symbolizing the light of knowledge), the Central Library is an inspiring sight. Its secondfloor rotunda is decorated with murals painted by Dean Cornwell, showing scenes of state history.
200 N. Spring St., Civic Center, lacity.org
Its distinctive 32-story threetiered tower was inspired by both the ancient world’s Mausoleum of Mausolus and the
previously completed Central Library. An exception to a 1904 city rule that limited buildings to 13 stories, City Hall reigned as the tallest building in L.A. for over three decades, until after the law was repealed in 1958. It houses the Mayor’s Office, City Council and a 27th-floor observation deck for visitors.
617 S. Olive St., Financial District, oviatt.com
“A spectacular example of Art Deco at its finest,” says Massino Smith of the Oviatt Building, built to house the haberdashery shop Alexander & Oviatt. While many details have been lost, owner James Oviatt spared little
expense on his prized building, commissioning Lalique glass for elevator doors, chandeliers and the entrance’s showy arcade ceiling. His penthouse suite is now an events venue; the ground floor houses Cicada Restaurant and Club.
EASTERN COLUMBIA BUILDING
849 S. Broadway, Historic Core
Perhaps L.A.’s most beautiful Art Deco building, the 13-story Eastern Columbia is noted for its turquoise terra cotta tiles, gold details, dramatic sunburst patterns and four-sided clock tower. A former department store, it was renovated as condominiums in 2006.
DTLA BOOK 2018
601 W. 5th St., Financial District, thecaledison.com
The monumental 14-story former Southern California Edison Building was built as a paean to energy, with sculptures by Merrell Gage and a mural by Hugo Ballin representing forms of power. The Art Deco lobby, open to the public and offering free Wi-Fi, is beautifully designed in 17 types of marble and boasts a 30-foot-high coffered ceiling.
800 N. Alameda St., Civic Support, unionstationla.com
Known as the last of the country’s great railway stations, Union Station has been described as Mission Moderne in style, a design that combines Art Deco and Spanish Colonial Revival elements. Intriguing details abound in the massive structure including coffered ceilings, decorative star shapes, and floor designs in terra cotta tile and travertine marble.
910 S. Los Angeles St., Fashion District, gerrybuilding.com
This distinctive late-Moderne office building, with its graceful rounded-corner canopies on the façade, has continuously housed fashion showrooms since it opened. It was one of the first buildings built in Downtown after World War II.
mothballed,” says Jernigan. One jewel lamentably was lost: The Richfield Tower, a
DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND POWER BUILDING
dramatic black-and-gold terra cotta–tiled 12-story building,
111 N. Hope St., Bunker Hill
was torn down in 1969, to be replaced by ARCO Plaza towers.
The drama of this 17-story utility-department office building—with its striking horizontal concrete slabs that extend from the structure— comes from the enormous 1.2-million-gallon pool surrounding it like a moat and the blaze of lights that stunningly illuminate it at night.
But when the Central Library was similarly proposed for
the 1920s. “ We’re very lucky. The Historic Core got
demolition, a preservation movement erupted, saving it and leading to the formation in 1978 of the L.A. Conservancy. As the value of historic buildings rose in people’s estimation, Downtown’s core eventually became prized. In 1991, developer Ira Yellin restored the beautiful Bradbury Building. In 1999—the same year the STAPLES Center was built
BANK OF AMERICA
333 S. Hope St., Bunker Hill, brookfieldproperties.com
The sixth-tallest building in L.A., this 55-story stone-and-glass skyscraper, built as the Security Pacific Bank building, was renamed the Bank of America tower in 2004 and boasts a beautiful Alexander Calder sculpture in its plaza.
550 S. Flower St., Financial District, standardhotels.com
Built in Corporate Moderne style, the former Superior Oil Company Building is clad in a striking grid of white marble and ribbed stainless steel. In 2002, it was converted into a boutique hotel.
DTLA BOOK 2018
14 Downtown—the city passed an Adaptive Reuse Ordinance that allowed office and industrial buildings to be converted into housing. “The true renaissance of Downtown started with the loft conversions,” says MADWORKSHOP architect
404 S. Figueroa St., Financial District, thebonaventure.com
Designed by neofuturist architect John Portman, who died in 2017, the cylindrical 35-story Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites is a signature example of his atrium hotel approach, featuring a soaring space punctuated with interior circular forms, elevators that appear to crash through the roof and then climb the hotel’s mirrored exterior, and a top-floor revolving restaurant and bar. Per an ordinance passed in 1974 that applied to all skyscrapers Downtown, it was required to have a flat roof—so that helicopters could land in the event of a fire.
Virgin Mary, one of the world’s largest pipe organs and an underground mausoleum that includes the remains of actor Gregory Peck.
US BANK TOWER
633 W. 5th St., Financial District, usbanktower.com
The second-tallest building in L.A., this 73-story tower with setbacks topped by a greenglass crown was acquired by Overseas Union Enterprise (OUE) in 2013. A makeover included the addition of the OUE Skyspace observation deck.
111 S. Grand Ave., Bunker Hill, musiccenter.org
777 S. Figueroa, Financial District, brookfieldproperties.com
“The most elegant high-rise in Downtown,” says Massino Smith of this 53-story design by architect César Pelli, which gracefully displays his “stretched skin” concept of a building sheathed in off-white steel and glass.
CATHEDRAL OF OUR LADY OF THE ANGELS
555 W. Temple St., Civic Center, olacathedral.org The postmodern, dramatically angled mother church of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles replaced the Saint Vibiana. It features massive bronze doors, a Robert Graham statue of the
Dave Martin, formerly design principal of AC Martin (which built everything from 1918’s Million Dollar Theatre building to 2017’s Wilshire Grand). Jernigan calls DTLA’s current wave of apartment building—and the opening of a plethora of new restaurants and shops—“a balancing.” He notes that not a single major tower devoted exclusively to offices has been built Downtown since 1992. “What’s occurring now is converting this office park to a 24/7 city.” That includes taking many of the skyscrapers from the last century, which often turned their backs on the city, and making them more accessible to the neighborhood around them. “This sort of de-corporatization of Downtown is what’s going on,” says Jernigan, “and I think it’s wonderful.”
22 D T L A
WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL
The exuberant and iconic Frank Gehry design is lauded for both the acoustics of its auditorium (which has seating on all four sides of the stage) and its swooping sail-like exterior forms.
221 S. Grand Ave., Bunker Hill, thebroad.org
The three-story contemporary art museum’s honeycomb-like exterior, a veil of panels in rhomboid shapes, provides a brilliant contrast to the sleek steel of the adjacent Walt Disney Concert Hall.
INSIDE LOOK AT FORGOTTEN L.A.
rchitect ura l photog rapher Hunter Kerhart, who beautifully photographed every building on the preceding pages, has
an obsession with the history of Downtown. He’s particularly drawn to abandoned spaces, such as the ones featured below, which in some cases he spent years gaining access to for photography. “It’s a way of traveling back in time,” he says. “Spreading the word about what has survived, sometimes for 100 years or more, is what excites me as a photographer.”
GARLAND BUILDING (744 S. Broadway)
“It’s rare to find an abandoned building in DTLA that hasn’t been fully gutted, which is what makes the Garland so interesting. Although decayed, the ornate interior of the 1913 building was left mostly intact and it gives a sense of how the historic offices on Spring and Broadway used to look.”
MERRITT BUILDING (761 S. Broadway) “The Merritt Building, which was built in 1915, has one of the most unique exteriors on Broadway. What is hidden behind its grand columns has long been a mystery. It was neat to explore the large vault and safety deposit boxes that remained from the bank that once occupied the ground floor and basement.”
RED CAR SUBWAY STATION (417 S. Hill St.) WILSHIRE GRAND
900 Wilshire Blvd., Financial District, wilshiregrandcenter.com
The tallest building in the West, the 73-story Wilshire Grand, designed by David Martin of AC Martin, is notable for its sailshaped crown, made possible after the city repealed its flatroof rule in 2014.
“When I first saw images of this underground terminal from 1925 in the USC archives, I was hooked. Seeing the tunnel and platforms was like traveling back in time to when L.A. had one of the world’s most robust transit systems. Imagining thousands of riders coming through there is an exciting thought.”
DTLA BOOK 2018
SEASIDE VIBES Heidi Merrick chose the Fashion District to bring her beach-inspired, made-in-L.A. line to life. In 2016, she opened a boutique: “It’s a place where you can make things happen.” By Lesley McKenzie
owntown might not seem like the most obvious place for a designer who grew up on the beach to launch a California-centric clothing line and debut
a boutique, but for Heidi Merrick, it made total sense. “It’s a place where you can make things happen,” says Merrick, who answered her calling in fashion after designing her own wedding dress 15 years ago. As a student learning patterning and sewing at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, located just south of Downtown, Merrick quickly became immersed in the area’s “culture of made-in-America clothing,” she says. “I realized I could do a clothing collection there easily.” With an inaugural four-piece offering fashioned from vintage fabrics, Merrick debuted her namesake line in 2006. It was as much an ode to her urban surrounds as to her laidback seaside upbringing in Carpinteria, California, with parents Terry and Al Merrick, founders of Channel Islands Surf boards, a famed brand beloved by such surf icons as Tom Curren and Kelly Slater. Merrick describes growing up surfboards and your mom packs picnics for the beach.” Her first collection was “four pieces that women wanted to wear, and I’ve never really varied from that idea,” says Merrick, whose equally wearable current collection includes breezy raw-silk gowns, plush velvet bodysuits,
DTLA BOOK 2018
PURA SOUL PHOTOGRAPHY
as “an idyllic California childhood where your dad shapes
FROM TOP: PURA SOUL PHOTOGRPAHY; NICOLE LAMOTTE
CALI COOL CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Merrick in her store, where tops and bikinis sit on a table by MASHstudios, and Britt Merrick for H. Merrick surfboards line the wall; the line’s Olivera gown in ivory; tags and fabric samples.
DTLA BOOK 2018
CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Selections from the collection hang in front of a Montrose and Merrick ocean print, a collaboration between Merrick and photographer Sharon Montrose, while the designer’s copper sequin Sirena pillows sit on the floor; Moroccan rugs and a MASHstudios’ PCH Canopy Bed; a Montrose and Merrick print; sage sachets, blanket and napkins.
26 D T L A
sequin-spangled bikinis, and home items such as vegan
Channel Islands store was two blocks away from where
leather throw pillows crafted from leftover materials.
the surfboards were made,” says Merrick, who offers by-
(Prices range from $225 to $671 for dresses and gowns to
appointment fittings and custom designs in her nearby
$60 to $375 for tops and T-shirts.) After outgrowing her
atelier. “It’s so special for the customer to know something is
original 300-square-foot studio, Merrick moved in 2009
made here. You’re coming to a destination, and you’re getting
to her current 1,500-square-foot location on Broadway to
something from a local designer.”
accommodate a growing team of on-site sewers and cutters.
The store, which houses the designer’s entire collection,
When a 1,700-square-foot ground-floor space opened
is as much a reflection of Merrick’s Silver Lake home (which
around the corner on W. 9th Street in 2016, Merrick jumped
she shares with her husband, realtor John Johnston, and
at the opportunity to open her first brick-and-mortar, H.
their two children) as it is her workspace. For proof, look
Merrick of California, with friend and business partner
no further than the full-wall inspiration board featuring
Jenny Murray. It was a move partly inspired by memories
fashion and beach shots that anchors the light-filled store,
of her parents’ own retail experience. “Growing up, their
complete with high ceilings and terrazzo floors bedecked
in Moroccan rugs, and a teak canopy bed by L.A.-based MASHstudios that the designer has in her bedroom as well. Merrick sees the store as a way to bring a coastal vibe to Downtown, from the limited-edition surf board collaboration with her brother, Channel Islands shaper Britt Merrick, that takes cues from her seasonal palettes to the ocean prints by L.A. photographer Sharon Montrose—a nod to Merrick’s love of surfing and fishing. “When someone
comes to Los Angeles, they want to see L.A. and California as a whole,” says Merrick. “I have that. It’s absolutely me.”
H. MERRICK OF CALIFORNIA 11 5 W. 9th St., Fa shion Distric t // 310-424-5520 // hmerrickofcalifornia.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
DESIGNERS OF THE DISTRICT Ten of the most stylish brands to know in 2018 are based in DTLA. By Lesley McKenzie
preading across 100 blocks, the Fashion District is home to more than 2,000 wholesale and retail companies. Among the most talked-about are these ten labels from designers including a pair of CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winners; Jennifer Lopezâ€™s
former stylist; two models-turned-creatives; and an eco-minded innovator discovering new ways to make clothing both chic and sustainable.
BROCK COLLECTION Models wearing the Spring/Summer 2018 collection during New York Fashion Week; dresses in the line start at $700.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Brock and Vassar at New York Fashion Week
WASSON After introducing her costume jewelry line, Low Luv, in 2008, and making bespoke pieces for Alexander Wang’s runway shows, model Erin Wasson debuted her fine jewelry line, Wasson, in 2016. “It’s a culmination of my experiences, my education in the world of fashion and an expression of my personal passion,” says Wasson of the line, which counts Karlie Kloss and Emily Ratajkowski as fans. wearwasson.com.
Wasson’s designs include (from top left) the Fluid Orbit earring, Hoop & Pin pendant necklace and Crater Disc cocktail ring ($1,600–$2,460).
Launched in 2014 and crowned the winner of the CFDA/ Vogue Fashion Fund just two years later, ready-to-wear line Brock Collection is the brainchild of husband-and-wife team Laura Vassar and Kristopher Brock. Expert tailoring and
BROCK COLLECTION: DAN AND CORINA LECCA; WASSON: TOBY LYNN; A.L.C.: DANIELA-SPECTOR; LIEBERMAN: TOBY LYNN
attention to details define these romantic luxury essentials (sold at Barneys New York and Neiman Marcus), from lingerie-inspired silk slip dresses to airy, lace-trimmed frocks. brock-collection.com.
A.L.C. Former stylist to the likes of Gwen Stefani, Drew Barrymore and Jennifer Lopez (remember that thigh-baring green Versace dress at the 2000 Grammys?), New Yorker Andrea Lieberman decamped for the West Coast and debuted A.L.C., her ready-to-wear and accessories line, in 2009. ABOVE: Lieberman. LEFT: A.L.C. dresses (which retail for $375– $995) hanging in the designer’s Fashion District studio.
Edgy silhouettes define this brand of elevated, day-tonight basics, from double-breasted wool jackets to cropped sweaters and collarless silk shirts. alcltd.com.
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REFORMATION Sustainability is at the heart of Yael Aflalo’s women’s line, Reformation, started in 2009. Each piece from her limitededition collections is made in an eco-minded factory using environmenta lly friendly fabrics—whether it’s a slinky stretch-velvet dress crafted in surplus fabric or a recycledpolyamide high-rise bikini bottom. She now operates eight brand boutiques in five cities. thereformation.com. Reformation’s Salsa dress in silk charmeuse, $248. ABOVE RIGHT: Aflalo.
Christy Dawn’s floral Dawn dress
CHRISTY DAWN “From fair wages to well-made dresses to environmentally friendly materials, each choice we make is an opportunity to add to the beauty of the planet or take away from it,” says former model Christy Dawn, whose namesake line of limited-run earthy dresses ($192–$390), jumpers, outerwear and accessories made from deadstock fabric debuted in 2013. In 2018, the brand will start offering tours of its Downtown factory to clients—along with the chance to buy dresses before they hit the website. christydawn.com.
REFORMATION: JAMES BRANAMAN; DAWN: COURTESY CHRISTY DAWN
Suiting options from Noon Goons’ Spring/Summer 2018 collection
FROM LEFT: Vrai & Oro Baguette Diamond necklace, $390; Skinny Stacking ring, $50; Dot ring, $72; Twist ring, $60. RIGHT: Stofenmacher.
NOON GOONS Launched in 2016, American Apparel alum Kurt Narmore’s menswear line
VRAI & ORO
takes cues from Southern California’s punk and skate scene, as evident in pieces ranging from zip-up corduroy jackets
When Vanessa Stofenmacher started her direct-to-
($249) to T-shirts ($59) bearing the phrase
consumer jewelry line, Vrai & Oro, in 2014, she envisioned a
“Weirdos are Loose.” noongoons.com.
brand that would resonate with a modern woman in search of quality and accessibility. “With honest prices, ethical manufacturing, and sustainable diamonds, we’re creating designs that allow her to wear her values as a conscious consumer,” says Stofenmacher of standouts such as her 14k
gold Baguette Diamond necklace (above). vraiandoro.com;
Crespo (left) and Alonzo
appointments upon request, email@example.com.
A mer ic a n A ppa r el vet s Iris Alonzo and Carolina Crespo debuted their label Everybody.World in 2016.
SPINELLI KILCOLLIN: SHAYAN ASGHARNIA; COURTESY VRAI & ORO; NOON GOONS; EVERYBODY; LPA
LPA’s gold Jumpsuit 655 in gold lurex, $228
The line of ethically made year-round wardrobe staples, starting at $25, also includes
“We wanted to create something clean and original with
capsule collections designed
a universal appeal,” says artist Dwyer Kilcollin, who,
in collaboration with other
along with her now-husband Yves Spinelli, launched fine-
creatives (including model
jewelry line Spinelli Kilcollin in 2010. What started with
Adwoa Aboah). The label has its own mini-store, Informal
the signature stackable, linked Galaxy ring has evolved into
Shop, inside the lobby of The Standard, Downtown L.A.
an equally avant-garde line of necklaces, bracelets, earrings
550 S. Flower St., everybody.world.
and wedding pieces. Everything is handmade within close proximity to the brand’s Fashion District studio, where private appointments are available upon request. 213-3418224; spinellikilcollin.com.
LPA The creation of former Reformation designer Lara Pia Arrobio, womenswear line LPA has garnered a celebrity following with its feminine-meets-tomboy aesthetic found in pieces such as metallic gold puffers and slinky silk slip dresses. lpathelabel.com.
LEFT: Spinelli and Kilcollin. ABOVE: Astral Aquamarine linked ring, $14,000
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DTLA BOOK 2018
WHERE THE SILENT STARS FROLICKED Downtown has been a favorite filming location for Hollywood since the 1910s and 1920s, when stars such as Charlie Chaplin, Harold Lloyd and Clara Bow made it their celluloid playground. By John Bengtson // Present-day photography by Hunter Kerhart
os Angeles epitomized the Roaring ’20s. New aqueducts drenched the arid region with imported water, spurring phenomenal growth. L.A. surpassed San Francisco’s population in 1920, and ended the decade doubling in size. Women had gained the
vote, hemlines and stock markets were up and jazz was all the rage. Hollywood reflected the era’s optimism and fun, including movies where women outshined the men. Thus, audiences laughed and cheered when Dorothy Devore, playing a “lady reporter,” scaled the Los Angeles
MARC WANAMAKER – BISON ARCHIVES
Railway Building to solve a mystery in the 1924 film Hold Your Breath.
THEN: Devore, atop 1060 S. Broadway, in a still from Hold Your Breath with a view looking north up Broadway from 11th Street. NOW: Such Broadway landmarks as the United Artists Theatre, the Eastern Columbia Building and the Orpheum Theatre were all built later in the booming era.
CHARLIE CHAPLIN AT WORK IN THE FASHION DISTRICT THEN: Chaplin in The New Janitor in a window-washing scene filmed at 112 W. 9th Street. The long-closed Tom Mack Café is visible below him. NOW: Today’s view east down 9th Street includes a sneaker store (which sits on the site of the demolished café building) and the New Mart building.
Charlie Chaplin began his film career at the Keystone Film Company in January 1914. Although an absolute novice, Chaplin soon convinced the studio to let him write and direct his own pictures, and by 1916 had become the world’s most famous and highly paid entertainer. Chaplin’s debut movie, Making a Living, was filmed at 1st Street and Broadway beside the former Los Angeles Times building, and several DTLA locations appear in his early films. Chaplin’s “Little Tramp” character was actually gainfully employed in two other films from 1914—as a piano mover in His Musical Career, and in The New Janitor, where he’s seen leaning out of the Marsh-Strong Building (now called the LA Apparel Mart), built the previous year.
THEN: Chaplin in His Musical Career, also looking east on W. 9th Street, toward where it intersects Main and Spring streets. NOW: Looking north from the junction of Main, Spring and W. 9th streets.
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THIS PAGE: USC LIBRARIES; CALIFORNIA HISTORICAL SOCIETY COLLECTIONS, 1860-1960. OPPOSITE PAGE: CHAPLIN STILLS RESTORATION BY THE BFI NATIONAL FILM INSTITUTE, CINETECA DI BOLOGNA, AND LOBSTER FILMS.
A circa-1917, trolley-era photo looking north from the same intersection. Note the sign that says W.M. Garland & Co., which also appears in the upper-left corner of the Chaplin photo from His Musical Career.
HAROLD LLOYD ABOVE BROADWAY Harold Lloyd was box office king. More prolific than Chaplin, and more popular than Buster Keaton, the bespectacled star sold more movie tickets in the 1920s than any other comedian. Lloyd’s can-do spirit fit with the times, overcoming all obstacles in his way, even a skyscraper! The actor staged his stunt-climbing comedies by building small two-level sets atop several DTLA buildings, including 908 S. Broadway for his 1923 classic Safety Last! While still riotously funny today, his many films also inadvertently captured the 1920s building boom.
THEN: Lloyd in Safety Last! hanging from a clock specially built for the film atop 908 S. Broadway. The Hamburger’s store building, built in 1908, which later became a May Company department store, is visible on the southwest corner of Broadway and 8th Street. NOW: The Hamburger building, most recently known as the Broadway Trade Center, is undergoing a renovation as a mixed-use project.
DTLA BOOK 2018
HAROLD LLOYD ENTERTAINMENT, INC.
“IT” GIRL CLARA BOW ON PERSHING SQUARE Racy-novel writer Elinor Glyn coined the 1920s catchphrase “It,” loosely understood as a blend of charm, joie de vivre and sex appeal. In 1927, Paramount hired Glyn to script a shopgirl-meetsmillionaire story for Clara Bow, and in a brilliant marketing move, titled the movie It. Known thereafter as the “It” girl, Bow shined. It was set in Manhattan, but the exterior scenes were filmed at Pershing Square near the Biltmore Hotel. Nine decades later, DTLA continues to regularly portray New York on film.
THEN: Bow with actor William Austin in It on Olive Street across from the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel, which opened in 1923. NOW: Current tenants in the Biltmore building include a dentist and a Coco Fresh boba and juice shop.
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All Jazzed Up’s Helen Darling catching a train at the original Lower Station at Hill and 3rd streets
Marshall in The Devil’s Needle
Present-day Angels Flight Lower Station at 351 S. Hill Street
DESPAIR ON WEST 5TH
RIDING ANGELS FLIGHT
Abor tion, child abuse, dr ug
A popular setting for film-noir classics such as the late-
addiction—the mov ies have
1940s movies Act of Violence and Criss Cross, the Angels
explored cha lleng ing socia l
Flight incline railway plays an early role in 1920’s All
issues for more than 100 years.
Jazzed Up, a comedy where a husband chases down his
Fi lmed in 1916, T he Devil’s Nee d l e fol low s a r ene ga de
Jewelry Trades Building
thrill-seeking wife. Built in 1901, and touted as the world’s shortest railroad, Angels Flight originally stood adjacent
artist’s near-fatal spiral into
to the 3rd Street Tunnel, only to be dismantled in 1969
drug abuse. Tully Marshall, who portrays the anguished artist, appears above, across
and later reassembled half a block south. The landmark
from an entrance to the Jewelry Trades Building at 220 W. 5th Street in the Historic Core
attraction recently resumed service. Downtown’s second
District. In a sad but remarkable coincidence, the Rite-Aid drugstore occupying this site
incline railway, Court Flight, once ran up Court Hill; both
was busted in 2015 for excessively furnishing tens of thousands of painkillers.
the railway and hill were bulldozed flat in the 1950s.
DTLA BOOK 2018
DIVINE DINING Located in a magnificent former Archdiocese cathedral, Redbird restaurant and Vibiana events venue are the delectable culinary province of chef Neal Fraser and his wife, Amy Knoll Fraser. By Lesley McKenzie
or as long as he can remember, born-and-raised Angeleno Neal Fraser has been an avid supporter of his hometown. “I’ve always worn Los Angeles on my
sleeve,” says the chef. “People really had a bone to pick with it, and I was always trying to prove them wrong, and now it’s gotten a lot easier.” It’s a shift in perception that can be attributed in part to the city’s rapidly evolving dining scene, in which Fraser has played a hand since opening his first restaurant, Boxer, in 1995. Two years later, Fraser came on board as chef at Santa Monica’s now-defunct Rix restaurant, where he met his wife and business partner, Amy Knoll Fraser; the two went on to launch some of L.A.’s most beloved dining institutions, including the now-shuttered Grace and BLD, which, like Boxer, sat centrally located on Beverly Boulevard in the
inside Vibiana—a breathtaking events and performing arts
Fairfax District. “I spent almost 15 years of my career on the
venue housed in one of the city’s few remaining 19th-century
same street,” he says.
landmarks, a former Archdiocese Catholic cathedral—it was
But ever since he completed an externship at Downtown’s
hard to say no. (St. Vibiana had been deconsecrated in 1996;
Checkers Hotel under Thomas Keller at age 21, Fraser had
in 2001, the newly built Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels
dreamed of opening a restaurant in the neighborhood. And
was anointed as its successor.)
with the area’s “big-city feel.”
“I was just stunned by the building. I had no idea it was here,” says Knoll Fraser, who had done a walkthrough
So in 2008, when the couple was presented with an
of the whole Italian Baroque property—complete with
opportunity to open an eatery in Downtown’s Historic Core
marble altar—ahead of a catering gig, and learned that the
DTLA BOOK 2018
Chef Fraser’s deconstructed New York “Cheesecake,” with citrus, caramelized olives and blood orange sorbet.
Knoll Fraser, a Tennessee transplant, had long been in love
LOVE AT FIRST BITE
Splendor in the Grass cocktail with Four Pillars dry gin, Clément Canne Bleue white rhum, orange bitters and Pernod Absinthe
owners were looking for a restaurant to occupy the former rectory building, built in 1933. “I got chills, and said, ‘Neal has to see this. We have to do this.’” After the couple started negotiations with owner Tom Gilmore, the scope of the project grew. “It became evident that all of it needed to be managed by a team that had experience in hospitality,” says Knoll Fraser. “It made sense to structure a deal in which Neal and I took over the operations of everything.” In 2012, after years of permitting and refinancing, the Silver Lake–based Frasers, along with a group of partners,
INTERIOR: LAURE JOLIET; COCKTAIL: CARLEY RUDD
took over the venue as both owners and operators and set about restoring and modernizing it, debuting their modern American restaurant, Redbird, three years later. Knoll Fraser teamed up with designer Robert Weimer to thoughtfully reimagine the space while paying homage to its original bones. The surroundings, in turn, inspired Fraser’s vision for the eclectic menu, prepared in the chef’s signature French technique using ingredients that showcase the city’s multicultural character. Think heritage pork posole with Redbird’s light-filled main dining room, located in the former rectory of the Vibiana cathedral. The Frasers chose the name Redbird because the quarters of the Archdiocese’s cardinal were on the fourth floor.
cabbage and avocado, and California sea bass served with butterball potato and pickled radish.
DTLA BOOK 2018
BAROQUE GEM LEFT: Exterior of the classical Italian-style Vibiana cathedral, with the Financial Districtâ€™s skyscrapers in the background. BELOW: Cured salmon with Persian cucumber, yogurt vinaigrette and dill on rye.
FROM LEFT: Golden Road, Venetian Spritz, Turkish Delight
Neal Fraser & Amy Knoll Fraser
rooms and the cathedral’s soaring main hall. “Vibiana offers a transformative space that allows for any vision imaginable,” says event planner Kristin Banta. The venue, which can hold up to 1,400 people, has hosted such events as the Outfest Legacy Awards and Fox’s post–Emmy Awards party. “It’s kind of a blank canvas. People really go crazy with it,” says Fraser. That includes the newly debuted The Garden at Redbird/ Vibiana, a public-private partnership with the neighboring Little Tokyo Branch Library. Situated behind the cathedral, the 6,000-square-foot landscaped area serves as an additional event space and a site for library programming opportunities. It’s also home to a fruit and vegetable garden for Redbird, complete with beehives; olive, Meyer lemon and OPPOSITE PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: CALLAWAY GABLE; MARY COSTA; MICHAEL SEGAL; CARLEY RUDD THIS PAGE, LEFT: JENN EMERLING; RIGHT: MARY COSTA
plum trees; herbs; and a clipping garden for flowers. “I think there are a lot of personalities tied in to
ROOM TO PARTY LEFT: Vibiana’s grand cathedral hall accommodates 550 people for dinner. ABOVE: Redbird’s second-floor West Room is the largest of five private dining rooms, seating 110 and including an outdoor balcony.
“I am trying to create food that should be made inside
restaurants. To have something that has more personality
Los Angeles, based on the people who live in L.A.,” says
than Amy and I combined as a backdrop was a unique
the chef, who is also a partner in the fast-casual rotisserie
opportunity to do something that’s bigger than us,” says
chicken concept Fritzi Coop, located at L.A.’s Original
Fraser, reflecting on the venue. “Hopefully it will live well
Farmers Market on Fairfax and adjacent to Downtown’s
past us being involved with it.”
Arts District Brewing Company (814 Traction Ave.). While Fraser helms the stoves, Knoll Fraser oversees the couple’s catering business and operations for the multifaceted venue, which includes five private dining
REDBIRD 114 E. 2nd St., Historic Core // 213-788-1191 // redbird.la VIBIANA 214 S. Main St., Historic Core // 213-626-1 507 // vibiana.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
DTLA NOIR With real-life mummies, bodies in suitcases and secret tunnels—and a cursed building that inspired American Horror Story: Hotel —it’s no wonder Downtown birthed a whole new chilling genre. Edited by Degen Pener // Illustrations by Chris Sharp
ince becoming a booming urban center in the 1910s and 1920s, Downtown has been the scene of so many crimes, swindles and capers that it gave birth to an entire storytelling genre: noir. The foremost practitioner of the style, Raymond Chandler, took inspiration
from real-life L.A. crimes splashed across newspaper front pages, while tales that looked at the city’s dark underbelly hit the big screen, creating classics like Double Indemnity and In a Lonely Place. For a look at the era’s most illicit and wild true tales, DTLA Book spoke to five tour guides, writers and historians to ask what most fascinates them to this day.
DOWNTOWN MUMMIES As recounted by Kim Cooper, co-founder of Esotouric Bus Adventures tour company
like to say that every neighborhood gets the crimes that it deserves, and there is no L.A. neighborhood that has attracted as many weirdos as Downtown. There are so
many peculiar narratives that dance around in my brain, competing for favor. Many of them are featured on our tours. I’m fascinated by the travels of Elmer McCurdy, the mummified Old West outlaw exhibited for many years at Louis Sonney’s wax museum at 6th & Main, and after passing through several hands ended his performing life on display in a Long Beach fun house attraction whose owners didn’t realize this battered old thing was an actual human
DID YOU KNOW? In 1921, Louis Sonney was a peace officer in Washington State. He arrested the robber Roy Gardner, received a $5,000 reward and opened The Museum of Crime in L.A., displaying wax replicas of Jesse James and the Dalton Brothers. Elmer McCurdy’s mummified body was given a room of his own. The museum closed in 1949 when Sonney died.
DTLA BOOK 2018
body until somebody broke its arm and saw a bone sticking out. After that, Elmer got a big funeral back in Oklahoma. But when it comes to L.A. mummies, it’s hard to top the tale of the beautiful teenage Willa Rhodes, who died from an infected tooth and was preserved by the 1920s Bunker
THE TRUNK MURDERS
As recounted by Hadley Hall Meares, historical journalist and tour guide, AtlasObscura.com
Dabney Oil, in Downtown’s Bank of Italy building, sued the
cult’s leaders for fraud. During the investigation, Willa was
overnight train in Phoenix on October 18, 1931, with two
discovered, autopsied and given a proper burial at Santa
checked suitcases that were full of body parts.
Hill eternal-life cult The Great Eleven. They mixed spices, salt and lots of ice, and she looked pretty lifelike when they finished. The cult carried around Willa’s body for years, but her promised resurrection was foiled when an exec at
or me, the story of Winnie Ruth Judd sort of encapsulates what a transient place Downtown has always been. What happened is that Winnie,
who was 26 at the time and married to a doctor, boarded an
Monica’s Woodlawn. Intrigued by the fact that the young
The trunks started bleeding during the trip. When the
Raymond Chandler, not yet a detective novelist, worked at
porters in L.A. saw the blood, initially they thought it was
Dabney Oil with the victim in the fraud case, I turned the
deer meat or something. It used to be common to transport
Great Eleven story into my first mystery novel, The Kept
illegal meat. When Winnie tried to claim the bags, she was
Girl, with Chandler and his secretary sleuthing the case.
confronted and asked what was in them. She made some excuse that she had to call her husband and then left L.A.’s Central Station—the predecessor to Union Station—and fled. Needless to say, the porters were totally shocked when they opened one trunk and inside was the complete torso and head of a woman in pajamas. It’s very murky what actually happened as far as the murders went. Winnie worked at a hospital in Phoenix and her husband had a major drug problem. She became very good friends with these two women named Sammy and Agnes. These three women had been married multiple times and they became a kind of urban family. They had a lot of male friends who would come and visit them and give them money to live. One night, Winnie was over at the house the other two women shared, and there was some kind of fight. Agnes and Sammy ended up being shot and killed. There’s always been a lot of speculation that a businessman named Jack Halloran, who Winnie was having an affair with, was involved. Many believed somebody helped Winnie to cut up the bodies and put them in the suitcases. Some people believed Jack told her to chop up the bodies and that she could take them to Los Angeles, where her husband was then living, and throw them in the ocean. It was a vague notion that she’d be rid of them; it would be like it never happened. L.A. was kind of the last port of call in the U.S., the last stop for desperadoes. She had most likely had a psychotic break.
DTLA BOOK 2018
HOAX MURDER ATTEMPT
As recounted by James Bartlett, author of Gourmet Ghosts: A Guide to the City’s Haunted Bars and Restaurants
After she escaped from the train station, she just hid for four days. Los Angeles was such a bustling place, nobody noticed her. She walked all the way to Altadena to a sanitarium, where she was treated for tuberculosis.
he craziest story I’ve found—so far—happened at the Hotel Alexandria on Gallery Row, though it’s not the bizarre tale of their Ghost Wing, still
sealed off after nearly 80 years.
She went back Downtown and even spent the night in the
In 1922, Vaden Elwynne Boge, a wealthy young
Broadway department store, where she had worked before
rancher, checked in and ordered lunch for himself and
she lived in Phoenix. She saw people she knew and no one
his wife, but soon after room service delivered the
noticed her. Then she turned herself in and was extradited
sandwiches, salad, coffee and pie, Boge staggered into
the hall screaming that he had been poisoned.
She was found guilty of first-degree murder, but she was
Police found that one of the coffee cups contained
judged to be mentally incompetent. Judd was considered a
cyanide, and the scandal-hungry L.A. press went to
sweet model patient at the asylums and jails where she was
town on the mystery, sensationally describing the
housed between 1933 and 1971. She escaped multiple times,
citywide hunt for his “Ghost Woman” wife. But there
once for six years. After she won release in 1971, she was
was no Mrs. Boge. The unhappy Vaden, who died soon
sort of adopted by a California family who took care of her
after, had created an elaborate hoax, and, as the next
basically for life. She died in 1998 at age 93.
day’s headline read “Had Feasted to Death Alone.”
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ILLICIT UNDERGROUND As recounted by Sandi Hemmerlein, writer and historian, AtlasObscura.com
W DTLA BOOK 2018
and a piano store moved into the ground level, conveniently acting as a cover. The underground bar is now the storage basement of the King Eddy Saloon, which, once Prohibition was repealed,
hen the King Edward Hotel opened, it offered
came up from the underground. In fact, the sign outside of
high-class accommodations for travelers
it says “King Eddy’s, Established 1933.” Of course, it was
coming into Downtown, way before that area
established way before that, but that’s the year Prohibition
was known as The Nickel, aka Skid Row. And it had a bar at
know as the King Eddy Saloon moved into the basement
street level like any other nice hotel would have. But when
The King Eddy basement is just the tip of the iceberg,
the Volstead Act began to enforce the 18th Amendment and
though. The speakeasy used to be connected to an entire
Prohibition was in full swing by January 1920, what we now
network of tunnels underneath that part of Downtown near
Spring Street, which was considered the “Wall Street of the West” and is now what you’d call the Old Bank District. If you were moving large sums of money—even legally— it made a lot more sense to do it underground to avoid the streetcars, automobiles, horses, pedestrians and bicycles of that era. But in the ’20s and early ’30s during Prohibition in particular, those tunnels became quite convenient for illicit activity—if you didn’t have the connections to City Hall or the vice squad to be able to do it out in the open. The thing about the speakeasies is that they were sort of just for show. If you were connected, you didn’t have to go underground to do your business during Prohibition. Every thing was basica lly run out of City Ha ll. The government was in on it. If you had the money and the inf luence, you could continue to do whatever it was you wanted and continue to make a lot of money off it. There were mob bosses who boasted of having a direct line into City Hall. One of the main Prohibition officers, the head of the vice detail—it was called the Purity Squad at the time—actually ended up moving over to the dark side. He ran gambling rackets on the side and then quit altogether to become a bootlegger. And where was the cops’ favorite place to go drinking during Prohibition? King Eddy’s.
THE CURSED HOTEL
window, just upstairs from where Helen Gurnee took the
As recounted by Jordan Riefe, arts writer
leap in 1954.
DID YOU KNOW? ow being redeveloped, the legendary lodging once known as the Hotel Cecil has a blood-drenched history that dates back to the Great Depression.
Even the Black Dahlia plays into its sordid past as she was rumored to have had her last drink at the hotel bar before she turned up dead a few miles away in 1947. Fifteen years later, Pauline Otton jumped from a ninth-f loor window, killing herself and an unsuspecting George Giannini, who was just passing by on the sidewalk below. That same year, a woman named Julia Moore jumped from an eighth-floor
FX’s American Horror Story: Hotel (2015–2016)—which starred Lady Gaga as a the proprietor of the fictional Hotel Cortez—was inspired by the dark doings at the Hotel Cecil, located at 640 S. Main Street in the Historic Core. To film the show, AHS: Hotel ’s creators used the Art Deco Oviatt Building for exterior shots (see page 19 for photo), while the fictional lobby was inspired by the Oviatt’s Cicada Club.
If you’ve never heard of any of these people, no doubt you know the Night Stalker, Richard Ramirez, convicted of 13 murders, five attempted murders, 11 sexual assaults and 14 burglaries committed in 1985. He lived at the Cecil and is the reason Austrian journalist Jack Unterweger took a room there in 1991 to research law enforcement and prostitution. In February 2013, the body of 21-year-old Elisa Lam, a Chinese-Canadian tourist, was found naked inside a water tank on the hotel’s roof during an inspection. She had been decomposing for roughly 19 days before hotel customers began complaining about the taste of their tap water. Police ruled her death an accidental drowning.
DTLA BOOK 2018
MASTER OF MURALS Peter Greco combines classical calligraphy with street art to create his signature “calligraffiti” works, generating some of DTLA’s most unforgettable public art. By Maxwell Williams // Photography by Poul Lange
n his long commercial career as a graphic designer, Peter Greco has infiltrated visual culture with his typographic projects. He devised the Los Angeles Times Magazine’s
masthead that was used for 25 years until 2005; the iconic D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) logo; lettering for Beach Boys and Santana albums; and the typographic identity for iconic movie posters such as Splash, Blazing Saddles, Brazil and The Little Mermaid. Downtown’s recent renaissance has served Greco’s later emergence as a fine artist whose practice blends the now-ness of street art with centuries-old calligraphic technique. On a wall inside the Arts District’s Eat Drink Americano gastropub, his 16-foot-high text work evokes old-timey sign painting. A couple blocks away, Greco’s 18-foot-long Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) painting on the front of the legendary American Hotel has become one of the area’s most Instagrammed murals. Dominated by an orb filled with script of an invented language that exists only in Greco’s mind, it gleams with gold and red paint across a base of green. “It was supposed to be up for three months. Three years later, it’s still there,” says Greco.
DTLA BOOK 2018
The artist in front of his mural Save the Planet , commissioned by Buddha Company in the Arts District.
In his latter-day work, Greco has been shifting from the rigid practice of graphic lettering to a more imaginative style since beginning to practice as a Toltec, or man of knowledge. His increasingly abstracted typography looks at once like someone put ancient writing from every world culture in a blender—and like an altogether alien language of its own. “The reason that Arabic, Hebrew, Gothic and Roman calligraphy look the same to some extent is because of the tool: It’s a chisel pen,” says Greco, explaining that written languages, and calligraphy, all derive from just seven directional marks that can be made within a graphic space (such as vertical, horizontal, and left and right curves). “Elements of this exist in many cultures, but they never really put it together the way I did.” Which is to say that Greco, who was never formally trained in the calligraphic arts, is an ardent autodidact. He has lately begun to call his art “Toltec calligraffiti,” in honor of his philosophy, his calligraphy and the fact that
DTLA BOOK 2018
STENCILED STYLE TOP LEFT: Greco in front of his mural Save the Planet. He’s wearing a Calvin Klein jacket, made for his 2016 solo show at the former LosJoCos Gallery, on which he stenciled and handpainted his Toltec calligraffiti designs. RIGHT, FROM TOP: His original hand-lettered, ink-onMylar title art for the 1993 film The Age of Innocence, the LAPD’s D.A.R.E. program and the 1984 film Splash.
BRUSHING UP ABOVE, RIGHT: Greco doing touchups on his “T for Toltec” mural, part of Gabba Gallery’s Alley Project in Historic Filipinotown. ABOVE: Greco wearing a D.A.R.E. T-shirt with his original brush calligraphy, done as a pro-bono contribution to the LAPD.
he’s become known for painting outdoors. “My calligraphy
Downtown in the ’80s and ’90s living in the Arts District,
has nothing to do with the [pre-Columbian Mesoamerican]
then a no-man’s land. He reminisces about the American
Toltec cult,” says Greco, 63, who grew up in New Jersey and
Hotel’s long-closed legendary music venue Al’s Bar (see page
studied at New York’s School of Visual Arts in the 1970s
68 to read more); how there used to be only one restaurant
before relocating to L.A. in 1979. “My calligraphy is based
open on Sunday (the now-shuttered Vickman’s Restaurant
on medieval and later developments of Gothic, so when I
and Bakery, where he ate strawberry pie); and a half-wolf he
use the term ‘Toltec calligraphy,’ all I mean by that is me, a
used to see roaming the streets leading a pack of wild dogs.
Toltec, who does calligraphy.”
“It was the Wild West, uncharted territory, a ghost
Though he now resides with his wife, Yumi, in
town,” Greco says. “I even did some vigilante action—I
Pasadena, close to his job teaching at ArtCenter College
arrested four people for breaking into my car. They’d put
of Design, Greco’s formative years in L.A. were spent
the battery in a shopping cart, take it over the First Street
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MAN OF LETTERS LEFT: Skate decks designed by Greco. BELOW: Greco teaching a hand-lettering Expressive Type class at ArtCenter College of Design. BOTTOM: His “Preface” lettering video clip for his Spalato graphicnovel project, which has more than 94k views on Instagram. OPPOSITE PAGE: Ink and gold-leaf work on found paper, part of his Spalato project. “Rinascita” is Italian for rebirth.
Bridge, sell it to one of those cheap places, and then I’d go and buy my own battery back. Seventeen times.” Twenty years on, things have changed mightily both for the Arts District and for Greco. The artist—who had a solo show in 2017 at the Laguna College of Art + Design Gallery— is now finishing an illustrated novel, Demon of the Golden Age, about a renegade language-maker named Gonza Spalato. “The way I present it is: This is not my work,” says Greco, who built an exhibition around Spalato at the nowdefunct LosJoCos Gallery last year. “I tell a whole story of how it was discovered in Sicily in an old house when they were renovating it. A collector in Italy got it, he came out here and he gave it to me, because he knows I’m a lettering artist and that I would understand. It sounds real.” Innovative, spiritual and criminally unsung—Peter Greco’s art, either on the gallery wall or in the streets, is a perfectly Los Angeles specimen.
UPCOMING SHOWS APRIL 14 to MAY 12 at MARIE BALDWIN GALLERY 814 S. Spring St., Ste. 2, Fashion District // 310-600-4566 // mariebaldwingallery.com
“Letter & Line,” a solo show of Greco’s meticulous and richly detailed calligraphic artworks with body and live paintings as well as workshops.
MAY 18 to JUNE 15 at AVENUE DES ARTS 807 S. Los Angeles St., Fashion District // 213-232-8676 // avenuedesarts.org
Greco will be showcased in a group exhibit, “Thrive,” featuring L.A.-based artists at this 6,000-square-foot contemporary art gallery.
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Watch Greco HandLettering in Action! Scan this QR code with your standard iPhone camera to launch our DTLA Book AR App and watch the image come to life! Powered by augmentmode.com
WHERE TO SEE HIS MURALS “EL ALISO” EAT DRINK AMERICANO RESTAURANT 923 E. 3rd St., Arts District
A chalkboard-style typographic mural with a restaurant theme.
“DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS” THE AMERICAN HOTEL 303 S. Hewitt St., Arts District
Beautiful Toltec calligraffiti with gold-accented text in honor of the Day of the Dead.
“THE CROW” THE FORMER LOSJOCOS GALLERY 725 Kohler St., Arts District
Calligraffiti mural that can be seen through the nowlocked gate of the defunct gallery.
“T FOR TOLTEC” ALLEY CLOSE TO GABBA GALLERY Alley behind 134 N. Dillon St., Westlake District
Beautiful red hues accented with silver and gold in an alleyway with dozens of other artists’ murals.
“SAVE THE PLANET” FAÇADE OF BUDDHA COMPANY 2038 Sacramento St., Arts District
Swooping calligraphic style surrounding the entrance of the high-end dispensary.
“META-COSMIC INTEGRATION” LAGUNA COLLEGE OF ART + DESIGN 2222 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach
Two large site-specific calligraffiti interior murals.
“GIFT OF INSPIRATION” ARTCENTER COLLEGE OF DESIGN 1111 S. Arroyo Pkwy., Pasadena
His latest, an interior calligraffiti mural with striking gold lettering.
MURAL TO BE REVEALED ONE SANTA FE 300 S. Santa Fe Ave., Arts District
Greco is working on an AR/interactive mural at the One Santa Fe mixed-use complex. Download DTLA Book AR App and visit to see the wall come to life!
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Comunity’s shoes are handcrafted with Italian leather in Downtown Los Angeles.
GREATER GOODS The 2017 grand opening of Comunity’s HQ
These five DTLA companies not only design stylish clothing and accessories—they also help communities from Skid Row’s homeless to Bangladeshi moms. Says the president of one company, The Giving Keys: “Giving people a purpose is critical.” By Linda Immediato
COMUNITY W hen Comunity founders Sean and Shannon Scott and Ryan Gumienny were looking for a space for their headquarters, they made a list of neighborhoods that could benefit from a giving program and help build community. (They dropped one “m” in the word “community” to differentiate their company.) After Downtown rose to the top of the list, they set up shop for their line of “handcrafted in DTLA” shoes in the Arts District. The space serves not only as a retail outlet, but also as a showroom, shoe repair shop, event space and a place where people can sip coffee, charge a cell phone or use free Wi-Fi. Also, for every pair of shoes sold ($160–$185), the company gives $10 to a local nonprofit. “We The Mateo in white
chose to support three platforms,” says Shannon. “They’re all important issues that directly affect the area.” The three
THE PEOPLE CONCERN: WILLIAM SHORT
issues are the arts (through the organization Street Poets), education (the nonprofit Youth Mentoring Connection) and ending homelessness (The People Concern). “Our mission,” explains Shannon, “is to be a catalyst for change, inspire action and participation, and empower others.”
COMUNITY The People Concern’s Lamp Village in Skid Row offers 98 emergency shelter beds.
584 Mateo St., Ar t s Distric t // comunit ymade.com
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Thousand also sells such accessories as the crochet and leather De France gloves and Club Pennant sweatshirt.
THOUSAND Gloria Hwa ng, long time bike rider a nd founder of Thousand, has something to confess—she used to pedal The Stay Gold helmet, as worn by Amanda Farhall, community manager at DTLA’s Vrai & Oro jewelry
around the city without wearing a helmet. “I always felt goofy wearing one,” she says. When a friend of hers passed away in a bicycle accident (he wasn’t wearing a helmet either), she tried to change her ways. But she just couldn’t bring herself to don clumsy-looking protective headgear. Instead, Hwang found herself riding her bike less and less.
A signature feature is that all Thousand helmets (including Speedway Creme, seen here) can be secured to a bike lock.
This was the inspiration behind Thousand—a line of safety helmets ($85–$115) that blend stylish elements from the kinds worn by scooter enthusiasts in the ’50s and ’60s and by equestrians. “If you make a bike helmet people want to wear, it could solve a multitude of social problems,” she says, citing health issues, traffic congestion and climate change among them. Having previously worked for five years for the philanthropic arm of TOMS, Hwang felt strongly that her company should have a similar give-back program. Since its inception, Thousand has donated a portion of proceeds areas—climate, food, land, pollution, water and wildlife.
THOUSAND 120 S. Vignes St., Ar t s Distric t // explorethousand.com
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to 1% for the Planet, a company that vets nonprofits in six
Dark bronze “Believe” key necklaces, handmade in Downtown; customers can also order custom words.
THE GIVING KEYS While on tour in 2009, singer-songwriter Caitlin Crosby had an idea to engrave keys with inspirational messages like “Strength” and “Let Go.” She hung them as pendants on chains and sold them at her shows, where they’d sell out. Back at home, Crosby—who called the line The Giving Keys—had another idea. She had met a couple living on the streets in Hollywood and taken them to dinner to hear their story. Upon learning they had experience making jewelry, she hired them to engrave the keys. Eventually, the couple saved enough to get an apartment and Crosby saw firsthand how providing training and employment opportunities could help those in need transition out of homelessness. The Giving Keys president Brit Moore COURTESY THE GIVING KEYS
Gilmore says the company—which sells necklaces, earrings, bracelets and keychains ($28– $56)—has created more than 60 jobs so far: “Giving people a purpose and income through a job is really important. And I would say the purpose part is almost more critical.”
THE GIVING KEYS 836 Trac tion Ave., Ar t s Distric t // thegivingkeys.com
Classic “Inspire” key necklaces
Skid Row Housing Trust’s Star Apartments, designed by Michael Maltzan Architecture, provide housing to 100 formerly homeless individuals using innovative prefab units.
The Heritage Jacket, sewn in Los Angeles, is made with deadstock 14-ounce Italian selvedge denim.
SKID ROW DENIM & APPAREL Skid Row Housing Trust—known for working with cuttingedge architect Michael Maltzan to create attractive, permanent housing for the formerly homeless—has now hooked up with an edgy fashion label to create its own brand of denim. The Skid Row Denim & Apparel line was launched in late 2016, with consultation help on design and manufacturing from DTLA company Skingraft, which has been worn by such names as Rihanna, Beyoncé and A$AP Rocky. The vision, though, goes well beyond the well-made jeans, jean jackets and tees ($50–$125). The brand also functions as a workforce development program, creating job opportunities and skills training for residents of the 24 operates. And it helps to rebrand Downtown’s Skid Row— where thousands of homeless men, women and children live on the streets or in shelters—as a place of hope, with all proceeds benefiting the work of the nonprofit.
SKID ROW DENIM & APPAREL skidrowdenimandapparel.com // Available at Rogue Collective, 305 S. Hewitt St., Ar ts District // theroguecollective.com
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FROM LEFT: POUL LANGE; JOSHUA SPENCER
apartment buildings that the Housing Trust manages and
APOLIS Alpaca cardigans made in Peru help support artisans in that country. A briefcase was designed to aid the people of Uganda in reviving their cotton farming industry. And one of the most popular items is a customizable market bag produced by a company in Bangladesh that offers literacy and nutrition classes (as well as fair wages) to employees. These are just some of the products available at Apolis, a brand known for its stylish-Boy-Scout clothing and
Cypress Fig soy-based candle, $30
accessories. Brothers Raan and Shea Parton founded the company—whose name is Greek for “global citizen”—in 2004. Together they set about constructing a new business model, which they call “advocacy through industry,” one that generates social change by increasing workers’ access to the global marketplace. Now a certified B Corp company (meaning it meets certain social sustainability and environmental performance standards), Apolis has helped to create almost 4,000 jobs in six developing nations.
APOLIS POP-UP SHOP
826 Ea st 3rd St. (inside Alchemy Work s), Ar t s Distric t // apolisglobal.com
“Defend Tomorrow” T-shirt ($38), and key chains (both made in L.A.) and lunch bag ($28), made in Bangladesh
Mothers in Bangladesh with whom Apolis has partnered to make all its market bags
RED & PURPLE LINES
By Liz Ohanesian // Illustrations by Sarah Klinger
Historic Union Station connects the Red/Purple Metro subway lines with the above-ground Gold Line, as well as Metrolink and Amtrak trains, LAX FlyAway and shuttles to Dodger Stadium and the Hollywood Bowl. Check out the station’s art and architecture or grab a drink at Traxx before heading out into the city.
Seven Downtown train stations, all within easy walking distance of each other, give seamless access to the vast and diverse culture of Los Angeles, even the beach.
ne of the biggest advantages of staying Downtown is access to L.A. Metro. Los Angeles’ large—and still growing—public transportation system extends deep into the suburbs, but it’s here in the city’s core where you’ll find the
most options. Downtown is served by two subways and three light rail lines as well as numerous buses that can transport you to a bevy of local attractions without the hassle of traffic or high parking rates. With an L.A. Metro TAP card, available at local stations, riders can pay per trip or buy a daily, weekly or monthly pass. The $25 7-Day Pass is ideal for those who plan to ride regularly during a stay of four days or longer. Do be aware that Metro trains don’t run 24 hours. If you plan to explore the city at night, keep tabs on your last train home and have a rideshare app set up on your phone just in case you miss it.
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Head west to Koreatown, Thai Town, Hollywood and Universal City UNION STATION
CIVIC CENTER/GRAND PARK Grand Park is 12 acres of tranquility between City Hall and The Music Center that often morphs into a lively outdoor event space. The Music Center is home to four theaters (Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the Ahmanson, the Mark Taper Forum and Walt Disney Concert Hall) that serve as the center of live performance in the city.
PERSHING SQUARE Metro’s Pershing Square stop will lead you to Angels Flight, the historic, tiny railway. At the top, head to the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Back downhill, grab lunch inside the massive food court at Grand Central Market. For night owls, hip bar La Cita and LGBT-centric club Precinct DTLA both neighbor this Metro stop.
7TH STREET/METRO CENTER Your connection between the Red/Purple and Blue/Expo lines is at 7th Street/ Metro Center. Venture outside the station for shopping and dining options that
This is your portal to Hollywood nightlife. At the Pantages Theatre, Broadway musicals make their L.A. stop. The Fonda boasts concerts from locals and touring acts. On Vine Street is mega-club Avalon. On Cahuenga Boulevard, you’ll find DJ-centric spots Station 1640 and Le Jardin as well as singer-songwriter hub Hotel Cafe. Shop for albums at the massive record store Amoeba Music or catch a film at the 1963 Cinerama Dome next door.
HOLLYWOOD/HIGHLAND Thai Town
You’ll arise from this stop into an action-packed scene filled with street performers and costumed characters posing for photos in front of the Hollywood & Highland mall. From here, head west to the historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, TCL Chinese Theatre, El Capitan Theatre and shopping options that include Japanese minimalist shop Muji. Move east to find the Egyptian Theatre and famed 1919 restaurant Musso & Frank Grill, plus attractions like the Hollywood Museum inside the Max Factor Building. You can catch a shuttle to the Hollywood Bowl from this stop as well.
UNIVERSAL CITY/STUDIO CITY The best way to visit Universal Studios Hollywood is to take the Metro. This stop is downhill from the theme park and adjacent Univeral CityWalk. A shuttle will transport you to the entrance.
include FIGat7th and The Bloc. For sightseeing, head to Central Library, the heart of the massive Los Angeles Public Library System.
This stop offers access to the galleries, shops and restaurants of the NoHo Arts District. You can also connect to the bus–rapid transit Orange Line (which continues on through the San Fernando Valley) here.
During the summer months, Levitt Pavilion inside MacArthur Park is home to free concerts that showcase the diversity of music in L.A. From hip-hop to indie rock to jazz, programming crosses genres and cultures with an emphasis on locally made sounds. Grab a bite at the famous Langer’s Deli, open since 1947.
WILSHIRE/NORMANDIE Along Wilshire Boulevard, you’ll find the Byzantine Revival–style Wilshire Boulevard Temple, home to the city’s longest-running Jewish congregation, as well as Saint Basil Catholic Church, famed for stained-glass windows created by Claire Falkenstein. Head to HMS Bounty, on the bottom level of the Gaylord Apartments where John Barrymore once lived, for a drink.
WILSHIRE/VERMONT If you want to stroll past the vintage buildings of Wilshire Boulevard, this is a good place to start. You’re near the Art Deco Bullocks Wilshire Building and Gothic Revival Immanuel Presbyterian Church. Head down Vermont for a meal at popular Parks BBQ. For a Korean spa experience day or night, Wi Spa on Wilshire is open 24/7.
VERMONT/SUNSET Head to East Hollywood’s Barnsdall Art Park to tour the Frank Lloyd Wright– designed Hollyhock House and visit the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery. Or walk into Los Feliz for funky shopping at Y-Que, Soap Plant/Wacko and SquaresVille. Dining options range from classic steakhouse The Dresden to burger sensation Umami. For a nightcap, Tiki-Ti has Scorpions and Zombies. You can also catch the DASH Observatory bus to the Griffith Observatory or the Greek Theatre, or see the Hollywood Sign.
HOLLYWOOD/WESTERN You can get a taste of L.A.’s diversity in restaurant-heavy East Hollywood, where Thai Town and Little Armenia sit side by side. If you’re brave, take the Dynamite Spicy Challenge at Jitlada restaurant. Comedy fans will want to check out a show at the Upright Citizens Brigade on Sunset Boulevard, near Western Avenue.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Hollywood Walk of Fame comprises more than 2,600 five-pointed terrazzo-and-brass stars embedded in the sidewalks along 15 blocks of Hollywood Boulevard and three blocks of Vine Street in Hollywood.
One of the city’s most beautiful buildings is located right at this stop. The blue-green glazed-tile Art Deco Wiltern theater dates to 1931 and was once a home for vaudeville shows. Today, it’s one of the city’s premier concert venues. Area dining options include KyoChon Chicken and Beer Belly.
Gold Line continues to Highland Park, Pasadena and Arcadia
DOWNTOWN AREA METRO STATIONS
EXPO LINE Go west to Expo Park, Culver City and Santa Monica
Temple St. Grand Park
LITTLE TOKYO/ ARTS DISTRICT STATION
CIVIC CENTER/ GRAND PARK STATION
To East L.A.
Grand Central Market
Metro Lines in DTLA PERSHING SQUARE STATION
7TH STREET/ METRO CENTER
Union Station to North Hollywood
Union Station to Wilshire/Western
5th St. Los Angeles Central Library
Downtown L.A. to Long Beach
Downtown L.A. to Santa Monica
W 6th St
East Los Angeles to Azusa
Red Line continues to Hollywood and Universal City
Blue Line continues to Watts Towers, Green Line, Compton and Long Beach
Expo Line continues to USC/Exposition Park, Culver City and Santa Monica
HOW TO GET WHERE DTLA is the hub of the L.A. Metro system with spokes in all directions. Most of the Downtown stations are underground and fairly near each other. The Red and Purple lines start at Union Station (with Amtrak connections to everywhere in the U.S.), then share stops until Wilshire/Vermont, where they split up; the Red Line continues to North Hollywood, and the Purple Line goes through Koreatown to Wilshire/Western. At 7th Street/Metro Center, the Red and Purple lines connect with light rail lines to Culver City and Santa Monica (Expo Line) and Downtown Long Beach (Blue Line), where you can catch a ferry to Catalina Island. For Chinatown, Highland Park or Pasadena, catch the Gold Line at Union Station.
EXPO/SEPULVEDA Sawtelle Japantown is one of the Westside’s go-to destinations for food and fun and is accessible from here. Popular restaurants include Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle and Plan Check. Art and toy lovers should hit up beloved gift shop Giant Robot and its art gallery, GR2.
Santa Monica’s Bergamot Station is a former streetcar station-turned-arts complex. The collection of galleries ranges from pop surrealism at Copro Gallery to photography at Duncan Miller Gallery.
W. Pico Blvd.
This stop is in the heart of Culver City, where restaurants, including Akasha and The Wallace, are plentiful. Check out Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre, known for new plays. Or take a stroll to the whimsicalmeets-bizarre Museum of Jurassic Technology.
W 7th St
Purple Line continues to Wilshire/Western
Los Angeles St.
LA CIENEGA/JEFFERSON L.A. and Culver City border each other near this station, forming an enclave known for its art galleries, including Blum & Poe, Honor Fraser, Edward Cella and Thinkspace. Grab a drink at artist hangout Mandrake.
Exposition Park’s cultural institutions include the California Science Center, (home of the Space Shuttle Endeavour), the California African American Museum and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. You’ll also find Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, home to Rams and USC football.
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Natural History Museum
DOWNTOWN SANTA MONICA Heading to Santa Monica for a beach day? Metro is the best way to go. This stop is a few blocks from the Santa Monica Pier, Third Street Promenade, hot restaurants such as Dialogue and Uovo, and, of course, the sand. Reserve a spot at the Annenberg Community Beach House, which has 2/1/18 8:50 PM showers and changing rooms.
GOLD LINE Head east to Boyle Heights, Highland Park and Pasadena MARIACHI PLAZA Since the 1930s, Mariachi Plaza, a landmark in Boyle Heights, has been the gathering point for mariachi musicians available for hire. Outside of the plaza, eat at one of the number of local restaurants, check out the books and gifts at Espacio 1839 or grab a drink at Eastside Luv.
Mount Analog music store Watts Towers
LITTLE TOKYO/ARTS DISTRICT Little Tokyo boasts both the Japanese American National Museum and The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. Eats range from ramen hit Daikokuya to local classic Fugetsu-Do Confectioners, which dates back to 1903.
CHINATOWN In recent years, Chinatown has become a favorite among foodies, particularly for the restaurants like Howlin’ Ray’s in Far East Plaza. It’s also home to a number of galleries, many on Chung King Road.
HERITAGE SQUARE A “living history museum,” Heritage Square features 19th-century homes and buildings that were nearly demolished in the 1960s before being moved to this haven. Tours run Fridays through Sundays.
SOUTHWEST MUSEUM The small Historic Southwest Museum Mt. Washington Campus was founded in the early 1900s to preserve Native American artifacts. Now part of the Autry Museum of the American West, the museum is open only on Saturdays.
accessible is Old Pasadena, packed with shopping and dining options, as well as bars and, for gamers, Neon Retro Arcade.
ALLEN This station is about as close as you’ll get by rail to the renowned Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens. It’s a mile-anda-half walk from the station, or you can take a Pasadena ARTS bus.
ARCADIA The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden—filled with picturesque settings and a global array of flora—is a 1.6-mile walk from the Arcadia station. The Arboretum’s website suggests using Arcadia Transit’s Green Line shuttle or a Metro bus to get there from the station.
BLUE & GREEN LINES Go South to Watts Towers and Long Beach
The Watts Towers installation consists of 17 major sculptures constructed from structural steel, covered with mortar and adorned with glass, sea shells, g pottery and tile—built without benefit of machine equipment. The highest tower contains the longest slender reinforced concrete column in the world.
You’ll be a short walk from the heart of Figueroa Street, home to record stores (Gimme Gimme Records, Mount Analog, The Artforum Studio), Book Show, carrying zines and vintage tomes, and 24-hour La Estrella Tacos.
This point on both the Blue and Expo lines is your stop for the Los Angeles Convention Center, where the calendar is packed with events including the LA Art Show, E3, Anime Expo and RuPaul’s DragCon. Pico is also the closest Metro stop for STAPLES Center and L.A. LIVE.
103RD STREET/WATTS TOWERS
This stop drops off in the middle of a charming village. Go toy shopping at The Dinosaur Farm and grab a sweet treat at Fair Oaks Pharmacy.
The Watts Towers, Simon Rodia’s steel masterworks, have their own designated stop. Tours are offered Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
DOWNTOWN LONG BEACH
The Norton Simon, USC Pacific Asia Museum and Pasadena Museum of California Art are within walking distance of this Pasadena stop. Also
Take the Blue Line to downtown Long Beach for a daylong excursion that could last into the evening. Walk to the Aquarium of the Pacific, go whale watching, or catch a free local bus to the retired RMS Queen Mary ocean liner. Grab dinner and drinks at one of the neighborhood’s many restaurants (George’s Greek Cafe is a local favorite) and bars.
Santa Monica Pier
DID YOU KNOW?
MARIPOSA The Green Line, which intersects the Blue Line at the Willowbrook/Rosa Parks station, is primarily used by commuters in and around the South Bay, but one of its major destinations is Toyota Sports Center, the massive ice skating rink where the L.A. Kings practice. You can check out practice sessions for free; follow the Kings on Twitter for info.
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COURTESY HYPERLOOP ONE
ABOVE: A rendering shows a potential station for Virgin Hyperloop One, which has headquarters in the Arts District and recently named Richard Branson as chairman. RIGHT: A test car gets a lift at the company’s facility near Las Vegas.
66 D T L A
FAST FORWARD The future of transportation is taking shape in Downtown Los Angeles, thanks to the efforts of two ambitious rail startups. By Joe Bargmann
wo companies in the city known for its love affair with the auto are pioneering forms of transportation that make cars—even fancy new electric ones—
co-founder of Hyperloop One, who left the company in 2016
seem extremely old-fashioned. With headquarters in the
amid a bitter lawsuit—says its Batmobile-esque vehicles will
DTLA area, Virgin Hyperloop One and Arrivo are developing
travel on an enclosed railway at about 200 mph.
Arrivo plans to transport passengers in car-like modules that run on an enclosed track at about 200 mph. The company’s offices are in Boyle Heights, just across the L.A. River from the Arts District.
electric train-like systems based on magnetic levitation, or
The hyperloop deserves some skepticism. But an
maglev, technology. While neither is the first to use such
analogy to private-space programs is apt. A lot of people
technology—a maglev rail line is currently operating in
once said Elon Musk would never fire a module into space.
Japan—introducing it to the U.S. would be unprecedented.
Last year, his company SpaceX became the first to launch
SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk first posited
and land an orbital rocket. It can pay to dream.
the feasibility of the hyperloop system in a white paper published in 2013. Musk’s vision consisted of modular
VIRGIN HYPERLOOP ONE
Ending traffic on congested city highways
Vacuum-tube maglev railway
Grounded maglev railway
Unknown (privately held)
11–50 (per LinkedIn)
2019 (railbed construction to begin)
Successful beta test 2017
Building test center near Denver
vehicles, similar to train cars but smaller, traveling in a vacuum tube up to 760 mph. He called it “a cross between a Concorde and a railgun and an air hockey table.” Last fall, Virgin Hyperloop One, which is focusing on city-to-city connectors, pushed a bullet-shaped prototype to a modest 192 mph at its Nevada test track. Regardless, the company has said it will begin constructing a commercial vacuum-tube route in 2019, with passenger travel by 2021. Arrivo’s approach is proving closer to traditional train travel, at least in its first project. The project would use
maglev technology but not vacuum tubes to link Denver International Airport to the city’s downtown. The company has a promise of $760,00 in tax breaks from state officials. That money would help Arrivo in “ending traffic,” as its website homepage trumpets. CEO Brogan BamBrogan—a
TECHNOLOGY FUNDING KEY INVESTORS EMPLOYEES PROJECTED LAUNCH STATUS
DTLA BOOK 2018
THE CRAZIEST BAR IN DTLA In the ’80s and ’90s, the American Hotel and its former music club, Al’s Bar—the subjects of a fascinating new documentary—were where artists and bands were free to run wild: “It was social sculpture.” By Jordan Riefe // Illustrations by Ulla Puggaard
THE AMERICAN TODAY Built in 1905 as lodgings for African-Americans, the brick building now comprises a hotel, apartments, the Rogue Collective boutique, the Corner Store convenience shop and the Pie Hole’s original location. 303 S. Hewitt St., Arts District americanhotella.com
f New York’s CBGB and the Chelsea Hotel had moved out West and had a love child, it might have grown up to be L.A.’s American Hotel. The Downtown landmark,
built in 1905 at the corner of Traction Avenue and Hewitt Street, enjoyed its heyday in the ’80s and ’90s when it became both a residence for artists and musicians on its upper floors and the home of Al’s Bar, one of L.A.’s legendary
DTLA BOOK 2018
When artist Marc Kreisel bought the four-story
“Anarchy reigned and that was probably the hottest
building in 1979, he recognized the stirrings of an
thing about it. It was a piece of living art. Marc gave a lot
underground punk, art and drug culture in the then-largely
of people opportunities,” recalls performance artist Skip
derelict area. His venue, the subject of the new documentary
Arnold, a regular at Al’s.
Tales of the American, due out this year, became a conduit
Mat Gleason was a resident and manager of the hotel in
for the scene, a place for artists to live and display their work
the 1990s when he started publishing his magazine, Coagula
and, at Al’s Bar, the perfect grungy stage for then-under-the-
Art Journal. Today, he also runs a Chinatown gallery, Coagula
radar alternative and punk bands with names like Nirvana,
Curatorial. “Al’s Bar was Marc’s social sculpture,” he says.
Misfits, White Stripes, Rage Against the Machine and the
Gleason first set foot in the bar in 1986 and quickly became a
Red Hot Chili Peppers.
regular. “Al’s Bar was a place that you either visited once and
EXTERIOR: JORDAN RIEFE; WOMAN: LEONID SADOFEV; MAN: SHANNON FAGAN | DREAMSTIME.COM
music venues for emerging talent, on its ground level.
never went back out of disgust, or you visited it and it became the place where you went through your Al’s Bar phase.”
It wasn’t always a place for artists, but was always inhabited by marginalized people. A hundred years ago,
Gleason fell into the same downward spiral as some in
the hotel launched as first-class lodgings for African-
the community around him, investing his time in artwork
Americans, at a time when most accommodations were
and alcohol. “Marc saved my life. I was his best customer and
segregated. In the years preceding World War II, Japanese
I was two weeks sober when he hired me to run Al’s Bar,” he
immigrants made it their home.
recalls. “I would credit Marc with being a major reason I’m still alive.”
“The amazing thing is that nobody famous has ever lived there or come out of there,” says Tales of the American
As hotel manager, one of Gleason’s duties was sorting
director Stephen Seemayer, an artist who managed the hotel
the mail, which gave him an idea of who was on welfare,
in the ’90s. “But the American Hotel completely represents
who was collecting unemployment and who was taking
America and the American experience.”
what medication to get their lives back on track. “Most of
When Al’s Bar closed in 2001, it was the West Coast’s
the people who drank at Al’s Bar had some association with
oldest surviving punk club. In 2013, the American was
the visual arts,” he says. “Did they also have a drug problem?
purchased by entrepreneur Mark Verge. It maintains a
Yeah. Basically, if Mom and Dad were paying the bills and
prominent place in the Arts District, its northern wall
you had a coke problem, you were living in Venice. If Mom and Dad weren’t paying the bills and you had a coke problem, you were in Downtown.” The walls used to swim with band stickers, graffiti, murals and impromptu sculpture. Gronk, a member of the legendary Chicano arts movement Asco, painted a mural over the door, and Arnold graced the bar’s ceiling with one of his “day-glo nudes” with its head cut off. Painter Bob Zoell routinely updated the rusty sign outside with messages like
“Anarchy reigned and that was probably the hottest thing about it. It was a living piece of art.” —Per formance ar tist and Al’s Bar regular Skip Arnold
CIGARETTE: DMYTRO TOLOKONOV | DREAMSTIME
“Dance in the parallel universe” and “Who is guilty?” One guilty party was a band called the Imperial Butt
graced by a three-story mural of artist Ed Ruscha painted by
Wizards. Their act involved decapitating stuffed animals,
Kent Twitchell, while Peter Greco, DTLA Book’s cover artist
the remains of which inevitably found their way into the
(see page 50 to read about him), has emblazoned a wall along
plumbing. Gleason recalls standing across the street one
Hewitt Street with one of his signature “calligraffiti” works.
night when halfway through the band’s set, the doors flew
Gone are the addicts, punk rockers and miscreants,
open and smoke came billowing out. “They were lighting
replaced by cafés, brewpubs and clothing boutiques, like
fireworks and smoke bombs inside,” he says, laughing about
the Rogue Collective where Al’s Bar used to be. “If any
it now. “They had a huge following but they could only play in
neighborhood has changed over the past 112 years, it’s that
the desert or Al’s Bar cause they were so anarchic.”
one, from a black neighborhood to a Japanese neighborhood
Another person who almost blew up the place was a man
to an artist’s neighborhood,” says Seemayer. “It’s important
by the name of Don Jones. A shopper at local swap meets,
to tell the story of the ‘other’ in our society. If you don’t
Jones returned to the hotel one day with a shell casing from
capture these stories, they evaporate like so much smoke at
World War II. When he opened it, he discovered its contents
the end of a cigarette.”
intact. “I’m standing around, and the bomb squad showed up,” recalls Gleason. “Had Jones continued to open it up, there wouldn’t be a hotel. So that was the classic kind of weird character that was there.”
DTLA BOOK 2018
UNICORN LOFT In the Arts District, painter Vanessa Prager and watch dealer Stephen Hallock create a home in the type of raw, soaring space that “doesn’t really exist anymore.” By Degen Pener // Photography by Ian Spanier
had always wanted to live in a space like this—a big, open, industrial space, but they don’t really exist anymore,” says Stephen Hallock, a dealer in rare
mostly Swiss-made timepieces, of the loft he and his wife, painter Vanessa Prager, share in the Arts District. At most Downtown buildings these days, he feels, “the word ‘loft’ is usually code to charge 80 percent too much for a studio.” With its high ceilings and loading bays for doors, the space, located in an early 20th–century building, was a true discovery. Hallock heard about the unit, which was never listed for rent, from a real-estate agent. It previously had been back-end offices for a DTLA-based company. The problem, recalls Hallock, was that “it was nowhere close to livable. The bathroom looked like a gas station bathroom.” Says Prager, “He was like, ‘It’s never gonna work, but this Prager, who had moved Downtown in 2013 to the Bank District, assured him the unit actually could work. It already had a staircase and a loft that could accommodate two bedrooms. She previously had experience redoing her
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PHOTO CREDIT TK
PHOTO CREDIT TK
Prager, on a Ligne Roset Togo sofa, and Hallock in the living area and library. Her 2017 painting, I Don’t Want the Warmth from Your Sun, is at far left. Says Hallock of the loft: “It really was a blank slate and there are little bits of each of us in all of the designs of everything.”
art studio just across the L.A. River in Boyle Heights. She knew where the salvage yards were located to find things like a bathroom sink, counters and a kitchen island. Prager, who is known for her richly textured paintings with figures slightly hidden in them, had even mixed her own concrete to fill a hole in the floor at her studio. “My landlord was just like ‘You take it how it is,’ basically,” says Prager, who grew up in Los Feliz and loves Downtown because “I think you do meet more people from different areas down here. There’s so much interaction.” The pa ir renovated the bathroom a nd kitchen, refinished the floors and painted everything. They set up a room for Hallock’s seven-year-old son from a previous relationship. Artwork—both by Prager and by her sister, the photographer Alex Prager, as well as pieces by friends— covers every wall. W hat they treasure most about the space is its flexibility. “Every time I want something new, I can just build a spot for it,” says the Baltimore-reared Hallock, who even carved out space for a studio for his photography. They recently put in a room divider that doubles as a bookcase. “I like to read. Books are the only things I collect,” says Prager. An area near a window has been designated for Hallock’s business, TickTocking—for which he also does a podcast and hands-on YouTube videos featuring the watches he sells. Hallock focuses on cutting-edge indie brands like Urwerk, Greubel Forsey, De Bethune and MB&F (where he used to be North American president). Prager recently completed her newest body of work, In The Pink—a series for which she’s been reading classic and modern feminist books—scheduled to show at New York’s The Hole gallery in early 2018. She actually met her husband through work, when he visited her studio in 2015 to purchase a painting. Six months later, he asked her out on a date at Blacktop Coffee, near where they now live. “We had our first actual date right outside,” says Hallock. And that painting he bought from her? It now hangs in the secondfloor loft area. Says Prager, happily: “Now it’s in the family.”
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UP IN DOWNTOWN ABOVE: Prager and Hallock in the loft, overlooking the kitchen and dining area. The lamp was found at Amsterdam Modern in Echo Park. RIGHT, TOP: Hallock’s photos of timepieces by Greubel Forsey, Vianney Halter, Kari Voutilainen and Richard Mille. RIGHT, CENTER: A John James Audubon image. RIGHT, BOTTOM: Sculptor Tim Hawkinson’s “Tree Chain,” on display in the center of the loft, is carved from a discarded Christmas tree.
The couple, with their dog Jake, on one of the loading bays that serves as a door. Hallock says he loves Downtown because he rarely needs to get in a car. â€œI walk. I ride my bike,â€? he says.
L.A.’S BIRTHPLACE Established 237 years ago, El Pueblo, founded as a Spanish mission, was reborn as a themed shopping area in the 1930s. Text and Photography by Poul Lange
hould you ever wonder why Los Angeles sometimes
settlers brought up by De Neve were from the northern
feels so much like a Mexican city, take a trip to El
Mexican provinces of Sinaloa and Sonora.
Pueblo, just west of Union Station on the border of
Chinatown. This is where the story of Los Angeles began.
El Pueblo was under the rule of the Spanish government until 1821, when Mexico gained independence from Spain.
Several tribes of Native Americans had lived in what
The small but growing town was part of Mexico until 1850,
is now known as the Los Angeles Basin for thousands
when California gained U.S. statehood after the Mexican-
of years. It was in 1781 that Felipe De Neve, the Spanish
American War. That’s when certain L.A. street names
governor of Alta California, founded a small mission he
became anglicized—Calle Principal was renamed Main
named El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles
Street and Calle Primavera became Spring Street.
del Río de Porciúncula (The Town of Our Lady the Queen
Fueled by the gold rush, the cattle industry and the
of the Angels of the River Porciuncula). The original 48
arrival of the railway, Los Angeles experienced explosive
DTLA BOOK 2018
PHOTO CREDIT TK
LEFT: Vintage postcards from the then-newly renovated Olvera Street. RIGHT: An official marker at El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument.
MÁS TAQUITOS There is always a line at Cielito Lindo, one of the oldest restaurants in El Pueblo, established in 1934.
DTLA BOOK 2018
growth, but as the business district moved south to Temple
houses around Olvera Street dilapidated and on the verge of
and Main streets, El Pueblo floundered. By the 1920s Olvera
condemnation. She soon threw herself into a campaign to
Street was a run-down, unpaved alley and the wine shops
save El Pueblo, and with the help of Harry Chandler (newly
run by Italians there were shut down by Prohibition.
appointed publisher of the Los Angeles Times), she managed
Surprisingly, it was an Anglo-American woman who
to drum up political and economic support for her project.
managed to save much of the historical center around El
El Paseo de Los Angeles, as the new marketplace on Olvera
Pueblo. Inspired by Ramona, Helen Hunt Jackson’s popular
Street was named, opened on April 19, 1930, with shops
novel set in old California, Christine Sterling came to Los
operated by local Mexican Americans.
Angeles in the early 1920s with a romantic view of Southern
Thanks to this effort, you can now visit the Avila
California, typical of the time. Looking for her idealized
Adobe (1818), the oldest existing house in Los Angeles;
vision of the Mexico of old, she was appalled to find the adobe
the 1850s Pelanconi House, the city’s oldest fired-brick
Scenes from Olvera Street
Celebrants at DÍa de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
THE CONTROVERSY BEHIND L.A.’S OLDEST SURVIVING STREET MURAL The dramatic 18-by-80-foot mural América Tropical at El Pueblo
tells a story that is dripping with controversy and irony.
ABOVE: The mural’s centerpiece shortly after it was unveiled. Siqueiros had come to L.A. after being expelled from Mexico for his radical politics.
In 1932, two years after El Paseo de Los Angeles had opened, preservationist Christine Sterling approved the commission of a mural on a second-story wall of the Italian Hall. Had she done a little more research on the artist, David Alfaro Siqueiros, a major
Mexican muralist, she would most likely have hesitated. This was the beginning of the Great Depression, a time when Mexican Americans were not only hit hard by unemployment, but also the start of a decadelong period when half a million would be deported. Siqueiros was a fiercely political artist. So instead of finishing the romantic motif Sterling had hoped for, Siqueiros spent the night before the unveiling alone, hidden by scaffolding, painting the centerpiece: a Mexican peasant crucified underneath the American
building; as well as the Old Plaza and Olvera Street market.
eagle. In an upper corner, a revolutionary soldier aims his rifle at the eagle. Some critics found the mural
While you could say that this tourist-friendly and
exciting and powerful, but Sterling disliked it so much that she had it covered in whitewash. The great
sanitized version of the original Pueblo did little to improve
irony is that this censorship probably was what ultimately saved it. Without this protective layer of paint,
the often-dire conditions of the Mexican Americans at the
the mural might have completely deteriorated from sun and rain.
time, over the years, El Pueblo has become an important
Even out of view, the mural was never forgotten, and in the 1960s Chicano artists started campaigning
place for Chicano culture. Día de los Muertos (Nov. 2), Cinco
for its resurrection. The mural was too damaged to be fully restored, but with the support of the Getty
de Mayo (May 5), the Blessing of the Animals (March 31)
Conservation Institute, it has been preserved, and a viewing area along with a museum, the América
and other festivals are celebrated here. On weekends, the
Tropical Interpretive Center, is now open in El Pueblo’s Sepúlveda House.
Plaza fills up with couples dancing to Mexican tunes, and on any given day the vendors on Olvera Street are selling Mexican food, arts and crafts.
EL PUEBLO DE LOS ANGELES HISTORICAL MONUMENT & AMÉRICA TROPICAL INTERPRETIVE CENTER 125 Pa seo de la Pla za, El Pueblo // 213-485-6855 // elpueblo.lacit y.org & theamericatropical.org
DTLA BOOK 2018
LAP OF LUXURY In the surprisingly dog-friendly urban jungle of DTLA, the go-to spot for all things upscale pet is Pussy & Pooch. By Liz Ohanesian // Photography by Gabor Ekecs
ooking to indulge your fur baby? Main Street’s stylish Pussy & Pooch puts cats and dogs in pampered heaven, with offerings that go far beyond the average pet store. The boutique and spa offers full-service grooming, personal shopping services, pet
parties, and a selection of toys and accessories that will charm you as much as they will your dog or cat. While your four-legged pal is cleaning up in the Bathhouse spa area, you can shop the boutique for stylish outfits and baubles to complete a makeover. Pussy & Pooch’s Meat Market offers a variety of foods to stock up on, while canine and feline guests can feast on-site at the Pawbar café, which offers seasonal menus. On a sunny afternoon on Nov. 25, 2017, DTLA Book visited the Pussy & Pooch store in the Historic Core (the first of three locations) and photographed some of the proud human and animal customers visiting that day. Which pair or trio of buddies is your favorite?
DTLA BOOK 2018
VOTE FOR US!
Go on Instagram and like your favorite of these 13 shots, and youâ€™ll have a chance to win a Pussy & Pooch gift certificate ($25 value)! The people in the photo garnering the most likes (votes) will receive a Pussy & Pooch Shopping & Spa Package ($100 value), plus one runner-up will earn a gift certificate ($50 value). Follow the rules below for your shot at a prize. 1. Follow @pussyandpooch and @dtlabook on Instagram. 2. S earch #PPDTLApets and like your favorite of the 13 images. Contest ends May 5, 2018. Winners will be announced by @pussyandpooch and @DTLAbook on May 10, 2018.
1. CC Bursell & Piggiesmallz 2. Chris Milligan & Micah Troy 9 3. Tania Hinton & Nimka 4. Soo Kim & Einstein 5. Gennadiy Gegenava & Coco 6. Ariana Nussdorf & Fox 7. Rick Montano & Kiba 8. Meg Kitagawa & Mel 9. Alexander Swain & Lady 10. Drew Luu & Cody 11. Jim White, Alex LiMandri & Jacques 12. Galina Gegenava & Kaylah 13. Gavin Elliott Meigs & Huxley Montgomery Find out more about them and vote on Instagram: #PPDTLApets.
PUSSY & POOCH 564 S. Main St., Historic Core // 213-438-0900 pussyandpooch.com
DTLA BOOK 2018â€‡
EAT AND GREET The DTLA Dinner Club, founded by political consultant Josh Gray-Emmer, is a way for residents to connect. DTLA Book joined the community and hosted a dinner prepared by Tuck Hotel founder and chef Juan Pablo Torre. By Stacie Stukin // Photography by Emi Rose Kitawaki
n 2010 Josh Gray-Emmer bought an apartment in the El Dorado Lofts building in Gallery Row. Enamored with the 1914 landmark, its Gothic-meets-Art-Nouveau
façade and a lobby replete with Batchelder tile, he chose a penthouse with sweeping views of the city where he grew up. He also bought into the promise of a burgeoning DTLA social scene. “It was my dream home,” he said. His instincts were right, and as more people moved into the neighborhood, he found a group of peers who agreed with his philosophy: “I believe the best way to build community is over dinner and drink.” So, he started hosting dinner parties. Word got out and every Wednesday night 30 people gathered at his loft, where the only qualification to attend was a DTLA address, a beverage in hand, and the will to make new friends and help with service. Thus, the DTLA Dinner Club was born. Gray-Emmer is a political consultant by trade and a social engineer by nature, and as the club grew in popularity and prestige, he formalized the process, hand-picking
DTLA BOOK 2018
THE SPECIAL GUEST CHEF BELOW: Juan Pablo Torre of Tuck Ventures, who cooked the eveningâ€™s dinner, recently opened the modern and chic boutique Tuck Hotel in the Fashion District. It features 14 rooms, a restaurant and bar. (Read more on page 107 & 108.)
FROM LEFT: Uli Nasibova, Josh Gray-Emmer, Jessie Hoch, Scott Hoch and Sam Walbuck on the Courtyard Terrace of LEVEL Furnished Living apartments in South Park
Karyn Pinsky Cohen and her husband, Marc Cohen, a real-estate attorney whose practice represents many Historic Core developers
Justin Shenkarow (left), actor, and Justin Oberg, senior principal, Salesforce.com
Brooke Walbuck, interior designer and director of business development at Unisource Solutions
Part of the protocol of the evening is that dinner guests help serve and clean up. “Since the Dinner Club is free,” explains Gray-Emmer, “it’s always been more about community than commerce, so guests bring drinks to share and everyone is happy to help with service.” Gray-Emmer
Patrice Hopper, senior director of marketing for Brookfield Properties, whose Downtown holdings include 777 Tower, FIGat7th and the California Market Center
DTLA BOOK 2018
on Dinner Club guests. Her efforts paid off. Now she owns two outposts of Gelateria Uli (see page 114), where she still uses recipes originally conveived at Dinner Club. On a recent Wednesday, Juan Pablo Torre, proprietor of the intimate 14-room Tuck Hotel, who grew up in Argentina in a Sicilian family, prepared a three-course meal. He limited dishes to three or four ingredients, highlighting his Institut Paul Bocuse culinary school technique with a focus on vegetables, courtesy of Melissa’s Produce. An arugula salad dressed with a classic French vinaigrette and flourished with a Parmesan cloud was followed by soy-foam-topped smoked
attendees through a website reservation system. He also
salmon on seaweed salad. The main course—vegan paella
enlisted sponsors like Whole Foods and guest chefs like Ilan
with artichokes and shiitake mushrooms—was a nod to Chef
Hall (of Top Chef ), Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken.
Torre’s time in Spain.
Loyal guests, like Sam Walbuck and his wife, Brooke, kept
Meanwhile, Gray-Emmer, with a glass of whiskey in
showing up. “Moving to DTLA was such a plunge for us,”
hand, tended his hosting duties and made sure everyone
Walbuck explained, “and we knew every Wednesday we’d be
had napkins and cutlery. After the group toasted friends
welcomed into a network that inspired and motivated us.”
old and new, Gray-Emmer pointed out that there are
Since its inception, Downtown movers and shakers
only 65,000 people who live in DTLA. “We’re really a
such as Los Angeles City Council member José Huizar,
small neighborhood in a very big city,” he said. “I’m proud
consultant Hal Bastian and developer Tom Gilmore have
that we’ve become lifelong friends, started businesses
attended club dinners. Uli Nasibova, an early club member,
together, some of us even go running together and yet
left her job in finance after finding a passion for making
others have met their spouses and started families. And
gelato. In fact, she honed her skills and tested the results
just think—it all started at Dinner Club.”
ong before you sipped a lychee martini, dared to try ghost-chile popcorn or dug into a pulled-jackfruit taco, Melissa’s Produce (melissas.com) carried the ingredients that restaurants and food
magazines clamored for to make these dishes. Tucked among the industrial buildings southeast of the Arts District lies a veritable fantasy land of fresh food. Founded by Sharon and Joe Hernandez in the 1980s, Melissa’s—now the country’s largest supplier of specialty produce—started out as a one-room operation under the 10 Freeway. Still family owned and operated, it’s grown into an enormous warehouse that’s commonly referred to as a “Produce Wonderland.” The company carries over a thousand items at a time, ranging from basic to blow-your-mind cool. Dime-sized radishes, magenta-fleshed Hidden Rose apples, many-fingered Buddha’s Hand citrons, bubble-gum pink radicchio
FROM LEFT: Andrés Rigal, Iko Bako, Anthony Ferrara, Brooke Walbuck
and tender young myoga ginger are just a tiny taste of what’s available. With a myriad of growers across California, the country and abroad, nothing is off limits. As the company recently told a commenter on Instagram: “If it’s legal in the United States, we can get it for you.” Melissa’s supplies grocery stores across the country, including most L.A. markets. Even if you’ve never gone out of your way to buy their produce, you’ve probably already enjoyed their wares, since popular L.A. chefs keep their kitchens stocked with Melissa’s ingredients. Anyone craving a fresh option at a big game will appreciate their fruit and veg carts at Dodger Stadium and STAPLES Center. They also supply the produce required by mixologists at the city’s swankiest clubs. An L.A. original, Melissa’s is a reminder that our city is full of fresh ideas, even in the places you least expect.
CHEF TORRE’S FEATURED MENU - Arugula salad served with French vinaigrette and a Parmesan cloud - Smoked salmon “Tiradito” on seaweed salad with soy foam - Vegan paella with artichokes, shiitake mushrooms and classic Spanish allioli - Mashed potato gelato by Dinner Club member Uli Nasibova’s Gelateria Uli
LEVEL Furnished Living provided its Fireplace Lounge for this special feature photo shoot. For more information about its short- and long-term-stay apartments, visit stayinglevel.com.
The evening’s fresh vegetables, including arugula for the salad, were provided by Melissa’s Produce.
n the beginning, it was so exciting, everybody wanted a piece of it. The pictures that came out of it were admired all over the world. Then, after a successful
run, changing times put a damper on the enthusiasm, and soon it was all but abandoned. But it was never quite forgotten, and a movement rose up to bring it back. And now it is here again, better than ever, as we see it developing right in front of our eyes. Are we talking about DTLA or the Polaroid SX-70 Land Camera? It doesn’t really matter—we sent two photographers, Alexander Laurent and Poul Lange, out to shoot the former with the latter.
Sexy Beast The foldable Polaroid SX-70 Land Camera from 1972 is arguably the sexiest camera ever designed. It was the superstar of instant cameras, and soon had a cult following, favored by artists as diverse as Ansel Adams, Andy Warhol and David Hockney. However, the camera went out of circulation for over a decade when the film was discontinued in 2005. Thanks to Polaroid Originals, fresh stock is available, and the beautiful vintage machines are moving from closets and drawers into the streets again.
DTLA BOOK 2018
ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER Artist Alexander Laurent was born and raised in California. Working bicoastally between Harlem, New York, and Downtown Los Angeles, he is heavily influenced by the places in which he resides. As a resident of DTLA, he has worked closely with the community and service providers in Skid Row, providing the imagery for their sanitation report, “No Place to Go: An Audit of Public Toilets in Skid Row.” Laurent mainly works in traditional, larger-format, blackand-white photography, and he processes in the darkroom. He’s stated that his favorite camera is his Polaroid SX-70 and naturally chose Polaroid Originals blackand-white film for this editorial.
DTLA BOOK 2018
ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER When Poul Lange was a foreign student from Denmark at NYC’s School of Visual Arts back in the ’80s, he would buy outdated film at the surplus stores on Broadway to shoot portraits of his friends, and move the emulsion around with the pressure of a teaspoon to create a surreal look unique to SX-70. Later he would use Polaroid photos for his illustrations and book-jacket designs. When he’s not in the DTLA streets trying to unfold a Land Camera, he’s in his studio making collages or designing magazines.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Watch It! Scan this QR code with your standard iPhone camera to launch our DTLA Book AR App and see this image develop! Powered by augmentmode.com
DTLA BOOK 2018â€‡
THE TASTE MAKERS Downtown L.A.’s brightest creatives and entrepreneurs dish on the restaurants, shops and art they love best right now. By Kathryn Romeyn
reatively speaking, DTLA is on fire right now, and the nine innovative personalities on the following pages—who excel in everything from
gastronomy, fashion, art and design to skull tattoos— are generating an outsize share of the heat. “Downtown has become a n incubator of ideas,” says actor a nd
Mulholland Distilling partner Walton Goggins. Seconds Lily Stockman of handmade textile company Block Shop, “There’s a dynamic, bustling and gritty energy here that doesn’t exist anywhere else in L.A. Within a few-block radius, you’ll see artists’ studios, furniture fabrication warehouses, jewelry makers, corporate skyscrapers, the Frank Gehry–designed Walt Disney Concert Hall, experimental retail spaces and every type of food.” Of Gehry’s popular masterpiece, Simone chef Jessica Largey says, “It’s hard to put into words the magic of being inside. The sound, the wood—it’s a different world.” DTLA’s distinctive neighborhoods create, in a way, many different worlds, and that diversity is part of the draw. “The variety of food one can eat or topics of conversation one can overhear
DID YOU KNOW? Established in 1990, James Beard Foundation Awards recognize excellence in cuisine, restaurant design and culinary journalism in the U.S. annually. Recent Los Angeles winners include Pizzeria Mozza’s Nancy Silverton (Outstanding Chef, 2014), Lucques’ Suzanne Goin (Outstanding Chef, 2016), Animal’s Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo (Best Chef: West, 2016) and Osteria Mozza’s Dahlia Narvaez (Outstanding Pastry Chef, 2016).
JESSICA LARGEY Photography by Anjali Pinto
The winner of the game-changing James Beard Rising Star Chef of the Year Award in 2015—won while she was chef de cuisine at Northern California’s Manresa—became passionate about cooking as a child and never looked back. Her first restaurant as head chef/partner, the seasonal Simone, is the Arts District’s anticipated destination (due to open in April), with a 75-seat dining room, six-seat tasting
are endless,” says Goggins. Here, our featured tastemakers’
menu counter in the kitchen and Duello at Simone bar. Her
curated picks and tips for doing just that.
experience growing up in an agricultural area in Ventura
90 D T L A
“DTLA has transformed immensely—it’s like meeting a whole new city.” —J E S S I C A L A R G E Y
County still informs Largey’s plates, which are created
TOP THREE CULINARY PICKS “The burger and fries at Everson
around produce as opposed to proteins, allowing it to shine.
Royce Bar is simple and perfectly seasoned. The Caramelo at
A Largey creation: sweet potato with tahini, shishito peppers, mustard greens and harissa vinaigrette
Sonoratown has the best flour tortillas—don’t forget to add WHY DTLA? “I got my start cooking here for four years. Coming
poblano! And the yellow falafel sandwich at Madcapra with
back is definitely a homecoming, but DTLA has transformed
a sumac-beet soda. They put it best: ‘Because vegetables.’”
immensely and it’s like meeting a whole new city. One of the
FAVORITE RECENT DISCOVERY “Union Station. I love the
biggest draws is being part of the amazing community in the
design and history of it. I grew up here but had never been
Arts District. There’s an incredible amount of momentum
inside, which seems bizarre now. My favorite part is the
and energy coming to L.A., Downtown in particular. When
waiting chairs and booths in the main lobby—they feel like
deciding my next career move, I chose community.”
you’re in a different time.”
INSPIRATION SOURCE “Street art. It draws many parallels
to food for me—it’s an art form that isn’t permanent and is accessible to all, which is a theme I hope Simone embodies.”
SIMONE 447 S. Hewit t St., Ar t s Distric t // 323-628-7600 // simonear t sdistric t.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
Detail of untitled work by Campbell
TATTOOIST & ARTIST
Campbell in front of his 2016 acrylic-and-oil painting, Prayer and Repetition, displayed in his Saved Tatoo shop in the Arts District. He also has a private art studio three blocks away, where he spends time on his art, and running his cannabis lifestyle brand, Beboe. One of his recent tatoo clients is his wife, actress Lake Bell, with whom he is raising two kids. Watch: Shinola
SCOTT CAMPBELL Photography by Ian Spanier
Two thousand seventeen was a big year for famed tattoo artist and painter Scott Campbell, who opened the first
Campbell tattooing Jacobs
West Coast outpost of his Saved Tattoo studio in the back of Shinola’s Arts District shop and launched Beboe, a line of
true walking culture, and the community of artists down
luxury cannabis products from pretty vaporizers to dosed
here is incredibly open and supportive of each other in a way
pastilles. (Read more on page 128.) The contemporary artist
that I haven’t felt from New York in a long time. I left New
from Louisiana also collaborates on Saved Wines, an art-
York because I feel like all the weirdos got priced out. Los
emblazoned range of California blends. This year promises
Angeles still has an abundance of weirdos.”
to be even bigger, with the legalization of recreational
FAVE UNDER-THE-RADAR ARTIST “[Boyle Heights–based] Wes
cannabis in California, upcoming art exhibitions(the artist
Lang is one of my favorite painters ever. I pretty much moved
says painting skulls “is like a mantra”) and the evolution of
here because he said life was better in Los Angeles.”
his Whole Glory project, where he sits behind a wall with
BEST MEAL “Guisados’ tacos are my number one.”
a hole in which volunteers place their arm for a surprise
DRINK GO-TO “Manuela. My tattoo shop is right next door to
tattoo inspired by what he feels from touching their skin.
it, and they pretty much do everything right.”
His intuitive, evocative style is what makes the likes of
SOURCE OF CULTURE “Sitting outside my tattoo shop,
Sting, Orlando Bloom and Marc Jacobs seek out his hard-
to-get appointments. WHY DTLA? “It has a similar feel to Brooklyn when I moved
there 15 years ago. It’s the only place in Los Angeles that has
92 D T L A
SAVED TATTOO 825 E. 3rd St., back room of the Shinola Store, Arts District // savedtattoo.com scottcampbellstudio.com // beboe.com. See pa ge 128 to read about Beboe.
JACOBS & CAMPBELL: CRAIG MCDEAN
MAN WITH MANY HATS
“The community of artists down here is incredibly open and supportive of each other.” — S CO T T C A M PB E LL
FRAME’s Old School sweatshirt
“After working several years in South Park, it started to feel like home.” — E M I LY PA R K
ESTHER PAIK & EMILY PARK Photography by Caroline Tran
The online fashion retailer Le Box Blanc began with a vision by two women, Esther Paik and Emily Park. The pair tightly curate modern designers (many of them L.A. based) for both their Internet store and their first brick-and-mortar shop, which debuted in 2017. They infuse their minimalist 1,800-square-foot space in the heart of South Park with their own classic sense of style, along with influences from Instagram, editorials and Asian street style. WHY DTLA? PARK: “After working several years in South
Park it started to feel like home. We’ve grown very comfortable here, and our hope is that our boutique will be an enhancement to the neighborhood. Also, the people! Our neighbors, customers and partnerships have grown on us.” TOP THREE CULINARY PICKS PARK: “The vegan burger from
Mendocino Farms, sushi at Sushi Zo and kalbi tang [Korean beef soup] from Yang Ban Sul Lung Tang.” PAIK: “Kale salad from Otium, the tasting menu at Orsa and Winston, and Salt & Peppered Shrimp from Âu Ląc LA.” COCKTAIL ORDER PAIK: “Broken Shaker has a fun vibe,
nice view of the city and good drinks. My go-to is an Old Fashioned.” PARK: “I love Broken Shaker’s Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe, which combines vodka, Aperol, lemongrass, lemon and pineapple juices and basil leaves.” HOT L.A. DESIGNER PARK: “FRAME denim. L.A. is one of
the major denim producers of the world, and we’re proud to carry such a groundbreaking denim line.” SOURCE OF CULTURE PAIK: “I enjoy the contemporary art at
The Broad.” FAVORITE RECENT DISCOVERY PARK: “I might be a little late on
this, but the cioppino from Colori Kitchen—it might make Esther Paik (left) and Emily Park at their store opening party in July 2017, in the Luma South building in South Park. Le Box Blanc carries L.A.-based brands A.L.C., Chan Luu, Current/ Elliott, LACAUSA, AG, Black Orchid, J.O.A., Joie, L’Agence, Michael Stars, Janessa Leoné, and Pam & Gela.
my top three favorite dishes next year!”
LE BOX BLANC
1100 S. Hope St., C1, South Park // 213-519-3400 // leboxblanc.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
Matthew Alper (left) and Walton Goggins raising a glass outside Manuela restaurant in the Arts District
“There are many painters in DTLA—pick one, reach out and stop by for a studio visit. That’s where it’s really happening.”
WHO POURS MULHOLLAND 71ABOVE
6 3 3 W. 5 t h S t . , 7 1 s t F l . // 2 1 3 -7 1 2 -2 6 8 3 71above.com
—WA LTO N G O G G I N S
ACE HOTEL LOS ANGELES
9 2 9 S . B r o a d w a y // 2 1 3 - 6 2 3 -3 2 3 3 acehotel.com
6 0 0 S . S p r i n g S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 2 2 -1 0 2 2 beelmanspub.com
THE BOARD ROOM
1 3 5 N . G r a n d A v e . // 2 1 3 - 9 7 2 - 8 5 5 6 patinagroup.com
BROKEN SHAKER / RUDOLPH’S BAR & TEA
F r e e h a n d H o t e l , 41 6 W. 8 t h S t . 2 1 3 - 6 1 2 - 0 0 2 1 // f r e e h a n d h o t e l s . c o m
COLE’S / VARNISH
1 1 8 E . 6 t h S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 2 2 - 4 0 9 0 2 1 3 h o s p i t a l i t y. c o m
COURAGE & CRAFT
Grand Central Market, 317 S. Broadway 2 1 3 - 6 24 -2 3 7 8 // g r a n d c e n t r a l m a r k e t . c o m
THE DOWN AND OUT
5 0 1 S . S p r i n g S t . // 2 1 3 -2 2 1 -7 5 9 5 d o w n a n d o u t b a r. c o m
4 0 0 S . M a i n S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 8 7-7 0 1 5 ledlowla.com
MATTHEW ALPER & WALTON GOGGINS
TOP MEAL MA: “As Walton is from the South and I have deep
Photography by Andrea D’Agosto
and hush puppies at Manuela—they’re so damn good! Add a
connections there, I can’t get enough of the pimento cheese Mulholland whisky sour and I’m a happy man.”
6 3 0 W. S p r i n g S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 14 - 0 0 5 3 librarybarla.com
9 0 7 E . 3 r d S t . // 3 2 3 - 8 49 - 0 4 8 0 manuela-la.com
FAVORITE BARS MA: “Broken Shaker is a go-to. The vibe,
2 2 2 S . H o p e S t . // 2 1 3 - 9 3 5 - 8 5 0 0 otiumla.com
While shooting The Avengers, ex-cameraman Matthew Alper
the unique menu, the ridiculous view. And downstairs at
PREUX & PROPER
had the epiphany that led to the homegrown Mulholland
Rudolph’s Bar & Tea is always my first stop.”
Distilling, his whisky-, gin- and vodka-slinging label
SOURCES OF CULTURE WG: “The Broad, MOCA, The Geffen
(mulhollanddistilling.com) with actor Walton Goggins,
Contemporary. Some of my best friends are artists with
star of Justified and Vice Principals. The pair envision their
studios, so I get a coffee and sit on their sofas. There are
new invite-only Arts District headquarters like a “modern-
many painters in DTLA—pick one, reach out and stop by for
day salon devoted to new ideas in spirits, the arts, music,
a studio visit. That’s where it’s really happening.”
whatever!” Their whiskey is best described as young and
PERFECT DTLA DAY WG: “My family’s perfect day starts with
pretty, while the gin makes a mean Negroni.
a sandwich from Eggslut, walking down Broadway talking about life on our way to get a cookie and coffee at the Ace
WHY DTLA? MA: “The Arts District is bristling with creative
Hotel, then heading to an art show or, every once in a while
energy and excitement. We wanted to be in the center of it so
when we as a community come together to shout in unison,
when people visit, they can feel the electricity we do.”
jumping into a protest, then ducking out to get tacos!”
8 4 0 S . S p r i n g S t . // 2 1 3 - 8 9 6 - 0 0 9 0 p r e u x a n d p r o p e r. c o m
1 14 E . 2 n d S t . // 2 1 3 -7 8 8 -1 1 9 1 redbirdla.com
4 2 8 S . H e w i t t S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 2 8 -7 5 0 3 residentdtla.com
SEVEN GRAND WHISKEY BAR
5 1 5 W. 7 t h S t . , 2 n d F l . // 2 1 3 - 8 1 7- 5 3 2 1 2 1 3 h o s p i t a l i t y. c o m
SPRING ST. BAR
6 2 6 S . S p r i n g S t . // 2 1 3 - 6 2 2 - 5 8 5 9 s p r i n g s t b a r. c o m
ZINC CAFE / BAR MATEO 5 8 0 M a t e o S t . // 3 2 3 - 8 2 5 - 5 3 8 1 zinccafe.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
LILY & HOPIE STOCKMAN
Sol Lewitt. Recent collaborations have included designs for the Ace Hotel & Swim Club in Palm Springs and Heath Ceramics. Their mission: “to celebrate the tradition by creating heirloom textiles with a low environmental impact and high social impact,” says Hopie, who with her sister
Photography by Laure Joliet
invests 5 percent of profits to build community healthcare programs in India (think cataract surgeries and installing The sister act of Lily and Hopie Stockman pushes the
water filters). Watch for new architectural hand-woven rugs,
boundaries of traditional Indian hand block printing by
cotton robes and desert-hued upholstery fabrics in 2018.
creating large-scale, one-of-a-kind geometric patterns on cotton silk with the Chhipa, a fifth-generation family of
INSPIRATION SOURCE LS: “We love the crumbling Art Deco
printers and dyers in Rajasthan, India. Started as an art
buildings along Broadway—their geometric motifs inform a
project and launched in 2013, their textile company Block
lot of our designs.”
Shop is known for its scarves, pillows and hand-stitched
TOP THREE CULINARY PICKS HS: “Pork meatballs at Rossoblu,
quilts, some of which take inspiration from the work of artist
Fa ir fa x brea k fa s t sa ndw ich at Eg g s lut a nd loca l persimmon gelato at Gelateria Uli.” SOURCE OF CULTURE LS: “Hauser & Wirth; Hennessey +
Ingalls bookstore; live shows at Resident DTLA, The Regent, The Theatre at Ace Hotel and Belasco Theatre; the ICA LA.” DRINK GO-TO LS: “Oriel, for a glass of Beaujolais in one of our
favorite L.A. interiors. Or cocktails at the Freehand, either in the vibey lobby bar or upstairs. Our favorite is the herbal tequila and mezcal drink Romance in Durango.” DESIGN SHOPPING HS: “Hammer & Spear, which carries our
pillows; Poketo; and the Los Angeles Flower Market for copious house plants.” PERFECT DTLA DAY HS: “Breakfast at Poppy + Rose. Peruse
the L.A. Flower Market. Shop at The Row, including Erica Tanov. Visit Spring Arts Tower for The Last Bookstore and Block Shop studio. Lunch at Grand Central Market— Madcapra’s orange falafel sandwich. Funicular ride up to The Broad and MOCA. Sunset drinks and light eats on the Ace Hotel rooftop. Live music at a classic old-timey theater. Late-night pescado tacos from Guisados.”
BLOCK SHOP 453 S. Spring St., Historic Core, by appointment only // blockshoptextiles.com. Also available at HAMMER & SPEAR, 255 S. Santa Fe Ave., Ar t s Distric t hammerandspear.com.
FAR LEFT: LAURA DART
The sisters in Joshua Tree, California, unfurling their handdyed and hand-woven Temple dhurrie rug in Indian cotton.
“We love the crumbling Art Deco buildings along Broadway—their geometric motifs inform a lot of our designs.” — LI LY STO C K M A N
Lily (left) and Hopie Stockman at their Downtown studio with their cotton-and-silk Temple scarves (86”x34”) in fuchsia and coffee.
“A perfect night: some jazz at Blue Whale, try a new restaurant, see what’s happening at REDCAT or The Theatre at Ace.” —A M A N DA H U NT
EDUCATOR AND PROGRAMMER
AMANDA HUNT Photography by Ian Spanier
From an early age, the director of education and public prog ra ms at MOCA—fresh ly minted in 2017, upon returning to L.A. from a couple of years at Harlem’s The Studio Museum—made it her personal mission to help manifest artists’ visions. As curator at LA><ART in 2012, Amanda Hunt not only helped produce the Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival and the Hammer Museum’s Made in LA biennial, but also cut her teeth producing public works with local art giants, such as Barbara T. Smith and Eleanor Antin. At MOCA, she’s now working to give a broader community of Downtown dwellers better and deeper access to its collection. With education a priority—her civic duty, she says—2018 brings work on taking virtual reality into schools as an arts learning tool through a pilot program.
TOP: A 2015 installation by artist Lauren Halsey, whose new MOCA Grand Avenue show “still here, there” about South Central L.A. runs March 4–September 3, 2018; Hunt is producing a series of music performances to accompany the exhibit. ABOVE: Hunt at the museum’s Grand Avenue location in front of painter Jonas Woods’ Still Life with Two Owls (MOCA).
DTLA’S DEVELOPMENT “Beyond the alarming rate at which the
skyline is evolving, the growth of L.A’.s creative community
Stella’s piece is an incredible example of how public art can
has also been overwhelming in the most positive sense—I
live in the world.”
have so much catching up to do post–New York, but it’s a
DESIGN SHOPPING “The MOCA store! Our store director is
lot of fun.”
incredibly talented and I can’t help but shop there all the
ART STOPS, BEYOND MOCA “ICA LA and Hauser & Wirth are
time. Poketo on 2nd Street is fun and affordable.”
excellent to pop into on a regular basis. Near Downtown is
COCKTAIL ORDER “I’m a firm believer that rosé works year-
CAAM, the California African American Museum.”
round. Silverlake Wine’s Downtown outpost in the Arts
TOP CULINARY PICKS “Anything Italian—it’s in my blood—so
District is fun on wine-tasting night—especially if they’re
Bestia, Pizzanista. Love KazuNori. I tried P.Y.T. for lunch
carrying Vin de California’s merlot. Cole’s is a classic and a
and was blown away by the quality of their produce, which
sure bet for the best Old Fashioned Downtown.”
they harvest in partnership with a local school program.”
PERFECT DTLA DAY “It’s a perfect night, really. Some jazz at
LUNCH GO-TO “My favorite Thai spot at Grand Central
Blue Whale, try a new restaurant, see what’s happening at
Market is Sticky Rice II.”
REDCAT or The Theatre at Ace.”
FAVORITE PUBLIC ART “The enormous, partially hidden Frank
Stella mural on the side of the AT&T Building at 433 S. Olive Street. It was commissioned as part of the Percent for Public Art program in the 1990s, which is how MOCA came to be.
MOCA GRAND AVENUE 250 S. Grand Ave., Bunker Hill // 213-621-2766 // moca.org THE GEFFEN CONTEMPORARY 152 N. Central Ave., Little Tokyo // 213-625-4390 // moca.org
DTLA BOOK 2018
POINTS OF VIEW A historic icon and two modern towers offer three takes on the city’s epic vista and beyond.
WILSHIRE GRAND CENTER
900 Wilshire Blvd., Financial Distric t // dtla.intercontinental.com
HEIGHT 1,100 FEET YEAR COMPLETED 2017
ADMISSION PURCHASE OF DRINKS OR FOOD FLOOR 73
LOS ANGELES CITY HALL
200 N. Spring St., Civic Center // lacit y.org To visit the city’s landmarked seat of government, bring your valid ID and enter from the Main Street side.
HEIGHT 454 FEET YEAR COMPLETED 1928
ADMISSION FREE FLOOR 27
Spire 73, the property’s new 73rd-story rooftop bar (part of InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown), is the highest open-air bar in the entire Western Hemisphere. The observation deck is open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
OUE SKYSPACE LA
633 W. 5th St., Financial Distric t // oue-sk yspace.com
HEIGHT ADMISSION 1,018 FEET $25 (OBSERVATION DECK) YEAR COMPLETED $33 (SKYSLIDE COMBO) US BANK TOWER: 1989 FLOOR OUE SKYSPACE LA: 2016 70 Thrill seekers are rewarded with a sky-high view from the 45-footlong clear glass Skyslide.
102 D T L A
Passion is What Drives You.
It embodies us all. Whether you own a coffee shop, curate an art gallery, teach at a yoga studio or are just a free spirit, passion is what drives you to seek a new twist on an old classic. Much like how Downtown L.A. has been revitalized and reinvigorated, we as humans love finding new ways to explore our passions. Let Subaru help you explore the â€œnewâ€? Los Angeles and reconnect with why you fell in love with this city.
FAVES - EAT -
FOR THE VIEW UPSTAIRS AT ACE HOTEL
929 Broadway // 213-623-3233 // acehotel.com
Described as “bunker-like,” this isn’t the most verdant rooftop in L.A. But it might be the hippest. Bring a crowd and enjoy a punchbowl of potent cocktails like Capture the Flag, with scotch, apple brandy, ginger, lemon and black tea. Chips and the like are available when munchies set in.
WESTIN BONAVENTURE BONAVISTA LOUNGE Broken Shaker
BROKEN SHAKER 416 W. 8th St. // 213-261-3599 freehandhotels.com
For ultimate vacation vibes, order a playful cocktail—like the DTLA-inspired Coco-Nutcase—and a smoked fish tostada with guac at this kitschy and colorful rooftop bar, a James Beard Award finalist.
900 Wilshire Blvd., 69th Fl. // 213-688-7777 dtla.intercontinental.com
Get interactive at this fun buffet with epic views where diners chat with chefs as they prepare Mediterranean-inspired meals.
1000 Wilshire Blvd. // 323-642-8393 harborhousedtla.com
This comfy terrace on the Wedbush building’s ground floor offers outside dining with serious skyline views. Hit the Financial District stop for happy hour and enjoy the juicy burger.
DTLA BOOK 2018
448 S. Hill St. // 213-802-1770 // perchla.com
Live band, festive flair. There is no better way to approach midnight than seated beside a fire pit on the 16th-floor rooftop lounge of this French bistro. Stellar sip: the signature Spicy Concombre—a mix of gin, St. Germain, cucumber, lime and jalapeño.
THE ROOFTOP AT THE STANDARD
550 S. Flower St. // 213-892-8080 standardhotels.com
You can nibble on pretzels, wieners, strudel and beer from the Biergarten. Or settle into a waterbed pod with cocktails and sliders. A DJ spins every night.
900 Wilshire Blvd., 69th Fl. // 213-688-7777 dtla.intercontinental.com
Never has conveyor-belt sushi looked as good as it does at this
4 0 4 S . F ig u ero a St . // 2 1 3 - 6 24-10 0 0 thebonaventure.com
The revolving bar on the 34th floor of an iconic L.A. hotel
makes a 360-degree rotation in just under an hour. It’s the most efficient and Mad Men –chic way there is to see the city from every possible perspective.
900 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-743-8824 ritzcarlton.com
Dinner with a view, anyone? Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant is on the 24th floor of The Ritz-Carlton, serving up a panoramic view of the city and modern Chinese dishes like dan dan dumplings and lobster fried rice.
69th-floor eatery, where the most coveted black and white stools are the ones along the expansive wall of windows.
TO NEW HEIGHTS
71 vs. 71
This open-air spot is perched atop the tallest building west of Chicago, with true bird’seye views that seem to make everything you imbibe and eat taste that much better. (See page 10 for a cocktail shot over the sky and page 102 for more information.)
A top-of-the-world war is waging in Downtown. The stakes?
900 Wilshire Blvd. // 213-688-7777 dtla.intercontinental.com
The title of L.A.’s loftiest, most awe-inspiring perch. DTLA’s tallest skyscrapers pit their staggeringly high fine-dining restaurants—each on the 71st story—against each other. At 950 feet, 71Above (633 W. 5th St. // 213-712-2683 // 71above.com) in the US Bank Tower is the ultimate date-night spot, with 360-degree panoramas that seem elusive elsewhere. But La Boucherie on 71 (900 Wilshire Blvd. // 213-688-7777 // dtla.intercontinental.com) is glassed-in,
811 Wilshire Blvd. // 213-236-9600 // takamisushi.com
Japanese robata-grilled favorites and sushi aren’t the only things on offer at this 21st-floor rooftop restaurant. Gorgeous panoramic views take the experience to the next level, literally.
too, inside the tallest building west of the Mississippi, the Wilshire Grand. Ultimately each exclusive eatery offers a different experience, even if the jaw-dropping views are similar. Where 71Above serves $75 three-course tastings of dishes artfully composed by chef Vartan Abgaryan, La Boucherie offers fanciful French-inspired steakhouse standards—alongside tons of charcuterie and cheese—a la carte. The verdict? Try both.
COURTESY FREEHAND HOTEL
GO FOR: Chorizo and papas tacos
B.S. Taqueria (514 7th St. // 213-622-3744 // bstaqueria.com) , Broken Spanish’s little bro, excels at street eats like spicy ceviche and these beloved tacos.
GO FOR: Tex-Mex Bar Amá (118 W. 4th St. // 213-687-8002 // bar-ama.com) skews toward the Texasinflected—think queso with chorizo, Frito pie and enchiladas.
GO FOR: Grilled Gulf shrimp tacos Border Grill (445 S. Figueroa St. // 213-486-5171 // bordergrill.com) has long set the standard for elevated modern takes on Mexican food.
927 S. Broadway // 213-235-9660 bestgirldtla.com
This new all-day eatery is your chance to drool over impeccable crudo, oysters, pastas and even a game-changing pork chop by one of L.A.’s most beloved chefs, Michael Cimarusti (Providence).
GO FOR: Throwback dishes Favorites get fancy at Broken Spanish (1050 S. Flower St. // 213-749-1460 brokenspanish.com) , Ray Garcia’s colorful modern-meets-classic cantina.
GO FOR: Tequila and mezcal
A list of 300 agave spirits complements upscale East L.A.–style Chicano dishes at Mas Malo (515 W. 7th St. // 213-985-4332 // masmalorestaurant.com) .
GO FOR: Grilled coastal cuisine Taking inspiration from the Yucatán, Baja and Oaxaca, Pez Cantina (401 S. Grand Ave. // 213-258-2280 // pezcantina.com) plays on vibrant Mexican dishes.
117 Winston St. // 213-628-3847 blacksmithsla.com
“Elevated American” is the way this elegant Old Bank District gem is described, and the Southern-inflected menu— with items like buttermilk fried chicken, bacon truffle mac
and cheese, and rye whiskey with smoked hickory honey— doesn’t disappoint.
CHURCH & STATE
THE DANKNESS DOJO BY MODERN TIMES
1850 Industrial St. // 213-405-1434 churchandstatebistro.com
1135 N. Alameda St. // 213-253-9419 orielchinatown.com
832 S. Olive St. // 213-878-7008 moderntimesbeer.com
404 S. Figueroa St. The Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites, 35th Fl. 213-612-4743 // thebonaventure.com
Go for the prime beef, stay for the panoramic city view and encyclopedic wine list featuring hundreds of award-winning vinos. Seafood is also on the sophisticated menu, making surf and turf the right call.
907 E. 3rd St. // 323-849-0480 // manuela-la.com
It’s not dinner, it’s supper at this hip indoor-outdoor eatery and garden (with chickens!), where bites of pimento cheese, hushpuppies and blistered okra— with innovative cocktails to boot— transport diners to the South.
108 W. 2nd St. // 213-278-0025 themightydtla.com
The former 1925 Nabisco bakery is a Francophile paradise under chef Tony Esnault, who serves up steak frites and bouillabaisse in a charming bistro atmosphere. The cocktails are on point, too.
This photogenic little wine bar is hidden under the Gold Line in Chinatown, but the classic French bites (like bavette steak) and rare French wines make tracking it down worthwhile.
Beloved San Diego craft beer maker Modern Times plants its flag in DTLA with this brewery and full-service, plant-based restaurant and café that even serves coffee starting at 7 a.m.
LE PETIT PARIS
FAITH & FLOWER
Husband-and-wife restaurateurs David and Fanny Rolland opened this elegant two-story
This spacious, light-filled dining room sporting a fountain, plenty of greenery and an open kitchen offers refined dishes recalling the South of France, from pâté and escargots to classically prepared meats and fish.
You’ll want to dress up to dine at this classy establishment, where the atmosphere and shared plates get A’s for attractiveness. Order an English Milk Punch, then go to town on a panoply of proteins, veggies and pizzas.
This chic indoor-outdoor resto beside The Broad embodies its name as a place where time is spent on leisurely social activities. Indeed, there’s no need to rush through creative cocktails and fantastical New American plates.
brasserie back in 2015. While it’s great for date night, it’s also a beloved brunch spot, when classic French dishes are served up and mimosas flow freely.
257 S. Spring St. // 213-372-5189 springlosangeles.com
705 W. 9th St. // 213-239-0642 faithandflowerla.com
451 S. Hewitt St. // 213-797-4534 // urthcaffe.com
Though “fast casual” technically describes this ultra-relaxed café, it’s where many people take it slow, loitering over organic coffee, fresh-baked treats, artisan salads and sandwiches.
544 S. Grand Ave. // 213-891-0900 watergrill.com
For a casual bite or 20, there’s the latest revelation by serial restaurateurs Karen and Quinn Hatfield. With a splash of Californian cuisine (Avocado + Burrata Toast), they balance interesting salads with savory pastas you can’t stop eating.
418 S. Spring St. // 213-217-4445 lepetitparisla.com
222 S. Hope St. // 213-935-8500 otiumla.com
A sustainable seafood–serving stalwart since 1989, this refined restaurant excels at everything from chilled shellfish and bivalves to cioppino. A stiff martini pairs perfectly, as do the to-die-for sourdough rolls.
NOT SAMPLED YET...
The Most Anticipated At press time, three eagerly awaited new spots were about to open. In late January, Daniel Humm of NYC’s Eleven Madison Park, named by one website the No. 1 restaurant in the world, was set to introduce The Mezzanine at the new NoMad hotel (649 S. Olive St. // thenomadhotel.com) . David Chang of Momofuku fame was days from debuting Majordōmo (1725 Naud St. // majordomo.la) near Chinatown. And Jessica Largey was readying Simone (447 S. Hewitt St. // simoneartsdistrict.com) . See her interview on page 90.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - EAT -
ITALIAN Terroni’s Tagliolini in Canna a Mare pasta and Beppe Beppino Beppuccio pizza
CENTO PASTA BAR
128 E. 6th St. // 213-489-0131 // centopasta.com
This lunch-only pop-up—open indefinitely, thankfully—in wine bar Mignon is a carb-lover’s dream. It’s the most affordable handmade pasta in L.A., and maybe the most delish.
429 W. 8th St. // 213-622-5950 colorikitchen.com
Italian countryside cuisine wows in the big city. Family-run and laid-back, it’s all about rustic, authentic dishes that are easily customizable. Order the fettuccine Alfredo and BYOB.
THE REAL DEAL
525 S. Flower St., Ste. 120 // 213-228-8998 dragocentro.com
Glamorous and grand, Terroni, a 1924 bank-turnedrestaurant, is as eye-catching as its food is authentic. Passed-down Italian family recipes—pizzas, pastas and addictive apristomaco—are unmodified, and stand the test of time. Also an excellent destination for oenophiles, the restaurant features an extensive list of Old World wines available in the adjoining grocery shop, Dopolavoro.
TERRONI 802 S. Spring St. // 213-221-7234 // terroni.com
A shining star of Downtown L.A.’s dining scene, Bestia serves up creative multiregional Italian dishes (pastas, pizzas, cured meats among them) in a hypermasculine, loud, industrial space. (Note the meathook chandeliers.) Just be sure to make your reservations far in advance.
There’s more to Bottega Louie than prized Technicolor macarons (still, don’t miss them!). Italian staples including particularly pretty pizzas sit alongside Cali-influenced bites like portobello fries and avocado and chorizo toast.
2121 E. 7th Pl. // 213-514-5724 // bestiala.com
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700 S. Grand Ave. // 213-802-1470 bottegalouie.com
Old World flavors undergo modern transformations with the help of super-fresh ingredients and contemporary techniques. Colorful creations and handcranked pastas shine in this large, marble-clad space.
1300 Factory Pl., Ste. 101 // 213-996-6000 thefactorykitchen.com
A reclaimed factory in the Arts District got a second—decidedly more delicious—life as a North Italian trattoria, churning out mouthwatering traditional fare that’s rich in flavor.
701 W. 7th St. // 213-279-5025 // giuliadtla.com
When cravings hit for chic, modern Italian—think beautiful
zucchini blossom and burrata pizzas, drool-worthy salumi— Giulia is the answer. Bonus: Most plates are served until 2 a.m.
MACCHERONI REPUBLIC 332 S. Broadway // 213-346-9725 maccheronirepublic.com
The name of this South Broadway staple should give a hint to its specialty: pasta. Homey organic pastas are handmade fresh daily in fanciful shapes and rival any Italian grandma’s.
1331 E. 6th St. // 213-553-8006 // officinebrera.com
This sleek and sophisticated spot is straight out of Northern Italy, serving up hearty meat dishes, homemade pastas and a few seafood standouts. Ask about the off-menu farinata, a chickpea pancake that draws raves from diners.
OLIVE BISTRO & CATERING
619 S. Olive St. // 213-327-1186 // olivebistrocatering.com
Order in or go out, one thing is assured: It will hit the spot. This affordable, casual hideaway executes generous portions of all the standards flawlessly in a warm, friendly atmosphere.
ORSA & WINSTON
122 W. 4th St. // 213-687-0300 // orsaandwinston.com
Known for tasting menus— offered in four, five, nine or 20 small courses—of artfully plated dishes that span the gamut of flavors, from Italian to Asian, this restaurant with only 33 seats warrants a reservation.
PASTA E PASTA BY ALLEGRO
432 E. 2nd St. // 213-265-7003
Talk about turning Japanese. The new addition to Honda Plaza, hailing from Japan, turns out heaping plates of squid ink pasta, carbonara and uni spaghetti, best washed down with a draft Asahi or Italian vino.
1124 San Julian St. // 213-749-1099 rossoblula.com
For his highly anticipated DTLA debut, chef Steve Samson focused on Bologna, beautifully represented in the pure expressions of grandmotherly cooking served family style in an expansive dining room that begs repeat visits.
1111 S. Hope St. // 213-973-5013 // testadtla.com
South Park’s newest eatery brings romantic lighting and Italian inspiration to the neighborhood alongside dishes that could pass as vibrant Californian. Craft cocktails like Hope Passion (bourbon and apple brandy) up the ante.
707 S. Grand Ave. // 424-362-6263 tomgeorgela.com
Who says Italian food has to be made by Italians? This Hungarian export mixes covetable-cool design with modern, seasonal creations that reference the bootshaped country as well as the Mediterranean and California.
GLOBAL Plum Tree Inn’s Sweet and Pungent Shrimp, Garlic Sauce with Vegetables, Vegetable Spring Rolls and Mai Tai
place for inventive empanadas (think jam and cheese), salads and sandwiches by day, and octopus grilled on the plancha and a Chegroni by night.
BLOSSOM RESTAURANT 426 S. Main St. // 213-623-1973 blossomrestaurant.com
Sit inside or on the sidewalk of this popular Vietnamese spot to enjoy pho and other regional dishes. The restaurant itself is sleek and modern, a nice juxtaposition with its traditional take on healthy, Saigon-style food. Blossom’s sophisticated wine list is a bonus.
The Classic Choice
or decades, Plum Tree Inn has been Chinatown’s go-to culinary outpost for authentic—and addictive—Chinese favorites
and Szechuan specialties, made with love and highquality ingredients. Succulent and savory dishes aren’t the only reasons to visit the spacious, elegant spot; their famous Mai Tais are hands-down the city’s best.
PLUM TREE INN 913 N. Broadway // 213-613-1819 // plumtreeinn.com
108 W. 2nd St. // 213-221-7466 // badmaashla.com
The menu at this beloved Indian spot (the name is Hindu for “badass”) reflects its owners’ Indian heritage and Canadian upbringing. Customers fall in love with the fused flavors of dishes like the Chicken Tikka
Poutine, while a Bollywoodmeets-Warhol design beckons a young, hip clientele.
403 W. 12th St. // 213-415-1821 // barcitola.com
Inspired by Buenos Aires’ breezy corner cafés, this is the casual
THE EXCHANGE RESTAURANT
416 W. 8th St. // 213-395-9531 freehandhotels.com/los-angeles/the-exchange
Vibrant colors and multicultural dishes pop inside this all-day restaurant clad in honey-hued wood. Though representative of urban L.A., the offerings celebrate Israeli flavors down to the drinks, like the yogurt-infused Kefir & Honey.
523 W. 7th St. // 213-628-3146 // littlesisterla.com
In a city filled with pho restaurants, Little Sister offers a break from the norm with contemporary Vietnamese cuisine. While Little Sister bills itself as “East-meets-West– inspired dishes,” L.A. Times food writer Jonathan Gold dubbed Chef Tin Vuong’s style “antifusion cooking.” Expect modern dishes with traditional flavors.
806 S. Spring St. // 213-988-8308 // pekingtavern.com
This underground gastropub is known for its ’90s Beijing vibe and for serving up street-style dishes like delectable Sichuan fish dumplings (the red oil garlic sauce produces a numbing sensation) and hand-pulled noodles (made in the glass-walled kitchen). Also, it’s the only place for Chinese Baiju cocktails.
PREUX & PROPER
840 S. Spring St. // 213-896-0090 preuxandproper.com
For the Southern delicacies of New Orleans (po’ boys, catfish, jambalaya, étouffée), head to this open-air patio with frozen daiquiris downstairs. Whether you’re seeking the hedonism of Bourbon Street or the refined beauty of the Garden District, you’ll find it here.
419 W. 7th St. // 213-807-5341 // ricebarla.com
Downtown’s go-to Filipino restaurant serves up modern takes on classic comfort dishes. Seating is extremely limited at this fast-casual spot (with only seven seats at the kitchen-facing counter), where you’ll craft a rice bowl from imported ingredients and traditional Filipino flavors.
Tuck Hotel, 820 S. Spring St. // 213-947-3815 tuckhotel.com/restaurant
Dinner is now served in the intimate yet spacious restaurant in the 14-room Tuck Hotel on Spring Street. Chef/owner Juan
Pablo Torre created the eclectic menu with Spanish-inspired highlights such as Truffles Spinach Maltagliati and Porcini Buñuelos. Don’t forget to check the walls; the art (by local artists) changes every couple of months.
834 S. Grand Ave. // 213-623-3555 unclejohnsdtla.com
A Chinese-American diner may sound one-note, but actually the decades-old Downtown staple serves hangover-busting breakfasts, favorites like honey shrimp over noodles, and shifts to an authentically Cajun seafood boil at night.
107 W. 9th St. // 213-629-1765 // woodspoonla.com
You’ve likely never had Brazilian food like this, inspired by the country’s African, European and Indian influences, served in an intimate “shabby chic” environment. WoodSpoon isn’t a Brazilian steakhouse; instead, it serves traditional street food, like its signature dish, a chicken pot pie with hearts of palm.
800 E. 3rd St. // 213-687-4444 // wurstkuche.com
Open ’til 1:30 a.m. every night of the week, Wurstküche is Downtown’s go-to spot for sausages (served on fresh rolls with a variety of toppings and gourmet mustards) and Belgian fries. If you’re feeling adventurous, the exotic sausages are what you’ve been looking for.
DTLA BOOK 2018
BREAKFAST / BRUNCH / LUNCH faves are the bibimbap breakfast burrito and creative waffles.
516 W. 6th St. // 213-622-7876 astrodoughnuts.com
BLU JAM CAFE
541 S. Spring St., #110 // 213-266-8909 blujamcafe.com
The Spring Arcade is now home to an airy, expansive outpost of the uber-popular brunch paradise. Waits are almost guaranteed on weekends, but so is supreme satisfaction thanks to the magic made with eggs.
718 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-944-8326
Inside a small food court is an extensive selection of well-priced fusion dishes (Thai and Korean among them). Local
DTLA BOOK 2018
800 DEGREES NEAPOLITAN PIZZERIA
CRÊPES SANS FRONTIERES 541 S. Spring St. // 213-623-3606 crepessansfrontieres.com
Tucked in the Spring Street Arcade Building, this is a stylish spot serving fanciful sweet and savory crêpe creations (gluten-free options, too), plus charcuterie plates, delicious toasts and wines. Note it’s closed on Mondays.
PITCHOUN BAKERY & CAFÉ 545 S. Olive St. // 213-689-3240 pitchounbakery.com
The pastry shop of your dreams, Pitchoun (an affectionate term meaning “kiddo” in French) offers traditional salads, sandwiches and soups, though most are entranced by the selection of artisan breads, pastries and cakes. Best of all, everything is made in-house daily.
POPPY & ROSE
765 Wall St. // 213-995-7799 // poppyandrosela.com
Known for American comfort food (think chicken and waffles), this casual Flower District spot (open as early as 6 a.m. and serving breakfast, lunch and brunch ’til 3 p.m.) takes its inspiration from a Southern country kitchen.
If you’re seeking something sweet to accompany that fried bird craving, look no further. Order a chicken sandwich or classic breast and wing, but leave room for a homemade doughnut.
1110 E. 7th St. // 213-537-0844 comfortla.net
At the go-to spot for soul food Downtown, you can’t go wrong with the dinner special, consisting of five fried chicken wings, a piece of cornbread and two sides, from which you can choose collard greens, mac ’n’ cheese and more. Heaven.
814 Traction Ave. // 213-537-0327 // fritzycoop.com
STRADA EATERIA & COFFEE 119 E. 5th St. // 213-822-4558 // stradadtla.com
Expect global eats running from sensational ceviche to sammies and service with a giant smile at this eatery that stands out for its sworn-by Turkish coffee, sand-brewed for smoothness.
Tuck Hotel, 820 S. Spring St. // 213-947-3815 tuckhotel.com/restaurant
Breakfast lovers will find their Eden in this intimate hidden gem with spectacular eats like orange ricotta pancakes and a stunning smoked brisket sandwich.
Fried chicken’s moment is in full swing at chef Neal Fraser’s chicken-centric Arts District spot. Takes on antibioticfree poultry include pulled, rotisserie and extra breading versions, made all the more excellent by gravy and sauces.
727 N. Broadway, #128 // 213-935-8399 howlinrays.com
Anthony Bourdain famously threw shade at this Nashvillebred fad, which has seen waits of up to two hours. But the arrestingly spicy fried stuff the chef hates, many others adore.
800 Wilshire Blvd. // 213-542-3790 800degreespizza.com
Perfect personal Neapolitan pies are cooked in mere minutes with an array of toppings and a multitude of gourmet cheeses.
243 S. San Pedro St. // 213-947-3329 baldoriadtla.com
L.A. pizza vets make creative pies—one boasts chicken, bacon, onions and strawberries—and progressive bottled cocktails.
300 S. Grand Ave. // 213-687-8999 firenzapizza.com
Instead of BYOB, it’s BYOP—build your own pizza—in Bunker Hill, with San Marzano tomatoes and other Naples signatures.
2019 E. 7th St. // 213-627-1430 pizzanista.com
With its “New York pizza with California ingredients” mindset, this parlor is popular for its sourdough crust, but the Sicilian slices are also winners.
TWO BOOTS DOWNTOWN 828 S. Broadway // 213-623-2100 twoboots.com
For 30 years this pie pioneer has fed cravings. Now, stellar cheesy pies are served alongside vegan and gluten-free stunners.
EMI ROSE KITAWAKI
FAVES - EAT -
This counter-service cheat-day hot spot sees lines out the door for its famous crème brûlée doughnuts. Don’t miss the massive fried chicken sandwich served on an Old Bay doughnut.
314 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-536-5720 birdiesla.com
ASTRO DOUGHNUTS & FRIED CHICKEN
CASA LA DOÑA
When you’re craving flavorful Mexican, head to this casa for tacos on homemade corn tortillas and an extensive salsa selection. On Tuesdays they’ll only set you back $1 (tortillas are premade).
L.A.’s Hawaiian poke obsession gets the fusion treatment with cheekily named bowls (Straight Outta Tofu) and sushi burritos.
800 S. Main St. // 213-627-7441
728 S. Olive St. // 213-896-0373 // chicastacos.com
It may be tiny, but the tacos are big on flavor. Choose steak, chicken, pork, fish or veggie and enjoy your (quite hefty) meal at a communal picnic table out back.
518 W. 7th St. // 818-938-0908 poke-tendo.com
The best things in life often take a little searching. Take this cute poke shop hidden behind a Thai spot. Considering quality and flavor, the value is off the charts.
700 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-327-0782 breadlounge.com
All pastries and breads are baked on-site daily at this Arts District café offering panini, focaccia, quiche, soup and salads.
714 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-243-0770 bronzedaussie.us
Crisp, golden hand pies, both sweet and savory, are the attraction at this bakery/café with an excellent brekkie pie.
Various locations in DTLA // guerrillatacos.com
330 E. 2nd St., Ste. C. // 213-265-7879 snocietyla.com
Classically trained chef Wes Avila has built a fanatical following for his food-truck tacos since debuting in 2012. A brick-andmortar spot is due in 2018.
Kill two birds at this café serving a pair of “it” trends: poke and boba tea. Customizable bowls have habit-forming sauces, and beverages run a rainbow gamut.
Serving eggs all day, sandwiches, and tasty sides, this spot inside an Airstream trailer at Resident DTLA is perfect for a lunch on the patio or a bite in between Resident’s live music sets.
SPINFISH POKE HOUSE
PHILIPPE, THE ORIGINAL
This local chain is considered the gold standard by Angelenos. It's great for simple tacos on corn tortillas with fillings from chicharrón to veggie. Can’t decide? Try the mini-taco sampler.
Geminis who can’t choose between signature salmon and tuna poke bowls can mix the two. Both the fish and cheerful service are acclaimed.
541 S. Spring St. // 213-627-7656 // guisados.com
372 E. 2nd St. // 213-935-8404 spinfishpoke.com
Pop into this 12-seater cooking Northern Mexican (Sonorastyle) dishes for carne asada tacos on fresh flour tortillas and fantastic agua frescas.
A modern space is the perfect place for bright, fresh flavors to pop. Build your poke bowl atop rice, kelp noodles or kale.
208 E. 8th St. // 213-290-5184 // sonoratownla.com COURTESY PALIKAO
507 S. Spring St. // 213-628-3378 // okipokila.com
735 W. 7th St. // 213-599-8050 sweetfinpoke.com
Palikao’s vegan bowl of whole wheat couscous with vegetables
428 S. Hewitt St. // 323-316-5311 // ktchndtla.com
1001 Alameda St. // 213-628-3781 // philippes.com
This 1908 Chinatown institution serves nothing but old-school deli faves like French Dip at slightly nostalgic prices.
SPREAD MEDITERRANEAN KITCHEN 334 S. Main St. // 213-537-0284 spreadkitchen.com
Part of L.A.’s Mediterranean moment is this flavorful, veganfriendly eatery with mix-andmatch options (za’atar fried chicken) and Greek fro-yo.
The Couscous King
traight from Paris, restaurateur Lionel Pigeard opened his dream concept: Palikao, a North
African–influenced couscous bowl bar that pays homage to his grandmother’s hometown of Palikao, Algeria. What inspired you to open a couscous restaurant after owning Parisian brasseries? My wife is a yoga instructor and we wanted a fresh start in California. L.A. is a great crossroads for different cuisines, and I realized there weren’t many options for couscous, although Middle Eastern and Moroccan cuisine is quite fashionable at the moment. What was your ultimate goal with Palikao? I wanted to make a modern take on a very traditional dish, but be more original with the flavors—it’s like half Californian. In couscous everything is boiled, but we cook each locally sourced vegetable according to what is best. I don’t think my grandmother would know bok choy—it’s absolutely new in couscous. In that way it’s alive. Customers can grab prepackaged foods or create their own flavorful bowl, correct? Yes, we sell homemade pickles and dips! The same person can come three times in a week and never have the same couscous. Every day we also offer a gluten-free base option, and you choose from three meats—usually one chicken, beef meatballs and Merguez lamb sausage—and veggies. We also offer meatless bowls with spicy matzo balls.
PALIKAO 130 E. 6th St. // 213-265-7006 // pali-kao.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - EAT -
The Story of Vegan Eggs A notoriously non–vegan-friendly dish goes animal-free at Grand Central Market’s Ramen Hood, where the decadent broth—typically pork-packed— is made with sunflower seeds and mushrooms instead. The vegan egg is the biggest feat. Molecular gastronomy inspired by the chef’s stint at Noma is to thank for realistically soft-boiled eggs, created with beta carotene, nutritional yeast, B vitamins, black salt and magical sodium alginate.
UMAMI CENTR AL
A Ramen Broth Guide LIGHT: SALT / SHOYU / FISH / VEG BROTH Hailing from Yokohama and Tokyo, the soy sauce–based shoyu broth is almost always clear, featuring chicken, vegetables or fish for the base.
For vegetable-based umami broth: RAKKAN RAMEN 359 E. 1st St. // 213-680-4166 // rakkaninc.com
For great vegan options: DTLA RAMEN 952 S. Broadway // 213-265-7641 // dtlaramen.com
R AMEN REPORT
MENU Use DTLA Book AR App to see the full menu
t the first U.S. location of Rakkan, a popular Tokyo ramen chain, the soup is as authentic as it gets. Unlike the ubiquitous and heavy bone-based broths, theirs are umami packed and light. Shoyu, salt and miso soups are vegetable- and
olive oil–based, and imported straight from the source. Minimalist décor allows flavors from Tokyo-style ramen, karaage (fried chicken) and miso eggplant to shine bright.
HEAVY: TONKOTSU BROTH This style of broth was conceived in Hakata City, northwest of Kyushu. It can vary, but is usually a thick white soup made from pork bones. It’s sometimes called Tonkotsu (pork bone) ramen.
For filling soup with a wait: DAIKOKUYA 327 E. 1st St. // 213-626-1680 // dkramen.com
To select your own toppings: SHIN SEN GUMI HAKATA RAMEN 132 S. Central Ave. // 213-687-7108 // shinsengumigroup.com
For free extra noodles: HAKATA IKKOUSHA 368 E. 2nd St. // 213-221-7920 // hakataikkoushausa.com
ALTERNATE RAMEN STYLES For miso, coconut milk broth and more: HANA-ICHIMONME 333 S. Alameda St., Ste. 303 // 213-626-3514
For $10 ramen, curry and gyoza combos: MY RAMEN BAR
359 E. 1st St. // 213-680-4166 // rakkaninc.com
321 ¼ E. 1st St. // 213-613-9888
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COURTESY RAKKAN RAMEN
Rakkan Pearl salt ramen
SUSHI & SASHIMI
AND MORE JAPANESE
SAKANA SUSHI LOUNGE
Elegant but not stuffy, creative but not crazy, this Japanese eatery does sushi and sashimi along with beautifully plated small plates, salads, poke and uni pasta, addressing cravings for a family of flavors.
Refined Japanese izakaya fare with French flair has been served in this breezily beautiful restaurant for years, but the mother restaurant in Kamakura, Japan, traces back to the early 1600s. Fun trivia: They created tuna tartare.
347 E. 2nd St. // 213-680-3454 // hamasushila.com
Sushi connoisseurs know Hama is all about purity. There are no noodles or tempura bites here, and no flash. The intimate Little Tokyo favorite doles out melt-in-your-mouth sashimi that attracts lines.
421 S. Main St. // 213-493-6956 kazunorisushi.com
SUGARFISH BY SUSHI NOZAWA
Calling itself “the original hand roll bar,” KazuNori takes pride in being a first-of-its-kind sushi spot, serving only made-to-order hand rolls of crispy nori, warm rice and the freshest of seafood. An offshoot of Sugarfish, it has the same attention to detail with a more casual vibe.
600 W. 7th St. // 213-627-3000 sugarfishsushi.com
351 E. 2nd St. // 213-680-1792 // komasasushi.com
Locals line up at this Little Tokyo sushi den—a staple for 20 years with its 10-seater sushi bar and half a dozen tables—especially during peak hours. And it’s for good reason, as it’s hard to find fresher, better quality nigiri, sashimi and rolls than at this intimate spot.
521 W. 7th St. // 213-225-6285 // qsushila.com
321 W. 9th St. // 213-683-0008 sakanadtla.com
With just 26 sought-after seats within its exposed brick walls, Q delivers painstakingly perfect Edomae cuisine. Chef Hiroyuki Naruke adheres to tradition when preparing his rice and imported seasonal fish, worth every pretty penny.
Sushi surprises abound at this renowned nigiri mecca. Doing things the old-fashioned way is an option, but trust us, order Trust Me: seven enlightening courses of warm rice, creamy fish, hand rolls and edamame.
422 E. 2nd St. // 213-617-0552 sushigen-dtla.com
Located in Honda Plaza, sushi-lovers flock here for the sashimi deluxe plate, which arrives at your table loaded with the day’s freshest fish. It’s a popular spot for an inexpensive lunch, too, even among some of the city’s most renowned local chefs.
525 S. Flower St. // 213-236-9577 // thechaya.com
123 Astronaut E. S. Onizuka St., #204 213-620-0855 // curryhouse-usa.com
This casual California chain has served up homestyle Japanese dishes—a variety of curries, katsu and noodle dishes—since the ’80s, and it still draws lines out the door, especially for lunch. For a Japanese dish you likely aren’t familiar with, order the menchi katsu curry.
225 S. Garey St. // 310-999-0476 inkonitorestaurant.com
This beautifully designed robata restaurant seats 124 diners. Charcoal cooking is king here, with choices from crab tartare to pork ribs in a whiskey glaze.
IZAKAYA & BAR FU-GA 111 S. San Pedro St. // 213-625-1722 izakayafu-ga.com
334 S. Main St. // 424-201-5576 // sushizo.us
For special occasions there is no sushi sampler as storied as this stark white spot’s $160-perperson omakase feast. Expect to experience perfect harmony between the neta (seafood) and shari (rice).
It’s not easy to find, but this sleek spot serves up small plates, steaks and sushi in its underground lounge. (You’ll have to look for the tiny streetlevel sign.) Tradition is shrugged off for what is basically a Japanese take on delicious bar food and inventive fusion.
SHABU SHABU HOUSE
Whether you’re new to Japanese food altogether or a huge fan, this is a good place to start. Between shabu shabu, izakaya menu and sushi options, you can’t really go wrong. Be sure to get the tofu sampler, featuring tofu made in-house every morning.
Nope, it’s not a sauna; it’s a shabushabu house! You’ll be cooking your own meal at this local spot credited with bringing the cooking style to L.A. Meats, veggies and noodles are cooked in a hot pot tableside before they’re served with rice. Just be prepared to wait for a table or counter seat.
Sinfully delicious shabu-shabu is the focus of this bambooaccented eatery. While beer-fed, massaged Japanese beef takes prime billing, thoughtful service and heavenly bowls of congee and crab make the meal, too.
This intimate bar and restaurant—only open for dinner—is kappo style, which means instead of sashimi and rolls, you’re served intricately plated, complex dishes (some hot, some cold, some sweet, some rice-based) on the 400-year-old cypress tree counter.
362 E. 1st St. // 213-613-1415 e-k-c.co.jp/gazen/la
418 E. 2nd St. // 213-617-1016 kagaya.dla.menuclub.com
424 E. 2nd St. // 213-229-8200 kinjiro-la.com
Octopus ceviche, beef tongue and the bone-marrow dengaku are but three stars of the menu at this quiet Little Tokyo spot, an artisanal izakaya that serves both traditional and new-school small plates.
MARUGAME MONZO 329 E. 1st St. // 213-346-9762
127 Japanese Village Plaza // 213-680-3890
815 Hill St. // 213-265-7923 // shibumidtla.com
T.O.T. RESTAURANT 345 E. 2nd St. // 213-680-0344 littletokyorestaurant.com
Short for “Teishokuya of Tokyo,” this contemporary (but still traditional) spot is popular for its rice bowls, noodle dishes, sushi and vast sake options (more than 20 labels), though many step inside for the tonkatsu (deepfried pork cutlet). This cozy little spot is popular for lunch and dinner.
This spot, known for drawing a hip crowd, is renowned for its hand-pulled udon noodles crafted in the kitchen. (You’ll watch them get made while you eat.) Opt for traditional dishes or slurp up more creative concoctions, like the sea urchin cream udon.
Udon-making at Marugame Monzo
FAVES - EAT -
JUICE & AÇAI BOWLS AMAZEBOWLS
300 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 323-610-2099 amazebowls.com
The output at this Arts District açai go-to couldn’t be more Instagrammable. Do your followers—and your belly—a favor with the Coconut Amazebowl, topped with fresh and dried fruit, granola and edible flowers.
DELICIOUS TOGETHER 859 Santee St. // 213-281-9477
If ultra-creative coffee or tea concoctions are the craving, this unassuming Santee Alley café is the call. From iced Thai milk tea boba to sweet potato lattes, drinks come with a cute taiyaki pastry.
this healthy mini market churning out detoxifying smoothies with activated charcoal, along with superfood-rich açai bowls and other mindful, filling bites.
860 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-688-9700 pressedjuicery.com
Geared toward those seeking cold-pressed juices for a cleanse (and those seeking out the milkshake-like almond milk concoctions), Pressed Juicery sells a variety of fresh formulas perfect for a detox.
OM NOM ORGANICS 215 W. 9th St. // 213-489-3663 444 S. Flower St. // 213-614-7004 omnomorganics.com
Health nuts and those aspiring pick up guilt-free sustenance at
ALL ABOUT THE GREEN JUST THE JUICE
ive well and be well is the mantra at Juice Crafters, the rustic-chic Spring Street bar acclaimed for cold-pressed juices, wellness shots, powerhouse smoothies and açai bowls. Using only fruits and veggies handpicked by local farmers and
delivered daily, these ultra-fresh raw ingredients deliver over-the-top flavor and nutrition. This is the place where healthy habits take hold.
A matcha setup
Matcha Madness The boba obsession has given way to a concentration of matcha-slinging cafés. The hyper-nutritious, antioxidantpacked ceremonial green tea is now found not only in mugs, but also in soft serve, taiyaki and cream puffs. MIDORI MATCHA CAFE 123 Astronaut E. S. Onizuka St., Ste. 101-C // midorimatchatea.com
SNOWYA 123 Astronaut E. S. Onizuka St., Ste. 103 // 213-265-7637 // snowya.com
TEA MASTER MATCHA CAFE & GREEN TEA SHOP
702 S. Spring St. // 213-689-4555 // juicecraf ters.com
450 E. 2nd St. // 213-680-1006 // teamaster.la
DTLA BOOK 2018
COURTESY JUICE CRAFTERS; MATCHA: PETER MAYER | DREAMSTIME.COM
Juice Crafters’ raw cold-pressed juice Green Plus #1.5
A TEA WITH MANY NAMES
COFFEE / TEA The light and airy interior of Don Francisco’s Coffee Casa Cubana at the Spring Arcade building
Boba tea, bubble tea, pearl milk tea, bubble milk tea, boba juice
137 E. 3rd St. // 213-687-7753 // giorgiporgi.com
There’s nowhere on Earth like this moss-laden tunnel opening to a minimalist Italian-style espresso bar serving up quality coffee (and no Wi-Fi).
855 S. Broadway // 213-612-0331 // ilcaffe.se
Find Scando style, Stumptown beans and house-made sammies at this Swedish coffee chain.
DID YOU KNOW… NO GHOST BEARS
The Chinese word boba is slang for enormous breasts. It became a term for bubble tea, mainly in the U.S., when the size of tapioca pearls increased.
305 E. 8th St., Ste. 103
Don’t be intimidated by the punk rock attitude of this shop with sidewalk tables using Japan’s slow-roasting style.
Latin Flavor COURTESY DON FRANCISCO’S COFFEE CASA CUBANA; BOBA: MAKIDOTVN | DREAMSTIME.COM
Don Francisco’s Coffee, the L.A.-born brand with more than 140 years of history, brings a new tropical oasis to DTLA's Spring Arcade. Patrons of the beautiful all-day café will experience Cuba not only in handcrafted coffee drinks,
GO FOR: Cheese tea Decadent cream cheese floats atop sweet flavored iced teas at the Asian-influenced Little Fluffy Head Cafe.
Specializing in its own “secret blends,” this Bay Area–based chain serves up custom blendeds, like the mint mojito iced coffee.
203 W. 7th St. // 213-266-8495 // littlefluffyhead.com
801 S. Hope St. // 213-213-2616 philzcoffee.com
authentic house-made bites, and beer and wine, but also in affable charm that makes everyone family.
DON FRANCISCO’S COFFEE CASA CUBANA 541 S. Spring St., Ste. 124 // 213-537- 0323 // dfca sacubana.com
BLUE BOTTLE COFFEE
This newly trendy caffeine chain—selling beans and home brewing equipment along with its drinks and pastries—is beloved for its New Orleans–style iced coffee.
A spot for coffee obsessives, this café specializes in Kyoto iced coffee (which drips for over 14 hours in a weird alchemy contraption).
582 Mateo St. // 300 S. Broadway 213-621-4194 // bluebottlecoffee.com
STUMPTOWN COFFEE ROASTERS
806 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 855-711-3385 stumptowncoffee.com
The gigantic in-house coffee roaster is on display, but the real focal point at this Portland-born shop is its extensive menu.
135 S. San Pedro St. // 213-613-9300 cafedemitasse.com
VERVE COFFEE ROASTERS 833 S. Spring St. // 213-455-5991 vervecoffee.com
Worldly roasts and home-brew kits on a Fashion District patio.
GO FOR: Self-serve boba Customize your milk tea with boba, rainbow jelly and more at Little Tokyo’s first DIY café, Milk+T. 310 E. 2nd St. // 323-884-1164 // milkandt.com
GO FOR: Matcha milk tea Bright and naturally lit, Rabbit Crew Coffee & Tea serves subtle milk teas and boba. 1019 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-935-8368
GO FOR: Boba and toast It’s in the name: Toastea offers Brick toast (matcha, pepperoni pizza) and small-batch Taiwanese boba. 600 W. 7th St., Ste. 120 // 213-628-3766 // toasteacafe.com
GO FOR: Sea salt Thai tea Diverse boba, fluffy froth and bold teas make Little Tokyo staple Twinkle Brown Sugar shine. 131 S. Central Ave. // 213-626-8889 // twinklebrownsugar.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - EAT -
CR AZY FOR CUPCAKES
Baking Boss He might look like an unlikely baker, but 6’5” Chip Brown is actually the man behind DTLA’s most to-die-for cupcakes. Big Man Bakes is the shop where, since 2009, he’s been slinging incredibly moist, fluffy mini and full-sized cakes topped with smooth, sweet frosting. Mix and match freshly baked bite-size cupcakes in rotating flavors and perennial faves like carrot and red velvet.
BIG MAN BAKES 413 S. Main St. // 213-617-9100 // bigmanbakes.com
Little Damage’s activated charcoal ice cream with Fruity Pebbles topping
SOFT SERVE SPOTLIGHT
The Big Chill
scream, you scream, we all scream for…charcoal ice cream?! Step outside your comfort zone and into Little Damage, where rotating adventurous flavors—including one vegan option—are nothing short of innovative. The family-owned shop prepares
their ice cream daily in small batches, using local ingredients supplied by organic dairy farmers. Don’t forget to Instagram that freshly rolled signature black cone, naturally colored with activated charcoal.
700 S. Grand Ave. // 213-802-1470 bottegalouie.com
Best known for their French macarons and picturesque dessert cases, the Downtown icon is part restaurant, grand market and patisserie, all under one gorgeous roof.
CAFÉ DULCE 134 Japanese Village Plaza // 213-346-9910
The Row, 777 Alameda St., #150 // 213-536-9633 cafedulce.co
Their bacon doughnut made them famous, but you’ll find a full menu of breakfast and lunch items along with coffee, tea and matcha.
THE PIE HOLE
7 14 Trac tion Ave. // 21 3-537- 01 1 5 thepieholela .com
LITTLE DAMAGE 700 S. Spring St. // 213-534-8363 // lit tledama ge.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
This sleek local chain serves up both sweet and savory from-
scratch pies—some by the slice, some personal hand pies—to Downtown denizens looking for a tasty treat. A slice is perfectly paired with The Pie Hole’s medium-roast coffee, available as espresso, drip coffee or cold brew.
ICE CREAM & GELATO FOR WAFFLE LOVERS The Dolly Llama 611 S. Spring St. // thedollyllama.com
FOR GELATO CONNOISSEURS Gelateria Uli 541 S. Spring St., Ste. 104 // 213-900-4717 gelateriauli.com
FOR ECO-MINDED CYCLISTS Peddler’s Creamery 458 S. Main St. // 213-537-0257 peddlerscreamery.com
FOR FLAVOR ADVENTURERS Salt & Straw
829 E. 3rd St. // 213-988-7070 // saltandstraw.com
COURTESY LITTLE DAMAGE; BIG MAN BAKES: POUL LANGE
VEGETARIAN / VEGAN ÂU LAC
“Serene” is how many describe the dining room of this vegan Vietnamese spot specializing in flavorful plant-based dishes. It’s been in the L.A. area for nearly a decade, a leader in the local raw food movement.
Chef Josef Centeno’s latest creation puts veggies center stage, featuring in-season produce from local farms in mouthwatering combos sure to satisfy the hungriest carnivores. But while veggies rule, you’ll still find uni and ribeye on the menu, plus plenty of cheese and butter.
710 W. 1st St. // 213-617-2533 // a u l a c . com
600 S. Spring St. // 213-622-1022 beelmans.com
Like many an Angeleno, this former pub dropped the meat and went vegan. With an Asian-Pacific bent, its kitchen prepares refined plant-based fare—think faux hot dogs, Buddha bowls and Impossible Meat “burgers”—with tiki cocktails and craft beer.
300 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-929-5580 cafegratitude.com
This favorite spot among local veggies is a SoCal chain seeking to promote consciousness and sustainability by serving nothing but organic, plant-based food such as solidly crafted salads, sandwiches, wraps and warm entrées.
THE DANKNESS DOJO BY MODERN TIMES 832 S. Olive St. // 213-878-7008 moderntimesbeer.com
This brewery & restaurant serves over 30 tap beers and a full menu of plant-based cuisine. Think battered and fried seitan, onion rings, salads, and meatless burgers. Coffee from 7 a.m.
400 S. Main St. // 213-687-7015 // pytlosangeles.com
333 S. Alameda St., Ste. 310 // 213-617-0305 theshojin.com
This upscale vegan and macrobiotic Japanese spot holds its customers’ health in the highest regard, which is why it replaces the fish you’d normally find in rolls and ramen with spicy tofu.
WILD LIVING FOODS 760 S. Main St. // 213-266-8254 wildlivingfoods.com
“Live Dirty, Eat Clean” is the slogan of this vibrant corner space in the Fashion District serving raw food, smoothies and dairy-free gelato alongside cold-pressed juices bottled in glass. The Gorilla Milk (cucumber, kale, almonds, dates, green apples and pink salt) is a fan favorite.
ZINC CAFE & MARKET
580 Mateo St. // 213-825-5381 // zinccafe.com
Serving up vegetarian takes on American comfort food (pizzas, burgers, sandwiches), this courtyard and sleek dining room provide a much-needed respite from the industrial streets surrounding it. Mixology lounge Bar Mateo sits out back.
FOOD COURT / DINING DISTRICT GRAND CENTRAL MARKET 317 S. Broadway // grandcentralmarket.com
L.A.’s original food court has been around for 100 years, yet still manages to attract crazy long lines for the likes of Eggslut, the wildly popular breakfast sandwich sanctuary. A whopping 37 food and beverage stalls make for a full experience—grab a falafel salad at Madcapra, a smoothie at Press Brothers Juicery, then a scoop or two from the legendarily good McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams. Addictive Asian food comes courtesy of China Cafe, Sari Sari Store and Sticky Rice, while Wexler’s Deli’s new-traditional Jewish deli goods are just classic enough. Belcampo Meat Co. is among purveyors that sell both mouthwatering prepared foods and raw ingredients. And there’s Knead & Co. Pasta Bar + Market, which hawks sustainably sourced staples and
724 S. Spring St. // corporationfoodhall.com
The latest debut in L.A.’s food court scene is this
800 W. Olympic Blvd. // lalive.com/eat
eight-eatery collection, which comprises known restaurants, new concepts and now-stationary food
When it comes to dining options,
trucks. Buddha Belly is an example of the latter, and,
L.A. LIVE is an embarrassment
as the first brick-and-mortar by the ArroyLA truck
of riches. You’ll have plenty
masterminds, doles out the same eclectic Southeast
of restaurants to choose from
Asian fare. In fact, the selection at this food hall
depending on your vibe for the
seems to circle the globe. Funculo serves a plethora of freestyle pastas, Soom Soom (meaning “seed” in Hebrew) cooks up a 100-year-old falafel recipe and offers a salad bar of fresh Mediterranean flavors, and Poke2Go makes exactly what it sounds like. You won’t find typical Mexican at Tacos Tu Madre; instead, they flip the script with things like truffle guacamole and red velvet churros. Pig Pen Delicacy, too, is decadent and for the most part deep-fried, while Bardonna keeps it simpler with easy salads, sandwiches and worth-the-trip coffee. Lest you think a food court is only for daytime, there’s The Sixth Nickel, a destination (that was due to open in February 2018) for gourmet pizzas and craft cocktails.
DTLA BOOK 2018
SMORGASBURG LA 785 Bay St. // la.smorgasburg.com
The instantly legendary Brooklyn-born food market—a spinoff of Brooklyn Flea—has found a happy West Coast home at the five-acre Row DTLA. Some 75 food and shopping vendors gather with their goodies every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s the place to discover up-and-coming businesses and cuisines. Standouts include Hot Star, selling giant pieces of Taiwanese-style fried chicken, and Goa Taco, a fusion spot featuring paratha, a flaky, buttery hybrid between tortilla and croissant. (Don’t miss the crispy pork belly.) Lobsterdamus, for whole grilled lobster and lobster fries, and Wanderlust Creamery, for incredibly smooth scoops in cute colorful cones, are other hits.
night, like Yard House with more than 160 beers on tap, Triple 8 China Bar & Grill for modern Chinese/Cantonese food, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, Katsuya for innovative sushi platters, or Cleo’s modern twist on Mediterranean cuisine—just to name a few. You can even hit the bowling lanes at Lucky Strike and forget about the game or show altogether, that is if you want to.
CORPORATION FOOD HALL
fresh pasta made like an Italian-by-way-of–New Jersey nonna would.
DINEFIG california pizza kitchen five guys gentaro soba george’s greek grill gulp sushi alehouse indus by saffron loteria grill the melt mendocino farms morton’s the steakhouse new moon café ohana poké oleego by parks bbq pazzo gelato the pizza studio salata sprinkles cupcakes starbucks torta company twist & grill
Hungry? We’ve Got 20 Restaurants & Eateries!
#LifeHappensHere #StyleHappensHere @FIGat7th · FIGat7th.com 735 S. Figueroa St. · Downtown L.A. · Across from the 7th Street/Metro Center Station
FAVES - EAT -
BURGERS THE BLACK SHEEP 126 E. 6th St. // 213-689-5022
Specialty Burgers 100-DAY DRY-AGED BURGER, $23 It’s all about the beef in Belcampo Meat Co.’s raclette- and caramelized onion–topped stunner. Grand Central Market, 317 S. Broadway 213-625-0304 // belcampomeat.com
THE KIM PARK LEE, $9.75 Bulgogi, cheddar, kimchi and Meatzilla’s signature sauce are an undeniable combo. 646 S. Main St. // 213-623-3450 meatzilladtla.tumblr.com
THE MEXICAN, $12 Angus dressed up with beef barbacoa, guacamole, cilantro and chipotle sauce at 464. 464 S. Main St. // 213-239-9482 // 464dtla.com
THE SHACKBURGER, $5.29 At press time, Shake Shack’s DTLA location hadn't opened yet, but this item is the one that made Danny Meyer a hit around the world. 801 Hill St. // shakeshack.com
SIMPLE BURGER, $10 The prime beef chuck and Tillamook cheddar burger at Everson Royce Bar sets the standard. 1936 E. 7th St. // 213-335-6166 // erbla.com
WAGYU SLIDER, $7 Chaya’s Asian bent applies to its bar-only slider, dolled up with kimchi, yuzu jam and fontina. 525 S. Flower St. // 213-236-9577 // thechaya.com
118 D T L A
GASTROPUB / TAPAS
BLUE COW KITCHEN
PUBLIC SCHOOL 213
Diners at this clamored-after burger chain get exactly what they want, whether it’s on the menu or not; the idea is complete customization. Endless options consistently beget mouthwatering results.
Offering $6 cocktails, wines and sangria margaritas, happy hour here (4–6:30 p.m. on weekdays) is a guaranteed good time. Popular among those who work nearby, Blue Cow offers a ton of delicious small bites and a casual patio area in the middle of Downtown.
Expansive, high-ceilinged and glass-clad, this craft beer heaven hits a high note, pouring dozens of brews—not to mention kombucha and cold brew—and passing satisfyingly savory plates at all hours.
Throw it back to school days during Recess, aka happy hour, which, like lunch and dinner at this craft beer–slinging gastropub, features grown-up, gourmet twists on lunchroom faves: meatballs, PB&J and tots.
SIXTH ST. TAVERN
This atmospheric bar takes its place in the Fashion District to heart, honoring iconic designers with “haute” cocktails named Lagerfeld and Chanel. Vibrant small plates and fashionappropriate salads are the finishing touch.
High-quality modern American pub grub goes from crispy Brussels sprouts to crispy chicken. Wash it down with a stellar selection of 28 craft brews pulled behind the zinc bar.
725 W. 7th St. // 213-228-7800 thecounterburger.com
646 S. Main St. // 213-623-3450 meatzilladtla.tumblr.com
The quirky creations at this tiny hole-in-the-wall burger stand are exciting, but the option to upgrade them with a mini pepperoni pizza substituted as the top bun truly takes things over the top.
852 S. Broadway // 213-413-8626 738 E. 3rd St. // 323-263-8626 umamiburger.com
Sleek environs and that elusive fifth taste (umami) make for an attractive combination at this hip hang with reclaimed wood, Edison bulbs and a full bar crafting cocktails that pair perfectly with the burgers.
350 S. Grand Ave. // 213-621-2249 bluecowkitchen.com
BRACK SHOP TAVERN 525 W. 7th St. // 213-232-8657 brackshoptavern.com
A love of sports isn’t necessary to enjoy this comfy tavern, but games are always on as the kitchen churns out comfort food like bacon-topped twice-baked potatoes and bartenders shake up original cocktails.
THE EIGHT BAR
788 S. Grand Ave. // 213-873-4745 wholefoodsmarket.com
The location of this gastropub may surprise would-be patrons who find it inside Whole Foods. With a hip ambience, outdoor patio, evening DJ and themed nights (Taco Tuesday), The Eight Bar is more like a 10.
330 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-596-9005 mikkellerbar.com
100 W. 9th St. // 213-627-7774 patternbar.com
1100 S. Hope St. // 213-493-4786 prankbar.com
An open-air, walk-up bar makes for perhaps DTLA's most pleasant place to drink. On-tap kombucha, cocktails made with experimental terpene (an anti-inflammatory oil from cannabis) and delectable bites don’t hurt the cause.
612 Flower St. // 213-622-4500 psontap.com
630 W. 6th St. // 213-614-1900 sixthstreettavern.com
THE STOCKING FRAME 911 S. Hill St. // 213-488-0373 thestockingframe.com
It’s a coffee shop during the day, but starting with happy hour (5–7 p.m. at the bar), it becomes a late-night spot with cleverly concocted cocktails and sophisticated eats. Plan to run into urban hipsters seeking craft beers and deep conversation.
NATALIYA ARZAMASOVA | DREAMSTIME.COM
Craft beers are featured at this friendly gastropub, where magnificently juicy burgers— some highlighting Asian flavors—and addictive tater tots, covered in carne asada or cheese and truffle, stand out.
LATE NIGHT AND 24/7 24/7 RESTAURANT AT THE STANDARD 550 S. Flower St. // 213-439-3030 // standardhotels.com
Open 24 hours. Surprise, surprise—a big draw of this all-night diner is its consistent, no-brainer hours of operation. Comfort food is served all day to hotel guests and post-party revelers from either the mod counter or the party-ready patio.
408 S. Main St. // 213-687-8808 // bacomercat.com
Open until midnight Friday and Saturday; 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Prolific chef Josef Centeno’s trademarked bäco flatbread is joyously available in the form of pizza, tacos and gyros until late at this hopping neighborhood spot. End-of-the-evening specials start at 10 p.m. during the week, 11 p.m. on weekends, and include Bäcobeer for $5.
314 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-536-5720 // birdiesla.com
Open 24 hours on Friday and Saturday. All kinds of late-night cravings are sated on weekends at this part-coffee, part-doughnut, part–fried chicken solution. The original chicken sandwich is crisp and juicy, while the made-on-the-hour artisanal pastries wow in a slew of inventive flavors.
1110 E. 7th St. // 213-537-0844 // comfortla.net
Open until 3 a.m. Thursday through Saturday; midnight Sunday through Wednesday (closed Monday). Soul food doesn’t get more authentic in all of Downtown than at this go-to for the bar-hopping crowd. Fried chicken, collard greens and mac ’n’ cheese are clearly made with love.
THE ORIGINAL PANTRY CAFE
877 S. Figueroa St. // 213-972-9279 // pantrycafe.com
Open 24 hours. This diner, open since 1924 and accepting only cash ever since, is rumored to not even have a lock on its door. The nostalgic stop is perfect for an old-school plate of steak and eggs or a late-night stack of buttermilk pancakes.
800 E. 3rd St. // 213-687-4444 // wurstkuche.com
Open until 1:30 a.m. daily. When the sidewalk hot dog carts won’t do the trick, there’s Downtown’s go-to for artisanal grilled sausages on fresh rolls, Belgian fries and craft brews. Exotics like rattlesnake and rabbit make for good late-night dares.
Bold Flavors Meet Urban Sophistication Let your senses be dazzled by Chef Hansen Lee’s modern, approachable menu inspired by the extraordinary sustainably-grown ingredients purveyed by local farmers. Each dish pairs perfectly with the bar’s enticing handcrafted cocktails. At DISTRICT not only do we make use of the extraordinary foods grown sustainably by our local farmers, we also seek out unparalleled ideas from food purveyors around the world. Reservations can be made via www.districtdtla.com or by calling 213 612 3185. District is located within the Bloc • 711 South Hope Street, Los Angeles, CA 9001
11/21/16 2:48 AM
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - DRINK -
HAPPY HOUR better, happy hour lasts all day long on Tuesdays.
711 S. Hope St. // 213-612-3185 districtdtla.com
From 3–7 p.m. daily, the bar and lounge areas offer incredibly great deals, including can’t-miss Moscow Mules, wine and craft beer, all for $6 each. Small dishes of avocado hummus, tenderloin-and-kimchi tacos, tamari deviled eggs and shishito peppers are three for $20.
107 E . 6th St . // 21 3-98 8-8355 21 3 dthospitalit y.com
A cocktail at DISTRICT
408 S. Main St. // 213-687-8808 bacomercat.com
The late-night happy hour at this hopping neighborhood spot (served at the bar and on the patio, 10 p.m. to close during the week, 11 p.m. to close on weekends) offers great deals on fave food and drink items, like the bäco, a flatbread combining the best of pizza, tacos and gyros.
BLUE COW KITCHEN 350 S. Grand Ave. // 213-621-2249 bluecowkitchen.com
Offering $6 cocktails, wines and sangria margaritas, happy hour
DTLA BOOK 2018
here (4–6:30 p.m. on weekdays) is a guaranteed good time. Popular among those working nearby, Blue Cow offers a ton of delicious small bites—think poke lettuce tacos and wings—and a casual patio area in the middle of Downtown.
COLE’S RED CAR BAR
Five-dollar margaritas at this mezcal-bar favorite aren’t super strong, but that just means you can have more. Palomas are also $5 from 5–8 p.m. on weekdays, and weekends from 1–8 p.m.
510 S. Broadway // 213-628-3337 mezcalerodtla.com
Every day from 3–7 p.m., this mezcal mecca serves specialty cocktails and beer, wine and well drinks for a mere $3–$7, but Tuesday 3 p.m.–midnight is the real get: $3 tacos and half off agave spirits (tequila and mezcal).
118 E. 6th St. // 213-622-4090 colesfrenchdip.com
The restaurant is renowned for its French Dip sandwiches, but Red Car Bar is particularly popular among Downtown denizens for its happy hour, offering classic cocktails and cheap eats from 3–7 p.m. Even
POUR HAUS WINE BAR
which also boasts $5 vino (including sparkling!), sangria and beer.
SPRING STREET BAR 626-B S. Spring St. // 213-622-5859 springstbar.com
This laid-back bar and sandwich shop runs specials on its tasty sammies and brews from 3–7 p.m., seven days a week.
THE STOCKING FRAME 911 S. Hill St. // 213-488-0373 thestockingframe.com
It’s a coffee shop during the day, but starting with happy hour (5–7 p.m. at the bar), it becomes a late-night spot with cleverly concocted cocktails and sophisticated eats. Plan to run into urban hipsters seeking craft beers and deep conversation.
LIVE JAZZ Bop and Gin Date Night: BAR THIRTEEN 448 S. Hill St., 13th Fl. // 213-802-17 70
Thirteen floors up, just below Perch, is this dressy gin and jazz den that offers not only swinging entertainment, but also epic vistas. Cocktails aren’t cheap, but there’s no cover charge, and the elegant digs and entertainment are more than worth it. Jazzed About Jamming: BLUE WHALE BAR Weller Cour t, 123 A stronaut E. S. Onizuka St. // 213-620-0908 bluewhalemusic.com
This intimate jazz club and art gallery is well loved by local L.A. music aficionados for the amazing acoustics inside. Step up to the bar for small-batch bourbons, modern artisanal cocktails and rotating craft beers on tap, or grab a table and a bite while enjoying jam sessions courtesy of its emerging talent. Speakeasy-Style Music and Sips: THE BOARDROOM 135 N. Grand Ave. // 213-972-8556 // patina group.com/the-boardroom
18 20 Industrial St . // 21 3-3 2 7- 03 0 4 pourhauswinebar.com
Savory French food, creative cocktails named for iconic
Discover delectable bites—like papitas bravas and flatbread white pizza—for just $5 at this daily 4–7 p.m. happy hour,
this speakeasy under the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion,
authors and excellent jazz are available to those who find open Thursday through Saturday. The unpretentious atmosphere makes it even cooler.
SPEAKEASIES BAR JACKALOPE
515 W. 7th St., 2nd Fl. // 213-614-0736 barjackalope.com
The tiki-themed Pacific Seas
ONE OF A KIND THE EDISON
207 S. Broadway // 213-537-0510
infectious live music, billiards, shuffleboard and board games alongside craft cocktails and cold brew.
Take in a live band—or a silent movie projected onto the walls—while enjoying inexpensive apps and reducedprice beer, wine and cocktails, every Wednesday through Friday (5–7 p.m.) at this steampunk-meets–Art Nouveau spot, formerly L.A.’s very first power plant.
RUDOLPH’S BAR & TEA
707 E. 4th Pl. // 213-626-8200 // eightytwo.la
The “barcade” concept comes alive at this Arts District hot spot, where clever mixology mixes with classic arcade games and pinball. The cocktail menu features drinks with 8-bit–inspired names, plus caffeinated options (made with local roaster LAMILL coffee) to keep your mind sharp during long bouts of Ms. Pac-Man.
648 S. Broadway // 213-627-1673 // cliftonsla.com
Tucked inside Clifton’s, through the Art Deco Map Room, is a tiki-themed speakeasy (with a dress code) that takes drinkers on a journey to the South Seas. Just the right amount of kitsch plus faves like a Navy Grog and Rum Barrel make it a sure bet.
BIRDS & BEES
108 W. 2nd St. // 213-613-0000 // edisondowntown.com
RHYTHM ROOM LA
206 W. 6th St. // rhythmroomla.com
The rhythm is bound to get you in this ’20s-era underground jazz lounge–turned-bar serving up
Whiskey enthusiasts will be right at home in this teensy hidden backroom bar inside Seven Grand—if they can find it. Expect friendly faces, an old-school vibe and a library of Japanese and American whiskeys.
416 W. 8th St. // 213-437-9496 // freehandhotels.com
Tea time gets liquored up at this vintage-feeling craft cocktail bar inside the Freehand hotel lobby. Along with the traditional service are small plates (plus particularly yummy shoestring fries) and tea-infused concoctions such as Coquito con Matcha and the Russian Tea G&T.
515 W. 7th St. // 213-614-0736 // sevengrandla.com
Built to resemble a vintage hunting lodge (think Don Draper’s bar of choice), the emphasis here is on a well-curated whiskey selection so massive that it requires a bar-mounted ladder. While weekend evenings can get a bit raucous, happy hour offers a mellow spot to imbibe a Manhattan or an Old Fashioned.
550 S. Flower St. // 213-439-3065 // losangeles.wearespin.com
Located in The Standard, this is L.A.’s only spot for a serious game of table tennis. Open late, the venue offers craft cocktails, a bar menu and 11 custom tables on Olympic-quality cushioned flooring. Come for casual play, partake in a tournament or take advantage of private instruction with the pros.
Find mellow retro ’50s vibes at this secretive subterranean speakeasy, an industrial yet cozy underground lair for throwback classics and original recipes named after the likes of Lucille Ball and Ella Fitzgerald. Early birds appreciate “violet hour,” aka happy hour, with $8 cocktails.
CAÑA RUM BAR
714 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-745-7090 canarumbar.com
Featuring more than 250 varieties of the sugarcane spirit, this “members only” spot (join for $20 per year) seeks to elevate the rum-based cocktails you know and love. The bar’s convivial crowd—sipping on piña coladas, daiquiris, mojitos and Caña’s popular rum punch—will have you pining for the Malecón of Havana.
416 S. Spring St. // 213-621-7710 eldo-stowaway.com
Tucked away in the historic El Dorado Hotel’s basement is a craft cocktail bar where you’ll discover impeccable libations
with zero attitude. DJs, occasional live jazz and 5–9 p.m. happy hour Wednesday through Sunday are cherries atop a stellar venue.
THE LITTLE EASY BAR
216 W. 5th St. // 213-628-3113 // littleeasybar.com
A maze-like pathway transports you to New Orleans’ Garden District—courtesy of chandeliers, wrought iron trellises, a courtyard fountain and old-fashioned Southern hospitality. Well-crafted cocktails and authentic NOLA eats (po’ boys, gumbo, beignets) make this a great spot for brunch or a late-night bite.
THE SLIPPER CLUTCH 351 S. Broadway // 213-265-7477 theslipperclutch.com
Step back in time by stepping into the back room of Bar Clacson, where vintage pinball machines and ’80s arcade games dot the funky, neon-lit space. Cocktails are $10 and include well-made classics like Jack Daniels’ with housemade ginger syrup.
118 E. 6th St. // 213-265-7089 thevarnishbar.com
Hidden behind iconic Downtown sandwich shop Cole’s, this dark and moody spot serves up some of the city’s most sophisticated old-school–era cocktails. The 1920s serve as inspiration here— for the bartenders, who are clad in suspenders; for the finely crafted daiquiris, Manhattans and gin fizzes; and for the clientele, who keep their drinkin-hand conversations hushed.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - DRINK -
NEIGHBORHOOD / DIVE BARS HISTORIC CORE BAR CLACSON
351 S. Broadway // 213-265-7477 // barclacson.com
No pretense, only fun at this friendly bar with a comfortably lived-in aesthetic. Eighteen taps deliver brews, ciders and even cocktails; bartenders work fast, giving patrons plenty of time for foosball, pétanque and Pac-Man.
361 S. Broadway // 213-628-3354 bernadettesla.com
The patio at Everson Royce Bar
ARTS DISTRICT EVERSON ROYCE BAR
1936 E. 7th St. // 213-335-6166 // erbla.com
Head through E.R.B.’s orange door for a welcoming night of cocktails, great eats and casual conversation. Its Arts District location guarantees a hip crowd, and the cocktail program—best enjoyed on the spacious back patio with the bar’s comfort food options—is truly inspired.
dive bar, formerly a hangout of hipster hero Hunter S. Thompson. Shoot pool, enjoy the jukebox, throw some darts or play ping-pong between drinks, and when you get hungry, order a slice from Pizzanista next door.
1356 Palmetto St. // 213-613-0766 villainstavern.com
Check the chalkboards inside for
Travel off the beaten path to find this unassuming “art bar” with an apothecary theme. There’s never a cover to enjoy live music on the patio (mostly blues, rock and bluegrass), and its mixologists will whip you up something magical in a Mason
an extensive list of mezcal and other spirits on hand at this dark
jar. Craft beer and delicious bites are a bonus.
2017 E. 7th St. // 213-622-5523 tonyssaloon.com
DTLA BOOK 2018
This throwback-themed drinking den does pretty much everything right, from allowing dogs inside to creating the perfect patio for sipping rotating frosé or IPA (check the palm-print board) while people-watching. It’s decked in primo midcentury décor, with an enviable Garfield phone as the crowning touch.
COLE’S RED CAR BAR
118 E. 6th St. // 213-622-4090 // colesfrenchdip.com
This famed French Dip restaurant has been a cherished landmark since 1908, and when you step up to Red Car’s 40-foot bar, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time. Recalling the spot’s own early years with penny-tiled floors and historic photos, the cocktails here—classic but creative and changing with the seasons—are timeless.
417 W. 8th St. // 213-614-8001 goldengopherbar.com
Formerly owned by President Teddy Roosevelt, this historic
spot—a little retro and a lot glamorous—is now home to strong drinks and a liquor to-go booth where spirits and six-packs of beer are available for takeaway.
KING EDDY SALOON 131 E. 5th St. // 213-629-2023 kingeddysaloon.com
One of Downtown’s favorite spots for cheap drinks, light bites and a round or two of darts, this spot has been serving L.A.’s locals and visitors since 1933 (and bootlegging before that, according to the bar owners). Enjoy more than a dozen beers and a wide range of no-frills cocktails.
LOVE SONG BAR
450 S. Main St. // 213-284-5728
This place is groovy, literally. The reclaimed wood–clad craft cocktail lounge inside the revamped Regent Theater not only boasts a vintage piano, but also a record player on which classic vinyl constantly spins. Top tunes are complemented by cleverly named “rocktails” like Black Flagg’s Rise Above and Houses of the Holy.
SPRING STREET BAR 626-B S. Spring St. // 213-622-5859 springstbar.com
Happy hour isn’t the only reason to visit this industrialstyled beer bar (a full selection of liquor is also on hand), but it’s a darn good one. The centrally located brew hub features 26 taps serving suds that pair particularly well with sandwiches.
656 S. Main St. // 213-622-7200 // wendellbardtla.com
Named for Wendell Green, who opened some of the city’s most legendary bars, the motto of this two-story space is “keep it simple.” The beer selection ranges from local drafts to cans of PBR (you won’t find bottles here), which pairs nicely with a hot dog and the rock-filled old-school jukebox.
FASHION DISTRICT CRANE’S BAR DOWNTOWN 810 S. Spring St. // 323-787-7966
Look for the neon “Cocktails” sign over the door of this mellow bar inside an old bank vault— perfectly positioned for a few bourbon cocktails before or after dinner at Terroni. Quirky décor, retro gaming consoles and a jukebox ramp up the fun.
100 W. 9th St. // 213-627-7774 // patternbar.com
Located in Fashion District (hence the name), here’s a bar that’s as stylish as its patrons. The blackand-white décor is simple and sleek, with gigantic windows that make it a great place to drink and be seen. Keeping with the bar’s fashionable theme, the cocktails are named after fashion’s finest.
FINANCIAL DISTRICT SHOO SHOO, BABY
717 W. 7th St. // 213-688-7755 // shoobabyla.com
Take a trip back in time to the ’40s inside the vintage-themed
DYLAN + JENI
SPOTS WITH LIVE MUSIC bar named for a WWII-era song about loving an enlisted man by The Andrews Sisters. Great vibes blend beautifully with cocktails like the perfect Moscow Mule and cheekily named Piss ’n Vinegar.
SOUTH PARK HANK’S BAR
840 S. Grand Ave. // 213-623-7718
Perfect for a stiff drink with zero pretense before heading to the nearby STAPLES Center, this hole-in-the-wall, attached to the lobby of the Stillwell Hotel, is the definition of a dive bar. It’s the most packed when there’s a game on TV, but you likely won’t have a hard time finding a spot at the bar.
1100 S. Hope St. // 213-493-4786 prankbar.com
An open-air, walk-up bar in South Park known for its inventive pairings, imperfect mischief and bitchin’ music is a bar we can get on board with. At the helm is Dave Whitton, the guy behind Villains Tavern. Between that and the vegan nachos, things are off to a promising start for Prank.
COURTESY HAM & EGGS TAVERN
DOWN & OUT
THE LEXINGTON BAR
A favorite among beer aficionados, this spot has more than 30 selections on tap and hundreds of whiskeys.
Open 365 days a year, you’ll find whatever you’re looking for here, from video games and ping-pong during “game night” to karaoke backed by a live band. Rotating DJs spin on weekends, with local and touring bands tearing up the venue during the week.
Live entertainment is the name of the game here. The Lexington is best known for open mic nights that range from comedy to music to variety show performances. You’ll cozy up to a small stage and awesome graffiti décor. Stop in for happy hour Monday through Friday and score $2 PBRs.
347 E. 1st St. // 213-617-9990 // farbarla.com
WOLF & CRANE BAR 366 E. 2nd St. // 213-935-8249 wolfandcranebar.com
Japanese whiskey, small-batch American spirits and local craft beer are the specialties here. Whiskey connoisseurs are smart to splurge on a flight.
CHINATOWN APOTHEKE LA
1746 N. Spring St. // 323-844-0717
The NYC bar best known for its apothecary vibe and “prescription list” drink menu has finally made its way to L.A. over by the L.A. River.
410 Boyd St. // 213-626-1800 // theescondite.com
The name means “the hideout,” and for good reason. Don’t tell them we blew their cover, but this Little Tokyo dive bar is a hidden gem and local favorite. In addition to an extensive burger menu and outdoor patio, they offer live music from local bands.
FIVE STAR BAR
475 Gin Ling Way // 213-625-7500 generallees.com
This locals-only, craft cocktail– slinging dance spot is where Frank Sinatra once drank and bartenders can school patrons in artisanal gin and pour a vodka Red Bull.
On the quest for the ultimate dive bar, add Five Star to your list. It has all the grit you’d expect and offers more than 50 domestic and craft beers. The space is outfitted with billiards, art on the walls and a small stage for live bands to play while you rock out.
HAM & EGGS TAVERN
Since 2012, this intimate hole-in-the-wall (part beer-and-wine bar, part live-music setup) has been treating patrons to small-scale rock concerts by local and indie bands. Drawing a crowd of regulars, it has achieved the impossible: respectable wines with a house-party vibe, perfect for the aging hipster.
336 Hill St. // 213-687-7111 // lacitabar.com
Fantastic $8 pizzas during happy hour (4:30–7 p.m.) attract patrons to this chic, welcoming eatery/bar with a plethora of mouthwatering bites and sips.
A simple exterior gives way to a gorgeous interior of vaulted ceilings and Chinese lanterns. Creative cocktails and beer on tap fuel fun-seekers through long nights.
939 N. Hill St. // 213-625-2823
129 E. 3rd St. // 213-291-5723 // thelexingtonbar.com
THE MOROCCAN LOUNGE
901 E. 1st St. // 213-395-0610 // themoroccan.com
A new venue from the founders of the Teragram Ballroom in Westlake, the Moroccan Lounge opened in the fall of 2017 in a Moorish-accented historic building in the Arts District. The front room is a restaurant serving falafel bites and tzatziki lamb burgers, while behind it lies an intimate venue where acts such as Grizzly Bear and Børns have performed.
267 S. Main St. // 323-428-4492 // fivestarbardtla.com
433 W. 8th St. // 213-891-6939 // hamandeggstavern.com
243 S. San Pedro St. // 213-947-3329 baldoriadtla.com
501 S. Spring St. // 213-221-7595 // downandoutbar.com
Don’t come to La Cita unless you’re ready to party. With more sneakers than revealing dresses, and a vast beer selection, its reputation as a Latin bar belies its diverse clientele, from punks and hipsters to locals on the hunt for no-frills daytime drinks. The divey spot dedicates different nights to different dance parties, so you’ll want to check the calendar for what’s in store, as rockabilly, punk, reggae and Latin cumbia beats are all on the roster.
REDWOOD BAR & GRILL
316 W. 2nd St. // 213-680-2600 // theredwoodbar.com
Every now and then, you just get a craving for stiff drinks in a sunken pirate ship. Full of nautical ropes, dark wooden planks and other aquatic ephemera, The Redwood offers live music every night of the week (plus a Sunday matinee performance) and pub grub that is itself worthy of stepping inside.
428 S. Hewitt St. // 213-628-7503 // residentdtla.com
A classy but casual place to relax in the Arts District, this multiuse space is meant to recall the spirit of an Austin, Texas, neighborhood bar. Inside you’ll find a live music setup (DJs and indie rock, mostly), while the outdoor beer garden uses a refurbished trailer to serve drinks and welcomes local food trucks. Ham & Eggs Tavern
FAVES - DRINK -
DISTILLERIES GREENBAR DISTILLERY
2459 E. 8th St. // 213-375-3668 // greenbar.biz
This company, offering perhaps the best-known distillery tour in the area, has the world’s largest organic, handcrafted spirits portfolio. You’ll only be able to catch a tour on Saturdays ($12 per person) here, but they have plenty going on during the rest of the week, like cocktail classes and tastings for you to choose from.
LOST SPIRITS DISTILLERY 1235 E. 6th St. // 831-235-9400 // lostspirits.net
Disney meets distilling at this magical destination where science, innovation and art come together to create standout peated malt whiskeys and rum. The legendary laboratory is open only to those with online reservations for two-hour tastings, which comprise a tour, presentation and pours of truly one-of-a-kind spirits. Angel City Brewery
216 Alameda St. // 213-622-1261 angelcitybrewery.com
This tap room and pub is also a hub for community gatherings, including a weekly farmers market. Enjoy popular brews and limited runs; feel free to bring in outside food for a fun time.
ARTS DISTRICT BREWING CO.
828 Traction Ave. // 213-817-5321 artsdistrictbrewing.com
Enjoy a couple of brews between games of ping-pong, darts and vintage Skeeball in a spot that produces 3,300 barrels of craft beer annually. Bar snacks pair perfectly with stouts and IPAs.
OUR/LOS ANGELES showings, block parties and live music. Every beer label has been designed by an L.A. artist, and the tap room—outfitted with foosball, darts, a pool table and more games—is designed with local furnishings and fixtures.
THE DANKNESS DOJO BY MODERN TIMES 832 S. Olive St. // 213-878-7008 moderntimesbeer.com
This San Diego-based brewery offers more than two dozen taps and a plant-based menu. Read more on page 105 & 115.
IRON TRIANGLE BREWING CO.
1581 Industrial St. // 310-424-1370 irontrianglebrewing.com
BOOMTOWN BREWERY 700 Jackson St. // 213-617-8497 boomtownbrew.com
More than just a brewery, Boomtown seeks to create a community space through gallery
DTLA BOOK 2018
At 40,000 square feet, Iron Triangle is the largest of L.A.’s local breweries. The tap room—offering 10 brews—has a sophisticated throwback vibe, echoing the 1920s with its long
bar and fresh flowers. This ain’t your frat brother’s brewery.
915 S. Santa Fe Ave. // ourvodka.com/losangeles
Our/Vodka is a global brand that’s all about local flavors. With microdistilleries in nine cities worldwide, each city’s vodka has its own unique flavor and is sourced from local ingredients. For $10, take a tour of their modern facility in the Arts District and taste their L.A. blend at the source.
330 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-596-9005 mikkellerbar.com
This 100-year-old former auto repair shop was transformed into a high-ceilinged, industrialchic nirvana for beer geeks featuring 50-plus taps. Savory Scandinavian-inflected bites sidle up to brews ranging from Mikkeller’s own Waves IPA to a Texas Pecan Ice Cream Porter.
MUMFORD BREWING CO. 416 Boyd St. // mumfordbrewing.com
At any given time Mumford offers up a dozen beers on tap, including IPAs, porters and pale ales. The only food you’ll find on-site are freshly baked pretzels, so BYOF, and when you find your fave brew, have some canned to take home.
THE SPIRIT GUILD
5 86 Mateo St . // 21 3- 61 3-1498 // thespirit guild.com
This Arts District collaboration doesn’t mess around when it comes to the art of distillation. Started by a sixth-generation California farmer and Scottish-Canadian distiller, it sets itself apart by producing farm-to-glass gin and vodka completely in-house. It’s also gluten-free. Tickets are just $10 for a 45-minute tasting and tour to ooh and aah at their fab facility.
WINE BARS Drink & Shop: GARÇONS DE CAFÉ 541 S. Spring St. // 213-278-0737 // garcons-de-cafe.com
Easy on Your Wallet: POUR HAUS WINE BAR
1820 Industrial St. // 213-327-0304 // pourhauswinebar.com
More Than 800 Labels: BOTTLEROCK LA 1050 S. Flower St. // 213-747-1100 // bottlerockla.com
Rosé With Classic French Bites: ORIEL CHINATOWN 1135 N. Alameda St. // 213-253-9419 // orielchinatown.com // more on page 105
Rustic & Romantic: MIGNON 128 E. 6th St. // 213-489-0131 // mignonla.com
ANGEL CITY BREWERY
CLUBS THE CONTINENTAL CLUB
Don’t expect to spend the entire night on Instagram or Tinder at this subterranean club with zero cell reception. The hidden speakeasy is down an alley in Gallery Row, and prospective clubbers without a reservation are subject to the whims of the bouncer. Expect Penicillins and draft Moscow Mules, DJs and a dressed-up, laid-back crowd.
Known for its multicolored light-up dance floor, this slick spot with an old-school disco vibe invites you to get your groove on, but also to indulge in its expansive craft cocktail program of more than 50 drinks. Split into two rooms—one for drinking, one for dancing; you can choose your own adventure.
116 W. 4th St. // 866-687-4499 // circa93.com
819 S. Flower St . // 21 3- 6 8 8- 08 8 8 honeycutla .com
Queen Kong at Precinct
LGBTQA BAR MATTACHINE
221 W. 7th St. // 213-278-0471 // barmattachine.com
Like the name says, this club is on a different level—21 floors above Wilshire, to be exact. The massive space offers panoramas that reach the Hollywood Hills, but all the action is inside. Bottle service is the best bet for EDM fans who have something to celebrate, Vegas-style.
It’s not every day you come across a club with Mayan décor, but this former movie palace, opened in 1927, is one of the city’s most popular venues for concerts and club nights. The Mayan offers multiple levels of fun, usually with differing music from tropical to Top 40.
811 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 2100 // 213-623-7100 elevatelounge.com
103 8 S. Hill St . // 21 3-74 6 -4 674 clubmayan.com
The only gay bar in L.A. specializing in craft cocktails (with names resembling an LGBT history lesson), this gorgeously appointed two-story space draws an upscale clientele of queer folk and allies. More sophisticated and civilized than raucous, the space is home to a roster of local DJs and performers.
MUSTACHE MONDAYS AT THE LASH 117 Winston St. // 213-687-7723
THE RESERVE: COURTESY THE RESERVE; PRECINCT: JEREMY LUCIDO
618 S. Spring St . // 21 3- 6 2 7-8070 exchangela .com
Located in the former L.A. Stock Exchange building, this expansive, four-level nightclub is one of Downtown’s most popular venues, inviting international DJs of the highest caliber to treat its patrons to a pulsing dance floor. You’ll want to dress upscale for entry. The Reserve
65 0 S. Spring St . // 21 3-3 2 7- 0 05 7 thelareser ve.com
Like most of DTLA’s sophisticated nightlife hot spots, this place has history: It serves up its handcrafted cocktails in the basement of a 1920s BeauxArts bank (hence the name) and welcomes night owls with its talented DJs and three bars’ worth of friendly staff.
You may not think of Monday night as a popular one to hit the town, but this edgy underground party has been going on for years, attracting the city’s drag stars, club kids and inthe-know hipsters. In addition to sets by resident DJ and founder Josh Peace, the party regularly boasts performances by queer musicians and artists.
performances and Latino go-go boys, though a mix of people call this neighborhood bar home. Step into this cash-only spot for a night of cumbia, reggaeton and pop music.
Riot, Sweet Riot West Hollywood might
357 S. Broadway // 213-628-3112 // precinctdtla.com
Located in a former police precinct, this multiroom nightclub has become Downtown’s go-to spot for queer lovers of drag, dancing and rock ’n’ roll debauchery. The second-floor spot’s wraparound patio acts as a refuge for smokers, while the main room’s stage serves as a beloved home to talented local performers, comedians and musicians.
be considered the prevalent LGBTQ area in L.A. today, but in the ’50s and ’60s, a stretch of DTLA’s Main Street was the gay hangout. And what is considered the first gay uprising in America took place here, 10 years before NYC’s Stonewall Rebellion. Known as the Cooper’s
131 E. 6th St. // 213-935-8391 // redlinedtla.com
Donut Riot, it happened in May 1959, when a group of drag queens and
A sleek and modern gay bar located in the Historic Core, Redline draws boys and girls (mostly boys) with its hunky bar staff, roster of rotating DJs
with donuts, coffee and
The oldest of Downtown’s batch of gay bars, the New Jalisco caters to a Latin crowd with Spanish-language drag
and regular performances by some of the city’s most popular drag queens. Drinks are stiff and reasonably priced, and the patrons are a friendly bunch.
245 S. Main St. // 213-613-1802
hustlers, tired of being harassed by the police, bombarded the LAPD paper plates and caused Main Street to be closed down for a whole day.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Los Angeles suffers no shortage of yoga studios, and
- WELLNESS -
Downtown is no exception. Stereotypes would have us believe every Angeleno practices the meditative Indian discipline, and there are enough destinations for that to be true. Evoke Yoga (731 S. Spring St., #600 // 213-375-5528 // evokeyoga.com) offers both heated and unheated entry points for yogis of every level (and the attractive first-time offer of $25 for two unlimited weeks), with the common thread being energetic playlists and uplifting instructors. Downtown is the flagship studio for original hot yoga studio Bikram Yoga L.A. (700 W. 1st St. // 213-334-3949 // bikramyogala.com) , where 26 specific postures are taught in a 105-degree room. The peaceful ambience at Yoga Circle Downtown (400 S. Main St. // 213-620-1040 yogacircledowntown.com) encourages the flow in their classes
ranging from Solar Flow and Power Flow to Ayurvedic Yoga, Hatha and Yin. Specialty movement methods, such as aerial yoga, are taught at The Bridge Mind Body Movement (1820 Industrial St., #102B // 213-537-0159 // thebridgembm.com) , while yogarajDTLA (900 E. 4th St. // 213-293-9642 // yogaraj.org) has the city’s chicest setting, in the A+D Architecture and Design Museum. Just $10 for a vinyasa class.
Model and wellness blogger Melissa Eckman (@melisfit_) is as socially conscious as she is eyepoppingly flexible, bending into inconceivable yoga pose after yoga pose. One hundred percent of the proceeds of the Guatemalan-print Joriki Yoga leggings she wears above benefit Pencils of Promise, which builds schools around the world. Two hundred leggings sold translates to half a school built. She also supports the nonprofits Direct Relief and Feed America, and works with the brand Raw Sugar Living, which donates a bar of soap to a family in need for each purchase. The inspiring yogi celebrated donating 500,000 bars in 2017.
DTLA BOOK 2018
PILATES It’s no surprise that Pilates, a fitness practice renowned for its unique ability to strengthen, lengthen and tone with low impact, has taken off in this body-obsessed city. Specializing in the classical method, Kerri Baker Pilates (408 S. Spring St. // 213-590-3703 // kerribakerpilates.net) is an intimate go-to for newbies trying out the therapeutic modality, and experienced practitioners looking to be challenged one-on-one. At Club Pilates Downtown Los Angeles (1119 S. Hope St. // 213-204-6900 // clubpilates.com) , the pure method is taught to groups on state-of-the-art equipment (also, your first intro class is free). Tradition is turned on its head at Pilates+DTLA (110 E. 9th St., AL-025 // 213-863-4834 // ppdtla.com) , a Lagree Fitness studio where intense, sweaty classes test strength and muscular endurance for quick results.
BARRE Go for: Fun, fast-paced fitness
Dance, Pilates and yoga all come together in caloriecrushing workouts at The Main Barre. 560 S. Main St., #4W // 213-623-1213 // themainbarre.com
Go for: Isometrics and intervals
The Bar Method’s one-hour classes tone, stretch and sculpt students like ballet dancers. 724 S. Spring St., #203 // 213-221-1237 // barmethod.com
Go for: Long, lean muscles
High-intensity, low-impact sessions at Pure Barre work even the tiniest muscles to exhaustion. 740 Olive St., #106 // 323-305-7025 // purebarre.com/ca-downtownla
COURTESY MELISSA ECKMAN
GOOD CAUSE YOGI
WELLNESS / BEAUTY BASE COAT
70 4 Mateo St . // 21 3-935 -833 0 ba secoatnailsalon.com
FITNESS BESPOKE CYCLING STUDIO
7 35 S. Fig ueroa St . , #105 // 21 3-2 28-28 28 bespokec ycling studio.com
Although cycling is the name of the game here, workouts in the super-clean studio are dynamic and incorporate the upper body, too. The energetic sequencing in a clublike setting leaves you dripping, making the cold eucalyptus towels even sweeter.
444 Flower St. // 213-330-3999 // equinox.com
This members-only shop for all things fitness—and recovery— offers not only a hefty schedule of unlimited classes with inspiring instructors, personal trainers dedicated to clients’ individual goals and a wide range of equipment, but good vibes all around.
WAVEBREAKMEDIA LTD | DREAMSTIME.COM
1 2 3 S. Fig ueroa St . , #14 0B // 818-319 -31 18 f itprosla .com
Personal attention is a given at this state-of-the-art private training studio, where one-on-one and intimate group sessions are led by experts who specialize in tailoring workouts to the individual. Consider fitness goals addressed.
83 0 Trac tion Ave. , #2B // 3 2 3-20 4-76 0 4 thejyim.com
Bypass the temptation at Arts District Brewing Co. in favor of a sweat-heavy session upstairs. Prepare to get your butt kicked in both private and group classes including boxing, body sculpt and bootcamp, but have fun while you’re doing it.
KRAV MAGA UNYTED
33 4 S. Main St . , #1 10 6A // 21 3-2 2 3- 6 2 33 kravma g auny ted.com
Self-defense isn’t the only reason to go sweat it out at the gym specializing in the Israeli fighting system called Krav Maga and Mixed Martial Arts training, but it’s an added benefit of hard-core classes that sharpen the body and mind.
This nontoxic nail salon’s expansive, airy Arts District space is as Instagrammable as the manicure you’ll leave with. Fig & Yarrow custom-blends their plant-based products, and there’s kombucha and cold brew on tap.
7 18 Jack son St . // 21 3-26 6 -831 1 s anc tuar y f itnessla .com
It’s all about HIIT (high-intensity interval training) and spin at this fresh group fitness studio promising “peace through perspiration.” For just $25 new members can try the choreographed cycling classes and strength-inducing HIIT sessions—addressing different body parts daily—for a week.
8 8 8 S. Olive St . // 3 2 3-4 63-76 85 soul- c ycle.com
Forty-five minutes is all you need at this O.G. indoor spinning studio’s sanctuary-like space to fully work both body and mind. Inspirational instructors take riders through hills, jogs and pushups in a candlelit space.
300 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 424-249-3296 benjaminsalon.com
Hairstyling guru Benjamin Mohapi’s art-filled cut-andcolor salon in the Arts District is not only exceptionally cool, but so are the looks coming out of it.
The first of its kind in DTLA, this South Park gym makes working out an absolute blast by encouraging dynamic movement and cardio under the guise of laser tag. Bring friends for the match, which also includes parkour elements for added challenge.
Ditch the gym boredom at this boutique fitness favorite where classes tackle the entire body. Friendly, encouraging trainers utilize treadmills, C2 rowing machines, weights and other apparatus for high-intensity intervals that challenge even the fittest person.
4 0 0 W. Pico Blvd. // 855 -5 2 9 -7 3 4 8 la zr f it .com
1 1 1 3½ S. Hope St . // 21 3-894-9 94 4 speedplayla .com
Like UberEats for massage, this on-demand service delivers experienced masseuses to your doorstep, whether it’s an apartment, office or hotel room.
300 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-229-8832 // nailboxla.com
This celeb-loved destination doles out IV drips and vitamin infusions that promise to boost immunity and energy, jump-start muscle recovery and reduce stress. Botox, fillers and weight loss programs are also available.
Adorable décor and competitive pricing attract gel addicts for manicures from basic to blinged out, with chrome, holographic, jewels and nail art designs. Pedicures happen at cool copper basins.
607 S. Olive St. // 213-623-4383 // neihule.com
819 S. Flower St. // 213-784-8194 // fraisspa.com
866-473-6358 // meltondemand.com
1119½ S. Hope St. // 213-749-3747 // dripdoctors.com
SOULCYCLE DOWNTOWN LA
infrared sauna destination, where sessions to reduce chronic pain, alleviate stress and detoxify the body can be game-changing. Clean, private rooms allow guests to personalize lighting and entertainment and rinse off in a vitamin C–infused shower.
Everyone could likely use the Tech Neck Massage at this intimate spa with offerings such as full-body rubdowns, facials and acupuncture that end with chocolate and green tea.
HOTBOX INFRARED SAUNA STUDIO 835 S. Hill St. // 213-628-3221 hotboxsaunastudio.com
Netflix and chill—or heat—at this
This relaxing full-service salon across from Pershing Square offers skincare, massages, hair services, waxing and nail care.
THE RITZ-CARLTON SPA, LOS ANGELES 900 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-763-4400 // ritzcarlton.com
Feel like a king or queen for a day at this opulent, expansive spa, where Champagne kicks off pampering via luxe personalized treatments using ingredients from the rooftop garden.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Open Season The long-awaited moment is here: California voters passed that its effects are being felt—in more ways than one. The legalization of adult-use (over 21) recreational marijuana in the state ushers in a new era that is still being sorted
THE LUXE LIFE
out in its inaugural year. Under the new law, Californians 18 and older with a cannabis recommendation ID card
New laws set the stage for a slew of chic cannabis-based
can still purchase medical marijuana, while anyone in the
local businesses to take off. Tattoo artist Scott Campbell’s
state—temporarily or permanently—21 and over can legally
Beboe (beboe.com), called the “Hermès of Marijuana,” is the
purchase and possess up to one ounce (and grow six plants
perfect example. Along with former fashion exec Clement
at home). If that prompts a shopping spree, head to clean
Kwan, Campbell makes vaporizers and edibles both
and friendly Buddha Company (2038 Sacramento St. // 213-628-3144
sophisticated and cool. (Read more about Campbell on
awaiting adult-use license at press time) , where treats can be found
page 92.) And Lord Jones’ dark chocolate–covered sea salt
alongside eye candy in the form of an intricate mural by
caramels (lordjones.com) look like a box of sweets you’d give
artist Peter Greco. For a kick of calm without psychoactive
grandma but for their varying THC doses. The brand’s Pure
properties, try the Armani cocktail at Pattern Bar (100 W. 9th
CBD Pain & Wellness Formula Body Lotion also offers a
St. // 213-627-7774 // patternbar.com) , blending gin, elderflower, citrus
sweet-smelling, non-psychoactive way to treat sore muscles
and mint with au courant CBD compound. At Prank Bar
and skin conditions, while Sagely Naturals’ hemp CBD–
(1100 S. Hope St. // 213-493-4786 // prankbar.com) , mixologists add droplets
based Relief & Recovery cream and spray (sagelynaturals.com) act
of aromatic terpenes—anti-inflammatory oils that give
as natural painkillers, along with CBD + Turmeric capsules.
cannabis its flavor—to their creative concoctions.
It’s cannabis for the cure—elevated.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FROM TOP LEFT: ESKYMAKS | DREAMSTIME.COM; COURTESY LORD JONES; COURTESY BEBOE
Proposition 64 in November of 2016, but it’s only in 2018
SAMPLE SALES / VINTAGE & SPECIALTY STORES
FAVES - SHOP -
ARTS DISTRICT CO-OP
453 Colyton St. // 213-223-6717 // adcoopla.com
Head here for great flea market finds in block-party style, with food trucks and live music. Shoppers are able to scope out handmade local goods, furniture, art, jewelry and clothing, too, all inside a funky brick building. Open every day but Monday.
BLUE MOON FABRICS
3 05 E . 9 th St . , Ste. 1 10 // 21 3-892- 0 4 01 bluemoonfabric s.com
This store sticks out in its ’hood for having the most organized, wide-ranging and high-quality fabric selection around, plus the friendliest, most knowledgeable staff to help navigate all the alluring options.
CALIFORNIA MARKET CENTER
1 10 E . 9 th St . // 21 3- 63 0 -3 6 0 0 californiamarketcenter.com
The showroom is almost always off-limits to the public for trade shows, but on the last Friday of every month, they host a sample sale. You’ll know it by the line stretched around the block.
CALIFORNIA MILLINERY SUPPLY CO. ROBERT KNESCHKE | DREAMSTIME.COM
7 21 S. Spring St . // 21 3- 6 2 2-874 6 californiamilliner y.net
A true one of a kind in the city, it’s the place to buy hatmaking supplies. The shop owned by a former stage and costume designer addresses every imaginable need—vintage ribbons, lace, bows, trims and fascinator bases.
920 S. Maple Ave. // 213-622-6259 // mlfabric.com
At the “Disneyland of fabric stores,” newbies and novices alike will enjoy weaving up and down the aisles of colorful fabrics to find just what they need. Prices are affordable, and the staff is happy to help.
MOSKATELS / MICHAEL’S 7 33 S. San Julian St . // 21 3- 6 89 -4 83 0
It’s like Costco for crafters and party planners, complete with a warehouse of ribbon, frames, art supplies and everything you need for a DIY wedding. The theme changes periodically according to the season, which means you’ll rarely see the same store twice.
RAGGEDY THREADS 33 0 E . 2nd St . // 21 3- 6 20 -1 18 8 ra g gedy threads.com
It’s hard not to get nostalgic—and maybe even patriotic—in this classic Americana vintage
store. From the décor to the treasure trove of shirts, shoes, overalls and dresses, you’ll yearn for a simpler time, or at least want to look the part.
Olympic Boulevard to 1 2 th bet ween Maple and Santee street s // thesanteealley.com
With more than 150 vendors, you’ll leave with your hands full after a day of shopping here. It’s open daily, but weekends draw the biggest crowds. Bring cash, be prepared to bargain and pace yourself.
110 E. 9th St., CMC Penthouse // uniqueusa.com
If you’ve been hoping to shop at all your favorite Etsy stores in one place, this is it. The seasonal market has created a movement supporting small American businesses and independent designers, and it’s just $10 cash to get in.
SHOPPING CENTERS The Bloc 700 S. Flower St. // theblocdowntown.com After a pricey makeover, the former Macy’s Plaza is now a sophisticated, open-air spot, complete with shops (luxe brands, jewelry, toys), restaurants (a steakhouse, pizza, juice bar) and soon an Alamo Drafthouse cinema. FIGat7th 735 S. Figueroa St. // figat7th.com Get all your shopping done in a dash at this one-stop retail haven—a lifestyle center complete with fashion, food, fitness and special events. It’s home to Nordstrom Rack and Target, as well as H&M and Zara flagship stores, plus Gold’s Gym and 20 restaurants and eateries. The Row 777 S. Alameda St. // 213-943-4677 // rowdtla.com With capacity for 100 retail outlets, 15 eateries and 1.4 million square feet of creative office space, this mecca for shoppers and aesthetes alike is major. Curated global goods at Article Indéfini, tightly edited womenswear at LCD and sneakers at Bodega are just a few of countless reasons to go. The Yards 300 S. Santa Fe Ave. // osfla.com This 80,000-square-foot shopping center is anything but ordinary, and we wouldn’t expect less in the Arts District. Part of the residential complex One Santa Fe, it hosts select shops like Wittmore, Malin+Goetz and The Voyager.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - -
903 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-623-0013 brigadela.com
Marc Jacobs, Kate Spade, Furla, Jeffrey Campbell—all your favorite brands are under one roof at this women’s retailer, known for great sales and customer service. This location across from L.A. LIVE is a surefire hit.
20 08 E . 7 th St . // 21 3-537- 05 8 4 commonwealth-f t g g .com
855 S. Broadway // 213-243-0960 // acnestudios.com
The opening of this sleek Swedish brand’s flagship in 2013 signified a new era in DTLA. Located in the Eastern Columbia Building, its 5,000 square feet of worldfamous denim, leather jackets and minimalist must-haves await you.
8 26 E . 3rd St . // 3 2 3-4 87-1497 alchemy work s.us
A mix of retail and gallery space, this carefully curated boutique is hip to the max and includes men’s and women’s fashion, gifts, home goods, magazines and a Warby Parker showroom.
ready-to-wear French brand brought a whole lot of buzz with it when it opened. Both the collections and the space itself are minimalist with très chic flair.
826 E. 3rd St. // 855-894-1559 // apolisglobal.com
In a city where socially conscious equals sexy, this minimalist menswear boutique features shirts, swimwear, bags, outerwear and shoes, all ethically sourced. This fashion looks good on the body and feels good on the brain. (Read more on page 61.)
125 W. 9th St. // 424-252-2762 // apc.fr
In good company at 9th Street and Broadway, this popular,
DTLA BOOK 2018
City-dwelling sneakerheads get their fix at the Downtown outpost of the beloved shop that puts kicks front and center. Everything from Vans to rare
313 W. 8th St. // 213-271-2716 // cosstores.com
When you need to stay on-trend but can’t break the bank, it’s Bliss to the rescue. With a fine selection of women’s clothing, accessories and shoes starting at $30, it’s no wonder this boutique has a loyal following.
Clean and modern mark the men’s and women’s clothing and Scandinavian-inflected design of this London-based brand, a sibling company of H&M. Don’t expect fast fashion— the everyday basics and minimalist ready-to-wear are quality and meant to last.
This Australian retailer’s cult following spans oceans. Lucky for us, the 6,800-square-foot flagship store is the only U.S. location. You’ll find women’s fashion and accessories from Aussie brands like C/MEO Collective and Jaggar Footwear.
Make any excuse to visit this massive, museum-like space with evocative kinetic sculptures and large-scale installations by famed film director Floria Sigismondi. Stimulating surroundings make the experience of shopping for the
204½ W. 6th St. // 213-489-4022 // blissstores.com
725 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-626-6607 // blendsus.com
Nikes and Air Jordans draws hip-hop fans and skateboarders for regular sprees.
Inside a 1,500-square-foot space, this Virginia-based streetwear boutique is showcasing a variety of brands ranging from classics to lesser known cult favorites, such as Wacko Maria, Brain Dead and Padmore & Barnes.
901 S. Broadway // 213-327-0442 us.fashionbunker.com
816 S. Broadway // 21 3-935 -81 14 gentlemonster.com
Korean eyewear brand’s cool creations totally memorable.
20 4 W. 6th St . // 21 3-4 89 -1891
This jewel box of a shop packs a punch in a small amount of space, stocking well-priced separates and dresses that speak to current trends. The friendly salespeople are known to offer styling advice with purchases, too.
THE HOUSE OF WOO 209 S. Garey St. // 213-687-4800 ilovewoo.com
Nestled in the Arts District, designer Staci Woo’s flagship store brings a bit of the beach to Downtown—upscale but comfortable. You’ll find clothing and accessories for men, women and children, and, of course, beach towels.
LE BOX BLANC
1 10 0 S. Hope St . , C 1 // 21 3-519 -3 4 0 0 leboxblanc .com
From head to toe, Le Box Blanc’s store—an airy brickand-mortar shop opened by the DTLA-based e-commerce retailer in 2016—has you covered. Local designers like Janessa Leoné hang alongside faves from Equipment and IRO. (Read more on page 94.)
847 S. Broadway // 213-335-5815 // mykita.com
This German brand is known for custom-fit prescription eyewear (all done in-house),
WRANGLER | DREAMSTIME.COM
SHOP H&M, Zara, Target & More + Nordstrom Rack Now Open!
DINE Hungry? Choose from 20 Restaurants & Eateries!
PLAY FREE Music + Events All year long!
#LifeHappensHere #StyleHappensHere @FIGat7th · FIGat7th.com 735 S. Figueroa St. · Downtown L.A. Across from the 7th Street/Metro Center Station
FAVES - -
THE ROGUE COLLECTIVE
See what the Arts District used to be while you shop their premium lifestyle goods. The space pays homage to the iconic Al’s Bar that once was here, and you’ll even find the original stage and authentic band posters.
You’ve likely gotten a chuckle from someone wearing their signature KALE shirt, and you can expect more clever designs here. It’s a lighthearted U.Smade brand, and it’s all about that comfy and casual life.
3 05 S. Hewit t St . // 21 3-43 6 -1 16 0 therog uecollec tive.com Continued from page 130
with designs that straddle the line between edgy and classic. Downtown is its largest store yet and the only West Coast location.
8 6 2 S. Main St . // 21 3-5 42-2 3 80 shopnicekick s.com
Always at the center of sneaker culture, there’s never a shortage of celebrities or shoe events at this online retailer’s Los Angeles brick-and-mortar (which was due to reopen in February after a remodel). Stop in for hard-tofind kicks, apparel and hats.
POCKET SQUARE CLOTHING 205 W. 7 th St . // 21 3-375 -51 1 1 pocket squareclothing .com
Since 2011, this stylish shop has been the go-to place for dapper gentlemen looking for madeto-measure custom suits and accessories. With a focus on superior craftsmanship, their entire in-house collection is carefully handcrafted right here in L.A., favored by creatives, musicians and stylists.
RAISED IN LOS ANGELES 5 4 8 S. Sprint St . , R 1 10 // 21 3-265 -74 8 8 raisedinlos angeles.bigcar tel.com
Repping L.A.’s transplants and natives alike, this urban/skate brand carries hoodies, tees and accessories. Their collection also features one-of-a-kind “hand canned” pieces from local artists with spray-painted designs.
DTLA BOOK 2018
ROUND 2 LA
6 05 S. Los Angeles St . , Ste. D 21 3-8 8 4- 6 4 0 9 // round2la .bigcar tel.com
1 1 1 W. 7 th St . // 21 3- 6 89 -3 2 7 1 suburbanriot .com
8 6 0 S. Broadway // 21 3-265 -74 80 tannergoods.com
A fun place to play dress-up in both modern and vintage finds— from punk rock to disco—this store has a vibrant, playful vibe. They offer men’s and women’s clothing, accessories and mind-blowing platforms.
If you’ve ever dreamed of a hot lumberjack who also appreciates fine leather goods, he’d probably shop here. This Portland-based boutique is known for a top-notch selection of handcrafted leather items.
9 05 S. Hill St . // r svpg aller y.com
This Chicago-based conceptual streetwear store—a brainchild of Virgil Abloh, Kanye West’s style advisor—blurs the lines between luxury clothing boutique and art gallery. Takashi Murakami, Kaws, Channel and Bape are on display.
75 8 S. Spring St . // 21 3- 6 26 -26 6 2 sking raf tdesig ns.com
Play with your edge as you sift the racks of this L.A.based brand ruled by sleek designs, dark colors and fine craftsmanship. You’ll feel more badass wearing their men’s and women’s clothing, leather goods and accessories.
Rialto Theatre, 810 S. Broadway 21 3- 6 2 7-74 69 // urbanout f it ter s.com
Inside the architecturally significant Rialto Theatre building, this hipster juggernaut’s DTLA store is epic in size and content. With almost 10,000 square feet, there’s almost nothing you can’t find here, from clothing to cosmetics and vinyl to decor.
216 E . 9 th St . // 21 3-98 8-8 89 9 virgodowntown.com
Snag all the best vintage finds without all the digging. From denim to dresses to accessories, the owners have you covered. Not your size? Have their in-house tailor alter your find to fit you like a glove.
The Good Liver
LIFESTYLE / HOME / GIFT 3.1 PHILLIP LIM
734 E. 3rd St. // 213-246-2588 // 31philliplim.com
After closing in WeHo, Phillip Lim made DTLA its new home: 5,000 square feet of home, to be exact. Men’s and women’s clothes share the minimalist concept space with Patrick Parrish Gallery, M. Crow, Apparatus Books and Li, Inc. Studio.
Need a brass pencil sharpener? Or a $153 hand-carved wooden bowl? You might after you walk in.
HAMMER AND SPEAR
2 55 S. Santa Fe Ave. , Ste. 101 21 3-928- 0997 // hammerandspear.com
L.A. interior designers rely on power couple Kristan Cunningham and Scott Jarrell for amazing vintage and new home finds. This showroom is a retail mecca and interior design firm.
862 S. Broadway // 21 3-265-7487 // aesop.com
A pioneer of 9th Street and Broadway’s transformation, the Aussie brand has a cult following for its plant-based skin and hair products.
451 Colyton St. // 213-626-1311 // clevelandart.com
Long a secret trove for designers looking for industrial chic vintage furniture, Cleveland Art’s warehouse carries lighting, factory carts, cast-iron tables and selections from its own line.
THE GOOD LIVER
705 Mateo St. // 213-947-3141 // good-liver.com
This gift boutique is all about home and personal items with history and craftsmanship.
HATCHET OUTDOOR SUPPLY 941 E . 2nd St . , Ste. 101 // 21 3-935 -80 65 hatchet supply.myshopif y.com
With brick walls and a tight selection of designer and artisan gear, this Arts District store is made for the stylish outdoorsman, stocking gifts and everything for a camping trip.
PLEASE DO NOT ENTER 5 49 S. Olive St . // 21 3-263- 0 037 plea sedonotenter.com
Contrary to its name, this luxury retail/art exhibition space really does want you to visit. Design-loving men will especially love the curated collection of art books, home décor and accessories.
COURTESY THE GOOD LIVER
LITTLE TOKYO THE BOWLS
31 1 E . 1 st St . // 21 3- 6 28-8 8 6 6 // bowlsla .com
The Bowls has all the vibes of an old-school men’s general store, only more refined. Shop here for all your manly goods like grooming products, men’s clothing, hats and accessories.
all the rage, Angelenos were coming here for affordable beauty supplies. It’s fully stocked with Asian brands, and impossible to leave this shop empty-handed.
374 E . 2nd St . // 21 3-537- 0751 // poketo.com
333 S. Alameda St., #114 // 213-265-7821 // daisojapan.com
Move over, Dollar Tree, because for $1.50 you’ll find an assortment of household items, beauty supplies, gifts and more. You never know what you’ll find each time you go, but the overload of cuteness is guaranteed.
Artsy but organized is the vibe here—with everything from one-of-a-kind planters and books to wallets and backpacks with a colorful minimalist spin. Soon to come: sister store in The Row.
3 0 0 E . 2nd St . // 21 3- 6 2 5 -1 37 2 // popkiller.us
335 E. 2nd St. // 310-920-2383 // japangeles.com
Shopping bags for this Little Tokyo shop read “dope things inside,” and indeed the goods are covetable for guys who love streetwear. Just like the name would seem, this brand represents the intersection of Japanese and Los Angeles styles.
KINOKUNIYA BOOKSTORE 1 2 3 A stronaut E . S. Onizuka St . 21 3- 6 87-4 4 80 // us a .kinokuniya .com
More than just a big, beautiful bookstore, this spot has long been a pillar in L.A.’s Japanese-American community. Find a great selection of Japanese fashion magazines, manga and plenty of great reads in English as well.
1 3 0 Japanese V illa ge Pla za // 21 3- 6 20 - 0181
COURTESY MADE BY DWC
Long before Asian skincare products were
You can’t go to Little Tokyo and not stop at this shop, known for its unique selection of cheeky T-shirts and funky accessories. Everyone leaves this edgy boutique feeling a little more hip than they were before.
414 E . 2nd St . // 21 3- 614-1 181 // rafubussaninc .com
If you’re in need of a grown-up gift, look no further than the largest gift shop in Little Tokyo. The 7,000-square-foot space offers plenty of gorgeous tea sets, ceramics, Japanese dolls, lanterns and more to choose from.
magine if you could help provide housing for women in Skid Row by walking into a café and enjoying an organic pastry, or by
shopping for a vintage handbag or an upcycled teacup candle made with hand-poured soy wax (shown at right). You can in DTLA, thanks to MADE by DWC’s Café and Gift Boutique and Resale Boutique, two innovative
33 4A E . 2nd St . // 21 3- 617- 02 5 2 // rif losangeles.com
One of L.A.’s most reputable sneaker consignment stores, this DTLA gem has been curating rare and hard-to-find kicks and clothing since 2006. The novelty comes with a hefty price tag, of course, but you can’t beat the selection. Daiso
social enterprises created by the Downtown Women’s Center. Since 1978, the center has been serving women by providing supportive housing and a safe community. Its handmade products—also sold online—are created onsite by the center’s women. The program helps the women develop new skills and restore self-esteem. “It allows them the space to work through barriers they’ve been facing living in poverty or homelessness,” says Dena Younkin, product and merchandise senior manager. Proceeds support the DWC, which includes 119 housing units and a women’s health clinic.
MADE BY DWC CAFÉ AND GIFT BOUTIQUE
MADE BY DWC RESALE BOUTIQUE
438 S. San Pedro St. // 213-213-2881 // madebydwc.org
325 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-225-8020
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - -
5 02 Chung K ing Ct . // 21 3-5 05 - 695 7
Part bookstore, part co-working space, this Chinatown shop named for a character in The Big Sleep carries fine art books with a spotlight on California artists.
you’ve seen on Instagram. You’ll find books old and new, and they even have a music section featuring vintage vinyl.
THE LIBRARY STORE
630 W. 5th St. // 213-228-7500 // shop.lfla.org
HENNESSEY + INGALLS
3 0 0 S. Santa Fe, Ste. M // 21 3-437-21 3 0 hennesseying alls.com
This well-known bookstore moved from Santa Monica to the Arts District’s One Santa Fe. The shelves are packed with gorgeous books on art and design.
With all sales supporting the L.A. Public Library, it takes a lot of restraint not to go on a book shopping spree. This curated selection of literary gifts also includes toys, stationery, notebooks and more.
943 N. Broadway // 213-617-1105 // oogaboogastore.com
THE LAST BOOKSTORE
453 S. Spring St. // 213-488-0599 // lastbookstorela.com
A true L.A. icon, this indie bookstore is home to that infamous book tunnel
SHOP ’TIL YOU DROP OFF... f you enjoyed shopping in Downtown—and picked up more than can fit in your suitcase—City Business Shipping has got you covered. Residents and business owners of the Fashion District have long
depended on this one-stop shop for all their logistics and packaging needs. Opened in 1995 on 9th Street, it now has multiple area locations. It makes shipping easy, whether you need to send something small back home or are looking for freight consolidation to restock inventory at your boutique in, say, Chicago. Just bring any item into a location near you and the company will pack and box it and recommend the most appropriate carrier for delivery (UPS, FedEx, DHL or USPS). The company even offers same-day service for urgent shipments. Services include packaging and building custom crates for paintings, statues and antiques of all sorts.
CITY BUSINESS SHIPPING INC. cbshipping.com FASHION DISTRICT 225 E. 9th St. // 213-612-4949 GARMENT DISTRICT 967 E. 12th St. // 213-239-8877
DTLA BOOK 2018
LITTLE TOKYO 308 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-622-2426 MARKET SOUTH 1147 S. San Pedro St. // 323-831-2022
JUST FOOD FOR DOGS 333 S. Spring St . // 21 3-70 9 -2 963 just foodfordog s.com
Owners of picky or sickly pups flock to this specialty store, conveniently located beside a veterinarian’s office. The brand’s proprietary recipes address a number of dietary concerns and preferences using high-quality ingredients and creative combinations.
PET PROJECT LA
5 4 8 S. Spring St . , Ste. 107 // 21 3- 6 8 8-7 75 2 petprojec tla .com
Raw, organic food isn’t only trending for people, thanks to the presence of one pet supply store that sells only top-of-the-line food for your favorite four-legged family
members. Super-friendly staff treat all customers with care.
PUSSY & POOCH
5 6 4 S. Main St . // 21 3-43 8- 0 9 0 0 // pussyandpooch.com
Cats and dogs are more than family here—they’re almost royalty. This location features a “Pawbar” cafe where your four-legged baby can choose from raw meats, stews or made-to-order options. That’s luxe living. (Read more on page 80.)
FROM FAR LEFT: COURTESY CITY BUSINESS SHIPPING INC.; ISSELEE | DREAMSTIME.COM
This hip offbeat upstairs shop in Chinatown not only offers books, jewerly, clothing and music, but also obscure zines and even mix cassette tapes—in the most earnest throwback 80’s style.
Looking for some drama tonight?
C E N T E R T H E AT R E G R O U P
AHMANSON THEATRE Big, bold and Broadway.
MARK TAPER FORUM
Explosive, provocative, theatrical experiences. Located on the Music Center
Make a play date at CTGLA.org
FAVES - ART -
CHINESE AMERICAN MUSEUM
425 N. Los Angeles St. // 213-485-8567 camla.org
Located in El Pueblo’s Garner Building, SoCal’s oldest surviving Chinese building, the museum spotlights the experience of Chinese Americans in California.
EL PUEBLO DE LOS ANGELES HISTORICAL MONUMENT 125 Paseo de la Plaza // 213-485-6855 elpueblo.lacity.org
TIPS TO FULLY ENJOY THE BROAD
1. G eneral admission is free at this sublime museum—designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro and built by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad—but you still need a ticket, so reserve ahead of time at ticketing.thebroad.org. Tickets are released at noon on the first of every month for the following month. 2. If tickets are sold out online, do not fret. Do it the old-fashioned way and line up. But you’ll want to go early to beat the crowd. Thursday morning is your best bet. The museum is closed on Mondays. 3. Download the app at thebroad.org. It’s user-friendly and has a searchable, interactive map, and it even uses your location within the museum to queue up the right audio guide. 4. Reserve a time for Yayoi Kusama’s stunning Infinity Mirrored Room—The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away by finding the tablet outside the work and signing up for a 45-second slot. You’ll get a text 10 minutes before your entrance time. 5. Take a sneak peek through a glass window at The Vault, a 21,000-square-foot storage space. It’s a glimpse behind the scenes of the workings of the museum.
THE BROAD 221 S. Grand Ave. // 213-232-6200 // thebroad.org 136
DTLA BOOK 2018
A+D ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN MUSEUM
This monument includes 27 historic buildings, four of them museums, and Olvera Street market. (Read more on page 76.)
INSTITUTE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART, LOS ANGELES (ICA)
1717 E. 7th St . // 21 3-928- 0833 // theicala .org
Formerly called the Santa Monica Museum of Art, the ICA LA moved to a renovated industrial building in the Arts District in 2017 and named a talked-about new curator, Jamillah James.
ITALIAN AMERICAN MUSEUM OF LOS ANGELES 125 Paseo de la Plaza // 213-485-8432 italianhall.org
Opened in 2016, this institution, which explores the lives and impact of Italian Americans, is located in El Pueblo’s historic Italian Hall, built in 1908.
900 E. 4th St. // 213-346-9734 // aplusd.org
Celebrating progressive design, A+D moved to DTLA in 2015. Shows have included looks at never-built L.A. projects to architect retrospectives.
THE AFRICAN AMERICAN FIREFIGHTER MUSEUM 1401 S. Central Ave. // 213-744-1730 aaffmuseum.org
L.A. has the country’s only African American firefighter museum, housed in Fire Station 30 and established in 1913.
AMÉRICA TROPICAL INTERPRETIVE CENTER 125 Paseo de la Plaza // 213-485-6855 theamericatropical.org
This small museum, dedicated to Mexican artist David Alfaro Siqueiros, showcases his mural América Tropical. (See page 79 to read more.)
FIDM MUSEUM AND GALLERIES / ANNETTE GREEN FRAGRANCE ARCHIVE
919 S. Grand Ave., 2nd Fl. // 800-624-1200 fidmmuseum.org
The museum draws from its collection of 15,000 costumes, accessories and textiles with shows on everything from midcentury women designers in California to antique corsets, while the Fragrance Archive is the country’s only perfume museum.
800 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-765-6800 grammymuseum.org
At this four-floor music museum, you’ll find exhibits dedicated to the influence and history of music in almost every genre, brought alive through film and interactive displays.
JAPANESE AMERICAN NATIONAL MUSEUM
100 N. Central Ave. // 213-625-0414 // janm.org
The beating heart of Little Tokyo, it’s the country’s only museum dedicated to the history of Japanese Americans.
LA PLAZA DE CULTURA Y ARTES
501 N. Main St. // 213-542-6200 // lapca.org
Located near historic Olvera Street, this museum is the nation’s premier center of Mexican-American culture.
LOS ANGELES UNITED METHODIST MUSEUM OF SOCIAL JUSTICE 115 Paseo de la Plaza // 213-613-1096 museumofsocialjustice.org
Housed in the historic La Plaza United Methodist Church, this
small social-justice museum will stage a photo show on homelessness in 2018.
THE MAIN MUSEUM 114 W. 4th St. // 213-986-8500 themainmuseum.org
Still in a beta phase—with exhibits in a temporary space—The Main, co-founded by Downtown developer Tom Gilmore, will eventually spread across three historic buildings. It will include a rooftop sculpture garden, a café and studios for artist residencies.
GALLERIES CROSSING THE RIVER INTO BOYLE HEIGHTS This neighborhood just across the L.A. River has become a hub for new art spaces. But be warned: It’s been roiled by activists fighting gentrification, including protests of galleries.
356 MISSION 356 S. Mission Rd. // 356mission.com Founded by artist Laura Owens, Ooga Booga bookstore’s Wendy Yao and dealer Gavin Brown, this gallery has a sense of fun and friendliness.
BBQ LA 2315 Jesse St. // bbqla.net An often-roaming gallery founded by three artists.
MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, GRAND AVENUE
622 S. Anderson St. // chimentocontemporary.com
250 S. Grand Ave. // 213-626-6222 // moca.org
Its street-art roster includes D*Face and Ron English.
With more than 5,000 pieces in its phenomenal collection, MOCA is a force in the global art scene, staging acclaimed shows by the likes of Kerry James Marshall and Anna Maria Maiolino.
IBID 670 S. Anderson St. // ibidgallery.com
MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, THE GEFFEN CONTEMPORARY
Despite its cheeky name, this is a commercial gallery.
152 N. Central Ave. // 213-625-4390 // moca.org
A hipster favorite for its industrial setting, this second MOCA location features a mix of exhibitions and events.
Art gallery started by a collector, Eva Chimento.
COREY HELFORD GALLERY 571 S. Anderson St. // coreyhelfordgallery.com
A London transplant whose lineup includes David Adamo and Timo Fahler.
MACCARONE GALLERY 300 S. Mission Rd. // maccarone.net NYC gallerist Michele Maccarone’s massive L.A. satellite.
MUSEUM AS RETAIL SPACE 649 S. Anderson St. // marsgallery.net NICODIM GALLERY 571 S. Anderson St. // nicodimgallery.com Mihai Nicodim spotlights European art, including works from his native Romania.
PARRASCH HEIJNEN 1326 S. Boyle Ave. // parraschheijnen.com Co-founded by NYC dealer Franklin Parrasch and repping seminal L.A. artist Billy Al Bengtson.
SELF HELP GRAPHICS & ART
960 E. 3rd St. // 213-613-2200 // sciarc.edu
Since SCI-Arc architecture school opened a gallery space in 2002, more than 50 installations—all experimental projects by contemporary architects—have been staged here.
1300 E. 1st St. // selfhelpgraphics.com
Since 1973, this nonprofit center has supported the Latino community with shows and workshops.
UTA ARTIST SPACE 670 S. Anderson St. // utaartistspace.com United Talent Agency’s showcase for its artist division.
VENUS 601 S. Anderson St. // venusovermanhattan.com Collector Adam Lindemann’s outpost of his NYC gallery.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - ART
Meaning “think” in Flemish and representing Tim Hawkinson, Denk was opened in 2017 by an endrocrinologist and her superyacht-captain husband.
Located in a former toy warehouse, Paige Moss and Rick Royale’s gallery spotlights West Coast abstract artists including Phillip K. Smith III and Ken Lum.
GARIS & HAHN
WILDING CRAN GALLERY
749 E. Temple St. // 213-935-8331 denkgallery.com
ARTS DISTRICT ART SHARE L.A. GALLERY
801 E. 4th Pl. // 213-687-4278 // artsharela.org
With 30 subsidized artist lofts, this complex is a communityminded space with two galleries.
THE BOX GALLERY
805 Traction Ave. // 213-625-1747 // theboxla.com
Founded by Mara McCarthy, daughter of Paul, it reps crucial L.A. figures, such as Barbara T. Smith, as well as younger international artists.
CORDESA FINE ART
941 E. 2nd St., #208 // 323-682-9284 cordesafineart.com
Run by Meghan Kate Corso and Luke Lombardo, Cordesa focuses on emerging and mid-career contemporary artists.
DID YOU KNOW...
The Start In the mid-’70s, a handful of artists saw opportunity in DTLA’s empty buildings and began colonizing what
1820 Industrial St. // 213-267-0229 garisandhahn.com
Showing L.A.-based painter Sarah Awad and performance and video artist Kalup Linzy, Garis & Hahn relocated from NYC in 2017.
915 Mateo St., Ste. 210 // 213-488-1805 gricebench.com
Co-owned by artist Jon Pylypchuk, this highly respected small gallery has shown Christina Forrer and Kevin Reinhardt.
HAUSER & WIRTH 901 E. 3rd St. // 213-943-1620 hauserwirthlosangeles.com
Opened in a former mill, Swiss-founded Hauser & Wirth is a giant complex that includes Manuela restaurant, Artbook bookshop and a public garden. It represents major L.A artists Paul McCarthy, Mark Bradford and Thomas Houseago.
432 S. Alameda St. // 213-595-5182 royaleprojects.com
939 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-553-9190 wildingcran.com
Husband-and-wife dealers Naomi deLuce Wilding and Anthony Cran opened in 2014, showing work by Martin Bennett and Karon Davis.
FASHION DISTRICT AVENUE DES ARTS
former commercial spaces into working studios, sometimes renting space for as little as three cents a square foot.
DTLA BOOK 2018
110 E. 9th St., Building C Lobby // 213-221-4545 fathom.gallery
Located inside the California Market Center Building, Fathom focuses on affordability and also publishes monographs.
818 S. Spring St. // 213-374-5959 // mugelloart.com
Opened in 2015, this space leans toward colorful abstraction.
1206 Maple Ave., Ste. 515 // post-la.com
THE HIVE GALLERY
This adventurous decade-old spot is also in the Bendix.
This Downtown art walk, with 22 studio spaces, spotlights affordable, neo-pop illustration.
MARIE BALDWIN GALLERY
Ren exhibits pop and urban artists, including Futura.
The rigorous program showcases work by young international artists like Hamishi Farah, Helen Johnson and Parker Ito.
This new gallery represents such artists as DTLA Book contributor Poul Lange. It will spotlight DTLA Book cover artist Peter Greco this spring (see page 54).
The gallery, which has a location in Hong Kong, spotlights street artists like Hebru Brantley. (See page 54 for info on our cover artist’s upcoming show.)
1206 S. Maple Ave., Ste. 1030 // 213-973-5327 chateaushatto.com
CLUB PRO LOS ANGELES
The son of painter Gene Vass and fashion designer Joan Vass, Jason Vass moved his eponymous gallery here in 2016.
Punky new gallery Club Pro exhibits artists who will be the big names in a few years, like Brandon Drew Holmes, Hayden Dunham and Miami-Dutch.
1452 E. 6th St. // 213-228-3334 jasonvass.com
807 S. Los Angeles St. // 213-232-8676 avenuedesarts.org
became known as the Arts District, converting
Jason Rhoades show at Hauser & Wirth
1525 S. Main St., 3rd Fl. // clubpro.la
729 S. Spring St. // 213-955-9051 // hivegallery.com
743 S. Santee St., Unit B // 213-293-4877 rengallery.com
814 S. Spring St., Ste. 2 // 310-600-4566 mariebaldwingallery.com
MONTE VISTA PROJECTS 1206 Maple Ave., Ste. 523 montevistaprojects.com
This artist-run space recently relocated to the 1929 Bendix Building from Highland Park.
THE SPACE BY ADVOCARTSY 924 S. San Pedro St. // 213-372-5096 advocartsy.com
A new-in-2018 gallery highlighting Iranian art.
GALLERY ROW DAC GALLERY
431 S. Broadway // 213-627-7374 // dacgallery.com
Active since 2009, this space focuses on large group shows.
739 Kohler St. // superchiefgallery.com
An artist-run outpost of the NYC original, it spotlights street art.
gallery with a conceptual art bent moved to DTLA in 2014.
THE MISTAKE ROOM
1811 E. 20th St. // 213-749-1200 // tmr.la
TIGER STRIKES ASTEROID 1206 Maple Ave., Ste. 523 // 209-553-0462 tigerstrikesasteroid.com
This new gallery is part of a network of artist-run spaces.
BELOW THE 10 FWY LOS ANGELES CENTER FOR DIGITAL ART
104 E. 4th St. // 323-646-9427 // lacda.com
LACDA is dedicated to new media and holds juried competitions.
2441 Hunter St. // 213-537-0737 // baertgallery.com
This contemporary gallery reps such artists as Ludovica Gioscia.
1923 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-806-7889 cb1gallery.com
118 Winston St., 2nd Fl. // thesedaysla.com
This gallery and design shop was opened by Stephen and Jodie Zeigler in 2014.
HISTORIC CORE FOLD GALLERY
453 S. Spring St. // 213-221-4585 // folddtla.com
This gallery/store, above The Last Bookstore’s main floor, focuses on street art and pop surrealism.
INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT PRODUCE HAUS
1318 E. 7th St. // firstname.lastname@example.org produce.haus
This appointment-only spot is operated by Zadik Zadikian, known for his gold-covered art.
Founded by a one-time marketing exec, it opened in a former soap factory in 2015.
This nonprofit space founded by Cesar Garcia showcases international artists.
1419 E. Adams Blvd. // 323-232-1158 // mixografia.com
Known for its 3-D paper printing technique, Mixografia has produced editions with everyone from Ed Ruscha to Alex Israel.
2011 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 213-680-3473 cirrusgallery.com
A DTLA pioneer, Cirrus moved from Hollywood in 1979. It’s known for fine printmaking with such names as Lita Albuquerque.
DURDEN AND RAY
1923 S. Santa Fe Ave. // durdenandray.com
Opened in 2009, this space is a collective of 24 artist/curators.
2245 E. Washington Blvd. // 323-282-5187 ghebaly.com
Previously in Culver City, this
Chinatown’s Little Gem Back in the late ’90s, gallerists began taking unused spaces on Chung King Road, a 500-foot pedestrian alley. Since then, the art scene has spread throughout Chinatown, all from this intimate spot hung with red paper lanterns.
ACTUAL SIZE 741 New High St. // actualsizela.com Curator collective located in a 250-square-foot former convenience store.
2276 E. 16th St. // 323-589-1135 // nightgallery.ca
BEL AMI 709 N. Hill St. // belami.info
Davida Nemeroff’s space hosts acclaimed shows, performance art and even comedy nights.
CHARLIE JAMES GALLERY 969 Chung King Rd. // cjamesgallery.com
This year-old gallery is the brainchild of a writer, an artist and a co-founder of Human Resources.
A strong L.A. player since 2009, repping Lars Jan and Sadie Barnett.
COAGULA CURATORIAL 974 Chung King Rd. // coagula.com
This gallery debuted in late 2017 with a show of Vanessa Beecroft’s ceramics.
EASTERN PROJECTS 900 N. Broadway // easternprojectsgallery.com
3311 E. Pico Blvd. // 323-645-5955 // piopico.us
Chung King Road
1923 S. Santa Fe Ave., Ste. 100 // 213-935-8253 simardbilodeau.com
Two French-Canadian dealers opened this L.A. outpost of their Shanghai space, showing young artists like Harmonia Rosales.
STUDIO C GALLERY
2349 S. Santa Fe Ave. // 323-363-2188 studiogalleryla.com
This gallery dedicated to the work of women artists is located at the Santa Fe Art Colony.
Brick-and-mortar presence of Coagula Art Journal founder Mat Gleason.
New gallery committed to a culturally diverse program.
FELLOWS OF CONTEMPORARY ART 970 N. Broadway // focala.org Since 1975, this artist-run, membership-based group has supported artists with shows and publications.
THE GOOD LUCK GALLERY 945 Chung King Rd. // thegoodluckgallery.com A spotlight on self-taught (aka outsider) artists.
HUMAN RESOURCES 410 Cottage Home St. // humanresourcesla.com This hyperinclusive, artist-run nonprofit program has been staging highly effective shows since 2010.
INSTITUTE FOR ART AND OLFACTION 932 Chung King Rd. // artandolfaction.com Saskia Wilson-Brown’s brainchild offers perfumery education, exhibitions and events dedicated to the intersection between the nose and art.
LEIMIN SPACE 443 Lei Min Way // leiminspace.com A new space drawing a young crowd for artists like Vanessa Gingold and Laura Soto.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - -
PERFORMANCE THEATERS Walt Disney Concert Hall
LIVE CONCERTS BELASCO
distinguished 1920s façade, while the inside boasts a 5,000-square-foot stage for the ultimate show.
Enjoy live music at this historic theater, where the real star has been the ornate, gilded dome ceiling since 1926.
CICADA RESTAURANT AND CLUB
This 7,100-seat music venue at L.A. LIVE sits in the middle between STAPLES Center and The Novo in terms of size.
1050 S. Hill St. // 213-746-5670 // thebelasco.com
617 S. Olive St. // cicadarestaurant.com
The 1920s Art Deco and 30-foot ceilings make for an elegant night out with live music.
777 Chick Hearn Ct. // 213-763-6020 // microsofttheater.com
THE NOVO BY MICROSOFT
800 W. Olympic Blvd., Ste. A335 // 213-765-7000 thenovodtla.com
800 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-745-0162 congaroom.com
135 N. Grand Ave. // 213-628-2772 centertheatregroup.org
Amelie, Jersey Boys, Bright Star, Something Rotten...there’s a reason this 2,000-seat Center Theatre Group venue has the largest theatrical subscription base on this coast.
DOROTHY CHANDLER PAVILION
135 N. Grand Ave. // 213-628-2772 // laopera.org
This 1964 hall with gigantic chandeliers is home to LA Opera and Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center.
EAST WEST PLAYERS
120 Judge John Aiso St. // 213-625-7000 eastwestplayers.org
The Asian-American theater company is collaborating on plays with such companies as Rogue Artists Ensemble.
DTLA BOOK 2018
Known for its immersive junkyard operas around town (including at its hidden Basic Flowers space in the Historic Core), this company moved from Melbourne to L.A. in 2015.
Inside Walt Disney Concert Hall, REDCAT offers cutting-edge plays, dance and performance art in a black-box theater, plus a lounge-bar and art gallery.
LOS ANGELES THEATRE CENTER
514 S. Spring St. // 213-489-0994 // thelatc.org
Operated by the Latino Theater Company and housing several stages, it offers theater, dance and spoken word programs.
MARK TAPER FORUM 135 N. Grand Ave. // 213-628-2772 centertheatregroup.org
There’s not a bad seat in the house at the Center Theatre Group’s adventurous stage at The Music Center, thanks to its half-circle shape.
631 W. 2nd St. // 213-237-2800 // redcat.org
Catch live musical acts from global artists at this Latin dance club and venue.
448 S. Main St. // 323- 284-5727 // regenttheater.com
1038 S. Hill St. // 213-746-4674 // clubmayan.com
Bring the drama. Outside is a
WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL
111 S. Grand Ave. // 323-850-2000 // laphil.com and lamasterchorale.org
Home to the L.A. Philharmonic and Los Angeles Master Chorale, this Frank Gehry-designed hall also offers free tours of its architecture and gardens.
200 S. Grand Ave. // 213-621-1050 colburnschool.edu
This classical-music hall at the Colburn School is a main venue for the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.
THE REGENT THEATER
Thanks to the ingenious slanted floor, there are no bad seats in this theater.
SPORTS & CONCERT ARENAS Dodger Stadium 1000 Vin Scully Ave. // 866-363-4377 // losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com Go blue or go home. Dodger Stadium has been hosting Dodger fans since 1962 and has a capacity of 56,000 seats, making it a prime concert venue for big acts like Guns N’ Roses and Beyoncé as well.
STAPLES Center 1111 S. Figueroa St., Ste. 3100 // 213-742-7100 // staplescenter.com Welcome to the hub of DTLA. Between Lakers, Clippers, Sparks and Kings games and concerts, STAPLES Center sees about 4 million visitors a year.
FROM TOP LEFT: COURTESY LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC ASSOCIATION; ALKAN2011 | DREAMSTIME.COM
Formerly Club Nokia, this music/ event venue at L.A. LIVE has just over 2,000 seats and is known for good acoustics.
W. 3 t.
W. 5 th S t.
y a w d a o r B
1 UNITED ARTISTS THEATRE Opened in 192 7 // 2 ,2 14 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: This theater was built for United Artists, the company formed by Charlie Chaplin, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford and D. W. Griffith to gain independence from the big studios of the time. THE LATEST: Now The Theatre at Ace Hotel, it hosts concerts and events. UCLA’s Center for the Art of Performance brings some of its programming here as well, including performances by Taylor Mac and Angélique Kidjo.
ORPHEUM THEATRE Opened in 1926 // 2 ,000 seats
YOU’VE SEEN IT IN: Broadcasts of American Idol, America’s Got Talent, the seventh and eighth season finales of RuPaul’s Drag Race. THE LATEST: The theater’s $4 million makeover in 2003 has really paid off. The Orpheum is alive and thriving as a concert venue, film location and movie theater.
3 RIALTO THEATRE
Opened in 1917 // 800 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: The Rialto opened with The Garden of Allah starring Broadway favorite Helen Ware. THE LATEST: Urban Outfitters restored the theater’s marquee and opened a retail outlet in December 2013.
4 TOWER THEATRE CHRIS SHARP
Opened in 192 7 // 900 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: This theater was the first one in Los Angeles to be wired for talking pictures. THE LATEST: Rumors say it’ll be a future home of an Apple store, the first in DTLA.
5 GLOBE THEATRE
9 ARCADE THEATRE
6 LOEW’S STATE THEATRE
10 CAMEO THEATRE
Opened in 1913 // 782 capacit y
YOU’VE SEEN IT IN: J.Lo’s video “On the Floor” (2011) was filmed here. THE LATEST: Reopened in July 2015. Twice a month, the theater hosts TEASE, if you please!, a modern burlesque show.
Opened in 192 1 // 2 , 4 50 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: A six-year-old Judy Garland debuted here as Francis Gumm, appearing as part of performance trio The Gumm Sisters in 1929. THE LATEST: Currently called the State Theatre and home to a Spanish-language church, the Catedral de la Fe.
Opened in 1910 // 1 , 4 00 seats originally; 850 seats currently
YOU’VE SEEN IT IN: If you made the unfortunate mistake of seeing Daredevil (2003), starring Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner, you saw the theater’s rooftop, with L.A.’s Broadway played off as New York City. THE LATEST: Retail space in the lobby.
Opened in 1910 // 900 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Until it closed in 1991, the Cameo Theatre was the longest continuously operating movie theater in the United States. THE LATEST: Retail space in the lobby.
7 PALACE THEATRE
11 ROXIE THEATRE
12 MILLION DOLLAR THEATRE
Opened in 1911 // 1,956 seats originally; 1,068 seats currently
YOU’VE SEEN IT IN: Dreamgirls (2006), The Big Lebowski (1988) as Maude’s apartment and in Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” music video (1983). THE LATEST: After years as a filming location, the theater was given a $1 million renovation in 2011, opening the doors to concerts, movie screenings and other events.
LOS ANGELES THEATRE Opened in 1931 // 2 ,000 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Charlie Chaplin invested his own money to finish this lavish theater in time for the premiere of his movie City Lights. With a construction price tag of $1.5 million, it was the most expensive theater built up to that time on a per-seat basis. THE LATEST: The theater is now earning its money as a film location and event space.
Opened in 1932 // 1 ,600 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: It was the very last historic theater built on Broadway, designed by famed architect John M. Cooper. Its claim to fame as the only Art Deco theater in the district makes it easy to spot. THE LATEST: Retail space in the lobby.
Opened in 1918 // 2 ,024 seats
LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Opened February 1, 1918, by impresario Sid Grauman as one of the earliest and largest movie palaces in the country, the theater hosted jazz and big band stars such as Billie Holiday, Artie Shaw and Lionel Hampton in the ’40s. THE LATEST: Located next door to a thriving Grand Central Market, it’s enjoying new life as prime real estate for live events and movie screenings.
DTLA BOOK 2018
FAVES - PLAY -
Downtown L.A. Walking Tours
213-399-3820 // dtlawalkingtours.com
Formed in 2009, this company saw a growing interest in learning about Downtown Los Angeles and an influx of tourists and new residents became all the more reason to share the rich history of these changing neighborhoods. The Old & New Downtown L.A. Tour focuses on the past and the present, while L.A.’s Beginnings looks back at the history that helped shape the city. For TV and film buffs, the Hollywood in Downtown L.A. Tour heads to the filming locations of many popular movies. Tours are priced at $20. 670 Moulton Ave., #9A // 310-503-2365 // laarttours.com
For more modern-day enjoyment of all the fun things Downtown L.A. has to offer, there’s L.A. Art Tours. They paired up with SoCal Brew Bus for their Urban Art and Craft Beer Tour ($80), which is exactly what it sounds like, covering three craft breweries, graffiti and murals, all in the blossoming Arts District. If beer flights aren’t your thing, the Downtown L.A. Graffiti/Mural Tour ($17) is led by actual DTLA muralists and artists who take you through the Arts District on foot to see completed pieces as well as artists at work.
Los Angeles Conservancy
523 W. 6th St., Ste. 826 // 213-623-2489 // laconservancy.org
In a city with an ever-changing skyline, this influential nonprofit organization has been a champion for the historical preservation of Los Angeles for decades. As part of its work, there’s a wide selection of walking tours, mostly centered on Downtown, priced at $15. The Historic Downtown Walking Tour starts at Pershing Square and showcases historic and cultural landmarks Downtown, including the Central Library and Grand Central Market. There’s also the Art Deco Tour, where participants can appreciate the fine architecture of buildings from the 1920s and ’30s, with stops at the Eastern Columbia Building and the Title Guarantee & Trust Building. And for those who love vintage movie palaces, the Broadway Historic Theatre and Commercial District Tour focus on the evolution of Broadway. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to see a few theaters from the inside.
ARCHITECTURE TOURS L.A.
It’s not every day that you get to take a tour of L.A.’s oldest buildings with an actual architecture historian like Laura Massino Smith. This tour gets you up close and personal. Cost: $75 per person/$80 single traveler. Duration: 2–3 hours.
For $79, you’ll experience four courses in three hours and get a chance to go behind the scenes with local chefs and restaurant owners. Group size is limited to 12 people to keep it cozy.
323-464-7868 // architecturetoursla.com
L.A. Art Tours
DTLA BOOK 2018
BIKE LA CYCLE TOURS
lacycletours.com // 323-550-8265
They say biking is the best way to really experience L.A. With this leisurely paced tour, you’re sure to discover new pockets of the city you thought you knew. Cost: $65.
213-915-8687 // esotouric.com
If you’re looking to mix it up, you’ve come to the right place. This is no cookie-cutter company. You can choose from tours like true crime or literary (think Raymond Chandler). Cost: $58–$65.
213-394-0901 // avitaltours.com
SIDEWALK FOOD TOURS OF LOS ANGELES
877-568-6877 // foodtoursoflosangeles.com
Looking for just the highlights? These family-friendly tours will take you to six renowned stops that are bustling with tourists and locals alike, including the can’t-miss Grand Central Market. Tickets are $75; free for kiddos ages 1–3.
213-798-4749 // sixtaste.com
Experience this city’s culinary diversity on a walking tour and get to know eclectic Downtown eateries in neighborhoods like Little Tokyo and the Arts District. For $65–$70, you’ll eat well at five to seven spots and learn about the area’s culture and history, all in about 3½ hours.
FROM TOP LEFT: POUL LANGE; NENITORX | DREAMSTIME.COM
GAMES & RECREATION HISTORIC LIBRARY
CENTRAL LIBRARY TOUR
630 W. 5th St. // 213-228-7168 // lapl.org
Marvel at this prized historic building, including the Tom Bradley Wing with its awe-inspiring chandeliers. They offer free daily docent-led tours for an in-depth experience, and free walk-in tours on certain days.
MURDER & MYSTERY THE REAL LOS ANGELES TOURS
213-316-8687 // thereallosangelestours.com
This company offers a dozen different options including a tour (2½ hours, $30) that looks at the noir underbelly of the Historic Core from days gone by.
NEON NEON CRUISE
818-696-2149 // neonmona.org
800 W. Olympic Blvd. // 213-542-4880 bowlluckystrike.com
Between DJs, mood lighting, and 18 premium lanes, this is where bowling night is an elevated experience. Enjoy drinks from their expert mixologists and a full gastropub menu.
XLANES FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT CENTER 333 S. Alameda St., Ste. 300 // 213-229-8910 xlanesla.com
Look no further for your onestop-shop night out. XLanes has everything you’d ever need under one roof: bowling, billiards, an arcade, even a karaoke room.
1500 S. Los Angeles St. // 310-922-4562 getthefoutroom.com
If escape rooms seem like child’s play to you, this VR adventure is the thrill you’ve been waiting for. With more than 22 puzzles to solve against the clock, it’s no wonder The Virus is billed as one of the most advanced escape games in L.A.
KARAOKE MAX KARAOKE STUDIO
333 S. Alameda St., Ste. 216 // 310-421-2550
ESCAPE GAME ESCAPE ROOM
120 E. 8th St. // 213-689-3229 // escaperoomla.com
Put your sleuth skills to the test
The Museum of Neon Art’s Saturday night Neon Cruise ($65) has been around for 17 years, highlighting the best neon signs and movie marquees and permanent installations of neon art in Downtown and Hollywood.
This BYOB/food karaoke bar is where you can rent a private room and sing your heart out without the weirdos (except the ones you bring).
The American Contemporary Ballet
The Bloc, 700 S. Flower Street, Suite 3200 // 213-878-9020 // acbdances.com Dancers perform classical works right in front of you in a raw, intimate space on the 32nd floor of The Bloc building with live music and 360-degree views. The company was founded in 2004 in NYC and chose L.A. as its home in 2011. An artist reception follows every performance.
Chinatown Summer Nights chinatownsummernights.com
The crowds flock to Chinatown for this seasonal block party, which usually takes place on the first Saturday of the summer months. The festivities include cooking demos by Chinese chefs, cultural activities and music by KCRW.
Downtown Art Walk downtownartwalk.org
This free, self-guided walking tour has turned into a fullgrown street fair with food trucks and entertainment. It attracts huge crowds every second Thursday of the month. For info and maps, start at the Art Walk Lounge, located at 634 S. Spring St.
Grand Performances 617 S. Olive St. // grandperformances.org
People wait all year for this spectacular summer concert series at Grand Park. Not only is it free and family-friendly, but you can bring your own food and drink and enjoy live performances under the open sky.
Lucha Vavoom The Mayan Theater, 1038 S. Hill St. // luchavavoom.com
Part lucha libre (Mexican wrestling), part burlesque show, part comedy, this fun night out is an adrenalinepumping experience you have to see for yourself.
Night on Broadway nightonbroadway.la
Now in its 10th year, this annual free arts and music street festival attracts huge crowds. Food trucks and live entertainment line the blocks and historic theaters along Broadway. Check their website for next year’s date.
Tuesday Night Café
Aratani Courtyard/Union Center for the Arts, 120 Judge John Aiso St. tuesdaynightproject.org On the first and third Tuesday of every month from April to September, this free open mic night features visual and performing artists of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander descent. The shows emphasize art and community and are held in Little Tokyo.
213-537-0687 // cartwheelart.com ANASTASIA PETUKHOVA
in any one of these themed mystery rooms. You and your team have 60 minutes to uncover clues and solve puzzles. Tickets range from $32–$37.
Cartwheel’s Underground L.A. tours ($80) access some of DTLA’s famed Prohibition-era secret tunnels and speakeasies along with modern watering holes. The American Contemporary Ballet
DTLA BOOK 2018
CONTRIBUTORS LESLEY MCKENZIE—who writes about restaurateurs Neal and Amy Knoll Fraser, and profiles Heidi Merrick and other top DTLA fashion designers—is the deputy editor of C magazine and previously served as editor in chief of Angeleno magazine. Born in Scotland and raised between the Arabian desert and the Alps, she now calls Venice, California, home. See pages 24, 28, 40
Born in L.A. and raised by the beach, JOSH
SPENCER , who
photographed “5 Essential Rules for Totally Enjoying
LINDA IMMEDIATO , whose story, “Greater Goods,” spotlights
DTLA,” shoots portraits, fashion and video. “My goal is
five companies with giving back built into their business
to tell stories,” he says. “I hope the viewer is drawn in
model, has worked as an on-air news reporter for NPR and
enough to ask what happened before and after the frame
an editor at Gourmet, LA Weekly, Angeleno and Pasadena
was taken.” His clients have included The Mondrian and
magazine. Currently, she’s the style editor of Los Angeles
Garrett Leight California Optical. Check out his work on
magazine, where she produces seasonal fashion shoots.
See page 56
See page 6
IAN SPANIER , who shot portraits of some of DTLA’s top
creatives, began taking photographs at six years old when
illustrated “The Craziest Bar in DTLA,”
his parents gave him his first point-and-shoot camera. He’s
credits growing up in Denmark as a
shot for Condé Nast Traveler, MTV, HBO, Marie Claire, The
major influence on her graphic style and
New York Times and Los Angeles magazine and has published
color choices. She’s worked for The New
the books Playboy: The Complete Guide to Cigars and Local
Yorker, The New York Times, fashion
Heroes: Portraits of American Volunteer Firefighters. Spanier
designer Junya Watanabe and Audi.
recently left New York for the sunny coast, and now lives with
Her website is ullapuggaard.com.
his wife and two sons in L.A. His website is ianspanier.com.
See page 68
UL L A P UG G A A R D , who
See pages 72, 92, 100
MA XWELL WILLIAMS , who profiles L.A.-based K ATHRYN
DTLA BOOK 2018
ROMEYN —who writes in “The Taste
cover a r tist Peter Greco, has
Makers” about nine people who are inf luencing DTLA
written for The New York Times,
culture a nd lifest yle—is a globe-hopping freela nce
Vogue, Dazed, W and The Wall
journalist who covers travel, design, wellness and food.
Street Journal, as well as a number
Along with contributing to Vogue, Architectural Digest
of books. He is on the board of
and Robb Report, she surfs, plays drums and seeks out
directors at the Institute for Art
Neapolitan-style pizza wherever she goes.
and Olfaction in Chinatown, and he DJs at clubs around L.A.
See page 90
See page 50
LIZ OHANESIAN —who writes about taking
Metro from DTLA to access the rest of Los Angeles—is an L.A.-based arts and culture journalist. Her work has appeared in LA Weekly, Playboy and The Village Voice. “After moving to the Downtown area five years ago, my use of L.A.’s Metro system increased dramatically. It’s been exciting to share what I’ve learned.” See pages 14, 62, 80
JOHN BENGTSON , who writes about the DTLA spots where silent stars once filmed, is a business lawyer, film historian and author of the blog silentlocations.wordpress.com. His books Silent Echoes, Silent Traces and Silent Visions reveal the history hidden in the background of the films of Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin and Harold Lloyd. He serves on the board of the San Francisco Silent Film Festival. See page 32
I A N W O OD
is a former mobi le-phone-
technology consultant who recently began flying drones for the film and TV industries. When a video he made of DTLA went viral in 2014, producers and directors started to
K AYOKO SUZUKI-LANGE
SHANA WONG SOLARES
Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer email@example.com
Co-Founder & Publisher firstname.lastname@example.org
EDITORIAL DIRECTOR For the 2018 edition, we asked Degen Pener to oversee our editorial vision. He’s the former culture editor of The Hollywood Reporter and was previously editor in chief of Angeleno magazine. He has contributed stories on design, art, philanthropy and timepieces to such publications as Cultured, The New York Times, Elle Decor, Los Angeles magazine, C magazine and Santa Barbara Magazine. He also wrote three stories for this issue: see pages 6, 16, 72.
Consulting Editorial Director
MELISSA BR ANDZEL Copy Editor
DEBR A DILGER MARY GALLAGHER MARK NOCKELS ROBIN OKMAN
SPECIAL THANKS TO: Poul Lange, Richard Solares and our families for their unconditional support and contributions. PUBLISHER’S NOTE: While every effort was made to ensure accuracy at the time of publication, it is always best to call ahead and confirm that the information is up to date.
call him hoping to replicate the cinematic, dreamy nature of his drone videos. See page 4
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the publisher. Scanning, uploading and electronic distribution of this book or the facilitation of such without the permission of the publisher is prohibited. Opinions in DTLA BOOK are solely those of the editors and writers and are not necessarily endorsed by our distribution partners.
CHRIS SHARP, who created the art for “DTLA DEBRA SCHERER FOR THE CULTURE CRUSH
Noir,” is a New York–based illustrator. His clients have included A merica n Express, Aveeno, Bloomberg, Coca-Cola,
Copyright © 2018 by District 8 Media LLC. 2nd Edition // First published in the United States of America in 2017
Printed in Korea
Fast Company, Laura Mercier, Newsweek, UNICEF, United Nations and West Surfing. You can see more of his work on his website, instachrissharp.com. See page 44
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