Posts Tagged ‘Beverly Hills’

IMAGERY – Ye Olde Beverly Hills Hotel

Click on images for larger views.

As it’s a gorgeous day outside, my friend Geraldine and I will be observing interesting people and sights during a lazy Sunday wander through the indisputably historic Beverly Hills Hotel. Hell, we’ll probably even enjoy a cocktail/nosh at the Polo Lounge and hang out until we just can’t take the color combinations of pink and green any longer. Because that’s how we roll. We’re rogues.

Anyhoooo, the image below is what Hotel California looked like in 1920. If you look, you’ll see that this view is from Will Rogers’ Park (land which singer George Michaels is now banned from stepping foot on) overlooking Sunset Boulevard.

After the jump is another little treat… something we probably won’t ever see in front of the Beverly Hills Hotel ever again. Take a look at where the streetcar is located on the left side of the landscape photo below… that’s the exact location where the next image was captured some years later.©USC Digital Archive

Photograph of an exterior view of the Beverly Hills Hotel, 1920. A lavish courtyard is pictured in the foreground, with steps leading up to its paved walkway, which is lined to either side by palm trees. Several auxiliary walkways that branch from it demarcate circular areas of grass, beyond which a streetcar is visible parked in the driveway that stands in front of the large, three-story, L-shaped hotel. Three spires extend from the roof at the crook of the “L” from which flags wave. A second, equally large building can be seen in the far distance to the right, along with mountains.

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FLASHBACK – Black Gold at Kiddyland

Ever wonder what was on the corner of Beverly and La Cienega before the Beverly Center existed?

Kiddie rides and oil rigs. And the oil rigs are still there. Huh.

[youtube width=”590″ height=”420″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUYc3uZbRW4[/youtube] “In 1946, Dave Bradley opened Beverly Park and Playland (Kiddyland) at Beverly and LaCienega. It had a Tilt-a-Whirl, bumper cars, a roller coaster, merry-go-round, pony rides, blue hippo, you name it. And gourmet food, according to their ads.

…One of his visitors at Playland (Kiddyland) was Walt Disney, and Bradley became an advisor to Disney on many of the rides at Disneyland. He was one of the geniuses who decided that everything on Main Street would be built to 7/8 scale, so people would feel tall and not so overwhelmed as they walked around.” (SOURCE)

“This little amusement park, complete with roller coaster and spook house, sat in the shadow of one of the thousands of disguised oil pumps creakily pumping up profits from the huge oil reservoir under the area. Many a bedraggled parent found solace here, as for the price of a few 25 cent tickets, children could be let loose to ply the cheesy old rides while Mom and Dad sipped soda under a tree.” (SOURCE)

After 28 years, Beverly Park closed in 1974 and in 1978 plans for Beverly Center were announced. The mall opened in 1982. More than you ever needed to know about Kiddyland can be found on the Facebook page dedicated to the park.


LOCAL – The Crazy Robertson

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhJJauyvxXQ[/youtube] I’ve been learning surprising new things every single day since I created this site. I now know that there’s a catfish pond on La Cienega and a secret DMV, for example! But today’s revelation has blown me away.

Right after I moved back into town last August, I was walking down Robertson and pondered aloud to a friend, “I wonder what ever happened to the homeless guy who used to roller disco on this corner…” Prior to moving away, I had eaten many a weekend breakfast while watching this long-limbed man in spandex dancing spastically to a boombox… the corner seemed so empty and sad without him on it. My friends and I always commented on his groovy dance routines (while wondering aloud how anyone could possibly bear to exercise in the Santa Ana sun while wearing so much tight black clothing), and I’ll admit I felt a pang of remorse to consider I might never have his sweet moves to go with my pancakes ever again. Fearful that the man’s story of homelessness and mental issues may have ended in the worst way, I tried not to dwell on it. But the thing is, I’m a dweller. I *had* to know the answer of what happened to him. So today I turned to Google to research the fate of my mystery homeless dance king.

There was no possibly way on Earth to expect what I found… it appears that John Wesley Jermien (AKA “Crazy Robertson“) apparently became a hipster fashion icon while I was away.

WAIT… WHAT??!?

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