The Dream Factory and Mecca of the world cinema but also the Valley of the Dolls and Tinseltown… Welcome to sweet like cotton candy, invigorating like freshly roasted coffee, glamour like pink stiletto shoes with gilded heels Hollywood! For those who don’t know, Hollywood isn’t a separate city but it’s one of Los Angeles neighborhoods. Since 2006 this neighborhood has its formal boundaries recognized by the state of California. By the way, its relevant law was signed by the 38th Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Here are all the things we love about Hollywood.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
One of the oldest cemeteries in Los Angeles founded in 1899 is located at 6000 Santa Monica Boulevard according to Wikipedia. The reviews of those who visited this place vary. Someone says this place is from the category of must see, someone approves that place is nice but optional to visit, just a peaceful park with squirrels, peacocks and a pond with swans. Well, how many people, so many opinions.
Probably this place will catch more interest of those who wish to see the graves of celebrities who were buried there. For example, Victor Fleming, the director of films «The Wizard of Oz» and «Gone with the Wind»; Joe Dassin, the famous French singer and songwriter born in the United States; Hobart J. Whitley, «Father of Hollywood», and Tamara Tumanova, the prima ballerina, choreographer and actress emigrated from Russia. Here you can find the Toto, faithful Ellie’s friend in «the Wizard of Oz» memorial.
If you find yourself in Hollywood on a Saturday night from May till September, and will have some free time and wish to see a good old movie – welcome to the Forever Cemetery! Take a blanket, and enjoy the movies from the past century projected on the wall of the Cathedral Mausoleum. And the souls of stars buried here will be grateful for your attention.
Do you like Thai Tom Yam? Welcome to East Hollywood, the neighborhood with its very own Thai Town. Or do you like Armenian khash? One of the Armenian Diaspora centers in Hollywood called Small Armenia is also located here. And from 170 thousand of Hollywood population the number of Armenians is about 50 thousand. May be you prefer Mexican food? Well, up to 60% of the East Hollywood population are Latino people of any race according to 2000 U.S. Census. So, you will not be left here without a good taco and Spanish paella.
This is the third in population density neighborhood of Los Angeles conveniently located nearby Hollywood, artsy Silver Lake and business Downtown LA. Decided to visit these neighborhoods? Red line subway or numerous buses will help you. If you have been thinking about something more spiritual, you can visit the Church of Scientology in East Hollywood. Maybe you have ten or twenty dollars that you don’t really need? Make a donation to Braille Institute of America, helping children and adults who have lost vision, to adapt to life. The institute was founded in 1919 by J. Robert Atkinson, cowboy who had lost his vision for 6 years before that.
And if you are tired of the nationalities and styles mix and bustle of East Hollywood, go to a quiet and peaceful Barnsdall Art Park. Don’t forget to visit Hollyhock House designed by legendary Frank Lloyd Wright.
How to make the ordinary (well, sort of ordinary) sidewalk the object of the 10 million tourists’ pilgrimage annually and the theme of hundreds of articles, posts and tweets? Elementary, my dear Watson! Take one of the central streets of one of the most famous neighborhoods of the city. Better if the city is called Los Angeles, neighborhood – Hollywood and the street – Hollywood Boulevard. And create a Hollywood Walk of Fame by embedding of pink terrazzo stars in the sidewalks (find in Wikipedia what terrazzo is). By the way, star has to be rimmed with brass. And that’s all?! Well, one more little thing: the name of a celebrity should be on the star.
For installing the star with his or her name, the honoree pays about $30,000. Also the celebrity is obliged to attend the presentation ceremony because the PR will not be superfluous. Without the guest of honor the ceremony will be cancelled. At the moment more than 2.5 thousand stars are installed, and their number is constantly growing. To get a star on the Walk of Fame, the celebrity must significantly contribute to the development of the motion pictures, broadcast television, audio recording or music, radio or theater. Or to fly to the Moon like the guys from the Apollo 11 Mission (althoughthe star in their honor has the shape of the Moon). Or else you can just be born as a Mickey Mouse, and then the Studio will pay for your perpetuation under 10 million tourists’ feet.
Walking along the walk of Fame, you can look at TCL Chinese Theatre (until 2013 known as Grauman’s (Mann’s) Chinese Theatre) and marvel at the artifacts of Chinese culture.
And you can see the movie stars’ hands and feet imprints in front of the theatre. Not the public and not the Academy but the owners of the theater themselves decide who will have the honor to leave their fingerprints. The first imprint on the cement in front of the theater was left accidentally by Norma Talmadge, the silent film actress.
And don’t forget the Dolby Theatre (formerly Kodak theatre) hosting the Academy Awards ceremonies (the Oscars). By the way, during World War II the statuettes for the ceremony were made not from britannia metal plated with gold but from gypsum.
Hollywood Heights is the neighborhood located to the north of Hollywood and separated from it by Franklin Avenue. And also it is American TV series that started in 2012. Hollywood Heights is a kind of Riviera for actors and artists who decided to gain heart of American Mecca.
Where to go, what to see? Be sure to take outrageously slow for our high-tech time High Tower Elevator that will take you to the 5-story height in its open cabin, allowing you to admire the wonderful views of Los Angeles and Hollywood. By High Tower elevator you will get to High Tower Apartments in the Streamline Moderne style from the movie «The Long Goodbye».
Want some magic in your life? Then go to The Magic Castle. It’s a nightclub for magicians and clubhouse of Academy of Magical Arts. By the way, there is a program for beginners named the Magic Castle Junior Group. Once a week the participants of this program conduct their own performances in The Magic Castle. This is the right place if you really wanted to catch the train to Hogwarts but missed, come and try your luck here.
Have you already walked 9 times around Audrey Hepburn’s star on the Walk of Fame to find true love? Don’t forget to keep away from Charlie Chaplin’s star, with all respect to the great comedian. By all means visit the wax museum Madame Tussauds Hollywood. Wax figures presented there are very similar to the originals. Why pay $20 for taking a picture with pseudo stars scurrying around the Walk of Fame if you can take a photo with stars wax copies?
It is the chic neighborhood for the Bohemia, lovers of luxury boutiques, restaurants and nightclubs. There is a big LGBT community (up to 40% of the population) and the Russian Diaspora. There is Small Russia in West Hollywood (people call it WeHo) similar to Little Armenia in East Hollywood. Russians are up to 14 % of the West Hollywood population, so there are a lot of Russian food stores. The overall population density in WeHo is 1.7 times lower than in East Hollywood.
The main street of West Hollywood is Sunset Boulevard with its famous Sunset Strip. This is an area of 2.5 km length where Los Angeles night clubs thrive. There are famous bars, rock clubs and restaurants. There is Sunset Strip Market on the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Sherbourne Drive full of organic and certified farm products, homemade beer and different types of wine. Don’t miss Sierra Towers, the 31-story high-rise condominium for spectacular views of the city.
Blue Bottle Coffee
How to stay awake in the busiest neighborhood in Los Angeles, especially when you’re a young actor and should work 24/7? The answer is well-known to locals – third wave of coffee! Try Blue Bottle Coffee, a major player in coffee scene in LA, which produces only high-quality coffee and considers coffee as an artisanal foodstuff. If you are not afraid to fall asleep in the next 10 minutes, you may want to try the vintage “pour over” and watch a barista patiently and methodically washing water over coffee grinds.
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