Paul Revere Williams

Monday – February 24, 2020 by Jon Ponder
Clockwise from left: Berman-Kohner Building on the Sunset Strip, Paul Williams at the LAX Theme Building and Saks Fifth Avenue Beverly Hills

Paul Revere Williams was one of the most talented – and prolific – architects in Los Angeles in the 20th century. His work included some of the best-known commercial buildings in the city — notably the Los Angeles County Courthouse, Saks Fifth Avenue Beverly Hills, renovations on both the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Ambassador Hotel (demolished in 2006) and Al Jolson’s tomb in Hillside Memorial Park.… Read the rest

Henry Hancock

Henry Hancock, a New Hampshire-born, Harvard-trained lawyer and surveyor, arrived in Los Angeles in 1852, two years after California was admitted into the union. In 1860, Hancock acquired Rancho La Brea, a 650-acre tract whose footprint included the future city of West Hollywood and city of Los Angeles districts of Hollywood, Hancock Park, Museum Row and the world-famous La Brea Tar Pits.


Alla Nazimova

In 1919, not long after Metro Pictures had put Russian-born Broadway phenomenon Alla Nazimova under contract, she moved into an estate called Hayvenhurst at Sunset and Crescent Heights Boulevard. Initially she recreated her success on the stage in film, but after a series of career stumbles she was facing bankruptcy and converted the estate into a hotel. Later owners named it the Garden of Allah.