Bunker Hill, Los Angeles
Bunker Hill, not far from the present Civic Center, was where the well-to-do Angelenos lived in their Victorian houses at the turn of the century. In 1901 an open cable-railway, modeled on that in San Francisco, was constructed to make it easier for the residents to climb the eastern part of its hill, and which during the brief period of its existence earned the name "Angel's Flight" (now the name of a restaurant in the Hyatt Regency Hotel).The opulent homes were lost in the 1950s and 60s, replaced with high rise buildings of both residential and none residential nature which now comprise downtown Los Angeles.
Bunker Hill Map
Transit: Dash minibuses run to Bunker Hill.
The Museum of Contemporary Art features artwork from 1940 to present. The collection is spread out among three facilities with the main building, MOCA Grand Avenue, located on Bunker Hill.
Pershing Square, located in downtown Los Angeles, has been in existence in one form or another since 1866. It has undergone several re-inventions but is today an outdoor concert and event area with various activities depending on the season. One of the more modern additions to the Pershing Square calendar is ice skating. In the late 1990s an outdoor ice skating rink was added for the time period between mid November and mid January. This can be a fun place to visit over the holidays either to participate in the ice skating or watch the skating while enjoying some free concerts.The square hosts a number of concerts and special events throughout the year. Upcoming attractions are listed on the LA parks website.
Pacific Coast Exchange (closed)
The stock exchange known as Pacific Coast Exchange (233 S. Beaudry Avenue) came into being in 1957 as a result of the merger of the previously independent Los Angeles and San Francisco exchanges, and today is the second largest in the country after that of New York. The Los Angeles Stock Exchange was founded in 1889, and that in San Francisco in 1882. Only about 10% of the shares traded here are issued by Californian companies, the rest are also handled on the New York Exchange or the American Stock Exchange (also in New York and some other American cities).From a gallery, where there are some historic artifacts, you can watch what is going on in the stock exchange.ATTRACTION IS PERMANENTLY CLOSED.
Known as the shortest railway in the world, Angels Flight Railway covers a distance of 298 feet as it transports people up and down Bunker Hill. The railway was first opened in 1901 when this neighborhood was one of posh Victorian homes and well to do residents.The funicular service was terminated and the railway dismantled in 1969 as the area was being redeveloped. However it reopened, in a slightly different location in the 1990s. It closed again in the 2000s but is once again functioning and open to the public for a nominal fee. If you are in the area you may want to ride it simply for the experience rather than the convenience.
Millennium Biltmore Hotel
The Biltmore Hotel (506 S. Grand Avenue), built in 1923 and renovated several times since, the last time in 1986, is in the Renaissance style and has been a listed building since 1969. Although the immediate vicinity of the hotel, especially Pershing Square which is frequented mainly by the homeless, no longer retains its former elegance, this has not damaged the hotel's reputation, since in 1986 the main entrance was moved from S. Olive Street, directly on Pershing Square, to Grand Avenue at the back. The foyers preserved in the Spanish style are impressive as is the Biltmore Bowl banqueting hall, seating 1,500.
Westin Bonaventure Hotel
This Downtown hotel, near the freeways (400 South Figueroa Street, with a second entrance on Flower Street), is one of the most unconventional buildings designed by the hotel architect John Portman of Atlanta. The five free-standing round towers, with lifts going up and down on the outside, dominate the skyscraper scene of Downtown Los Angeles like no other building. Around the inner atrium, in the building of which much concrete was used, are numerous shops and restaurants. The hotel, built in 1978, has 1,500 rooms.
One of the few shopping centers within Los Angeles proper, and also one of the oldest, is to be found very close to some large hotels (505 S. Figueroa Street). In addition to dozens of shops and restaurants, the information office of the RTD (Rapid Transit District) is situated inside.Worth seeing is the fountain sculpture, created by the Austrian architectural artist Herbert Bayer, which stands in front of the center.
Los Angeles Central Library
The main library, which has 65 branches in Los Angeles, suffered a serious fire in April 1986. At that time the whole patent collection was destroyed, as well as 400,000 of the 2.3 million volumes. Only 400,000 books remained undamaged.The building, recently restored and modernized, was erected in the years 1922-26. It is worth visiting the interestingly arranged internal rooms, some with murals depicting the history of California.
Address: 630 West Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071-2097, United States
Opening hours: 10am-8pm; Wed: 10am-6pm; Fri: 10am-6pm; Sat: 10am-6pm; Closed: Sun
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Thanksgiving - USA (4th Thursday, Nov), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25)
Entrance fee: FREE
Disability Access: Full facilities for persons with disabilities.
US Bank Tower (formerly First Interstate Bank World Center)
With its pyramidal tower, the Central Library represents a mixture of Beaux Arts and various oriental styles.Completed in 1990, the First Interstate Bank World Center is one of the world's twenty-five tallest buildings, and the tallest on the west coast of the United States, at 1018ft/310m. It also has the dubious distinction of being the tallest building located in a seismic zone 4. Sale of the air rights around the Central Library to the tower's developers provided the library with the necessary funds for its recent restoration.
Wells Fargo History Museum
Like the museum of the same name at the big Californian bank in San Francisco, this museum (333 South Grand Street) also describes, by means of artifacts and photos, the bank's history and its contribution to the development of the West and of California in particular. Slides and videos are shown in a small projection-room.
333 South Hope Building
The building at 333 South Hope in Los Angeles is one of the tallest in the world at 743ft/226m. It was completed in 1975.
Gas Company Tower
At 749ft/228m, the Gas Company Tower in Los Angeles is one of the 100 tallest buildings in the world. It was completed in 1991.
Two California Plaza
Completed in 1992, Two California Plaza in Los Angeles is one of the 100 tallest buildings in the world, reaching a height of 750ft/229m or 52 stories.
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