Century City wouldn’t exist without 20th Century Fox: The neighborhood was built on one of the movie studio’s backlots. In 1956, Fox’s president decided to repurpose the land for real estate development and with the help of his nephew-in-law, an attorney who’s been dubbed “the father of Century City,” commissioned a master plan from an architectural firm. The first building went up in 1963.Referencing 20th Century Fox, the neighborhood was formerly used as one of the movie studio’s backlots until it was repurposed for real estate in 1956. Century City is bisected by Olympic Boulevard and occupies less than one square mile.
Though nearly 50,000 people flock to Century City for the workday, only approximately 6,000 Angelenos call this sleek, commercially-driven neighborhood home.
Though its population density thins at the end of the workday, Century City is rife with neighborhood infrastructure. Several shopping malls and a host of upscale restaurants contribute to a thriving retail and nightlife scene within this commercial center, including the 422,000-square-foot Westfield Mall development.
While Century City’s evening entertainment rarely gets too rowdy, its denizens take full advantage of the area’s luxe shopping and dining options.
Despite its diminutive nature, Century City feels more like a big city than the small town its square footage would suggest.Its expanding professional population, cluster of high-rises, and major Westfield shopping center lend a bustling urban air.
Much of Century City’s property is commercial, but it also boasts some of LA’s tallest, most well-appointed condo offerings as well as mid-century apartment buildings and duplexes that harken back to its early days of development.
Century City’s sleek outdoor spaces serve as prime canvas for a fleet of inventive restaurants. Grab high-end American fare at Tom Colicchio’s Craft or indulge in the Japanese-influenced menu at hotspot Hinoki and the Bird. With Mario Batali’s Italian food mecca Eataly slated to open in 2017, this neighborhood’s culinary scene is only growing.
Westwood is one of Los Angeles’ most in-demand areas. Sunset Boulevard forms its northern border, with Beverly Crest and Beverly Hills immediately beyond. To Westwood’s northwest, the Platinum Triangle’s glamorous Holmby Hills falls within the community’s boundaries. Santa Monica Boulevard bounds Westwood to the south, with West Los Angeles and Century City respectively located to its south and southeast.
Century City: 12 minutes
Downtown Los Angeles: 35 minutes
Burbank: 35 minutes
Westwood’s development began in the 1920s following the opening of the UCLA campus. Much of the district was master-planned by the Janss Investment company, including Westwood Village’s open-air shopping center. The Village takes heavy inspiration from Spanish architecture, with decorative tiles and clay tile roofs, along with an emphasis on open spaces, courtyards, and patios. The Janss Company modelled glittering Holmby Hills after an English country village, with large lot sizes and England-inspired street lamps and names.
Westwood is an eclectic district, with the youthful energy of UCLA students, urban professionals who value its convenient location, and the Platinum Triangle glitz of Holmby Hills.
The sprawling UCLA Campus is a major Westwood landmark. Points of interest here include the luscious 7.5-acre UCLA Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden and the Los Angeles Tennis Center, which hosted the tennis tournament of the 1984 Olympic Games.
Westwood is one of Los Angeles’ most walkable communities, with many shops and restaurants located within the designated historic landmark of Westwood Village. Designed in the 1920s, this upscale commercial area has one-of-a-kind fashion boutiques, big-name brands, and dozens of high-quality international restaurants.
It may seem odd for a cemetery to be considered an attraction, but Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park is one of the world’s most visited graveyards. The headstones of many Los Angeles legends are located here, including Marilyn Monroe, Hugh Hefner, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Burt Lancaster, and Dean Martin.
Westwood’s real estate mix varies throughout the district. Properties around Westwood Village mostly consist of stylish apartments and condominiums. To the north and south of Westwood Village, quiet residential streets feature elegant early and mid-20th century single-family homes with dramatic contemporary architecture. The grandest homes are located along Westwood’s northern border with Bel Air and the ultra-desirable Holmby Hills neighborhood. Real estate here is among the most spectacular in the world, with lavish estates and breathtaking design inside and out.
Housed within a charming 1920s building across the street from UCLA’s campus, the Geffen Playhouse is one of the best theaters in the LA area. The five plays staged here each season feature famous film and television actors, frequently earning award nominations.
Holmby Hills boasts some of the most magnificent property in the country. Located on the west side between Beverly Crest and Brentwood, the neighborhood is primarily residential with only a few shops within its 6.3 square mile area. Its remote location in the foothills of the Santa Monica mountains provides privacy and beautiful scenery for the high-profile locals.
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