Hollywood Photo Tour

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    Pictures of Hollywood Landmarks

    The Gateway to Hollywood Statue
    ••• The Gateway to Hollywood Statue, also known as the Four Ladies Statue at Hollywood Blvd and La Brea. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Hollywood, AKA Tinseltown, has gone through an evolution from the glamorous birthplace of the movie industry, through a seedy period the final quarter of the last century into a renaissance of renewed glamour in the new millennium. Hollywood is once again a thriving center of tourism and entertainment, although in the last couple years, the local police have given up trying to keep the homeless off Hollywood Blvd, so they keep a strong presence to keep the panhandling under control.

    Take this virtual photo tour of Hollywood landmarks from the Hollywood La Brea Gateway east on Hollywood Boulevard to Gower (with a couple north and south detours), then West on Sunset to the Hollywood Athletic Club with a side trip to Paramount Studios on Melrose at the end. You can take the mobile version with you when you're touring so when you wonder about that interesting building or piece of public art you're seeing, you'll have the answer.

    Gateway to Hollywood

    The Gateway to Hollywood is at...MORE the southeast corner of Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea in Hollywood.

    The Gateway to Hollywood sculpture, officially called the Hollywood La Brea Gateway, is the stainless steel gazebo on the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea. It is more commonly known around LA as the Four Ladies Statue. Created by production designer ("Vanilla Sky," "Laurel Canyon," "Tombstone, "Three Kings") and director ("Thirteen," "Lords of Dogtown") Catherine Hardwicke in 1993, the sculpture is a tribute to the multi-ethnic women of Hollywood. The four life-size silver ladies supporting the structure represent Mae West, Dorothy Dandridge, Anna Mae Wong and Dolores Del Rio.

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    Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel

    Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
    ••• Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. Kayte Deioma

    The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel is the original home of the Academy Awards and has hosted many historic events as well as many celebrity guests over the years. It's worth a stop to check out the lobby and take a peak at the swimming pool with it's swirly bottom painted by David Hockney.

    Read the Review of the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

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    Disney Entertainment Center

    Jimmy Kimmel Live! at the Disney Entertainment Center in Hollywood
    ••• Jimmy Kimmel Live! at the Disney Entertainment Center in Hollywood. Photo © 2009 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Disney Entertainment Center in the historic Hollywood Masonic Temple is right next to El Capitan Theatre across from Hollywood & Highland Center. The Jimmy Kimmel Live! show is taped here.

    Read more about Attending a TV Show Taping in LA.

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    El Capitan Theatre

    El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    El Capitan opened as a legitimate stage theatre in 1926. It was one of three theatres that Charles E. Toberman and Sid Grauman built together on Hollywood Boulevard. The other two were Grauman's Chinese and the Egyptian.

    Read the Review of El Capitan.

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    Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Studio Store

    Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Disney Studio Store
    ••• Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Disney Studio Store. Photo © 2014 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Ghirardellii Soda Fountain and Studio Store is located in the same building as the El Capitan Theatre at 6834 Hollywood Boulevard next to the Disney Entertainment Center. In addition to an old-fashioned ice cream soda fountain, they sell Disney merchandise.

    Read the Review.

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    TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood

    TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The TCL Chinese Theatre was formerly known as Grauman's Chinese Theatre, and sometimes now called simply the Chinese Theatre or the Hollywood Chinese Theatre. This most visited Hollywood landmark, with its Forecourt of the Stars, was one of several movie palaces on Hollywood Boulevard built by Sid Grauman. There's a fee to tour the theatre, but visiting the Forecourt of the Stars is free.

    Read more about TCL Chinese Theatre. More Free Things to Do in Los Angeles

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    Dolby Theatre in Hollywood

    Dolby Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2013 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Dolby Theatre at the Hollywood & Highland Center next to ITC/Grauman's Chinese Theatre was the Kodak Theatre from 2001 to 2011. It is the permanent home of the Academy Awards as well as hosting other performances and events throughout the year. When it's not being prepared for the latest Oscar celebration, you can take a tour.

    Read about the Dolby Theatre Tour.

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    Hollywood & Highland Center

    Babylon Courtyard at Hollywood & Highland Center
    ••• Babylon Courtyard at Hollywood & Highland Center. Photo © 2016 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Hollywood & Highland Center opened in 2001 as the first step in redevelopment of the run down Hollywood strip. It has become the center of modern Hollywood with restaurants, shopping, nightclubs and concerts at the Dolby Theatre and is connected to the upstairs cinema entrance at the back of the Chinese Theatre. TV shows are regularly taped right on the sidewalk in front of the complex, where you'll also find dozens of costumed characters available to pose for photos for tips.

    The Babylon Courtyard at Hollywood & Highland Center was based on the ancient Babylon set from D.W. Griffith's 1916 epic "Intolerance." The columns topped with standing elephants and the archway over the viewing bridges are modeled after the film set. 

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    Hollywood Sign

    Hollywood Sign
    ••• Hollywood Sign. Photo © 2016 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood Sign was originally an advertisement for a real estate development called Hollywoodland when it went up in 1923. After the last four letters fell down, it took on a different significance and the community became attached to the landmark. It became a symbol of the glamor of the film and television industry.

    After falling into disrepair, the sign got a complete makeover in the late 1970's with various celebrities helping to foot the bill. Alice Cooper sponsored an O and Gene Autry paid to rebuild an L. The famed Hollywood landmark got its most recent paint job in 2006.

    You can see the sign from many different places in Hollywood, but the easiest is probably from one of the viewing bridges at Hollywood & Highland Center.

    Read more about the Hollywood Sign and the Best Views of the Hollywood Sign.

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    Hollywood Walk of Fame

    Hollywood Walk of Fame
    ••• Hollywood Walk of Fame. Diane Macdonald/Getty Images/Photographer's Choice

     

    The Hollywood Walk of Fame is one of the area's most visited landmarks. It was introduced in 1958 to add a little glitz to the neighborhood. Since then the number of stars has grown to over 2500 and new ones are added regularly.

    Read all about the Hollywood Walk of Fame and how you can attend a Star Ceremony.

     

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    Magic Castle Hotel and Club

    Magic Castle Private Magic Club in Hollywood
    ••• Magic Castle Private Magic Club in Hollywood. Photo © 2014 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Magic Castle (7001 Franklin, 1 block north of Hollywood Blvd. at Orange) is a three story 1908 Victorian mansion that is a private club for magicians and their guests. It is the headquarters of the Academy of Magical Art. You can't get in unless you know a member, but the Magic Castle Hotel is a member, so staying there can get you access to the Magic Castle.

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    The Hollywood Bowl

    The Hollywood Bowl
    ••• The Hollywood Bowl. Photo © 2016 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood Bowl at 2301 N. Highland Avenue is the largest natural amphitheater in the United States. To figure out how best to situate the stage, Soprano Anna Ruzena Sprotte and composer/pianist Gertrude Ross trucked in a piano to test the acoustics from a platform at the bottom of the hill.

    The Hollywood Bowl is the summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and hosts a variety of other musical performances each year. The on-site Hollywood Bowl Museum is open before performances and during the day year round.

    For more information and photos, check out the Hollywood Bowl Visitors Guide.

    More Summer Concert Series in LA

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    Hollywood High School

    Portrait of Hollywood Mural at Hollywood High School
    ••• Portrait of Hollywood Mural at Hollywood High School. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The "Portrait of Hollywood" Mural was painted on the Hollywood High School Auditorium in 2002 by artist Eloy Torrez. The original Hollywood High School, built in 1906 one block south of Hollywood Boulevard on Highland, was damaged in the Long Beach earthquake in 1933 and had to be rebuilt.

    Famous alumni of Hollywood High include Michey Rooney, Judy Garland, Lana Turner, Carol Burnett, Ricky Nelson, Rita Wilson, Barbara Hershey, James Garner, Lawrence Fishburne, Scott Baio, Mike Farrell and many more.

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    Hollywood Museum

    The Hollywood Museum in the Max Factor Building
    ••• The Hollywood Museum in the Max Factor Building. Photo © 2005 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood Museum at 1650 Highland Avenue, just south of Hollywood Blvd, is located in an Art Deco pink and green marble building that used to be the Max Factor makeup studio and factory, opened in 1935. The bottom floor preserves Max Factor's original four makeup studios, decorated to compliment the coloring of blonds, red heads, brunettes, and what he dubbed "brownettes".

    The three upper floors and basement are crammed full of movie props and costumes and tributes to film stars, including Marilyn Monroe and Bob Hope. The basement exhibits include props and costumes from a variety of horror movies and TV shows.

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    Hollywood Wax Museum

    Hollywood Wax Museum
    ••• Hollywood Wax Museum. Hollywood Wax Museum

    Since Madame Tussauds moved in down the street, the Hollywood Wax Museum has become kind of the homely older sibling. Most of the figures aren't nearly as realistic as Tussauds, and they're behind barriers, so you can't pose next to them. But it's kind of entertaining to see how bad they are, and they have some figures you won't find down the street.

    More on Hollywood Wax Museum 

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    Guinness World of Records Museum Hollywood

    Guinness World of Records in Hollywood
    ••• Guinness World of Records in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Guinness World of Records Museum in Hollywood is totally kitschy and has a wonderfully gaudy marquee, which makes it a fun backdrop for selfies. If you've seen one somewhere else, you've probably don't need to go inside. If you haven't, and you're curious about the biggest, smallest, most, least of everything, you'll find it here.

    More on the Guinness World of Records Museum

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    Ripley's Believe It or Not

    Ripley's Believe It Or Not
    ••• Ripley's Believe It Or Not. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Ripley's Believe it or Not is another of LA's Pop Culture Museums that wouldn't be high on my To Do list, but, like the Guinness Museum, some people are fascinated by the oddities of the world, from two-headed goats to historic torture treatments.

    More on the Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum

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    Pig'n Whistle Restaurant

    Pig 'n Whistle Restaurant in Hollywood
    ••• Pig 'n Whistle Restaurant in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

     

    The Pig'n Whistle Restaurant at 6714 Hollywood Blvd. This 1927 landmark was a variety of businesses over the years, but in 2000, it was restored to its original name and decor, reopening in 2001 once again as the Pig'n Whistle.

    pignwhistlehollywood.com

    More Historic Los Angeles Restaurants

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    Souvenir Shops

    The Hollywoodland Experience Souvenir Shop on Hollywood Blvd
    ••• The Hollywoodland Experience Souvenir Shop on Hollywood Blvd in Los Angeles. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    In between landmarks, Hollywood souvenir shops sell movie posters, plastic Oscar statues, T-shirts and other memorabilia.Some of the souvenir shops, like The Hollywoodland Experience, have become popular selfie stops themselves.

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    Egyptian Theatre

    American Cinematheque at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• American Cinematheque at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Egyptian Theatre at 6712 Hollywood Boulevard was designed by architects Meyer & Holler for Sid Grauman. It opened in 1922 with the first-ever Hollywood movie premier, Robin Hood with Douglas Fairbanks. It was the first of many theatres built by Sid Grauman, who opened the Chinese Theatre a block west a few years later.

    American Cinematique offers film-festival-style offerings all year long and tours of the Egyptian Theatre once a month. Visit the Egyptian Theatre web site for more information.

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    Musso & Frank

    Musso & Frank Grill in Hollywood
    ••• Musso & Frank Grill, the oldest restaurant in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Musso & Frank Grill on Hollywood Boulevard is Hollywood's oldest restaurant, opened in 1919. The menu hasn't changed much since then, and some of the waiters have been around almost as long.

    More Historic Los Angeles Restaurants

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    "You are the Star" Mural

    Mural of Stars
    ••• Mural of Stars, Wilcox Ave. at Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, CA. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The "You are the Star" mural on Wilcox, just south of Hollywood Boulevard, painted by Tom Suriya, puts you on the stage or screen with an audience of movie stars watching you.

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    Dolores del Rio Mural

    Dolores del Rio Mural in Hollywood
    ••• Dolores del Rio Mural in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Dolores Del Rio Mural is on the east side of Hudson Avenue just north of Hollywood Blvd.

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    Warner Pacific Theatre

    Pacific Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard
    ••• The historic Pacific Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Warner Pacific Theatre building was built as the Warner Brothers Theatre in 1927. Carol Burnett was an usherette here in 1951. The largest theatre built in Hollywood, it is currently undergoing restoration.

    The Warner Pacific is rumored to be haunted by Sam Warner, who died in Los Angeles of a brain hemorrhage six months before it was completed.

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    Hollywood Toys and Costumes

    Hollywood Toys & Costumes on Hollywood Blvd
    ••• Hollywood Toys & Costumes on Hollywood Blvd. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Hollywood Toys and Costumes is one of the country's largest suppliers of costumes and props, located in this teal-tiled Art Deco building at 6600 Hollywood Blvd. Lots of toys too.

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    Knickerbocker Building

    The Knickerbocker in Hollywood
    ••• The Knickerbocker in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood Knickerbocker Hotel at 1714 North Ivar was once the playground of Hollywood hot shots. It's now an apartment building for seniors.

    Interesting moments in the Knickerbocker's history:

    • 1920s - Rudolf Valentino is said to have arrived on horseback from his home in the Hollywood Hills to party in the hotel bar.
    • 1936 - Beth Houdini, widow of famed escape artist Harry Houdini, held a seance on the rooftop on Halloween in a 10th and final attempt to try to reach the spirit of her dead husband.
    • 1943 - police dragged actress Frances Farmer through the lobby wrapped in a shower curtain after she missed a meeting with her parole officer.
    • 1948 - film Director D.W. Griffith dropped dead under the chandelier in the lobby.
    • 1954 - Marilyn Monroe used to sneak in through the kitchen to meet her future husband, Joe DiMaggio, in the bar.
    • 1962 - a well-known MGM costume designer, Irene Gibbons, slashed her wrists and jumped to her death from her 11th floor room.
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    Capitol Records Campus

    Capitol Records in Hollywood
    ••• Capitol Records in Hollywood. Photo © 2015 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The 13-story Capitol Records Building, just northeast of Hollywood & Vine in Hollywood, was designed by architect Welton Becket to look like a stack of 45 RPM records. Artists such as Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Nat "King" Cole and the Beatles have recorded here. At night the beacon on top spells out HOLLYWOOD in Morse code.

    The 88 x 26-foot "Hollywood Jazz" mural was painted by artist Richard Wyatt, Jr. in 1990 and restored by him in 2013.

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    Avalon Nightclub

    Avalon Nightclub in the old Palace Theatre
    ••• Avalon Nightclub in the old Palace Theatre. Photo © 2015 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The old Palace Theatre at 1735 North Vine Street was built in 1927 as the Hollywood Playhouse. It currently houses Avalon Hollywood nightclub, one of the Top Hollywood Dance Clubs and the upstairs Bardot.

    Read my Review of Avalon Hollywood

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    Hollywood & Vine Skytrackers

    A Hollywood and Vine Skytracker shines its blue light across the Taft Building.
    ••• A Hollywood and Vine Skytracker shines its blue light across the Taft Building. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood & Vine Skytrackers were designed by Tom Ruzika, a lighting designer for theatre, architecture and theme parks. They were installed as a public art project at the four corners of Hollywood and Vine in 1994. You rarely see all of them on at once, but even one of the blue lights criss-crossing the sky adds a little glitz to this famous intersection, now a hub of Hollywood nightlife.

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    Pantages Theatre

    Pantages Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Pantages Theatre The 1929 Art Deco Pantages Theatre was built by Greek immigrant and movie theatre magnate Alexander Pantages. The Academy Awards were held here in the 1950s. The elegant theatre continues to host touring Broadway productions.

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    The Henry Fonda Theatre

    The Fonda Theatre in Hollywood
    ••• The Fonda Theatre in Hollywood. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Carter DeHaven Music Box opened in 1926 as a live stage theatre featuring Broadway-style musical comedies. It was a movie theatre for a while in the 40s, and was known as Hollywood Pix before it closed in the 1970s. It was restored to its original condition in the 1980s and rededicated as the Henry Fonda Theatre. It is most commonly used for live music performances.

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    The Hollywood Palladium

    Hollywood Palladium
    ••• Hollywood Palladium. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood Palladium at 6121 Sunset Boulevard opened the night before Halloween in 1940 with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra and his vocalists, including Frank Sinatra. The Palladium dance hall is still used for performance events. It was completely remodeled including a totally new facade in 2008 after Live Nation took over operation. It's dance floor accommodates over 7000 people.

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    Cinerama Dome

    Cinerama Dome in Hollywood
    ••• Cinerama Dome, now part of Arclight Cinemas in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Cinerama Dome opened at 6360 Sunset Blvd in 1963 as a prototype for what was intended to be hundreds of geodesic dome theaters, but the others were never built. The 900 seat theater has a 32 by 86 foot curved screen. It is still under the auspices of Pacific Theatres, who have refurbished the original dome and surrounded it with a new building which includes additional theaters, a cafe bar and gift shop, offices, a gym and parking structure.

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    Amoeba Music in Hollywood

    Amoeba Music in Hollywood
    ••• Amoeba Music in Hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    The Hollywood branch of San Francisco-based Amoeba Music is a Mecca for music lovers looking for old vinyl and new independent releases. You can get the latest stuff too, but it's more interesting browsing through music history. You might also find some of your favorite music legends and movie stars browsing in the bins beside you.

    Amoeba is also known for its popular in-store concerts.

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    Crossroads of the World

    Crossroads of the World
    ••• Crossroads of the World in hollywood. Photo © 2004 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Crossroads of the World was constructed in 1936 in the shape of a cruise ship with a rotating globe on top. It was the city's first shopping mall. It was built by the widow of crime boss Charlie Crawford after she demolished the original building on the site where her husband was shot and killed. It is currently an office complex.

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    Paramount Studios

    Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood
    ••• Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood. Photo © 2012 Kayte Deioma, licensed to About.com

    Paramount Studios at 5555 Melrose Avenue was built in 1926 and is still a working film and television production studio. It is one of the studios in Hollywood where sitcoms and other television shows are still taped. You can get free tickets to be in the audience ar take a daytime or evening tour of the studios.

    Read more about Attending a TV Show Taping or taking the Paramount Studios Tour