Los Feliz, originally part of the Mexican land grant Rancho Los Feliz, is situated on the Eastside of Los Angeles. Named after the recipient of the land grant, Corporal Jose Vicente Feliz, the Rancho was originally 6,647 acres and was one of the first land grants in California. Corporal Feliz' original home, a small adobe structure built in the 1830s, lies on Crystal Springs Drive, near Barnsdale Park.
On July 6, 1919, Colonel Griffith J. Griffith, who had purchased 2/3 of the original land grant in 1882, bequeathed half of the Rancho to the City of Los Angeles, creating Griffith Park, one of the largest parks in the United States.
Los Feliz is bordered by Hollywood Blvd. to the south
Hyperion Ave to the southeast
Griffith Park to the north
The Los Angeles River to the east
Western Ave to the West
As a construction boom occurred in the 1910s and 1920s, lavish homes and estates were built in the gated community of Laughlin Park by Hollywood elite such as Cecil B. DeMille, W.C. Fields, Charlie Chaplin, Carole Lombard, Antonio Moreno, Deanna Durbin, Lily Pons and Andre Kostelanetz.
The architecture in Laughlin Park ranges from Craftsman bungalow (the oldest extant private residence in Los Feliz), to Spanish, Italian, Mediterranean, French, English Gothic to comfortable Traditional and Modern, such as Carole Lombard's house (designed by Lester Scherer) and other fine Modern/Modernist homes.
A cross-section of the elite of Contemporary architects worked in "the Park" as it's known, including Roland Coate (the Lily Pons/Andre Kostelanetz house), Gordon Kaufman (the former Chick Corea house), Julia Morgan (architect of Hearst Castle) and Lloyd Wright, who figured prominently in the design of more than five Laughlin Park homes. The views are stunning, from the Observatory to the ocean. There is a separate voluntary homeowners association, which maintains the gates and the private streets.
Named because the streets are Oak named, The Oaks enjoys revival styles interspersed with prime architectural homes, which provides something for almost everyone. Adjacent to Griffith Park, The Oaks neighborhood is known for its breathtaking city views. Also a favorite of vintage Hollywood, The Oaks was home to Ramon Navarro, Cary Grant, Randolph Scott, Author Vicky Baum and Director Dorothy Arzner. Lately, Brad Pitt, Nicolas Cage, Diane Keaton and Cassandra "Elvira" Peterson have called The Oaks "home". Oaks homeowners often live in the same house for many years or move from one Oaks home to another Oaks home.
Needless to say, neighborhood loyalty and pride of ownership are high in The Oaks. There is a separate voluntary homeowners association.
The Los Feliz Estates:
"The Estates" as they are known are one of the few newer tracts in the area. Streets generally are on straight and level terraces which are "single-loaded", i.e., homes are on one side only. Most homes are one-story and have city views. Flat gardens with pools are not uncommon. Because the homes were built after 1960, the floor plans tend to afford modern amenities such as family rooms; large eat-in kitchens; three to four or more bedrooms and garages with direct-access.
Franklin Square is that rare commodity: the traditional homogeneous neighborhood with grid-pattern, tree-lined streets, sidewalks and an adjacent commercial/service area. A short walk to the market, school, the post office or for a meal is not an impossibility in Franklin Square. Most homes were built in the 1920s and 1930s and are classic California bungalows with period revival influences and also duplexes and fourplexes.
Franklin Hills is a hilltop community with panoramic views. Franklin Hills offers a wide variety of home styles and sizes. The "Shakespeare Bridge" on Franklin Avenue is a local landmark revered by homeowners, who tend an adjacent median garden. Below the Shakespeare Bridge is Lycee de International Los Angeles, one of two active French school systems in Los Angeles. John Marshall High School, designed by George M. Lindsay in the collegiate Gothic style in 1931 (and a Los Angeles designated cultural landmark) has won numerous national and LAUSD academic decathalons. Notable past students include Leonardo DiCaprio, Alan Pinedo Lindo (of the Black Eyed Peas) and Michelle Phillips (of the Mamas & the Papas).