The Los Angeles Consolidated Railway was formed through the efforts of Moses Sherman and Eli Clark. In 1894, the two men started acquiring horse car and cable car systems within the city. A year later, they opened an electric rail line. This being the first intercity line between Pasadena and Los Angeles. The intercity line became so successful that it became an inspiration for the many more to follow suit. By 1896, there were already tracks running from Los Angeles through Beverly Hills and from Hollywood to Santa Monica. With all of these new rail lines, Sunset Plaza became a premiere destination for wealthy shoppers and celebrities.
Booze N Gangsters
Sunset Blvd, which would become known as The Strip was under the jurisdiction of the Sheriffs Department for they were much more lenient compared to the LAPD. The Strip was located outside of LA city limits in an unincorporated area, therefore the strip became a hub for wild nightlife and parties. By the 1920s, numerous casinos and nightclubs moved into the Strip. It became a magnet for the movie industry and many a like. During prohibition booze was served in the back rooms of the clubs. From the 1930s to the 1940s, the Strip was widely known for its glamour, sophisticated restaurants, nightclubs and entertainment for the rich and famous. Movie legends, business tycoons were all ensconced in clubs like the Trocadero, Ciro’s and the Mocambo. As for the other bars and restaurants they were said to be controlled by gangster Mikey Cohen. The Strip garnered a place in the novel The Little Sister, written in 1949. Some famous spots in the Strip were Schwab’s Drug Store and the Garden of Allah apartments, the Hollywood quarters for transplanted writers like F.Scott Fitzgerald, Robert Benchley ( Jaws) and Dorothy Parker.
The Whisky a Go Go
The 1960s were challenging for the Strip as it lost its link with a significant number of movie stars. Fortunately the bars, clubs and restaurants still were magnets attracting locals and tourists alike. During the 60s and 70s it emerged as a major gathering-place for the hippy scene. The curfew riots of 1966 inspired the song For What Its Worth by Buffalo Springfield. In the same years, the Strip became a magic paradise for musicians and bands. Bands like The Doors, Frank Zappa, Love, The Byrds and the Seeds were just some of the regulars in clubs like The Whisky a Go Go, the London Fog, Pandora’s Box and Roxy. Go-Go dancers started performing in July, 1965. Hyatt West Hollywood (aka Andaz West Hollywood) became a legendary hotel as it was the primary choice among musicians because of the easy access to live performances on Sunset Boulevard. English Disco was the hottest thing in the early 1970s, it was a favorite hangout for musicians and groups who were particularly interested in glam rock. And before the decade ended, Donna Summer’s Sunset People single from the album Bad Girls immortalized the nightlife on Sunset Boulevard.
The Strip became a concentration of rock, punk and New Wave as well as glam metal and heavy metal scenes. Extending throughout the 80s. Van Halen, Poison, Quiet Riot, L.A. Guns, Whitesnake, Ratt and Guns N Roses were just some of the groups performing at the strips hottest venues .To this day the music industry still dominates the clubs on the Strip.
On November of 1984, a proposal on the ballot to incorporate and make the area an independent city was passed by voters in West Hollywood. The Strip is home to some of the most exclusive condominium complexes on the West Coast, but the most coveted properties are those above the Sunset Strip, in the celebrity-studded hills. Access to the hills is limited to only a handful of streets that are well guarded with patrolling security. This high dollar neighborhood sets the standard of exclusivity, glamour, seclusion, luxury and scenic views.
The most star-studded areas in this part of the Hollywood Hills are just above Sunset Boulevard on Kings Road, Sunset Plaza Drive, and Doheny Drive. The houses usually range from $3 million to $15 million.Among the celebrities who make their respective homes in the Hollywood Hills (just above the Sunset Strip) range from movie actors, musicians and socialites. Singers like Christina Aguilera, Kylie Minogue, Jewel, Michael Buble, Robbie Williams and Dido reside here. Award winning movie stars like , Leonardo di Caprio, Keanu Reeves, Cameron Diaz, Ryan Philippe, and James Franco are most likely to jog in the streets during their free time. Sisters Paris and Nicky Hilton and TV comedy genius Seth Macfarlane also reside in the area.
The 1958-1964 TV hit series 77 Sunset Strip was set on the Strip, specifically between La Cienaga Boulevard and Alta Loma Road.