Monte Vista Hotel

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Not to be confused with the Hotel Monte Vista in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Los Angeles County's fashionable Monte Vista Hotel was situated at today's Fenwick Street and Floralita Avenue in Sunland, California, a district of Los Angeles, between 1887, when it was built, and 1964, when it was demolished. In its early years it was used as an "elegant retreat for wealthy Los Angeles area sportsmen," who make their way to Glendale, California, and then take a stage to Tujunga and the lodge.[1] Carriages left Los Angeles for Glendale at 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., and an advertisement promised "The best cooking, the best furnished house, and better attention than at any hotel in the state."[2]

Monte Vista Hotel in the 1880s

The "showcase of the late 1880s" was built in 1887 by land developer Frank H. Barkley, who "used the hotel to attract prospective buyers for his surrounding large property holdings," but it was later turned into a rooming house, and then a senior citizens' residence called Cypress Manor.[3]

Oldtimers recall the hotel as a weekend resort and hunting lodge for Los Angeles society. Its clientele savored the cuisine of a French chef, relaxed in the mountain air and hunted bears and other game, which were plentiful in the area.[3]

Inside the building were a lobby, dining room and a number of bedrooms, each with a private fireplace and each equipped with imported furniture. On the wall were expensive paintings.[1]

The building was abandoned in 1961 by owners Mr. and Mrs. Robert Christopher of nearby Tujunga. By 1964 it had deteriorated to the point where the city of Los Angeles ordered it demolished. A neighbor said it was an eyesore, and a Los Angeles Times reporter wrote that "heavy growth of weeds" grew on the property where "Every window in the building is smashed. Writings mar the walls. Charred paper and wood litter the numerous fireplaces, which once provided warmth and cheerfulness for guests in every room."[3]

In 1964 Duncan Rimmer, a Brentwood real-estate man, owned the property, midway between Sunland Park and Sunland Elementary School,[4] and said he would develop it.[3]

References and notes[edit]

Access to the Los Angeles Times links may require the use of a library card.

Coordinates: 34°15′41″N 118°19′4″W / 34.26139°N 118.31778°W / 34.26139; -118.31778