The Top 8 Most Interesting Architectural Structures in Los Angeles

by Kristen FescoeNovember 11, 2016

Los Angeles is home to some of the most interesting and unique architectural structures in the country. Tourists and locals alike travel the boundaries of the city to take in some of these nationally recognized beauties. This list highlights eight of the most interesting architectural structures in Los Angeles that should not be missed.

  1. The Theme Building at LAX – When flying into LAX one of the first buildings you will encounter is the Theme Building, found right at the airport. African American architect Paul Williams erected the modern inspired building in 1961. There have been a number of tenants inhabiting this cool space, but it is currently looking for new occupants. However, visitors can check out the observation deck on the top floor during weekend hours.
  1. Frank Gehry’s Walt Disney Concert Hall – This hall can be found in downtown LA and was designed in the image of a grand ship sailing. What draws in many tourists to visit the hall is the ability to interact with the building itself by walking and even climbing throughout the “hulls” and “decks.” The ship-style building features stairways and walkways that allow visitors to walk around the flowing sails and view skylines of beautiful Los Angeles.
  2. The Petersen Automotive Museum – This museum was renovated in recent years and reopened in 2015, quickly becoming one of the cities most prominent buildings. The exterior was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, and is comprised of metallic stainless steel “ribbons” woven around the red-painted square building. If you catch the right perspective of the building you will see the shape of a race car speeding around the building.
  1. Richard Meier’s Getty Center – This building offers a wide range of perspectives and views, depending upon how and where you view it. It has picturesque views ranging from a travertine stone façade, a beautiful inner fountain, and poetic curves that line the main entrance.
  1. The Capitol Records Building – Located near Hollywood and Vine, this LA staple was designed by Welton Becket in 1956 with the goal of mimicking a stack of vinyl 45 records. The building has even found it’s way on the Los Angeles Register of Historic Places. A little known fact about the building is that at night, the blinking light on top of the tower spells out the word “Hollywood” in Morse code.
  1. Cesar Pelli’s Pacific Design Center – Located in West Hollywood, this structure was built over the course of almost twenty years. The Blue building officially welcomed its first visitors in 1975, and the Red building opened its doors in 2012. The lush 14-acre grounds serve as a platform for displaying interior design, public galleries and public art.
  1. The Gamble House – This beautiful craftsman home was designed by brothers Charles and Henry Greene and is listed among the most classic displays of the craftsman style in LA area. The home was built in the early 1900’s as a summer home for David and Mary Gamble of the Procter and Gamble Company. The design style marries Japanese influences and a Swiss chalet framework, with a craftsman flare.
  1. The Hollyhock House on Olive Hill – This Frank Lloyd Wright home was owned by oil heiress Aline Barnsdall, although she never officially lived there. The story is told that she was unhappy with the finished product and initiated the process to donate the home to the city before it was completed. Visitors can view the house, as it is an open historic home museum.

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