East Hollywood – Los Angeles, CA

Though smaller than its better-known neighbor to the west, East Hollywood is a central neighborhood in Los Angeles that's accessible to many freeways, as well as other parts of town. Additionally, its lower rent, diversity, and interesting restaurants offer residents a chance to have new experiences all of the time. Los Angeles City College, Barnsdall Art Park, and three large hospitals are all located in the East Hollywood area. East Hollywood sits approximately two miles from downtown Los Angeles. The neighborhood has one of the city's densest populations, and a bit of a hipster vibe makes the neighborhood popular with young adults.

Schools in East Hollywood

School data provided by GreatSchools

Restaurants & Nightlife

While no single location serves as a focal point for restaurants in East Hollywood, residents find a ton of culinary diversity here. Discover many Filipino, American, barbecue, Thai, Vietnamese, Tex-Mex, and Caribbean eateries in the neighborhood, along with ubiquitous pizza and sandwich choices. Most locals make it a point to visit the Faculty while in the area for its cheese and meat boards, salads, and sandwiches. Discover more than just food here, since the Faculty also acts as a bar, serving customers and artists of the nearby Sacred Fools Theatre Company. Find a new whiskey, craft beer, or signature cocktail from one of the hilarious bartenders who may just pose for a selfie with you. L.A. Rose Cafe is another must-visit while in East Hollywood. Check out the hearty breakfast platters and lunch specials of adobo, tocino, tapa, and longanisa. With the large portions and friendly service, you may feel as if you've inadvertently stumbled into a family dining room. If you have a large event to cater, the restaurant has it covered. Cha Cha Cha has been around for years, but the place hasn't lost a bit of its edge as the area's go-to Caribbean joint. From its brightly painted tin-shack exterior to warm and inviting interior, this place may have you longing for the islands. Try the guava and goat cheese quesadilla, black bean tamales, or empanaditas for a true taste of the neighborhood. Locals describe nightlife in East Hollywood as idiosyncratic, leaning toward dark dive bars with plenty of personality. The Virgil holds its own as one of the premiere karaoke places, with hipsters crooning Abba songs or doing stand-up comedy and lit readings. Lotus Lounge attracts locals with its cheap drinks, funny bartenders and proximity to the Vermont/Santa Monica Metro Station. Music-wise, there's the Dresden Restaurant for lounge entertainment seven nights per week thanks to a house jazz band. The Edgewood has food, events, and music-themed nights. Locals flock to Theatre 68 for theatrical productions and Karma Lounge for dancing.

History & Culture

The Tongva people were the first inhabitants of East Hollywood, establishing settlements before the arrival of the Spanish in the 1700s. In 1887, the foundations of East Hollywood sprang to life as Prospect Park, a plat of land some four miles from Los Angeles. The Cahuenga Valley Railroad connected this neighborhood to the center of the city along present-day Western Avenue. Several types of crops, such as oranges, avocados, bananas and wheat, grew on the site of present-day Los Angeles City College. The southern part of East Hollywood was known as Colegrove until the early 1900s. That town was named for Cornelius Cole, a friend of President Abraham Lincoln. Towns of this area became part of Los Angeles in the 1910s to take advantage of the city's new water system. It was during this boom time that much of East Hollywood took shape. The National Museum of Animals and Society, an institution that traces animals' contributions to humankind, represents the neighborhood's only museum. However, Barnsdall Art Park features Hollyhock House, one of Frank Lloyd Wright's masterpieces. Other art galleries in the neighborhood include Fake Gallery, Synchronicity Space, and the Ukrainian Art Center. You'll always find plenty to do after moving to an East Hollywood apartment -- including stage productions and comedy offered at the Sacred Fools Theatre Company, the Moth, the Met, DOMA, and Upright Citizen's Brigade. The Thai New Year Festival serves up great food, music, cultural activities and fun each April.

Transportation

Because of the population density in East Hollywood, it can be tough to park. If you're driving, look for a metered space during daylight hours. Consider valet parking at night for $3 to $5 plus tip. Many public transportation options run through East Hollywood, including the Metro Rail System, Metro Bus System, and DASH buses. You can reach East Hollywood from several freeways, most notably the 101, which connect you with the San Fernando Valley and downtown L.A. Though it's easier to hail a cab on the street here than in other neighborhoods, you may want to have a backup plan. Call a car service or arrange an Uber pickup, both of which are fairly easy in East Hollywood. Feel free to walk around East Hollywood as long as you don't mind the lack of trees and the urban feel. The area has only a few bike lanes, so cyclist should be wary of vehicular traffic at all times. If you like to bike, you may find it a lot more pleasant in a place like Barnsdall Art Park.

Cost

The cost of living is slightly lower here than the city average, with a typical one-bedroom apartment in East Hollywood renting for $1,155. It costs $1.75 to get to city center by bus. Since most of the area's bars are on the low-rent side, a beer typically costs around $3 to $4. Gas usually hovers around 12 percent higher here as compared to the rest of the country.

Shopping

East Hollywood provides several smaller boutiques and shops that have a great deal of personality, and all shopping enthusiasts should make a point to explore them whenever time allows. Most stores cluster along Sunset and Hollywood Boulevards or along Western Avenue at the neighborhood's western boundary. If you consider yourself to be a vintage shopper, don't miss Crossroads Trading Co., which sells gently used, vintage, and even relatively recent fashions and accessories, while Jenette Bras takes retro fashions and creates new lingerie based on these models. For name-brand boutique fashions as well as vintage wear, shoppers head to Una Mae's. Located in nearby Los Feliz, this shop features many high-end goods as well as some affordable treasures. It also hosts men's and women's clothes and accessories. East Hollywood has lots of grocery options, from large chain stores such as Vons, Jons Marketplace, and Food 4 Less, as well as smaller options such as Edi & Peter's Super Market. The area is served by two farmers markets, one located at Barnsdall Art Park on Mondays, and the other at Hollywood Boulevard and Western on Thursdays. Both have vendors selling fresh produce, baked goods, and other specialty foods.

Parks

Barnsdall Art Park anchors the neighborhood's park scene, thanks to a large green area and plenty of parking, as well as buildings for art classes and indoor galleries. Make sure to visit Frank Lloyd Wright's famed Hollyhock House. You may find the park a peaceful space to dream, meditate, or do a little jogging or yoga on the lawn. Other parks include the Lemon Grove Recreation Area, Rosewood Community Garden, and Madison West Park. All are free and open to the public while providing much-needed green space to the urban LA landscape. Annual events and activities include Barnsdall's Friday Night Wine Tastings held every summer. The wine event features boutique, artisan, and small-production wines from around the world.
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