The old Century City Mall when it first opened in 1965
"Honey, Century City's got everything covered."
That's what Tom Petty sang, and I thought so too.
The old Century City mall entrance from Santa Monica Blvd
I practically lived at the Century City mall growing up and spent countless weekends and weeknights wandering the mall. While my mom shopped for hip fashions at "Joseph Magnin" and "Field's," I was trying on back-to-school clothes at "Judy's" and "Contempo Casuals". The hours I must have spent in those dressing rooms!
Joseph Magnin had beautiful clothes. My mother bought knit pantsuits and sweaters that matched in so many amazing colors with scarves to match. Even their gift boxes were collectible. Joseph Magnin
Photo: Michael Boehm
Snapshot: Vintage Los Angeles
A Vintage Kodak snapshot of 'Judy's' in 1971. 'Judy's' supplied wardrobe to Suzanne Pleshette during her years on 'Newhart' and the 'Mary Tyler Moore Show'. I've always loved that illustration of the girl in the groovy striped shirt.
The original mall had unique shops that no other mall had across America. Let's start with "Heaven": The best novelty store ever. I even witnessed the Bangles in full bangles regalia purchasing T-shirt’s there in 1984. Around the corner there was a store called the "Bijou". It sold movie paraphernalia, Paper Moon Graphics and lobby cards. The even had a giant screen with satin pillows on the floor and showed everything from "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band" to "Xanadu". I'm pretty sure this was where my obsession for movie memorabilia came from.
There was "Nickelodeon Records" that also had a giant screen that aired MTV all day. I was there the first time "Thriller" debuted and by the end of the video, more than half the mall was cramped inside the store. Watching that was an event.
As a child of the 70s, I went to "Tog Toggery" toy store. I specifically remember playing in a giant life size tree. It was over by the the stuffed animals. I don't think I ever left that store without adding a new one to my collection.
A sequence from the Mary Tyler Moore filmed at Century City in 1970
I’m so grateful I grew up at the old Century City Mall with creative shops, imaginative arts and crafts, and unique retail. And they had THE BEST art shows on Sunday afternoons. My mom purchased these two little hippie girl portraits in 1970 - the year I was born.
The bottom hippie artwork was actually done by actress, Jennifer Grey's mother who was a vendor at Century City during the 1970s.
There was also the Hallmark Store, the jelly belly cart and the singing flower man who serenaded shoppers for many years performing songs from his retail flower cart in front of "Joseph Magnin". I finally gave in one day and purchased his self published LP. I'm so glad I did.
And before "Bloomingdale's" and "Macy's" department stores, we had "The Broadway"& "Bullock’s". I got my ears pierced at the Broadway and my first credit card was from Bullock's. My dad thought theCenturyCity Mallwas actually called "The Broadway" because you could see it’s huge signage from Santa Monica Blvd.
I vividly remember my mom buying me my first Swatch at Bullock's. What a memory!
The original "Bullock's Department Store opened on Sept, 9, 1976
All of these stores, boutiques, and department stores had individuality, contemporary space age design, and unique merchandise and I knew every crack in the pavement and every inch of the mall.
Above is a mind blowing presentation of Century City shortly after it opened. Some of this footage was filmed even earlier since it takes us through the entire duration of architect, Welton Becket’s vision of Century City after most of the old FOX lot was demolished to make way for the “future”. The Century Plaza, the Twin Towers, The ABC Entertainment Center, and of course the Century City mall. Please note how space age these sequences are. And the use of early ‘70’s SYNTH makes this trippy documentary even more memorable!
Century City during the 1980's. You can see the Nickelodeon record store above. "Heaven" was around the corner to the right. Photos: Vintage Los Angeles Archives
We always entered the mall from escalator 4.
1980s, Photo by Larry Ziff.
As far as I can remember behind where the camera is in this pic above, there was a large open plaza new stand just to the left. They would set up a temporary stage for small events on weekends. I once saw John Denver wearing a canary yellow sport coat pass the stage. Another time I saw Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley trying on earrings at "Contempo Casuals". I kept there store bags because they reminded me of Patrick Nagel.
The south stairs by Bullock’s - circa 1984. This image brings back a flood of memories. Even sensory ones. I can’t tell you how many times I walked up these stairs with my mother.
Contempo Casuals was on this side of the mall. It’s where I got all my back to school clothes.
On the other side of Bullock's there was a small greeting card store that sold the funniest cards. You couldn't get them anywhere else. Now let's get to the eateries.
We ate at the Century House quite a bit. You could practically walk directly onto that mid century roof that swooped down to the ground.
And not too many know there was actually a "Clifton’s Cafeteria" and a "Bob's Big Boy" in the mall too.
I used to roller skate down the ramp from the second floor that led to "Gelson's" market which originally opened up as a "Mayfair" market.
The market was extremely space-age back in the day. I can't tell you how many times I got lost in this market scaring the heck out of my mom.
I adored "Yamato's". I went there with my parents so many times over the years. We usually sat in the main dining room with Benihana-like tables. I remember their private traditional Japanese rooms where you sat on the floor. One of the rooms had a pit under the table so you could let you legs dangle. Good Times!
And don’t even get me started on the ABC ENTERTAINMENT CENTER around the corner that was also senselessly demolished. The new CAA building replaced the ABC Entertainment Center which had contained the Playboy Club, the Schubert Theatre, The Plitt cinema, and the sites of various surrounding restaurants including Harry's Bar, The Plaza Four, The Century Club, Hamburger Hamlet, Yamato, and Senor Pico.
The entrance / valet to the ABC Entertainment Center
Shubert Theatre and Plitt box office on the left
The Playboy Club below the Plitt Theatre
Filmex was held at the ABC Entertainment Center from 1974 - 1981
Mayor Tom Bradly greeting movie goers during Filmex
Mayor Tom Bradly greeting movie goers at the Plitt during Filmex
Olivia Newton John filmed her video for TOTALLY HOT at ABC Entertainment Center in Century City
A flyer I kept from 1984 when Madonna and Rosanna Arquette showed up to a public screening of "Desperately Seeking Susan"
News footage from Entertainment Tonight, 1985
The rocking chairs at the Plitt Theatre
Harry's Bar Menu cover
Matchbook from Jade West
The Shubert Theater located at the old ABC ENTERTAINMENT CENTER.
It closed on July 27, 2003 and was demolished the following year to build the new CAA offices. I've never gotten over it.
The Playboy Club below the Plitt Theatre
THE CENTURY PLAZA
POSTCARD READS: The Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel is a landmark 19-story luxury hotel forming a sweeping crescent design fronting the spectacular fountains on Avenue of the Stars, adjacent to the twin Century Plaza Towers and the Century City Mall. Architect: Minoru Yamasaki
The Century Plaza. Thankfully the hotel is landmarked
Parking lot across the street from the Century Plaza in 1968. This lot eventually became the ABC Entertainment Center. (Now demolished)
Above is an office from theABC Entertainment Center looking west to the Century Plaza Hotel. The original ultra modern design of Century City had the most rewarding and expansive outdoor long views ever built in Los Angeles. This was a production office in Century City Towers for SelecTV in the 1980s.
Photo: Kent Adamson
View from the Century Plaza Hotel looking across Ave. of the Stars towards the ABC Entertainment Center and Shubert Theater when Evita played the 2,100 seat venue in 1980. Opened in 1972, both were demolished in 2002 for office buildings. Photo: Richard Wojcik
Below is a series of photos taken at the oldCenturyCitymall. These magical moments all took place directly outside Judy’s and Joseph Magnin
The Nimoy’s taking a stroll in 1969
Tom Snyder hosting a 1970 KNBC Sunday afternoon special
The famous Jelly Belly cart
Gary Owens onstage with contestants for the ‘Most Beautiful Ape’ contest during promotion for “Conquest for the Planet of the Apes” in June 14, 1972
Joe Richards, also known as “The Singing Flower Man”. UCLA Archives
I could have sworn this was my own grandmother at Century City in 1970. "Fields" is in the distance
"Judy's' employees wearing "Judy's" clothing in front of the store.
Photo courtesy of Shaune Steele who later went on to marry radio legend, "The Read Don Steele"
Still to this day I still have a white plastic Judy's clothing hanger and bag that I've kept since the 80s.
Mall directory in front of the Broadway. The flower power mural for Joseph Magnin in the distance.
Joseph Magnin in the 1980s. I used to love their gift boxes.
Photo: Larry Ziff
The 44-story Theme Towers were designed by Minoru Yamasaki and completed in 1975, four years after the World Trade Center was finished. Yamasaki also designed the Century Plaza Hotel.
The outdoor Gelson's parking lot. The Century Towers seems so tall back then. I remember the Venturi effect between those buildings sped any breeze up to speeds that could turn your jacket into a sail.
Also the offices in Remington Steele.
View from Santa Monica of the Century House and the Broadway
Map of stores, late 60s
Joseph Magnin, 1967
The stores in the top crease are Bejeweled, Gaierie Michael and Party Cove--bottom crease is Lindberg Nutrition and Windsor Fashions
During the 80s and 90s, if we weren't seeing movies in Westwood, we would be at the Plitt Theatre or the AMC Century City Theatres following a browse though Brentanos Bookstore. One time we saw Gene Kelly standing by the best sellers section.
Bags from the "Broadway", "Bullock's" and "Judy's"
A groovy spread for LIFE MAGAZINE of popular actresses in the spring of 1968. Love seeing those old fountains across the way from the old ABC entertainment center too.
Sharon Tate, who was in Valley Of The Dolls, and is married to Polish director, Roman Polanski, wears a chiffon blouse and a petal tiered skirt designed for the Garment Works by Barbra Dulian. ($70 Dollars)
Sheltered by a steel sculpture in the Century City Mall exhibit, Peggy Lipton who will play a cop next fall on a new TV show called, “The Mod Squad” wears a dress of Indian cotton trimmed with mirror embroidery from “Chequer West , $35 dollars
Gayle Hunnicutt who modeled before she began acting, shows off a hand painted batik dress as decorative as the mosaic wall behind her. It was designed for the Rose Revived by Laura Labby ($459). Gayle in front of the mosaic ties at Joseph Magnin
“Brighting the doorway of an office building known as Gateway West, Christine Ferrare, soon to appear in her first movie, wears a high-waisted dress of Sari fabric
, who replaced Mia Farrow in The Detective. The Bandanna-print blouse and skirt ($28) were designed by Arlen Frantsvaag for the Pleasure Dome”
Leigh Taylor Young
Curled into a piece of sculpture,Leigh Taylor-Young, who appeared in Peyton Place wears a floral printed and tent shaped dress called an Aba. This from “Chequer West’.
(Costs $75 dollars)
Goldie Hawn, the giggly girl of Laugh-In, wears a backs jump suit of Jersey (35) from “Skitzo - My Generation” as she leans on a sign identifying one of the major thoroughfares of Century City”.
Sitting by the fountains on Ave Of The Stars, tall (six feet) Dhonyale Luna wears an exotic pants suit ($35) gtom Bootstrings by L’Tonya. A hit in Paris last year, she has just made her first American movie for Otto Preminger.
You can see footage of the old mall in a few TV shows and films mentioned below
This is from "The Bank Raising" episode of "The Beverly Hillbillies,"
Screen grabs of the Century House in"The Guide for the Married Man" staring Walter Matthau and Robert Morse
"The Guide for the Married Man" was directed by Gene Kelly in 1967
The original entrance
"Caprice" staring Doris Day released in 1967 filmed at Century City
"Conquest For the Planet Of The Apes" filmed at Century City. Most likely because of it's futuristic brutalist design.
Mary Tyler Moore filmed at the Century City Mall for episode titled, “Bess, You Is My Daughter Now”.
Rockford Files episode
An episode of "Dallas"
Episode of "Hardcastle and McCormick"
Architecture, Design & Additional History
The land was originally owned by Twentieth Century Fox, and was sold off to help the studio pay off debt.
Santa Monica Blvd, just west of Beverly Glen in 1932. Notice the FOX sign below (that's the Century City Mall today). This is when Fox Studios still reached Santa Monica Blvd from Pico Blvd. They eventually sold off the north side of the lot when the film, "CLEOPATRA" was a disastrous flop and nearly bankrupted 20th Century Fox. That's when the future of Century City, pioneered by architect, Welton Becket was born in 1964
The Fox back lot’s harbor set before it was demolished to become Century City
Few people know this but the back lot was once part of a 176-acre ranch owned by Tom Mix before the cowboy superstar sold it to William Fox. The plans for Century City began soon after the release of "Cleopatra". According to this Variety article, "Cleopatra took years to earn a profit and because of its enormous costs, the lavish production forced massive layoffs and ended many planned productions. Also, the growing popularity of TV forced a rethink of studio finances". In 1961, needing cash very badly, 20th Century-Fox sold it's 260 acre backlot to New York developer William Zeckendorf, who developed the land into Century City, leaving only the front lot and sound stages to carry on the motion picture business. Zeckendorf described his new property as "an oasis in the midst of a great city".
Century City's masterplan centered on Ave Of the Stars. Keeping with the space age era, this blvd was a complete city within a city by architect Welton Becket. It had all the facilities for business, living, and leisure. Century Square opened on October 12, 1964.
The Welton Becket Association discusses plans for building Century City on the former Fox Studios back lot in 1960. Welton Becket put together this early $35,000 model of his Century City, "producing a mix of office towers, hotel rooms, skyscrapers, apartments and elevated public plazas". Highlights included an Arabian Nights-themed hotel with gondolas and a wide street called Avenue of the Stars "studded with statues of such indigenous Fox lot mainstays as Will Rogers and Shirley Temple." It's interesting that he stayed with the 'stars' theme developing Century City, although it wasn't based on Hollywood. The refocused theme was focused on outers space with names like Constellation Blvd, Galaxy Way, and of course Ave of the Stars.
Check out this remarkable piece of film footage on the Making of Century City...
Here's the girder rail that was used for the new railroad crossing. Photo by Roy Platt
Actress Barbara Bouchet (Moneypenny in the original Casino Royale) at the newly opened Avenue of the Stars located in Century City in 1964.
Century city 1965
Century City, 1967
Welton Becket and associates office, Century City, 1960
Became the Rogers & Cowan building in the 70s and 80's
former headquarters building of architect Welton Becket and Associates located at 10000 Santa Monica Boulevard in Century City. Designed by Welton Beckett and completed in 1960, the four-story building featured a rooftop pavilion, a reflecting pool with fountains, and an incredible 734 foot mosaic band course by artist John Smith that wrapped around all four sides of the building
Lobby of the Welton Becket offices in Century City in 1965
The original entrance to Century City, circa 1967
Sharon Tate, 1968
Ave of the Stars, 1968 There was a gentle quiet in L.A. at one time
Another fantastic photo from Richard Wojcik’s incredible collection of slides! I believe this location is looking cover Constellation Blvd to Century City Square from The Century Plaza Hotel. You can see a gift store near the pond were you could purchase all kinds of causal clothing, novelties and toys. Bob’s Big Boy would have been directly across the street in the orange section next to Hallmark Shop (where the blue sign says, Pavilion Shops). Gelson’s Market is to the far left and that huge beige building is probably The Broadway at the top of the Century City Mall - PHOTO / 1968
1976 (from "Above Los Angeles" by Robert Cameron, 1976) Century City has replaced the oil wells in the previous photo, and West Olympic Blvd has divided off the former backlot and main studio sites.
Aerial of the CC, circa 1981
Photo taken from 20th Century Fox lot in 1983 Construction in the background
The Gateway West Building, located at 1801 Avenue of the Stars inCenturyCity, was built before all of it in 1963. It was built in the International Style and stood thirteen stories high, clad with a gold aluminum curtain facade. Gateway West was the first high-rise to be built inCenturyCityand stood directly across from its twin, the Gateway East Building, which was erected soon after. The two buildings flanked the entrance to the Avenue of the Stars, serving as landmarks toCenturyCity's main thoroughfare. These buildings were part of the privately funded $500 millionCenturyCitydevelopment project built on what was formerly part of the 20thCenturyFox Studio lot. Gateway West has since been demolished to make room for an expansion of the Westfield. (Welton Becket is rolling in his grave)
Train tracks used to run though Santa Monica and traveled past Century City. The tracks hung around even after the trains shut down. This is exactly how I remember it during the 1970s and 1980s
Billboards lined up on Santa Monica Blvd in front of the old Century City entrance in 1969. Check out those advertisements for KMET and Home Savings of America. And how about those train tracks?
Dennis Hopper on the train tracks in front of Century City
"Dive" restaurant, was owned by Steven Spielberg, and was in the shape of a yellow submarine. It was located by the AMC theaters and old food court. In 1999, "Dive" closed abruptly.
Tragically, it looked as though the real planet of the apes really did conquer Century City. Most if the Century City mall was leveled to build a new one in 2015. New additions and renovations can erode the character of any place, but tearing it down to the ground is like taking away a piece of our childhood.
The western Gateway office building that was torn down to make way for Eataly/Macy's, 1801 Ave of the Stars, was the place where Groucho Marx had his last office.
Visiting the new Westfield mall only made me miss the originalCenturyCity Mall so much more. Sadly, there isn't a single trace of the previous mall except the mid century bridge that crosses Ave Of The Stars and "Gelson’s". Today every mall across America looks the same - with the SAME stores. I also miss the original midcenturyarchitecture, the 3 hour free parking, and the MUZAK delicately playing throughout the mall. Today you need headphones and a Xanax to walk through the new one. And free parking is a thing of the past. Today there’s not even a human in the ticket booth to smile at you when you leave. Just insert your ticket and your money.
Today it's the Westfield Mall.
Yesterday, I drove into, and immediately out of, the parking lot there trying to find a parking spot near Gelson's. Plus the new mall is so confusing and noisy and plays the worst music piping through. I leave feeling nervous, disorientated, and ill from the entire 10 minute experience. I don't think I ever need to go there again.
At least the bridge is still there....
Standing on the original bridge used in "Conquest Of The Planet of the Apes". I must say, I'm quite relieved that much of this area east of the original mall was left intact. This bridge especially and sloped area now covered in grass where Roddy McDowall as Cesar stood with pride in 1972 and delivered that stirring speech to his fellow apes.
Wasn't that pedestrian bridge designed by Saarinen?ReplyDelete
Also, as for TV appearances, if memory serves correctly, the original Dynasty television show used one of the Gateway buildings (or another CC building like them) for the street-level exteriors of the handsome old Carrington guy's oil company offices. Long way from Denver but we won't hold that against them!
LA Marathon's brand new route now ends right there at the old pedestrian bridge on Av of the Stars at Santa Monica Blvd with the Finish Festival on the neatly manicured lawn between the Twin Towers. This bridge serves as the "finish line" - where media/photographers and public safety (police/fire) officials are perched to witness all the runners/walkers/hand cyclists finish and is where I'm positioned as a first aid "hot-walker". This is quite convenient for the Marathon since they didn't need to construct an overhead platform for the photographers like they did on Ocean Ave in Santa Monica for the last several years. Not sure exactly why the Marathon decided to move the finish line from Santa Monica to Century City, but its great location! All the medals, foil blankets, and snacks are handed out towards Constellation Blvd where the USC/LA County EMS medical facilities are posted. Tents for the staff/volunteers are in the breezeway at the Westfield adjacent to Chase Bank and most of the subterranean parking garages in the adjacent office buildings are the designated parking for all involved (runners and spectators pay for parking and staff/volunteers park for free at the 1999 Av of the Stars building).Delete
Stunning. The amount of pictures is spectacular! I really miss Broadway and Bullock'sReplyDelete
The photos are fantastic! The old Century City was too good to last. When anyone announces they will be making "improvements" to an established, cohesive site, it means "regrettable vandalism". I'm still traumatized by the complete antihalation of the original LACMA Campus. Now this...ReplyDelete
I had forgotten how truly beautiful Sharon Tate was. And those fashions are mind-blowing! Any one of those ensembles would get you the best kind of attention at a party or opening these days. That new mall (can we call it the "WorstView"?) is a truly schizoid assemblage. It honestly looks too frightening to enter. I can feel the migraine coming on. The one thing Beckett and his fellows had in their works was that 1960's optimism. And what's wrong with that?
Very cool, check out my photography project about modern Century City - https://www.priscillamars.com/century-cityReplyDelete
Thank you so much for writing this article! Really a trip down memory lane from the early 70s till very recently. Totally agree with you. I can't stand the new mall. Very disorienting. Really miss the original. So well-researched! I watched every video. Enjoyed seeing Peggy Lipton from The Mod Squad. A little creepy seeing Sharon Tate..ReplyDelete
I saw the play Grease at the Shubert Theater.
I remember that feeling of huge change when the Broadway and Bullocks turned into Macy's and Bloomingdale's.
Love the pictures of the train tracks. Once almost got hit by an oncoming train while daydreaming in my car on Rexford and Santa Monica. The Beverly Hills parking lots still remind me of the original tracks that they sit on...
And I, although a New Yorker, was always mesmerized and enchanted by California and being in Hollywood/Beverly Hills area in the 70s and 80s was a dream come true. I too, saw Evita with my friend (who at the time lived there) at Century City Theatre in 1980 with Patti LuPone. Amazing. Beautiful theater. Great time gone by. Sad.Delete
“Santa Monica Blvd, just west of Beverly Glen in 1932. Notice the FOX sign below (that's the Century City Mall today). This is when Fox Studios still reached Santa Monica Blvd from Pico Blvd. They eventually sold off the north side of the lot when the film, ‘CLEOPATRA’ was a disastrous flop and nearly bankrupted 20th Century Fox.”ReplyDelete
This is one of those legends that refuses to die, never mind that no less than Tom Rothman, when he was president of Fox, debunked it thoroughly. For the record, Fox signed contracts to sell off their back lot acreage years before as much as a single penny was spent developing, let alone shooting, “Cleopatra” (which ultimately, eventually did turn a profit). The worst thing, from the studio’s perspective, is that the property fetched less than $60 million; even adjusting for inflation, making it about $600 million in 2020 dollars, that’s less than a tenth of what the land’s actually worth today.
There’s also the matter that Century City was built based on the understanding that traffic would be routed to and from the development by a soon-to-be-built Beverly Hills Freeway. That freeway was, of course, never constructed — hardly surprising when you consider that the citizens of Beverly Hills, many of them being quite wealthy, objected to the idea of a freeway bisecting their community, applied a great deal of political pressure to kill the project.
As a consequence, all traffic into and out of Century City is via surface streets, making its construction one of the worst things to ever happen to Los Angeles.
By the way, the “Fox” sign in the above photo is just that: a sign advertising the company’s films. At its closest point Beverly Glen is about a third of a mile west of the westernmost edge of the Fox lot as it existed then. The property on which that sign sat was NOT on the lot, and did not eventually become the mall.
Oh, yes, re
“We usually sat in the main dining room with Bennie-Hanna-like tables.”
I moved to LA in the late 80s for college, and spent so much time at Century City Mall. I parked by Gelson’s, ALWAYS. I miss going to Brentano before or after seeing a movie at AMC. I don’t miss trying to get out of the garage before my parking ticket expired!ReplyDelete
Fabulous post! Very in-depth with details, I find that rare.ReplyDelete
Fascinating post, Alison. The archival videos (and the music video by Olivia Newton John) convey the scale of the development and evoke the era so well. I look forward to going back to Century City Westfield to find those locations from "Conquest Of The Planet of the Apes". I've been there many times but didn't know that was filmed there, as with the other movies and shows you mentioned.ReplyDelete
Reading about the ABC Entertainment Center was also very interesting. I didn't know that was once there (I lived in LA after it was demolished and replaced by the CAA building), but what a spectacular complex that must have been. I have always loved the look of Century City but didn't know it had been designed and built as one massive project, and one so ambitious for Los Angeles, in terms of mid-century/modern architecture. Does the Grand Promenade still exist in any form? Thanks!
The western Gateway office building that was torn down to make way for Eataly/Macy's, 1801 Ave of the Stars, was the place where Groucho Marx had his last office. Talk about bad karma. This is on you Westfield!ReplyDelete
1965?!!! I thought it was much newerReplyDelete
I was an editor at the Century City News from about ‘79 to ‘99, and I’m amazed at your photo collection; what a treasure trove! I have a few old issues of the community newspaper I could share with you, if you want to add to this archive. (I’m at email@example.com)ReplyDelete
I've been wracking my brain to try and remember the name of a restaurant in the ABC Entertainment Center. We used to go there occasionally before shows at the Shubert. I remember Harry's (loved it) and Jade West, but this restaurant had an exotic name and it was in the same building as the Shubert, but on the backside of the building. I really miss the Shubert, saw so many great musicals there.ReplyDelete
You've done us a service. What a great post! My fave CC memory was meeting there in 1968 to go on a tour of the Fox lot. I recall a storefront we met in with a model of the "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" Sub while we waited, then we left to see the "Hello Dolly!" set, "Payton Place" in fake snow and other cool stuff about to be shot across the street. What a day to a 10 year old... "Heaven" later became a "must do" store as well.
I worked in one of the Delta Towers in the mid 1990s. Before that, spent many days in '70s and '80s in the mall, at the Schubert, at Harry's Bar, at the Cineplex Odeon, Bullock's, shopping, hanging. It's one of those locations that is inextricably associated with my young adulthood and life in L.A.ReplyDelete
The theatre with the "rocking chair seating" was the perfect venue for the "Ladies and Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones" concert film with the addition of the killer quad stereo system. Would have been '73 if I recall correctly, otherwise it was '74. How they demonstrated the quad system just as the lights were going down was just a stroke of brilliance. The house went crazy and the show started.ReplyDelete
Thanks for kick-starting memories of the Mayfair Market. I remember going there with my grandmother. Spent some time in the mall, but mostly the Mayfair. And the photo of Doris Day is fun to see -- my mom had the same sunglasses back then.ReplyDelete
I believe Gelsons/Mayfair appears to the mall's oldest and longest tenured tenant as they've been there since the very beginning. The former parent company (Arden-Mayfair Group) changed its name of the Century City location from Mayfair Markets to Gelsons in 1971. Not sure if there are other stores at the mall that have been there for as long as Gelsons at the exact same location since the mid 1960s besides the Gelsons and Bloomingdales buildings. In the mall map from 1965 (from Mall Hall of Fame), a pharmacy was right behind the Gelsons building. Mickey Fine (a Beverly Hills-based retail pharmacy) currently is the mall's only pharmacy, positioned right above Gelsons.Delete
Back in the day, my office was in the Century Bldg #1. Century City was an amazing real estate development. The mix was brilliant. I no longer live in LA but when I come "home", I always try to find time to visit.ReplyDelete
• "Twentieth Century-Fox", "20th Century-Fox", "Fox" and their associated logos are the property of Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation. TWENTIETH CENTURY-FOX, 20th CENTURY-FOX, FOX and associated logos are trademarks of Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation and its related entities.ReplyDelete
• "Twentieth Century Fox", "20th Century Fox", "Fox" and their associated logos are the property of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX, 20th CENTURY FOX, FOX and associated logos are trademarks of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation and its related entities.
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I left L.A. in 1987 and this was a wonderful trip back in time for me. The first thing I thought about was my trips there with my mother who loved shopping more than almost anything. My friends Carol and Charlee had one of the carts. It was their first business venture. I saw Chorus Line and Annie at the Schubert. Thank you for the memories. Judys was my favorite shop.ReplyDelete
Amazing, wonderful article. all in all, though, I wish it were still a backlot.ReplyDelete
I loved that place and even worked at the popcorn stand in 1984 right next to the singing flower man. Thanks for the memoriesReplyDelete
Thank you so much for these memories. I loved the pictures. I frequented Judy's often and was a fan of Mary Quant cosmetics, my friends and I worked at Maestro Mcfly's, Bobs Big Boy and The Broadway. I saw a Chorus Line and Evita and Jesus Christ Superstar at the Shubert. I loved Century City Mall, sorry it's gone.ReplyDelete
For me, working at THE JELLY BELLY CART in the mid to late '70s created lifelong memories, marriage to Vivien (Judy's window display specialist), and friends forever. Please contact me if you remember me.ReplyDelete
Love these and your memories! I worked at The Bijou all through high school (BHHS!) ... it was a magical place to work with the sister stores of Heaven and Nickelodeon. Spent most of my paychecks on clothes at Judy's and shoes at Leed's. And also fun because so many friends had jobs at other stores in the mall. As a little kid, felt like such a grown up getting to serve myself at Clifton's. Remember Lindbergh's? The OG health food store! And the tree in Tot Toggery... Milk shakes at Bob's Big Boy..."Lo-cal cookie balls" from The Cookie Place...My best friend worked at Contempo after we graduated college - the best place for earrings and trendy stuff. I still have my doll house family (that I got from Toy Mart which I'm sure you remember) safely kept in a shopping bag from Field's where my older sister worked. So many great memories ... Thanks for the wonderful trip to the past!ReplyDelete
hi all, I remember the original mall very well from my first visit in 1996. Was also my first visit to the US altogether, after driving Route 66 down from Chicago. I bought a great Delsey suitcase at that time in the mall. Still using it! Question for all of you: I stayed during this visit at the JW Marriott around the corner. Based on their concierge's recommendation I enjoyed a very memorable evening at a fine dining restaurant that had live music and performance. It was I believe on St Monica boulevard West of the mall. A 5-minute ride or so from the hotel. Would love if anyone could help me remember the name of that place. Probably not too many top restaurants with show in the mall vicinity. Thanks for any comments! Stefan/from GermanyReplyDelete
Hi, for me the Century City mall was where I would walk around with my mom and look at the shops through the windows. I could never afford clothes from Judy’s and my mom could never have the money for I Magnin dresses. We could only walk around and hope for a sale. In high school I worked at the Broadway at a part time job that paid $2.35 an hour and you had to work hard folding clothes and selling, you couldn’t sit down on the job.ReplyDelete
Years later I helped design the guess jeans store.
Back in the summer of 1974, I had a filing clerk job for the company building the twin towers. I had to reach that office in the Century City Entertainment Center by walking along the outside of the Playboy Club and then left. The one thing I remember about the job was that one of the office staff was raving on about the book he was reading at the time: JAWS. Thanks for all the memories you have preserved!ReplyDelete
I really enjoyed your photos. They brought back some great memories of my time working on the 31st Floor of 2029 CPE. Thanks for sharing them.ReplyDelete
Back in approximately 1986, while on my lunch break, I went to the GAP in the Century City Mall to buy a pair of pants. They did not have my size (29 waist), but said they would order a pair from another store and call me when they arrived. I am still waiting for that call. If anyone has a connection at the GAP, please let them know that I will need to change my order to a 38 waist. The last 35 years have been brutal!ReplyDelete
That is hysterical!!Delete
nice article , thanks for sharing , checkout my work on shopping malls in los Angeles.ReplyDelete
Wasn't there a Bob's Big Boy restaurant on that northeast exit? Great pics. What a trip!ReplyDelete