Wednesday, July 17, 2013

One Truly Fantastic Historical Tour of Hollywood That Appeals to Your Intelligence!!!

This past weekend my sweet, lovely friend Else...

That's Else on the right. Hi Else!
Treated my husband and I to an amazing historical tour of Hollywood.

Here's the deal: If you're looking for the typical tour of star's homes or a studio lot tour, this is not for you. And if that is you, totally fine. I used to give tours of NBC at Rockefeller Plaza. I know! That being said, this is like the indie Hollywood tour because it is born from a passion and love for all of this town's rich history and glamor. The creator of the tour, Philip, cared so much about all this stuff,  he felt it needed to be shared, so the truth and legacy live on in this 90 minute journey through one of Hollywood's most historical areas. But that sounds really heavy and serious. Trust me, Philip's a character. He's funny, smart and doesn't talk down to you. At all. Hooray for People Who Trust That I Have A Brain and an Imagination! (Sorry for the outburst but my husband and I have gone on some pretty lame tours. One night tour in Prague was particularly offensive.)

It's all pretty simple. Philip meets you on the corner of Sunset and Vine, in front of the Chase Bank at the fountain there, and basically takes you on a 1 mile walking and talking tour - that's it. And if you know ANYTHING about this area, I'm not going to lie, visually -- not the most thrilling thing you're ever going to see. BUT THAT'S OKAY. Because a) Philip knows how to tell you where you really are and what hallowed ground you're truly walking on and b) he's got a swanky book!

That also doesn't sound like much does it? But the photos tell a lot. They help you to understand that what you're looking at, isn't remotely what this area once was. 

In fact, every time you pass a building, driveway or parking lot - Philip will show and tell you what used to be there, how it got there, who put it there, who slept there, who slept there with whom, who sold it to so-in-so or what-and-what or Warner Brothers, and what it's like now.

IT IS AMAZING. And fun. And I want to go again.

For locals it might even be more exciting.

We drive by, walk by, see these places every day and most of us really don't have a clue just how much has gone down here. Kind of makes you want to kiss the ground. Euphemistically. Let's not get carried away...

It did all really blow my mind.

Major stories with this place

Major stories with this place

Even major stories with this place that has nothing to do with pancakes. Though I'm sure there are some good pancake stories, too. Feel free to let me know.
I especially loved all the stuff about Harry Cohn and Thomas Edison. Thomas Edison, right? Who knew? Philip, apparently.

Tours are every Monday through Thursday at 1:30 pm. Friday through Sunday at 1 and 4pm and all tours last about 90 minutes. It's $40 per person and open to anyone over the age of 15. Tickets are arranged for in advance and to do so, check out the website:  felixinhollywoodtours. He will try to accommodate same-day purchasers, just check out how on the site. As for what you're in store for, this isn't going to remotely wear you out. Like I said, it's really a small amount of walking you're going to be doing. And there are kind of a million places to eat in the area: Tender Greens, Go Burger! Umami is near by on Cahuenga. Also, you can park at the parking structure at Sunset and Vine (where Borders used to be and is now a Walgreens and if you ask Philip, he'll tell you a lot more about all of that, too). You can also park on the street. Where I did. And so when on our home stretch we encountered the following, I momentarily panicked.

But back to the tour, if you go, let me know how you like it. I certainly hope you do.

The Palladium on Sunset, back in the day

***Fred Astaire & Rita Hayworth on the top of a Columbia Studios Soundstage.

1 comment:

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