Zip Codes: 91602, 91604, 91607, 91614
In the San Fernando Valley, just over the hill from Hollywood, sits Studio City. The 6.31-square mile community of approximately 37,000 residents offers a reprieve from the fast pace and congestion of the rest of Los Angeles, while numerous entertainment industry offices as well as CBS Studio Center make it a vital outpost of the entertainment industry. Still, Studio City’s deepest appeal is arguably the many mature, tree-lined streets lined with charming homes. It’s the ideal neighborhood for those who want the benefits of city life while enjoying a quieter, small town feel. And if you can afford the a place in portion of the neighborhood that is nestled in the hills, the views are breathtaking. Studio City’s median income is on the higher side for Los Angeles, while being one of the least densely populated areas of the city.
Location and History
Studio City is bordered on the north by Valley Village, on the south by Hollywood Hills West, on the east by Toluca Lake and Universal City, on the southwest by Beverly Crest, and on the west by Sherman Oaks. Originally known as Laurelwood, the area Studio City now occupies was largely uninhabited until the construction of the Los Angeles Aqueduct, which brought water to the San Fernando Valley in 1913. The population boomed in the wake of this development, and soon followed the construction of a new 20-acre studio by director, actor, and producer Mack Sennett. The studio quickly established itself as an undeniable economic engine of the area, and the surrounding area was renamed Studio City. The Studio is still in operation today as CBS Center Studios, where some of the most popular shows in TV history have been taped, including “Seinfeld” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.
Dine, Hang Out, Shop & Stuff
Despite that relative quiet of the area, there is no shortage of fhip boutiques, eateries, and nightlife spots in Studio City. Ventura Boulevard, the de facto Main Street, offers numerous entertainment and dining options. The boulevard is lined with dozens of sushi bars, ranging from casual, Americanized venues to high-end restaurants that treat sushi as an art form. And Ventura Place, the 1-block strip between Ventura Blvd and Laurel Cyn Blvd has a high concentration of hip destinations, including Joan’s on Third, Alfred Coffee, McConnel’s Ice Cream and Tuning Fork. For outdoor recreation enthusiasts, there are numerous hiking trails, including the popular Fryman Canyon. People seeking scenery can walk or drive along Mulholland, stopping at one of the many outlooks perched over the valley. For those seeking a fun, kid-friendly place, Universal Studios is right next door. Its wildly popular attraction, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, is sure to delight any young aspiring Hogwart. Here’s a sample of the areas fine destinations.
Sure, Amazon is cheaper, and delivers quickly. But there is something to be said about browsing the shelves at a bookstore. Or going to a reading. That’s why Bookstar will always be a bit one of the special places along Ventura in Studio City. The building was originally the Fox Studio City Theatre, designed by architect Clifford A. Balch and the doors first opened in 1938. Today, it’s a branch of Barnes & Noble. Much of the original facade, including the ticket booth and marquee remains as a testament to its past. Art-deco flourishes and restored murals grace the interior. Bring the kids in for Saturday Morning Storytime, every Saturday at 11:00AM.
Open every Sunday from 8am to 2pm, rain or shine, the farmer’s market is not merely a place to shop, it’s a fantastic place to enjoy an day outside with your family and friends. In addition to fresh, locally grown produce, there are craft merchants and food vendors dishing out everything from rice balls to lobster, from pizza to tamales. For the kids, don’t forget to check out the train ride, petting zoo, pony rides, and bouncy slide.
The Baked Potato
The definitive jazz and blues club in the valley, the Baked Potato has been serving up hot potatoes and smoking music since 1970. Whether the performers are household names, or unknown up-and-comers, it’s always a great evening to quality musicianship.
The Six Chow House
The Society of Six was an influential community of six artists in Northern California during the 1920’s prohibition era. At their cabin, known as “The Chow House,” these six closely-knit artists enjoyed creating art with their home-made meals, brews and wines. Inspired by the 1920’s “Society of Six”, which was a collective of six artists who had a cabin they called The Chow House, this rustic American restaurant serves affordable, unpretentious and locally sourced food in a cozy atmosphere, created primarily from recycled materials. The menu features six starters, six entrees, six red wines, six white wines, six brews on tap and six desserts.
Joan’s on Third
If you happen to walk by Joan’s on Third, you can’t help but walk in. Visually, it just has that sort of deep appeal that you can’t resist. And once you’re inside, even if you just go in to check it out, you will almost certainly buy something. It’s the kind of gourmet market (cafe/store/restaurant/gift shop) that all neighborhoods should have. Whether you want hot dishes, cold charcuterie, sit-down, take-away, just a pastry, or some candy, Joan’s has you covered. Some menu standards are three-cheese macaroni, omelets, chicken cutlets, Nutella pound cake and more.
When considering that this restaurant is located on a portion of Ventura that is driven past much more frequently than it’s walked past, it’s reasonable to conclude that the longevity of the Sun Cafe is due to the quality of its food rather than simply being a convenient vegan destination. And that conclusion would be correct. Having grown out of their tiny, original space, the current venue has plenty of indoor and outdoor seating and even offers off-street parking. Try the Jackfruit Tacos, or the Legendary Kale Colossus.
With an artful collection of clothing, home furnishings, and gifts, Soto is one of those dependable neighborhood stores you’ll go to again and again whether you’re looking for a stylish article of clothing for the new season, or a perfect housewarming gift - without breaking the bank!
Salt & Straw
If you like ice cream, there is probably no need at all to tell you why stopping in at Salt & Straw is a must. Because I’m sure you already know. Interesting flavors abound. And they vary by city. As of this writing, in Studio City you can get Rhubarb Crumble with Toasted Anise, Wildflower Honey with Ricotta Walnut Lace Cookies, and more.
This is a timeless, comfy, hangout for local creative types that features comfort food along with a broad selection of California craft beer, and small family produced wines.
I like rooting for the small, independent guys. And if it’s a small, neighborhood coffee shop with great coffee, I’m all in. Coffee fix on Moorpark is just that. Serving Forge Hold Fast Espresso and Forge Angel’s Crest Drip Blend, and organic Art of Tea teas, every cup is a good one.
Black Market Liquor Bar
Lots of delicious small plates, craft beer, good time and attentive staff make Black Market a great after-work gathering spot.
Jerry’s Famous Deli
Jerry’s has two locations in the valley, with Studio City being the first. The doors opened and 1978 and its extensive menu (which has had as many as 700 items on it!) has made it become a favorite noshing spot for many over the years.
Schools within the Studio City boundaries are:
Bridges Academy, private, 4-12, 3921 Laurel Canyon Boulevard
Campbell Hall School, private, K-12, 4533 Laurel Canyon Boulevard
Harvard-Westlake School, private, 10-12, 3700 Coldwater Canyon Avenue
Walter Reed Middle School, LAUSD, 6-8, 4525 Irvine Avenue
Oakwood School, private, K-6, 11230 Moorpark Street
Rio Vista Elementary School, LAUSD, K-5, 4243 Satsuma Avenue
St. Charles Borromeo School, private, K-8, 10850 Moorpark Street
Presburger House - 4255 Agnes Ave 1945 Rudolph Schindler
Kallis House - 3580 Multiview Dr 1947 Rudolph Schindler
Fredonia Apartment Building - 3625 Fredonia Dr 1964 Raymond Kappe
Laurelwood Apartment Building - 11833-11837 Laurelwood Dr 1948 Rudolph Schindler
Goodwin House - 3807 Reklaw Dr 1940 Rudolph Schindler
Gold House - 3758 Reklaw Dr 1945 Rudolph Schindler
Lechner House - 11600 Amanda Dr 1948 Rudolph Schindler
Waxman House - 3644 Buena Park Dr 1964 J. Barry Moffitt
Roth House - 3624 Buena Park Dr 1945 Rudolph Schindler
Chase Bank - Laurel Cyn & Ventura Blvd 1968 Millard Sheets
Ralph’s Market - Laurel Cyn & Ventura Blvd 1972 R. Leon Edgar
Simon House - 3649 Buena Park Dr 1989 Marshall Lewis
Lingenbrink Shops - 12632 Ventura Blvd 1942 Rudolph Schindler
Baron House - 3860 Berry Ct. 1965 John Lautner
Estes Residence - 3817 Broadlawn Dr. 1935 William Kesling
Halverson Residence - 3584 Multiview Dr. 1959 Buff, Straub and Hensman
St. Michael and All Angels Church - 3650 Coldwater Canyon Ave. 1959 A. Quincy Jones and Frederic Emmons
Agnes Avenue Historic District
A cohesive and intact concentration of American Colonial Revival residential architecture Revival constructed in 1937 and 1938.
Zwebell House - 4227 Agnes Ave. 1937 Arthur and Nina Zwebell
Stevens-Harnell House - 3692 Berry Dr. 1985 Robert Harvey Oshatz
Late Modern design with with Expressionist details.
Autry Residence - 3171 Brookdale Rd. 1949
Known as the “Flying A Estate”, this was the long-term home of legendary musician and actor Gene Autry, known as "The Singing Cowboy”, who lived here until his death in 1998. The nearly 8,000 square foot residence occupies a 160,000 square foot hillside lot.
Blair Residence - 3763 Fredonia Dr. Harwell Hamilton Harris 1939
Excellent and rare example of Early Modern residential architecture in the Valley
Virzintas Penthouse - 4336 Laurel Canyon Blvd. Richard Neutra 1949
An not-so-typical Neutra, this is a project where the architect added onto an already existing structure to create a tri-plex. Though, from the street, you might never know this as it all blends so well. Glass walled public spaces and master open to roof-deck with a perimeter reflecting pond.