Hudson Hollywood Apartments
A point of interest on the Lost Souls of Hollywood Boulevard GPS-guided audio walking tour.
Press play & listen to the tour audio!
The Golden Era of Hollywood was just around the corner in 1918, and the film industry was bustling with excitement. Hollywood Blvd was the main street of the film capital of the world and everyone was welcome. Well, everyone but actors.
Signs reading “no actors, no dogs” hung in apartment windows, and housing was short for Hollywood talent who landlords believed to be unreliable tenants. Movie mogul and film pioneer, Jesse Lasky, would have none of it. Actors were an important part of the business, and they needed somewhere to live. So, Lasky teamed up with Samuel Goldwyn to build The Hillview Apartments, designed specifically to house actors. And it quickly became Hollywood’s most sought-after residence, offering a large lobby, a ladies waiting room, a writing room, garbage incinerators, beautiful interior and even automatic elevators.
The Hillview Apartments has been home to some of Hollywood’s most famous stars, notably silent film stars like Viola Dana, Oliver Hardy and Mae Busch. And it’s rumoured to have been the site of Rudolph Valentino’s speakeasy.
Tenants graced the halls and suites of The Hillview Apartments until the 1994 earthquake damaged it structurally. Then there was the construction of the subway, and a 2002 fire that caused extensive damage. Fortunately, the building was restored and renovated in 2006, and is still standing as a home to new generations of Hollywood talent.
Now called The Hudson Apartments, the place is home to more than its current tenants, it’s said to be haunted. Most notably is a man from the 1920s who hangs around downstairs and shows himself to prospective renters, making it a bit challenging to secure long-term agreements.
This building is also home to an intimate theatre called Black Rabbit Rose, that is haunted by the former silent film stars that once lived in the apartments above. It’s also said to have “an obscure occult lineage” and was maybe once home to a secret society.
Today you can head to Black Rabbit Rose for a cocktail and Thai-Chinese favorites from the Crying Tiger takeout window. Or you can catch yourself a magic or burlesque show in the Rose Theatre.
We're going to cross north Hudson Avenue and keep walking east. As you walk, you'll see a large building with a radio tower on top. That's our next point of interest, the Hollywood Pacific Theatre.
Each POI has a fun multiple choice trivia challenge you can test your skills on.
The trivia questions are separate from the commentary and completely optional.
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