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Venice

There is always something happening in Venice. I love visiting this neighborhood: an unconventional enclave along Los Angeles’ coast, Venice combines Bohemian values with counter-culture street cred. A carnival atmosphere permeates throughout the beach boardwalk, but just one block over is the bustling Abbot Kinney Boulevard, home to some of my favorite restaurants, shops, and bars in the city. The romance of Venice never fades for me. There’s something about the cool ocean breeze here that makes it feel like a completely different city.

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Whether catching the sunset at the beach or walking (or boating!) along the picturesque Venice canals, I could spend days here always discovering something new.

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Homes in Venice vary widly from modern new builds to classic California Beach Craftsmans.

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Can you imagine the views of the beach from this home’s rooftop deck?

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Lemonade is one of the neighborhood’s best and brightest casual lunch spots. But if you’re looking for something a little more upscale for dinner, I’d recommend Primitivo Wine Bistro, James’ Beach, or Salt Air. All fantastic restaurants with beachy vibes.

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James’ Beach turns into a happening nightclub. Down the street is Roosterfish, a great place to dance any night of the week.

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Along the Venice boardwalk, you’ll find many interesting and curious shops. It is one of the most diverse and atmospheric gems of our city. Everybody meets at the boardwalk.

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Venice is also home to many burgeoning cutting edge design and architecture firms, like DU Architects, SANT Architects, and EIS Studio.

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One of the many pleasures of Venice is spending a day walking up the coast on a sort of architectural home tour. The entire journey is lined with many fabulous, stunning, or quirky ocean front homes.

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Abbot Kinney created Venice, built its canals and piers, and brought the first hordes of visitors to Southern California beaches. Today, it’s Venice’s residents that have transformed it.

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Demographics

The 2008 U.S. census counted estimated the population at 40,885. The median age for residents was 35, considered the average for Los Angeles; the percentages of residents aged 19 through 49 were among the county’s highest.

The neighborhood was moderately diverse ethnically, but had a high percentage of white people. The breakdown was whites, 64.2%; Latinos, 21.7%; blacks, 5.4%; Asians, 4.1%, and others, 4.6%. Mexico (38.4%) and the United Kingdom (8.5%) were the most common places of birth for the 22.3% of the residents who were born abroad—considered a low figure for Los Angeles.

The median yearly household income in 2008 dollars was $67,647, a high figure for Los Angeles. The percentage of households earning $125,000 was considered high for the city. The average household size of 1.9 people was low for both the city and the county. Renters occupied 68.8% of the housing stock and house- or apartment owners held 31.2%. Property values have been increasing lately due to the presence of technology companies such as Google Inc. (which in 2011 began leasing 100,000 square feet of space in Venice) and Snapchat (which leases property on Market Street and Abbot Kinney).

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Schools

  • Broadway Elementary School, LAUSD, 1015 Lincoln Boulevard
  • Animo Venice Charter High School, 820 Broadway Street, which opened in August 2002 with 145 students, adding a freshman class of 140 every year until 2006, when it reached its full capacity of approximately 525 students. The school moved in 2006 to the former Ninety-Eighth Street Elementary School campus, which had been occupied by the Renaissance Academy.
  • Venice Skills Center, LAUSD, 611 Fifth Avenue
  • First Lutheran School of Venice, private, 815 Venice Boulevard
  • Westminster Avenue Elementary School, LAUSD, 1010 Abbot Kinney Boulevard
  • St. Mark School, private elementary, 912 Coeur d’Alene Avenue
  • Coeur d’Alene Avenue Elementary School, LAUSD, 810 Coeur d’Alene Avenue
  • Westside Leadership Magnet School, LAUSD alternative, 104 Anchorage Street

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Film History

Venice’s unique architecture, canal network, and amusement piers provided Hollywood’s newly established motion picture industry with colorful settings for early silent pictures. Thomas Ince was one of the first to bring a motion picture camera crew to Venice. Rivals studios like Bison, Biograph, Vitagraph and Liberty were quick to follow. Movie companies became so numerous and disruptive to business, that for a time in 1915, there was talk of banning them from Venice’s streets. However, no action was taken, and in later years movies like Buster Keaton’s “The Camera Man” and several “Our Gang” comedies were filmed along the beach and on the pier. Harold Lloyd leaped from a canal bridge, Mary Pickford was rowed down the Grand Canal and Mabel Norman emerged from the ocean beside the pier with a fish on her head.

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Architecture

Designers Charles and Ray Eames had their offices at the Bay Cities Garage on Abbot Kinney Boulevard from 1943 on, when it was still part of Washington Boulevard; Eames products were also manufactured there until the 1950s.[41] The brick building’s interior was redesigned by Frank Israel in 1990 as a creative workspace, opening up the interior and creating sightlines all the way through the building.

Originally located at the Venice home of Pritzker Prize–winning architect and SCI-Arc founder Thom Mayne, the Architecture Gallery was in existence for just ten weeks in 1979 and featured new work by then-emerging architects Frank Gehry, Eric Owen Moss, and Morphosis. Constructed on a long, narrow lot in 1981, the Indiana Avenue Houses/Arnoldi Triplex was designed Frank Gehry in partnership with artists Laddie Dill and Charles Arnoldi. Frank Gehry has designed several well-known houses in Venice, including the Jane Spiller House (completed 1979) and the Norton House (completed 1984) on Venice Beach.[44] In 1994, sculptor Robert Graham designed a fortress-like art studio and residence for himself and his wife, actress Anjelica Huston, on Windward Avenue.

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