Architecture, Los Angeles, California
Concierge.com's insider take:
The Los Angeles Conservancy, a preservation society founded in 1978, operates weekly walking tours of downtown L.A.'s architectural landmarks, from the much-filmed 1893 Bradbury Building to the elaborately gilded twenties and thirties movie theaters on Broadway (213-430-4219; www.laconservancy.org; $10 for non-members). The L.A. chapter of the American Institute of Architects also conducts tours of architecturally significant houses at least twice a year (213-639-0777; www.aialosangeles.org). At the downtown Visitors' Center, you can pick up free itineraries guiding you on 30-minute walking tours, which include Rafael Moneo's Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, Frank Gehry's stainless-steel Walt Disney Concert Hall, and the museums and California Science Center in Exposition Park (www.seemyla.com). If you're interested in modernism, CA Boom Design Expositions offers tours series, visiting case houses and other significant homes (310-394-8600; www.caboomshow.com).
Notable buildings that are worth making specific pilgrimages to see are the MAK Center for Art + Architecture, the former West Hollywood home of famed modernist Rudolf Schindler; tours are held midday on weekends (323-651-1510; www.makcenter.org). Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House in Barnsdall Park in the Hollywood/Los Feliz area can once again be visited after extensive restoration (323-644-6269; www.hollyhockhouse.net), as can his Ennis House, in Los Feliz (323-660-0607; www.ennishouse.org). Of Pasadena's many craftsman bungalows, the most famous is the Gamble House, designed by Charles and Henry Greene in 1908 (626-793-3334; www.gamblehouse.org).