6672-6674 Vista Del Mar Duplex | Los Angeles Conservancy
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

6672-6674 Vista Del Mar Duplex

Standing like a Late Modern vision of the Streamline Moderne style of the 1930s and 1940s, the duplex at 6672-6674 Vista Del Mar in Los Angeles is quite a sight on its street of near-beachfront homes. This is reported to have been the first built work of architect Eric Owen Moss, now well-known for his visionary designs in Culver City and across the region. The actual building itself is older, completed in 1956, but it underwent additions and major alterations as part of Moss’s design in 1977.

It is a narrow building on a small lot, dwarfed by many of the larger houses on its street, but it stands out because of its verticality and playful design. The duplex is three stories in height, with garages underneath it and a large deck accessed by a small turret-like volume crowning the rooftop. It deftly uses its vertical orientation to maximize its usable space. Curving elements add visual interest to the front façade, with horizontal cylindrical elements supporting small front balconies. The tower that accesses the roof sits atop a cylindrical glass window bay offering a wide view to the north, looking out like a single eye facing away from the ocean.

This Late Modern building is a great and unusually accessible example of the style, and represents the beginning of Moss’s long and rich body of work.

Zenith Tower
Photo by Devri Richmond

Zenith Tower

A distinctive Late Modern building that deserves a second look, Zenith Tower's architect, Maxwell Starkman, was one of the first combination architect-developers which put methods of production on equal footing with pure design.