Continental Building | Los Angeles Conservancy
Photo by Annie Laskey/L.A. Conservancy

Continental Building

Designed by John Parkinson, the 175-foot, 12-story Braly Block (now known as the Continental Building) was one of Los Angeles’ first skyscrapers. The building was completed shortly before the city established its building height limitations, which went into effect in early 1905. Consequently, the Braly Block remained the city's tallest building for more than fifty years (only City Hall was taller because it was exempt from the limit by public vote).

The building, hailed as being virtually fireproof, contained many technological advances including a “state-of-the-art” steam heating plant and vacuum system.

The Braly Block was named for John Hyde Braly, who was president of the local business syndicate that constructed the building. Braly arrived with his family in Northern California from Missouri just before the Gold Rush of 1849. He made his fortune selling provisions to miners and later went on to become a farmer and the superintendent of schools in the Santa Clara Valley. He moved to San Diego in 1887, where he became a banker, and in 1891 moved to Los Angeles. 

Although no original interior elements remain, the Braly Block’s profusely decorated attic story ornamented with massive rounded columns is unchanged. The building housed many different banks over the years, and now serves as loft-style apartments.

Los Angeles Jewelry Center
Photo from Conservancy archives

Los Angeles Jewelry Center

Shining emerald green in the sun, this terra cotta-clad building from 1931 was designed by Claud Beelman for Sun Realty.
Courtesy City of Beverly Hills

Beverly Gardens Park

This project thoughtfully restored a beloved century-old city park, preserving its original pioneering design, while making it environmentally sustainable and adding modern infrastructure and design features to meet changing community needs.
Photo by Adrian Scott Fine/L.A. Conservancy

Rialto Theatre

Quinn's Rialto Theatre opened on May 21, 1917. The Rialto was one of the first theatres to have stadium style seating and features the longest neon marquee in the Broadway National Register Historic Theatre District.