Roxbury Plaza | Los Angeles Conservancy
Photo by Lynne Tucker

Roxbury Plaza

Of the many high-rise office buildings that shot up on Wilshire Boulevard during the postwar period, few are as graceful as the Manufacturers Bank building in Beverly Hills.

Completed in 1974, the thirteen-story tower (also known as Roxbury Plaza) is an undulating parallelogram on a corner in downtown Beverly Hills. It was designed by architect Anthony Lumsden of Daniel, Mann, Johnson, and Mendenhall (DMJM), who along with colleague Cesar Pelli was renowned for his innovative glass-skin designs.

The Late Modern-style Manufacturers Bank building illustrates Lumsden’s hallmark design elements of aerodynamic curves, reversed mullions, and vast expanses of glass curtain walls. It relates strongly to its site, with its curving walls bending in response to its corner location, the tallest tower standing at the intersection and the rest of the building flowing wave-like behind it.

Lumsden used a cladding of dark-tinted mirrored glass to set the tower apart from the other high-rise office buildings dominating this part of Beverly Hills. Its colors change with the weather but remain subdued in the service of the curving, balanced structure.

For all its elegance and size, the Manufacturers Bank building was remarkably cost-efficient, with its construction costing no more than $16 per square foot.

Glendale Federal Savings, Beverly Hills
Photo by Lynne Tucker

Bank of America, Beverly Hills

Visitors looking up from the base of the Glendale Federal Savings Building see light streaming through the fifty-two rainbow-patterned glass of a dalle da verre cornice, cantilevered nine-and-a-half feet from the top of the ten-story building.
Pacific Design Center
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

Pacific Design Center

At once beloved and reviled by its neighbors, the Pacific Design Center is an enormous landmark that arose in three major stages: Center Blue, Center Green and Center Red.
Haugh Performing Arts Center
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

Haugh Performing Arts Center

A sprawling building in Late Modern style with some hints of Brutalism, the Center hosts up to 200 performances each year and was a major achievement for the first junior college in L.A. County.