de LaB headed to our namesake avenue last month, hosting a tour of restaurants, retail and office hub District La Brea. The tour started with pastries, mimosas, and the “before” pictures of the former Continental Graphics printing shop, which lay fallow for several years before developer Madison Marquette purchased the building in 2008. With inauspicious timing, the recession meant that Madison converted the adaptive re-use project – a blessing in disguise as it turns out. As explained by Madison Marquette’s Brandton Leitze and Scarlet Garcia, the slow build out meant fashion forward retailers, such as Aether Apparel and Bonobos, were able to visualize and invest in the transformation of this corner of La Brea. Architect Alan Pullman of Studio One Eleven was careful to keep many of the buildings’ original features, such as soaring wood truss ceilings, exposed brick and steel beams. Touring the development, we stopped at newly opened churrasco Odys + Penelope, for a tour with architect and designer Alexis Readinger of Preen, who kept idiosyncratic touches such as the original greek columns on the street, but also created an open, airy space. Last, we stopped at high end design shop A+R for more mimosas and a brief talk by co-founder and owner Andy Griffith, who was one of the first tenants in a space designed by frequent collaborator Barbara Bestor. As A+R’s business grew, it also outgrew its former home on Abbott Kinney (which has transitioned to a mostly tourist trade), but luckily found the space and place to offer great design to locals.
This month we’re headed to our namesake avenue: La Brea! Anyone who has driven, walked, or biked down the street has noticed how much development has gone on in the neighborhood over the past year. And perhaps no single project has done more for retailing, restaurants, and design than District La Brea.
The 90,000 square foot adaptive re-use development project situated between 1st and 2nd Streets was formerly the home of Continental Graphics Corporation, a printing shop. Today, La Brea hosts a mix of creative office users, fashion forward retail, and dining.
Over the past five years, the project has undergone significant improvements, highlighting each building’s unique characteristics, including wood truss ceilings, exposed brick and steel beams. The project’s focus was to revitalize the historic 1930’s era compound of buildings into a destination that complements the existing retail of American Rag, Union, and Stussy across the street.
Join us as we hear from developer Madison Marquette, Alexis Readinger of Preen who designed newest dining destination on La Brea, Odys + Penelope, and Rose Apodaca, founder and owner of home design store A+R.
RECENTLY ADDED: Architect Alan Pullman of Studio One Eleven, who worked closed with Madison Marquette to design the building.
Brandton Leitze is Project and Sr. Manager for Madison Marquette. Leitze has an extensive background and knowledge in real estate development, finance, management, and leasing. Prior to joining MMRS Mr. Leitze worked with Westfield Group and General Growth Properties. Mr. Leitze is an active member in the International Council of Shopping Centers and Urban Land Institute.
Alexis Readinger is a designer based in Los Angeles’ Chinatown. She founded Preen, Inc. in 2005. Originally from Texas, she moved to California to complete a Masters in Architecture and has been designing hospitality spaces since 1999. Prior to hatching Preen, she designed for Dodd Mitchell, for Thomas Schoos and for Kanner Architects on fifty or so local and international hotel, restaurant, retail and residential projects. She is a LEED certified Green Building Advisor (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). She is committed to healthy, integrated growth in Chinatown and to just and joyful business everywhere.
Rose Apodaca is a writer, text and exhibition editor, consultant and half of A+R, the source for modern design from around the world. Rose and partner Andy Griffith founded A+R, the design retail lab and leading launchpad for modern designers to the North American market throughaplusrstore.com and a shopfront first on Abbot Kinney in Venice and now at District La Brea.
Alan Pullman, AIA
As founder of Studio One Eleven, Alan Pullman, AIA, leads design teams on mixed-use, urban infill and adaptive reuse projects. With over 20 years of experience in architecture and urban design, he has led project teams on a number of award-winning developments and is committed enhancing communities through incremental urbanism – the development of modest projects that emphasize placemaking. Pullman is a registered architect in California and an active member of the American Institute of Architects and the Urban Land Institute, where he serves on the Inner-City Council. He is also a board member for the Long Beach Conservation Corps and a partner in East Village Partners, a community focused infill developer. Pullman received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from Syracuse University.