Melrose Hill-  Small Town Feel in the Heart of the Big City

Tucked away in the Hollywood Studio District, north of Melrose Avenue between Little Armenia and Korea-town, is the historic quaint neighborhood of 45 residences called Melrose Hill”.  This HPOZ area illustrates why Los Angeles is known as “The bungalow capital of the world”, since it is notable for its numerous examples of Craftsman and Colonial Revival styles built between 1911 and 1926.

Originally developed as affordable housing by the Briggs Company, this tiny enclave is a great area for first time home buyers, even though prices have increased a bit since then.  In January 2003, Los Angeles magazine deemed it one of the city’s “10 Great Neighborhoods”, due to this gem of a community being what residents call “a step back in time”.  Melrose Hill is a charming place where neighbors know each other, watch after each other’s kids and play in the two cul-de-sacs and one tiny street.  If you want your anonymity, this is the wrong place, but its appeal is apparent, since houses come up for sale on average, every 1.5 years.  Home-owners love the isolation Melrose Hill provides, but say visitors often have a hard time finding them and so does “Waze”.

Though it may be hard to find, the location can’t be any sweeter.  It is centrally located near the 101 Freeway (Hollywood Freeway) so the commute is easier and everything you need is conveniently a short ride away.  This historical oasis is also close to many great schools like the King Middle School, Ramona Elementary School and John Marshall High School.

Recently sold: 4929 Melrose Hill

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Majestic and Historic Hancock Park

You know you’ve made it, when you can purchase a home in the elegant, magnificent and historic neighborhood of Hancock Park. Home to some of Los Angeles’ most grand and glamorous estates and many of the “Old Hollywood” screen stars from the 1920’s-1950’s, this area is once again, attracting the Hollywood elite who can blend into this affluent community of distinct homes that was built around the grounds of a private golf club in the 1920’s by the Hancock family with profits earned form oil drilling in the former Rancho La Brea. This family also mined the famous tar pits to the west for asphalt to pave the streets of San Francisco.

Architects including Wallace Neff and Lloyd Wright built in a variety of styles while preserving the essential character of the neighborhood. The beautiful homes, scenic streets, green rolling lawns and its majestic feel makes this a perfect place for everyone to live. The location is not some remote suburb, but is nestled in the center of the City, within walking distance to the shops on La Brea and Larchmont Village. The past few years has seen rapid development on the periphery of this area, specifically Larchmont Village which is centered on Larchmont Boulevard between Beverly Boulevard and 3rd Street. From famous retailers to specialty boutiques and confectionaries, Larchmont Village embodies all that is Old Hollywood glamour combined with the young spirit that permeates Los Angeles.

Hancock Park is home to many fine private schools that reflect the diversity of the area. From Yavneh Hebrew Academy and St. James Episcopal School to the esteemed Marlborough School, there are a multitude of alternative choices to public education. The public schools are outstanding, as well. From Hancock Park Elementary School to Larchmont Charter Schools, your children will blossom as beautifully as the exquisite greenery that defines this unique and majestic area.

We recently sold the Grand Hancock Park Estate at 124 N. Rossmore for $5M.
Own a piece of history in this heavenly neighborhood.

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Lighting: Set the Mood

Light Fixtures: Fresh and contemporary light fixtures add interest and character to a property.  In spaces with a low ceiling, it’s best to do a flush mount to not call attention to the low ceiling.  A low hanging fixture can add drama and interest to an extra high ceiling.  Light fixtures create a mood that’s hip, fresh and dramatic.  Inexpensive light fixtures with an attractive design add a huge bang for your buck when selling your home.

Exterior lighting can add drama and magic to a home.  Taking twilight pictures of the exterior of a property that’s beautifully landscaped and lit up can make a home sell for top top dollar.  If the exterior of your home is beautiful, definitely consider highlighting it in twilight photos.  If you have exterior lighting in place, great to make sure you have fresh working bulbs in all fixtures.  And make sure to offer to show your property at night!

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Painting Tips to Sell Your Home

Color Choice: Painting your house a new and fresh color (both inside and out) can change the way prospective buyers feel about a property. For example, painting the interior of a house white makes the house feel bigger, brighter, fresher and newer. If going with a neutral color it’s important to make sure the color is designer done and universally pleasing to create value.  White is the safer option because it’s universally pleasing.  

The Right Finish: A second factor to keep in mind when putting a house up for sale is the type of finish.  Flat paint is best; paint with sheen shows every imperfection in the walls and ceilings.  Flat paint doesn’t show imperfections on the wall and feels richer and more designer done.  Even in kitchens and bathrooms, do flat water-based paint only.  

painting tips to sell your home

Remember, you are trying to sell your home and make it look as beautiful as possible to the prospective buyer. So don’t follow traditional advice about putting “eggshell” paint (paint with some sheen) in kitchens and baths because it’s easier to wash walls that have sheen on them.  You will not be washing your walls.  You will be selling your house for top top dollar.  

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Mid-Wilshire: A Cultural Hub Lives in LA

Where do you find an eclectic mix of classic Hollywood charm and modern cultural trends in architecture, art, people and ideas?  Every LA lover knows that the blending of the old and new is a landmark concept throughout the City of Angels.  Los Angeles is THE center of aesthetics, creativity and beautiful people, of course, and nowhere in this ever-evolving bastion of dreams, is it more apparent than in the Mid-Wilshire Neighborhood of this magnificent city.

Chris Burden’s “Urban Light” Display at LACMA

Though “La Brea” may be synonymous with “tar pits”(La Brea means “the Tar”) , those of us who actually live here, see it as the crossroads of Urban Los Angeles.  In the past, La Brea, was the gateway to the elegant and glamorous Hancock Park neighborhood that was formed by the famous tar pits, but over the past few years, the revitalization of this corridor has brought out the artists, hipsters, Hollywood players and real estate investors by the droves.  Today the Mid-Wilshire district is a cultural center, with the Petersen Automotive Museum, the El Rey Theatre, the George C. Page Museum and LACMA soon to be joined by the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures.  La Brea  Avenue is quickly becoming one of the most developed and pedestrian friendly areas in town with multiple mixed use developments and “Phase One” of the Purple Line Subway Extension, which will run under Wilshire Boulevard to La Cienega.  A commuter’s fantasy come to life.


 La Brea Tar Pits

With no shortage of nightlife, or “day life” for that matter, the restaurants, bars and original venues make it an attractive location to put down your roots.  The neighborhood possesses a unique character that is reflected by the lovely pocket of homes in the area with no HPOZ.  You can walk (what a concept!) to the trendy restaurants, boutiques and even a few of the area’s “dive bars” from your new home in this La Brea renaissance.   The phenomenal schools like Third Street Elementary School, John Burroughs Middle School, Van Ness Avenue Elementary School and many private schools, gives you a plethora of choices for your progeny and PTA aspirations.

The Bienstock Group recently sold 921 S. Rimpau Blvd, 642 S. Sycamore and 406 S. Sycamore with multiple offers ABOVE the asking price.

We’re here to make your dreams come true and really love what we do.

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Fairfax District:  Where Culture and Art Collide in The Most Unusual Way

When you hear the name “Fairfax”, you automatically conjure up images of Old Jewish immigrants “kibitzing” at Canter’s Deli and the epicenter of the original Los Angeles Jewish Community, which has spilled over to East and Southwest of this historic Jewish corridor.  While the strip of Fairfax Avenue is lined with kosher bakeries, delis and little shops, you don’t need to be Jewish to enjoy living in this eclectic area near CBS Television City, Farmer’s Market and The Grove. 

When hipsters began to invade the area, it wasn’t long before the Fairfax District became one of the coolest places to provide a confluence of skate culture and Old Judaica.  This highly original and gritty street is the muse of many a creative type and you won’t find any area, quite as authentic and inspiring as this one.  Though prices are beyond the starving artist budget, there are many apartments and interesting studios that are within reach of the many young people that flock to the area.

Everything is walkable and it isn’t unusual to see soccer moms and baby carriages interspersed with skateboarders, joggers, bikers and Hollywood types. At the cusp of Hollywood and the La Brea area, the Fairfax district has blocks of beautiful and distinct homes perfectly located and near many landmark establishments such as Pink’s Hot Dogs, the ultimate Mom and Pop Hot dog stand that has skyrocketed to the status of an American Classic.

We are proud to be a part of the renaissance of this entire area by representing sellers and buyers who are attracted to the vibrant pulse and beautiful homes.   We recently sold 823 N. Poinsettia, a 22,050 square foot lot zoned as a retirement facility for $5.1M.

Schools in the area include many private primary, secondary and high schools.

Fairfax High School is the most notable public School in the area along with Melrose Avenue Elementary.

To find an available homes for sale in Fairfax District, Pico-Robertson, Hancock Park or other Los Angeles neighborhoods, please visit our property search page, and then give us a call to schedule a viewing (323) 310-2525.

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Delicious Chocolate Cake Recipe!!


     1/2 c. cocoa

     1 tsp. baking soda

     1/2 tsp. vinegar

     5 eggs, lightly beaten

     1 tsp. vanilla

     1 c. oil

     1 1/2 c. sugar

     3/4 cup of potato starch

     A splash of coffee


     Beat together 5 eggs, 1 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup oil

     Add in the 1 tsp vanilla sugar, a little coffee (mixed with water), 3/4 cup potato starch,       1/2 cup cocoa

     In a separate cup mix 1 teaspoon of baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon of vinegar.

     Bake at 350 degrees for 40 min

     Enjoy!! 🙂

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