Santa Monica
Traditional Reporting for A Digital Age

ROQUE & MARK Co. Real Estate 310.828.7525

Home Special Reports Archive Links The City Commerce About Contacts Editor Send PR

Iconic Hotel, Former Department Store Win Preservation Awards

Bob Kronovetrealty
We Love Property Management Headaches!

Good Vibes Start Here. Santa Monica Travel and Tourism

Santa Monica Apartments

Santa Monica College
1900 Pico Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90405
(310) 434-4000


By Lookout Staff

June 16, 2023 -- The rehabilitation of two prominent Downtown buildings and projects that chronicle the history of two minority neighborhoods are the winners of the Santa Monica Conservancy 2023 Preservation Awards.

Members of the winning project teams were honored during the Conservancy's Annual Meeting on June 10.

NMS Lincoln Apartments

The projects "demonstrate that preservation practice in Santa Monica is multidisciplinary, collaborative, creative, and rooted in authentic storytelling about people and place," Conservancy officials said.

The Rehabilitation Award was given to the 84-room Georgian Hotel at 1415 Ocean Avenue, whose new owners "completed a thorough rehabilitation program that honors its glamorous history and art deco styling" nearly a century after the hotel opened in 1933.
The Georgian Hotel

BLVD Hospitality and ESI Ventures hired HLW design and "starting in 2020, the team meticulously researched the story of the hotel to inform the historically inspired rehabilitation," Conservancy officials said.

"The Georgian’s pattern and color inspiration mark significant historic design movements that were drawn from the diverse history of the Art Deco movement, as it traveled east to west.

"BLVD took care throughout the project to substantially modernize building systems and utilize high-efficiency lighting and pluming solutions to meet today’s hospitality sustainability standards," Conservancy officials said.

The Rehabilitation and Adaptive Reuse Award went to the Sears Building at 302 Colorado Avenue, was purchased by real estate investment firm Seritage Growth Properties after the store closed in 2017.

The new owners of the designated landmark building designed by architect Rowland H. Crawford "launched an ambitious program to adaptively reuse the building as retail and office space.

Sears Building
Colorado Ave. entrance. (Photo courtesy of HRA)

"The project team referenced original photographs and design/construction drawings to replicate original materials and details, removed years of ad hoc modifications and successfully brought the building back to its original clean art deco styling."

In addition to making structural modifications, "the team worked to bring in more natural light through a large skylight on the roof and a central opening and smaller skylights on the third floor while preserving the intact historic facades."

The Conservancy's Cultural Heritage Award was given to an exhibition at the Santa Monica History Museum and a culture mapping project by the 18th Street Arts Center.

The Museum’s exhibition, "Broadway to Freeway: Life and Times of a Vibrant Community," featured "the tight-knit neighborhood along Broadway, built by African American, Mexican American and immigrant communities in the mid-20th century."

The exhibition has "helped bring (back) the stories, meaning and impact of this historically significant community" that was "forcibly displaced" and many of its buildings razed in the 1960s to build the 10 freeway.

"With period photographs, advertisements, oral histories, and songs," the exhibit "focused on the neighborhood’s families, businesses, churches, and civic and educational institutions," Conservancy officials said.

The other Cultural Heritage Award was given to the 18th Street Arts Center's "Culture Mapping 90404" project, "a community produced GIS Story map that highlights the history and cultural assets of the city’s Pico neighborhood.

"Since many cultural assets carry historic significance, the process of collecting and sharing their stories is central to keeping history alive through place," officials said.

"This is especially important in the Pico Neighborhood which until recently, was largely ignored by history keepers and unknown to new residents."

The media award was given to Mark Gorman for his popular blog "The Street Seen," which has chronicled Ocean Park's streets twice a month since January of 2020.

Catherine Conkle and Robin Venturelli were the winners of the Conservancy's Volunteer Award.

"The Awards Committee congratulates these exemplary individuals, organizations, and teams for their preservation, advocacy, and stewardship in our city," Conservancy officials said.

Back to Lookout News copyrightCopyright 1999-2023 All Rights Reserved. EMAIL Disclosures