Bullocks Wilshire Building
3050 Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles, California
Architect: John and Donald Parkinson
Bullocks Wilshire was designed by Los Angeles architects John and Donald
Parkinson; the interior design was by Eleanor Lemaire and Jock Peters of the
Feil & Paradise Company; the ceiling mural of the porte cochere was painted
by Herman Sachs.
The building was completed in 1929 as a luxury department store for owner
John G. Bullock (owner of the more mainstream Bullock's in Downtown Los
Angeles). The exterior is notable for its 241-foot tower whose top is
sheathed in copper, tarnished green. At one time, the tower peak had a light
that could be seen for miles around. Bullocks Wilshire's innovation was that
it was one of the first department stores in Los Angeles to cater to the
burgeoning automobile culture. It was located in a then-mostly residential
district, its objective to attract shoppers who wanted a closer place to
shop than Downtown Los Angeles. Traditional display windows faced the
sidewalk, but they were decorated to catch the eyes of motorists. Since most
customers would arrive by vehicle, the most appealing entrance was placed in
the rear. Under the city's first department store porte cochere, valets in
livery welcomed patrons and parked their cars.
In 1994, the building was acquired by Southwestern Law School - its
long-time neighbor. The school restored the building to its original 1929
state, adapting the building for use as an integral part of the school.