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The beauties of Los Angeles Googie Architecture

Blog | By James Fletcher | Jul 07, 2020


This photo shows one of Los Angeles’s better preserved and fully operational diners from the 50s - Norms.

It’s a classic example of Googie architecture - named after a Los Angeles coffee shop. Its notable features include bold use of acute angles, jutting roof, steel, and neon. Seen as an extravagance in the 50s as the US economy recovered from WW2, the designs reflected the space age and car design of the period. Typical uses were seen on diners, coffee shops, and petrol stations. Many of these locations are now classed as monuments and protected.

Apart from an update to cooking facilities, the interior and especially the dining area is as you’d have found it in the 50s - testament to the quality of materials and craftsmanship of the day. Open 24hrs. It has appeared in many TV programmes and films. It’s a smorgasbord of Los Angeles life. Tables of police officers starting an early morning shift, your jet-lagged correspondent, office workers, families, and late night revellers. The staff never change and it’s a pillar of the community.