Glendale is a city located in Los Angeles County of California. It lies at the eastern end of the San Fernando Valley, is bisected by the beautiful Verdugo Mountains, and is an important suburb in the Greater Los Angeles area. The city is bordered to the southwest by the Atwater Village district of Los Angeles; to the west by Burbank; to the northwest by the Tujunga district of Los Angeles; to the northeast by the city of La Canada Flintridge and the unicorporated La Crescenta/Montrose area; to the east by the city of Pasadena; and to the southeast by the Eagle Rock and Glassell Park, neighborhoods of Los Angeles. The Golden State, Ventura, Glendale and Foothill freeways run through the city providing a versatile commute to nearly anywhere you want to go.
Glendale has a variety of living styles from downtown high rise city areas or neighborhoods with tree lined streets. Totaling 24 different neighborhoods in all, you can find a variety of properties from historical character to modern architecture. Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, located in Glendale, contains the remains of many celebrities and local residents. It is famous as the pioneer of a new style of cemetery.
Several large companies have offices in Glendale such as the U.S. headquarters of the Swiss food multinational Nestle and International House of Pancakes. Another is the “southern campus” of Dream Works SKG, the diversified entertainment company founded in 1994 by Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen. The Los Angeles regional office of California’s State Compensation Insurance Fund is also in Glendale.
Centrally located, the city of Glendale offers easy access to many local attractions. The map below shows the distance in miles (shown in parentheses)
from the intersection of Brand Boulevard and Broadway (shown by a circled star).
Note: The places shown are a visual representation and do not depict true geographic locations, nor are they drawn to scale.
A Brief History of Glendale and its Neighborhoods
The area including what is now known as Glendale had long been home to the “Gabrielenos” Native Americans. Glendale’s modern history began more than 200 years ago when Don Jose Maria Verdugo established the Rancho San Rafael, which encompassed most of present-day Glendale, Burbank, Eagle Rock, and Highland Park. Forty years after his death, Verdugos rancho was dissolved by a court decision known as the ‘Great Partition.’ This made land available for people to build homes and establish businesses in the area.
The City of Glendale is divided into 33 neighborhoods, which are delineated by streets, washes, and mountain ridges. Each neighborhood has a unique history and character. As these neighborhoods developed throughout the years, they combined to form the City of Glendale as we know it today. Residents and merchants acclaim Glendale as the ‘Jewel City,’ first nicknamed by Edward V. Emery in 1910, because “it sparkled like a jewel in the sun.”
Below are brief descriptions of the neighborhoods which contribute to the sparkle of the ‘Jewel City’.
Adams Hill is famous for its bohemian enclave of artists, writers, young professionals, trades people, and boasts many third-generation residents. It is very culturally diverse. Recently a large cadre of film industry employees has taken up residence in this area. Adams Street winds over the hills, into Los Angeles and gives the neighborhood its name. The quaint winding streets are lined by vintage lampposts and homes of the Spanish, Tudor Revival, English Cottage, and Modernist styles. Of the homes built in the 1920s and 1930’s, most are still architecturally intact. Nearly every home in this area enjoys a view of downtown Glendale or the San Rafael hills. The Adams Square commercial district with its landmark Art Deco Building is located at the foot of the hill.
Many of these 1920-era homes, constructed on the western slope of the Verdugo Mountains, have spectacular views of downtown Glendale. The area was named for John Brockman, who in 1915 built a home with a three-story clock tower to accommodate a clock purchased from what is now Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. In 1925, the area was subdivided and named Brockmont Park. Residents enjoy the seclusion of the hillside as well as convenient access to the central city,
just minutes away.
The name Chevy Chase is associated with the Cheviot Hills, which separate Scotland from England. The Ballad of Chevy Chase, which describes the 1388 battle at Otterburn, ‘Chevy’ was a battle cry used in a hunt or chase. Custom homes line the streets, winding up from the confluence of the 2 and the 134 freeways, deep into the San Rafael hills. Once around the first turn, visitors encounter the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Derby House; the Country Club, community library, and unique country atmosphere. Residents have a convenient commute to downtown Glendale, Pasadena, or Los Angeles, but can quickly escape the city to their canyon retreat.
This area’s name is derived from its origin, the early site of commercial orange and lemon groves. Fannie Briggs Carr Park and Piedmont Park provide residents with a green refuge within this active neighborhood. This area also includes the Byrum House and the Goode House, two sites prominent in the history of Glendale. Citrus Grove offers convenient transportation providing access to restaurants, stores, and shops that grace Glendale’s two main east-west
Glendale’s City Center showcases its vitality through its developing skyline. A diverse blend of housing is available in this area, which surrounds downtown offices, stores and businesses. Contemporary condominiums are found adjacent to Craftsman-era homes. Apartments interspersed throughout the neighborhood provide a good source of rental housing. Glendale’s Civic Center, including City Hall and the Court House, anchors the professional area at the eastern edge of this neighborhood. City Center is also home to the historic Alex Theater.
Featuring two distinct styles of neighborhoods, College Hills derives its name from nearby Glendale Community College. The canyons of southern College Hills are lined with early California-style bungalows and period homes from the 1920s and 1930s, while the northern section consists of executive view homes developed in the late 1960s. Winding tree-lined streets connect the two areas and offer convenient access to Glendale’s commercial core on Glendale Ave. and easy freeway access.
Previously home to grizzly bears and mountain lions, Crescenta Highlands includes the neighborhoods of Glenwood Oaks and Mountain Oaks and continues to be a place removed from the rest of urban Los Angeles. Nestled against the majestic San Gabriel Mountains; the streets of the Highlands stair-step up the hill. The air is crisp and the wind blows through the mountain passes. Residents regularly see hawks, deer, raccoon, opossums, and other wildlife in their streets and yards. Oak trees and single-family homes make this an attractive neighborhood in which to raise a family. Nearby Foothill Boulevard offers a bustling commercial venue for locals.
El Miradero is a neighborhood that lives up to its name – ‘watchtower’ or ‘vantage point’. Located on the southern flank of the Verdugo Hills, it overlooks the San Fernando Valley and offers many of its residents spectacular views of the Verdugo Mountains to the North and Griffith Park to the South. Residents enjoy the unique features of historic Brand Park with its art galleries, Japanese Tea House, local history museum, and hiking trails, which access the canyons of the Verdugo Mountains. The ‘Village’ at Kenneth Road and Grandview Avenue features unique shops, restaurants, beauty salons, a meat market, fresh produce, and a pharmacy. Traditional fancy homes have been built in a variety of styles throughout this neighborhood.
Emerald Isle received its name from the original subdivision laid out in the 1960s, which borrowed the name from Northern Ireland. Many of the street names also reflect Irish roots. Located at the North-Eastern edge of the city, high in the San Rafael hills, ‘The Isle’ is a secluded retreat in a woodsy environment featuring scenic views. Executive-style homes are positioned along tree-lined winding streets, offering sanctuary from urban areas just down the road.
A combination of Spanish and character homes, apartments, and condos are within walking distance to beautiful Fremont Park. The neighborhood and the park both derive their name from the famous 19th century explorer, surveyor, and soldier John C. Fremont, who negotiated the end of the Mexican-American War in Verdugo Canyon. With its Washington palm trees, play areas, and numerous tennis courts, the park serves as the focal point for this neighborhood. Fremont Park is a quiet enclave in the middle of the city, yet offers convenience to the 134 Freeway and downtown Glendale. Family-style restaurants, churches, and small businesses line Glenoaks Boulevard and Pacific Avenue, serving area residents.
Named for Glenoaks Boulevard, the name is derives from combining Glendale and a natural feature of the area, the Oak tree. Driving into Glenoaks Canyon, one gets the feeling of entering a California of the 1930s. Here, Spanish-style courtyard homes are intermingled with ranch homes, and much of the local activity centers around the neighborhood park and elementary school. As with other canyon neighborhoods, Glenoaks residents share their environment with foxes, coyotes, racoons, hawks, and deer; all of which contribute to the canyon atmosphere.
Glenwood Road traverses this neighborhood and gives it its name. As in the name G1endale, the prefix ‘Glen’ means valley. The name is apparently a reference to trees that once grew in the area. The path Glenwood Road follows was used in 1871 as the line dividing land grants made to various relatives of pioneer Jose Verdugo. A mixture of single-family homes; large estate homes, newer condos and apartments offer a great variety of housing choices. Residents enjoy family restaurants, transportation, and convenient stores along graceful Glenoaks Boulevard. Kenneth Village provides local commercial amenities as well as an area for social activity. The Jones House on Kenneth Road, named ‘Bel Aire’ by its original owners, is a local landmark and has been used as a backdrop in numerous movies and television shows. The historic district of Cumberland Heights has also been established in this neighborhood.
Offering an interesting mix of modest homes and attractive businesses, the Grand Central media complex extends from Burbank, along the San Fernando Road corridor to the Los Angeles boundary. The Grand Central Airport terminal is the last remaining building on the site of the nation’s first transcontinental air passenger service, reminding visitors that this was a bustling airport in the late 1920s. ‘Wrong Way’ Corrigan was headed from New York to Glendale’s terminal before he accidentally lost his bearings and landed in Paris! Walt Disney Imagineering, DreamWorks, and ABC 7 have established their headquarters in the Grand Central neighborhood. Ample ancillary and production facilities make this area an entertainment industry hub, which is rapidly becoming a central media district catering to the needs of the media industry.
This neighborhood is named for Grandview Avenue, which marks its eastern boundary. The street, first recorded in City documents in 1921 as Grand View Avenue, was apparently named as an Anglicized translation of El Miradero. Grandview extends from its namesake street west to Burbank. Residential neighborhoods adjoin Glenoaks Boulevard, with its landscaped median and vibrant street life. On South-West side San Fernando Road follows the path blazed by the Spanish explorers, which connected Pueblo Los Angeles with Mission San Fernando. Historic Grandview Cemetery is the final resting place for many pioneer Glendale and Burbank families. Busy professionals, many employed in the media industries, live in this area, which offers a variety of lovely homes, condos and apartments.
Long-time residents remember Greenbriar as Dead Horse Canyon. Renamed in the 1950s, Greenbriar consists of attractive modem homes, many with large lots and spectacular views. Greenbriar Road, accessed from Mountain Avenue, climbs the hillside to the top of the ridge, where residents are treated to glorious views stretching 270 degrees from Burbank to Verdugo Canyon. Palm-lined Royal Boulevard is frequently photographed for promotional Glendale post cards and brochures.
Mariposa is the Spanish name for ‘Butterfly’ and is a popular California place name. Mariposa is a vibrant, multi-ethnic neighborhood with restaurants, local shops, stores, and markets that cater to its residents. All housing types are available in this neighborhood. Contemporary apartments, vintage homes, condominiums, and co-ops line the streets. Maple Park is located in Mariposa and is a gathering place for neighborhood residents of all ages. The gym and community center provide recreation facilities not offered in other neighborhoods.
Montecito Park Drive, subdivision and neighborhood acquired their names from the Spanish phrase ‘little mountain.’ A neighborhood of custom built homes in the 1920’s and 1930’s, historical Spanish Colonial Revival style homes and tree-shaded streets. A marker on Verdugo Road notes the entrance to this neighborhood.
This neighborhood borrows its name from the Verdugo family who once used this area to raise cattle. Montrose/Verdugo City traces its roots to the early 1900s when the area was a mountain retreat for the downtown residents of Los Angeles. Because of the clear, crisp mountain air, Montrose/Verdugo City was home to many sanitariums and retreats. Residents continue to choose this area for the same reasons today. This area includes downtown/historic Montrose, which retains its village character with hometown merchants, community festivals and a variety of trendy shops, restaurants and cafes.
Overlooking the Country Club and Golf Course after which it was named, Oakmont, which includes the neighborhood of Oakmont Woods, features homes built in the 1930s, 1960s, and 1980s. Many homes feature unique canyon settings, while others have views to the crest of Mount Wilson. Many provide the convenience of an executive home with minimal yard maintenance. Oakmont is secluded, yet convenient to the commercial services of La Crescenta and Montrose.
The Glendale Galleria separates this small neighborhood from downtown, with Colorado Street and Broadway bordering it on the south and north. This neighborhood derives its name from the original Moore Park subdivision. Vintage homes sit side by side with well-maintained apartments and condominiums, offering a variety of housing choices for people who enjoy living close to downtown. Young professionals and first time property owners have discovered the small-town feeling and value that Moorpark provides.
This charming little neighborhood acquires its name from Pacific Park and Edison Elementary School, which are located adjacent to each other and make up the site of an innovative joint community center and school. The area was once known as Riverdale, after a subdivision was laid out in 1876 by pioneer developer Andrew Glassell. Riverdale was Glendale’s original name, until it was changed for postal necessity. Much of the activity of this neighborhood centers on the social activities of Edison School and the two churches located here – Saint Mary’s and Holy Family. An eclectic mix of vintage homes and contemporary apartments, Pacific-Edison is a neighborhood of families. Convenient to downtown, the neighborhood is served by convenient transportation and commercial centers.
Gently curving wide streets, shaded sidewalks, and mid-sized homes make this a wonderful family neighborhood. It was named alter the Pelanconi family, which once operated a vineyard in the area. Mature palm trees and a baseball diamond grace the landscape of Pelanconi Park. Restaurants, markets, convenient transportation, and a variety of shops make this area a pedestrian’s delight. The ribbon of older apartments along Glenoaks Boulevard and a scattering of light industrial and manufacturing shops located on San Fernando Road mark the boundaries of this cozy neighborhood.
Rancho San Rafael
This neighborhood and Camino San Rafael, (the street running through it), are both named after the Spanish land grant that encompassed the entire region. This is a Mediterranean-themed, planned community of homes and condominiums catering to working professionals. Perched upon the San Rafael Hills, it provides excellent views of the Los Angeles basin and surrounding foothills. With easy freeway access, Rancho San Rafael is home to many residents who are employed in the Los Angeles central business district.
Popular with equestrians, Riverside Rancho is one of the few urban areas in Los Angeles County that allows homeowners to keep horses on their property. The name describes both its proximity to the Los Angeles River and its ranch-style environment. Residents enjoy this rural atmosphere bounded by Burbank, the river and the Los Angeles Equestrian Center. Easy access to Griffith Park by trails and riding paths make this area especially attractive to riders, and it is not unusual to see horses sharing the streets with cars and bicycles. Condominiums plus light industrial and manufacturing are also found here, and it is convenient to the Ventura Freeway, Travel Town and the Los Angeles Zoo.
Judge Erskine Mayo Ross successfully farmed this area and built a house at the mouth of Verdugo Canyon, which he named ‘Rossmoyne.’ This area was later subdivided into the planned neighborhood that is marked today by curving tree-shaded streets, period lampposts, classic custom-built homes, and close proximity to downtown Glendale. Mountain Avenue gracefully winds its way through the center of Rossmoyne, while quiet side streets adjoin it. Rossmoyne is an elegant neighborhood of single-family homes, whose residents consist of many longtime Glendale homeowners and a growing cadre of those employed in the entertainment field. Glendale College and the commercial services of the Central-Stocker Business District are also within walking distance.
Somerset is perhaps Glendale’s best hidden neighborhood, with many residents enjoying the seclusion that it offers, as well as the ambience of an established residential area. It is named after Somerset Farm, one of Glendale’s original farms once owned and operated by Glendale’s pioneer Sherer family. Later it was known as ‘Thornycroft,’ and was the site of the Thornycroft Farm and Sanitarium, which treated World War I soldiers. The sanitarium was a precursor to Glendale Adventist Medical Center. Somerset streets are shaded by mature trees and lined with traditional single-family homes, older apartments and an occasional duplex or fourplexes. Downtown Glendale is a five-minute commute, and Colorado Street, which adjoins Somerset on the north, provides many commercial services for residents.
Once the center of a thriving orchard business; Sparr Heights was the terminus for the Glendale to Montrose streetcar system. Indiana native William S. Span planted citrus groves in the area and opened a fruit packing plant down the line at Glendale and Lomita Avenues. In 1922, this millionaire citrus grower and land developer constructed and donated the Sparr Heights Community building to the City, which was the only building in the area at the time. It now serves as a senior citizen center. Developed as a residential neighborhood in the 1920s and 1930s, Sparr Heights retains much of its original character. A neighborhood park and school serve as focal points for residents who enjoy walking through Montrose village, either to shop, dine or for a casual evening stroll.
Home to the county’s first commercial strawberry farming operation, Tropico was named after a strawberry plant! Tropico possesses a strong municipal tradition. Originally incorporated as its own city, Tropico was one of the first in the county to pave streets, install concrete sidewalks, and provide street lighting. Tropico dis-incorporated and merged with its larger northern neighbor in the 1920s, and has served as the gateway to Glendale from Los Angeles ever since. The name apparently played on the near-tropical climate of the fruit-producing area, served by the Southern Pacific Railroad. This neighborhood offers vintage single-family homes and a bustling commercial core and transit center, convenient for locals.
Located in the heart of old Glendale, Verdugo Viejo developed around the remnants of Rancho San Rafael, owned by the Verdugo family. A combination of large and small homes, condos and apartments, make up this cosmopolitan neighborhood. With its own Post Office and convenient to markets, banks, restaurants, schools, shops, and transportation, Verdugo Viejo is home to commuting professionals and longtime Glendale residents. Historic Casa Adobe Park, which was the last home of the Verdugo family, is nestled in the middle of the neighborhood and is often used by the community for receptions, special events and to celebrate Glendale’s Hispanic heritage.
Nestled in historic Verdugo Canyon, this neighborhood began as the center of the original Rancho San Rafael. A portion of the area was subdivided in 1919 as the Selvas de Verdugo, or ‘Verdugo’s woods.’ Attracted by the canyon breezes, early Angelinos escaped downtown Los Angeles by establishing vacation retreats in the canyon. Indigenous trees such as sycamores and bays, as well as a sense of history, define the canyon neighborhood. Homes, apartments, and condominiums in a country setting surround Glendale’s Verdugo park and picnic grounds on Canada Blvd. and the Verdugo Adobe on Bonita Drive. locals refer to their neighborhood as ‘The Woodlands.’
This neighborhood originally was the location of Glendale’s earliest vineyards, whereby it derives its name. We can thank the people at Cal-Trans for creating this delightful little neighborhood. Formerly included in the Fremont Park neighborhood, it was separated from it in the 1960s by the routing of the 134 freeway. Since that time, Vineyard has remained a quiet place, convenient to downtown, yet still secluded. Tree-lined streets and craftsman-style homes accent this area, and residents take pride in their homes and property. Condominiums and planned developments have made their debut here, and blend nicety with the neighborhood’s ambiance. Residents here have easy access to transportation as well as the commercial services offered by downtown.
Whiting Woods is a secluded retreat from the hustle and bustle of city. With its’ mature oak trees tucked on the North slopes of the Verdugo Mountains. It is not unusual to see deer browsing on lawns in the early morning hours or to see red-tailed hawks circling overhead in the afternoon sun. Yet, it is still close to all city amenities. Whiting Woods shares its name with the original subdivision, and has an active Homeowner’s Association, around which many neighborhood events are centered.
Serving as a gateway to Glendale’s ‘other’ canyons – Glenoaks and Chevy Chase, Woodbury feels like a private neighborhood with its winding roads, vintage lampposts and limited access. Woodbury lives up to its name, delivering a ‘New England’ small-town appeal. The neighborhood also shares its name with Woodbury Road, located near its center. Home to the Glendale Adventist Medical Center, Woodbury hosts neighborhood businesses and professional activities that support the hospital. Beautiful residential homes of the Spanish, Mediterranean, Tudor Revival and English Cottage styles can be found on quiet, curving tree-lined streets. This area also includes the scenic view neighborhood of Oak Ridge, which overlooks the canyons on one side and the City Center on the other.