Welcome to NELA’S Cypress Park
The neighborhood of Cypress Park sits at the river valley created by the LA River and the Arroyo Seco. As a result, it’s surrounded by hills on all sides with Elysian Park to the southwest, Mt Washington to the northeast, and Ernest E. Debs Park at the southeast side. Cypress Park was granted as Rancho San Rafael to Jose Maria Verdugo in October 1784. In 1859, Jessie D. Hunter acquired the southern portion of the rancho from Julio Verdugo.
Jessie D. Hunter arrived in Los Angeles in 1847 as a Captain in the Mormon Battalion during the Mexican–American War. Hunter had previously acquired the Rancho Cañada de Los Nogales, which contains most of present-day Glassell Park. After Hunter’s death, the land was subdivided as the Hunter Tract and, in 1882, Cypress Park became the first of the Arroyo Seco communities to come into existence, predating Highland Park by three years.
Located at the corner of Broadway and Second Street, Hunter fired the first clay-fired bricks in Los Angeles. These bricks were used in the first brick building erected in town at the corner of Main and Third streets. There is no description of Hunter’s brickyard at Broadway and Second Street in Los Angeles. He probably used surficial material on the property to make bricks, which were fired in field kilns using wood as fuel. The bricks were smaller and thinner than the standard size. Because they were underfired, they spalled and eroded easily. These bricks were used locally in the Los Angeles area, and probably all of the first brick structures in town came from Hunter’s kilns. Aside from the first brick house at Main and Third streets in Los Angeles, it is likely that Hunter provided bricks for the first brick jailhouse. (Courtesy of Dan Mosier)
Cypress Park’s Architecture
Cypress Park has a fascination with seclusion towards its elevated regions. Futuristic to Midcentury Modern spreads out upon the landscape, along with splashes of Mediterranean, Pueblo, Craftsman, Bungalow and the turn of the century three-story Victorian, and larger estates, well preserved with vast yards.
Some of the region has smaller sections of bungalow rows near their transportation lines and unique single-story farmhouse homes with homestead solutions and great (ADU) accessory dwelling units external from the main residence. These structures have been created to add versatility for the homeowners, from revenue streams and rentals to home offices, libraries, and tranquil meditative spaces.
Perhaps a nod to the late Jane Mansfield’s 1958 Mediterranean mansion she named the “Pink Palace”, or the “Pink Palace” of The Beverly Hills Hotel which has been the spot for Hollywood’s brightest lights, and the ultimate beacon of glamour, but this Cypress Park home reinvents the neighborhood landscape in exquisite architectural detail, and her terroir procured by the finest array of California succulents.
Cypress Park’s Art & Culture
The Pottery Studio
The Pottery Studio began in Atwater Village when our owner, Marshall Blair – who had been making plates and bowls for his restaurants since 2014 – purchased a gas kiln and invited a few other potters to help fill it. More and more potters came, so we started adding classes, and The Pottery Studio officially began.
In 2017 we moved the studio to our current spacious building in the Cypress Park neighborhood. The Pottery Studio has continued to become home to hundreds of potters, students, and a vibrant ceramic community.
The Pottery Studio Shop is in the front of the building at 2808 Elm Street. The front entrance faces Cypress Ave. stock a full range of Cone 5/6 to Cone 10 clays, tools, supplies, bats, underglazes, and a variety of other goods for the potter. You can also view and shop work made in our studio by our community members, teachers, and staff.
Mini single serving kusu-style teapot, a work of sculptural art even on it’s own as an object. The driftwood handle perfectly carved to the ceramic teapot base, making a seamless transition between materials.
The Pottery Studio offers monthly classes, which include clay and firing for pieces made in your class, as well as open practice hours for students from 10am – 10pm. Our beginning wheel throwing class will teach you the basics of centering, opening, pulling walls, trimming, and preparing your piece for the bisque (first) firing. We then cover the basics of glazing your piece for the high fire. Other studio equipment such as the slab roller and extruder are covered as well. Their classes are designed for adults and kids aged about 12 and older.
Avenue 50 Art Gallery
The Avenue 50 Studio is an arts presentation organization grounded in Chicana/o and Latina/o culture, visual arts, and the Northeast Los Angeles area. We seek to build bridges of cultural understanding through artistic expressions. We develop programming to inform our community through innovative projects that connect artists, students, academics, and members of the community. Avenue 50 is committed to providing a place where the life and artistic interests of an under-served community can be made visible.
“I want to grapple my incapacitating fear of being judged so much. Strangle it by the throat and kill it, send it to hell, and have it killed off there as well. Thus I unapologetically and boisterously take up space—overpack my work in color, claustrophobia, and chaos because I feel so overlooked and invisible.” -MICHELLE SEO
“Evanescence of a Dream provides a look into the ethereal and intimate world that Victoria has documented over the past five years, which visualizes the fluid interaction between human consciousness, nature, and their mutual impermanence.”
Since its founding in 2000, Avenue 50 has grown from a small gallery to an active non-profit arts nexus and is now an important arts destination venue in the Highland Park neighborhood of Northeast Los Angeles, a traditional arts enclave in the city. We provide a venue for exceptional, up-and-coming local artists and poets. Our monthly art openings and our varied literary events are a testament to the rich diversity that makes up Los Angeles. Avenue 50 anchors a site that includes two galleries, a community art space, and three resident artist studios. Our programming includes art exhibitions, art workshops, lectures, poetry, and readings, as well as hosting annual events such as Dia de los Muertos. Over the past eighteen years, we have organized over 250 exhibits, celebrating a variety of artistic media and themes, and shown nearly 1,000 artists, poets, and musicians. We are committed to bridging the diverse cultures of Los Angeles.
Cypress Park’s Must-Haves
A Trip Through History
Designed circa 1908 by Edward S. Cobb, engineer of Angels Flight funicular railway, the Huron Substation now Los Angeles County’s Historical Monument #404 was built for the purpose of converting electricity needed to power trolleys for the Yellow Car railway system. Located at the intersection of West Avenue 28 and Huron Street in Cypress Park, the rustic structure features original brickwork, vaulted beamed ceilings ascending 45 feet, arched windows, and concrete floors.
The Los Angeles Railway also known as Yellow Cars, LARy and later Los Angeles Transit Lines was a system of streetcars that operated in Central Los Angeles and surrounding neighborhoods between 1895 and 1969. The system provided frequent local services which complimented the Pacific Electric “Red Car” system’s largely commuter-base interurban routes.
The company carried many more passengers than the Red Cars, which served a larger and sparser area of Los Angeles. Cars operated on 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm) narrow gauge tracks, and shared dual gauge trackage with the 4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge Pacific Electric system on Main Street in downtown Los Angeles directly in front of the 6th and Main terminal, on 4th Street, and along Hawthorne Boulevard south of Downtown Los Angeles toward the cities of Hawthorne, Gardena and Torrance.
The first electric railway in Los Angeles was built in 1887 to facilitate the sales of a real estate tract on Pico Street. The Los Angeles Electric Railway used the early Daft overhead system and used a crude electric car and trailers. Though the real estate venture was successful, after an explosion in the power station, the Pico Street electric line closed, seemingly for good.
The system was purchased by railroad and real estate tycoon Henry E. Huntington in 1898. At its height, the system contained over 20 streetcar lines and 1,250 trolleys, most running through the core of Los Angeles and serving such neighborhoods as Crenshaw, West Adams, Leimert Park, Exposition Park, Echo Park, Westlake, Hancock Park, Vernon, Boyle Heights and Lincoln Heights. The system was sold in 1944 by Huntington’s estate to American City Lines, Inc., of Chicago.
Cena Vegan began serving customers in June 2016 in Highland Park serving vegans, vegetarians, and those seeking healthier lifestyles and delicious Mexican food. The company serves 100% vegan street tacos, burritos, and nacho boats with truly authentic Latin American flavors using their own plant-based meats with flavors including carne asada, pollo asado, al pastor, and gluten-free barbacoa.
Cena Vegan stills pop up in different areas of NELA showcasing their delicious recipes to those interested in food that is artisanal, authentic, and fuel for your bodies. Their products can be found in local NELA grocers and meal kits are sold at their locations.
1802 Coffee Roasters
On the edge of Mount Washington in Cypress Park, 1802 Roasters owners and Cypress Park locals Christian Degracia and Crystal Weintrub took over a former meat market at 1206 Cypress Ave. Degracia and Weintraub were inspired to kick off their coffee trajectory after a trip to South America. The married couple started roasting their own coffee beans from respectable importers Royal Coffee, Coffee Shrub, and Bodhi Leaf way back in 2015 and has sold them at the Sherman Oaks, Brentwood, and Monrovia farmers markets over the last three years.
At 1802 Roasters, sustainability is part of their core business practices. They focus on the potential social, environmental, and economic implications of every business decision they make. Their products are representative of the sustainable global movement. A Cypress Park local community-based artisan micro-roaster that serves the community where they live and work. This guarantees the coffee each customer gets is freshly roasted, as it did not have to travel long distances or have long lives on shelves before it reaches your cup. The coffee suppliers source beans directly, so the coffee travels through very few hands, instead of many, making for a more equitable supply chain.
Sourcing top quality specialty grade coffee beans, which are hand-selected for their quality and acquired through direct traders. Direct trade suppliers work with farms and co-ops to source top-quality beans building a favorable exchange between coffee growers and importers. Choosing to work with direct importers who source from responsible farmers, evaluating growing processes and farm operations as part of their selection process. This type of relationship assures farmers are paid above market prices for their crops and have direct control over production processes. Working with co-ops and washing stations also creates an avenue for small farming operations to sell their crops at an above equitable price. This increases the diversity of farmers along with coffee and plant species in the region.
Beans are packaged in unbleached paper bags with a removable plastic liner. This insures the packaging can be removed from the waste stream by being recycled and/or composted. Our cups, lids, and straws are all compostable. (Though this is not a perfect solution, they feel it is the best option when no recycling is available.) 1802 Roasters napkins, filters, and bags are made from unbleached recycled paper.
1802 Roasters also chooses to buy rechargeable batteries rather than a diesel generator to power their booth at the farmers market, reducing emissions and carbon footprint. Their spent coffee and chocolate are composted, getting a second life as food for the next generation of plants. The roaster continually challenges themselves to be mindful of our environmental impact. With more knowledge and resources available, they continue to strive towards a zero-waste operation in the future.
Cypress Park’s Real Estate
The median list price in Cypress is $829,900. The median list price in Cypress was less than 1% change from May to June. Cypress’s home resale inventories is 27, which increased 22 percent since May 2021. The median list price per square foot in Cypress is $497. May 2021 was $467. Distressed properties such as foreclosures and short sales remained the same as a percentage of the total market in June. Cypress, California real estate market statistics are calculated by Movoto.
The typical home value of homes in Cypress Park is $861,332. This value is seasonally adjusted and only includes the middle price tier of homes. Cypress Park home values have gone up 9.8% over the past year. (Zillow)