Beverly Hills History

Beverly Hills tours are our bailiwick and we tour a lot of famous mansions, but it wasn’t always this way. Over a century ago this was cattle grazing land. Beverly Hills, California is one of the most famous cities in the world, known for its luxurious lifestyle, high-end shopping, and glamorous celebrity culture. The history of Beverly Hills dates back to the early 20th century, when it was a small, unremarkable farming community with a population of just a few hundred people.

The area that is now Beverly Hills was originally part of a Mexican land grant awarded to Maria Rita Quinteros de Valdez in 1838. The land was used for grazing cattle and was largely undeveloped until the early 20th century.

In 1900, a group of investors purchased 4,000 acres of land in the area with the goal of developing a new community. The investors believed that the area’s mild climate and beautiful surroundings would make it an attractive destination for wealthy vacationers and retirees.

The new community was named Beverly Hills, after the Beverly Farms area of Massachusetts, and the first lots were sold in 1907. The development was slow at first, but it began to pick up steam in the 1920s as more and more wealthy individuals began to build homes in the area.

One of the key factors in Beverly Hills’ early growth was the construction of the Beverly Hills Hotel in 1912. The hotel quickly became a popular destination for Hollywood celebrities, and it helped to establish Beverly Hills as a fashionable and glamorous place to live.

Beverly Hills aerial view

Beverly Hills aerial view

Beverly Hills Building Boom

During the 1920s, Beverly Hills experienced a building boom, with hundreds of mansions and estates being built in the area. Many of these homes were designed by some of the most prominent architects of the time, including Wallace Neff, Paul Williams, and John Byers.

Despite its rapid growth, Beverly Hills remained a small, exclusive community throughout much of the 20th century. The city was incorporated in 1914, and its population remained under 10,000 until the 1950s.
Throughout the mid-20th century, Beverly Hills continued to be a hub for the rich and famous. Many Hollywood stars, including Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, and Elvis Presley, owned homes in the area, and the city became synonymous with wealth, luxury, and glamour.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Beverly Hills underwent a period of redevelopment and modernization. Many of the city’s historic buildings were restored, and new high-rise buildings were constructed in the downtown area.
Today, Beverly Hills remains one of the most desirable and exclusive communities in the world. The city is home to some of the most expensive real estate in the country, and its luxury shops and restaurants attract visitors from around the globe.
Despite its reputation as a playground for the rich and famous, Beverly Hills is also a thriving business and cultural center, with a diverse population and a strong economy. The city is home to a number of major corporations, including Live Nation Entertainment and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, and it has a vibrant arts scene, with numerous museums and galleries.

Beverly Hills has a rich and fascinating history that dates back over a century. From its humble beginnings as a small farming community to its current status as one of the most exclusive and glamorous cities in the world, Beverly Hills has played an important role in the cultural and economic life of California and the United States.

Will Rogers Park in Beverly Hills

Will Rogers Park in Beverly Hills

Was Burton Green Involved in the Development of Beverly Hills?

Though some sources credit Burton Green as leading the group of developers who purchased the land that become Beverly Hills, the city was actually developed by a group of investors called the Amalgamated Oil Company in the early 20th century. The land that would become Beverly Hills was initially part of the Rancho Rodeo de las Aguas, a Mexican land grant that was later sold to a succession of owners.

In the 1890s, the land was purchased by a group of investors led by a man named Moses Sherman, who had previously developed the Los Angeles Pacific Railroad. They formed the Amalgamated Oil Company and began drilling for oil on the land, but when the oil turned out to be of poor quality, they decided to turn the land into a residential subdivision instead.
The investors hired a landscape architect named Wilbur D. Cook to design the layout of the new community, and they named it Beverly Hills after Beverly Farms, a wealthy community outside of Boston. The first lots went on sale in 1907, and the community quickly grew into a haven for the rich and famous.

Burton Green, on the other hand, was a real estate developer who was active in the Los Angeles area in the 1920s and 1930s. He developed several residential communities in the area, including Bel Air Estates and Holmby Hills. He was also involved in the development of the Los Angeles Country Club and the Riviera Country Club. However, he was not involved in the development of Beverly Hills.

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