In a discreet dark alley way in the middle of downtown’s Jewelry District lies a hidden gem. Saint Vincent Court is home to a Persian/Middle Eastern community nestled amongst chaos. Complete with faux European awnings over street café’s, small specialty food shops, and local businesses.
Once upon a time, Broadway was the financial and high-end commercial shopping hub for metro Los Angeles. But in the 1960s and 70s a wave of new commercial development on Figuaroa Street left the historic core basically deserted. The upside is that many of the best surviving examples of Beaux Art and Art Deco architecture were left unmolested.
Shops and restaurants with colorful awnings and peeling brick facades present a kitschy, Old World scene, complete with a pot-bellied chef statue and a Marilyn Monroe perched in a pink Cadillac.
The recently restored alleyway is supposed to look like a quaint Parisian street, lined with Middle Eastern cafés where clusters of men sip minty tea, and workers, shoppers, and the occasional hipster chow down on gyro, kebabs, and hummus.
Driving along Seventh Street between Hill and Broadway, the break between the solid building frontage on the north side of the street is easy to miss. But as a pedestrian, it’s impossible to pass St. Vincent Court without popping in through the breezeway. In its current incarnation, a look around the court might very well have turned into sitting down for a serious meal, most likely one involving hearty portions of grilled meats and traditional Mediterranean and Middle Eastern appetizers.
Rising gracefully within the heart of the jewelry district, down the street from the business district at the famed place where Hill, 7th and Broadway streets meet in downtown Los Angeles, St. Vincent Jewelry Center stands as a brand new gem in a grand old setting. Being the largest jewelry complexes in the world, it encompasses over 700,000 square feet of space, and houses nearly 500 independent merchants under one roof, where you will find jewelry manufacturers, designers, retail, and wholesale dealers.
WHAT: Saint Vincent Court
WHEN: Open during business hours
WHERE: 650 S Hill Street | Los Angeles, CA 90014
SOCIAL MEDIA: Yelp
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