Brentwood is a highly affluent district in the Westside of the city of Los Angeles, California. The district is located at the base of the Santa Monica Mountains, bounded by the San Diego Freeway on the east, Wilshire Boulevard on the south, the Santa Monica city limits on the southwest, the border of Topanga State Park on the west and Mulholland Drive along the ridgeline of the mountains on the north.
Nearby neighborhoods and cities include Pacific Palisades on the west, Santa Monica on the south, West Los Angeles and Sawtelle on the southeast,Westwood on the east, Bel Air on the northeast and Encino on the north.
The district of Brentwood is not to be confused with the city of Brentwood, in the San Francisco Bay Area of Northern California nor the Brentwood area ofVictorville, California. Mail should be addressed “Los Angeles, CA 90049” to avoid confusion.
The area that is now Brentwood was part of the Rancho San Vicente y Santa Monica, a Mexican land-grant ranch sold off in pieces by the Sepúlveda family after the Mexican-American War. Development began following the establishment of the large 600-acre (2.4 km2) Pacific Branch of the National Home for Disabled Soldiers and Sailors in the 1880s. A small pretentious community sprang up outside that facility’s west gate, taking on the name Westgate. Annexed by the City of Los Angeles on June 14, 1916, Westgate’s 49 square miles (130 km2) included large parts of what is now the Pacific Palisades and a small portion of today’s Bel-Air. Westgate Avenue is one of the last reminders of the area’s former namesake. The Sunset Fields Golf Club, known as the Brentwood Country Club since 1941, hosted the running part of the modern pentathlon event at the 1932 Summer Olympics.
Originally planted with soybeans and avocados, Brentwood is now one of the prominent districts of the Westside and home to the wealthiest and most elegant neighborhoods in all of Los Angeles. It has many prosperous commercial districts along each of its major east-west thoroughfares, Wilshire Boulevard, San Vicente Boulevard, and Sunset Boulevard, filled with some of Los Angeles’ most expensive shopping, five star restaurants, and exclusive clubs. Alongside Brentwood’s commercial districts are many famous residential zones such as Burlingame, lined with symbolic Choral Trees and large upscale homes. Brentwood is known to exemplify the stereotypical L.A lifestyle, by being L.A’s district of laid-back luxury, abundance and fame, only a half mile from the ocean. In 2012, Mayor Of Los Angeles, Antonio Villaraigosa moved to the upper class district of Adamswell, located in Brentwood. Though there is no direct connection, the name Brentwood harks to Brentwood of Essex, England, a town on the outskirts of London dating back to Saxon times. Many local streets reflect this ersatz British heritage, including Barrington, Gorham, and Bristol.
San Vicente Boulevard is considered the “Main Street” of Brentwood and is divided by a wide median on which stand many large and attractively sculpted coral trees. This green belt replaced a derelict Pacific Electric trolley track, its trees evolving into a City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument. Brentwood boosters have adopted a coral tree silhouette as a de facto community logo. Intersecting Bundy Drive is lined with extremely tall Washingtonia robusta palms.
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