Figueroa storefronts await new tenants *

Newly renovated storefronts on Figueroa | Katrina Alexy

Newly renovated storefronts on Figueroa | Katrina Alexy

Storefront ReportHIGHLAND PARK — Neighbors have taken notice as a row of storefronts in the 5600 block of Figueroa Street have been renovated to highlight and reveal their vintage features, including wrought iron metal work and windows  Now, those 1930s-era storefronts are up for lease as new restaurants and stores open up on the historic street. The LoopNet listing does not reveal a leasing rate, saying only that the rate is negotiable for five separate spaces in the 6,000-square-foot property. The storefronts are located in the middle of a gentrifying business strip that had catered primarily to Latino patrons. Says the listing:

This building is directly across from a new hot yoga studio and the Highland Park Theatre and right next to Mr T’s Bowl which is beginning a major remodel and relaunch of the historic bowling alley.

So who will be moving in?  Does Highland Park have enough room for another gourmet doughnut shop and vinyl record store?

* Correction: A previous version of this story said the building said the Highland Swap Mall was located inside the building. That’s wrong. The Highland Swap Mall is on the same block but in a different building.


  1. More dining/nightlife options please? That way we can bar hop like on York. That would be rad.

  2. Yes, they also terminated the lease to lots of stores in this block…What a shame!

  3. I’ve lived on this block, and the amount of change this year has been insane. Its a shame to see these businesses go, but they were far from successful operations. I just hope what replaces them reflect the best of the neighborhood, not what developers want the neighborhood to become.

  4. This building is lovely! I just drove by and noticed the improvements this morning on the way to the vet! Go Highland Park!

  5. Please, please, please can we have a great Indian Restaurant??? Decorate it tastefully, serve great food, and it will be a huge success. There’s too many pizza places on HP!!! The wrought iron on this building is gorgeous. The owner is doing an outstanding job refurbishing it and bringing back the beauty that has been covered over.

  6. oh great! more businesses that i cant afford to shop at that contribute to more of my friends moving and social circles dying. yipee!

    • What were the exact stores that were here before? Please name each and every one of them that you shopped at so I can also remember those stores

    • Definitely take off the disgusting stucco, plaster, and plastic crap that obstructs the beautiful architectural details that lie underneath.

      Looking forward to seeing what business moves in soon.

      Can anyone tell me what business’ were there before? I have a fuzzy recollection, but I’d definitely like specifics.

      • Hi Punky,

        I can take you back. Remember when you used to get a 40-oz at Amigos Liquor, and I used to get Lotto tickets and a cigarillo? And then we’d hook up with the guy from Highland Wireless, and walk down to the boarded-up part of the swap meet storefront, and I’d scratch off the Lotto tickets? Good times.

        Now I have to find somewhere else to buy Lotto tickets and cigarillos, and I don’t have clue one about how to make that happen.

        • amigos liquor is safe as i know. the actual renovations are happening just north of Mr. T’s. You can buy your cigarillos from amigos for now.

  7. Anyone have a guess as to the rents? When I was leasing up here in 2008 we were paying $1.20 per square foot. I’ve gotten about that same rate at two other locations up to the present day and a slightly lower rate in a crumbling and boarded up storefront on Figueroa as well.

    I wonder what would thrive here? My guess is some more nightlife-eque options which will soon be applying for liquor licenses once they get installed. I also think we’ll have some gentlemen businessmen open up places that have no real business model other than to spend that gentleman’s fortune. Pretty sure the current owners are gonna ask $2 and up per square foot. If you own a small business in the neighborhood and can’t find a way to buy the building you’re in, start making plans to get kicked out on your butt when your lease is up. Maybe Monte Vista is where everyone will be forced to move our little mom-n-pop shops?

    • I think that would be a really cool evolution for Monte Vista. La Tropicana Market is already an excellent example of understated, respectful change.

      • Totally. Monte Vista is in desperate need of a transformation, and would be a great candidate for mom-n-pops stores. Agreed on Tropicana. Everytime I’ve been in there, the staff has been very nice and helpful.

  8. Looks like Pasadena.

  9. Ah the good ol’ days, the good ol’ days.

  10. Ah the good ol’ days, the good ol’ days.

  11. The scary thing for this community must be that it is undergoing so much forced change and there is no guarantee that the changes will be successful or even bring about positive change. What if the fabric of Highland Park is torn apart (as it indeed is) and the new businesses don’t manage to mend the tears and the damage remains……?

    • Do yourself a favor and look at the active, pending and closed sales of homes for Highland Park in the last year. It will be pretty obvious where the consumers will come from and what these new businesses will cater to. Like it or not, the evolution of downtown LA and it’s surrounding historic districts will be pretty significant.

    • What if … they *are* successful and *do* bring about positive change!?!?
      So many, what if’s to consider.

  12. Most of Fig has been a total sh!thole for years. Its great to see property owners invest in restoration, which can only be achieved because of increasing rents, higher property values and an influx of residents with more disposable income. There are so many beautiful buildings hidden under plaster facades. Its great to see another one exposed. A lot of people have high hopes for potential tenants, but whatever ends up filling these spaces will be better than the crap shops there before, and a more appealing street to walk/bike/cruise as well.

  13. Who know when we opened our doors 6 years ago we would have done this. Long live This los angeles gallery and North Fig.



  14. Gentrification is the best!

  15. That building looks great when it is uncovered and fixed up. Looking at google maps, it shows what it looked like before. Check it out before google updates it. It would be great if Fashion 21, Forever 21 whatever the name is took over that property and expand their old store. into this.

  16. Go baby go!

  17. Eastsider you have the wrong building in the photo if you are describing the Highland Swap Mall it is 2 buildings west of the one in the photo. The building in the photo is between Fashion 21 & Mr T-Bowl. It has housed a photographic studio and a dress shop in its past. The new owner has restored the façade and interior to original conditions. They did a great job on the restoration, lets hope that will bring new stores that fit the areas needs.

  18. I’d love to know the point of this article. Is it just to get people guessing? There’s really very little information contained in it. As a “news” source, I would have at least expected the “reporter” to include who it is that currently owns the building in question.

  19. Awesome! We’ve been eagerly awaiting more shopping and dining options on Figueroa for the last 10 years since we moved here. Would love to see a breakfast/brunch restaurant ala Madame Matisse in Silverlake, and some shopping establishments would be nice as well – a mid range women’s clothing or shoe boutique,

    The re-development is on point as far as renovating the facade to it’s original beauty, and bringing in several businesses at the same time is brilliant. There is a better chance of survival if they can support each other with foot traffic rather than being a one off among party stores.

    Keep it coming!

  20. This is a BLOG, not 60 Minutes. This article is a brief blurb about a fantastic restoration job.

  21. The simple reality is that Figueroa is ready to take off. It’s a great stretch, begging for development, hopefully tasteful and in keeping with history. So easy to visualize a Trader Joes right there.

  22. I can see gucci store opening a store

    • I suspect you aren’t serious but Gucci isn’t so farfetched considering the talk of Maison Martin Margiela taking over the Frank’s Camera Shop. Or do you know something about Gucci that the rest of us haven’t heard yet…….?

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