Cafe Bristol – Downtown Los Angeles

Mason Opera House, 1909

Cafe Bristol

I came across another program from the Mason Opera House listed on EBay, this one from 1909. Here’s an ad for the Cafe Bristol, which was in the basement of the Hellman Building at 4th and Spring. It’s listed as Buy It Now for $19.99.

Here’s a postcard of the cafe, also listed on EBay, listed as Buy It Now for $5.

Hellman Building
The Hellman Building, as shown by Google Street View, at 4th Street and Spring, which serves as downtown L.A.’s “New York Street” for film crews.


The Bristol opened in 1904 and described itself as the finest cafe in Los Angeles. There were three entrances. Two on 4th Street featured marble staircases that led to the “general or ladies cafe” on the left and the men’s grill on the right. A third entrance on Spring Street also led to the ladies cafe.

According to Nov. 14, 1938, column in The Times by E.V. Durling, the Bristol, operated by Billy Schneider, “gave Los Angeles its first ice skating on a rink that measured 38 feet by 65 feet.”

I wonder what’s there now.

Dec. 12, 1904, Cafe Bristol

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About lmharnisch

I work at the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1904, 1909, Downtown, Food and Drink, Found on EBay, Spring Street, Theaters and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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