From high rises to single family homes, with a few mysterious islands mixed in, the architecture of Long Beach is varied, historic and very hard to take your eyes off. So it’s no surprise that Long Beach Architecture Week, running from June 8 to June 12, features its own wide range of subjects and sites. From Victorian charm, and tea, of the Bembridge House to Rat Pack style and cocktails, there’s a whole lot packed into the week. Tours? Oh, there are walking tours and bus tours and boat tours. Talks? Yep, there are serious talks and seriously funny talks, talks about the past and talks about what will be required of architecture in the future. Here’s a few of the very interesting offerings, just be aware they represent a fraction of all that’s going on, to see it all go to LB Architecture’s Upcoming Events page.
T.H.U.M.S. Boat Tour
Any discussion of architecture unique to Long Beach must include the funky structures constructed to camouflage oil drilling activities on these islands in Long Beach Harbor. Cal State Long Beach Assistant Professor of Art, Brian Trimble, along with content creator Cassidy Liston and City of Long Beach Energy Resources Department staff will offer an up close, boat-side view of these wonders, including the history and development of the islands designed by, among others, horticulturist Bill Evans, famous for his work at Disneyland. Tours– Wednesday, June 8 and Thursday, June 9–begin at Studio 111 (245 E. Third St.), at 8:30 a.m.
Keynote Talk: Doris Sung
Historic Downtown Self-Guided Tour
Though Long Beach and Los Angeles each have notable high rises, Long Beach is unique in that its skyline exists so near the ocean, creating a distinctive coastal cityscape. The Historic Self-Guided Tour takes you to iconic buildings and registered landmarks, everything from the Farmers and Merchants Bank building to the US Postal building to the Lafayette Hotel, past a host of buildings spanning Art Deco to Streamline Moderne. Go as fast or slow as you want, on foot, bike, skates or scooter. And, while you’re at it, stop for a bite or a drink at one of the numerous, great downtown spots. To take the tour, you’ll need to download the LB Living App.
Art Deco and Streamline Moderne Double Decker Bus Tour
Charles Phoenix: Long Beachland
Phoenix is a singular performer–how many “retro pop culture humorists” do you know?--and his hilarious and subversively informative slide shows regularly sell out. One of his most popular is Long Beachland, perhaps because Phoenix loves the city so much, calling its retro reputation “unequaled.” He takes great pleasure and pains to show the city’s many legendary landmarks, unsung attractions and local lore, scanning through about 3,000 Kodachrome slides from the ‘50s and ‘60s just to get the right one. Phoenix will present Long Beachland June 12, 2 p.m. at the Scottish Rites Event Center (855 Elm St.)