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The massive 500-room Ambassador Hotel, designed by renowned architect Myron Hunt, opened for business in 1921 on the site of a former dairy farm. It occupied 23.7 acres at 3400 Wilshire Boulevard, bordered by 8th Street, Catalina Street, and nearly to Mariposa Avenue. The hotel served as the stomping grounds for a staggering list of Hollywood legends, heads of state, and an endless list of famous personalities from the 20th Century. It was also home of The Cocoanut Grove nightclub, which was 'the' West Coast hot spot for live entertainment where people like Bing Crosby and Barbra Streisand got their start, and Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and many others came to perform. The Cocoanut Grove nightclub and coffee shop were redesigned by famed Los Angeles architect Paul R. Williams in the 1940s. It is said that as many as seven U.S. Presidents stayed at the Ambassador, from Hoover to Nixon, along with heads of state from around the world. A pivotal moment in world history happened in 1968, when Robert F. Kennedy was shot in a pantry off of the Embassy Room (and died 25 hours later), following his California Primary victory speech. The death of RFK coincided with the beginning of the hotel's demise. The Schine family had owned the Ambassador for about 50 years, until its doors were closed on January 3, 1989 after 68 years of service, selling for $64 million. The landmark hotel was eventually demolished between late 2005 and early 2006. After a prolonged legal battle with Donald Trump and a fight over preservation with the Los Angeles Conservancy, the Los Angeles Unified School District converted the property into the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools which opened in 2010. Photograph caption dated August 16, 1957 reads "Making plans for their annual American Institute of Banking fashion show scheduled for Aug. 24, at the Ambassador's Cocoanut Grove are, left to right, Mrs. Kathryn Hammond, vice chairman of the educational committee; Jacqueline L. Imus, women's committee chairman, and Augusta Anderson, entertainment chairman. Attendance of approximately 850 is anticipated for the affair."
1 photographic print : b&w ; 21 x 26 cm.
00154489 Valley Times Collection; HCNVT_d058_f23_i13 http://188.8.131.52/cdm/ref/collection/photos/id/127565
Hunt, Myron,1868-1952 Williams, Paul R.,1894-1980 American Institute of Banking Ambassador Hotel Cocoanut Grove (Los Angeles, Calif.) Women Associations, institutions, etc Restaurants Lost architecture Los Angeles (Calif.) Portrait photographs Group portraits