Norms Restaurant (La Cienega)

 
(1962)^.^ – View showing Norms Restaurant located at 462 N. La Cienega Boulevard.  Photo by Jack Laxer  

 

Historical Notes

The Norms Restaurants chain of diner-style restaurants was founded in 1949 by used-car salesman Norm Roybark when he opened his first restaurant on Sunset Boulevard near Vine Street. The oldest surviving Norms opened on La Cienega Boulevard in 1957 (seen above), featuring a distinctive angular and brightly colored style that came to be known as Googie Architecture. Key characteristics include concrete walls, large glass windows, jutting roof, and a neon marquee.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1960s)* - Interior view of the Norm's flagship restaurant on La Cienega.  

 

Historical Notes

Many Norms restaurants, including the 1957 La Cienega Boulevard location, were designed by Louis Armét and Eldon Davis of Armét & Davis to look like automobile showrooms with booths resembling bucket seats. Their unique appearance has made them the subject of exhibitions curated by the Getty Center.

Armét and Davis also designed the landmark Pann's coffee shop in Ladera Heights, Johnie's Coffee Shop at Fairfax and Wilshire, Penguin Coffee Shop in Santa Monica, nd several Bob's Big Boy restaurants.*^

 

 

 

 
(2014) - Google street view showing Norms Restaurant on La Cienega Boulevard. It is the oldest surviving Norms in the restaurant chain.  

 

Historical Notes

There are currently seventeen locations of Norms Restaurants in Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside counties.*^

 

 

 

 
(2015)^^* – Profile view of Norms Restaruant at dusk, 462 N. La Cienega Blvd.  

 

Historical Notes

On, May 20, 2015, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to designate Norms La Cienega as an Historic-Cultural Monument (HCM).

 

 

 

 
(2019)** – Looking up at the Googie-style features of Norms, La Cienega.  

 

Historical Notes

One of Armet and Davis’s most well-known works, this Norms location is the oldest still in operation. “The elongated diamond-shaped trusses, the sloping roof, the long open stretch of glass that looks out onto the boulevard.

Click HERE to see more on the origin of Googie Architecture.

 

 

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