Tiny Naylor's Drive-in Restaurant

(1949)* - View showing a full parking lot at Tiny Naylor's Restaurant and Drive-in, located on the northwest corner of Sunset and La Brea in Hollywood.  


Historical Notes

This is the original location of "Tiny Naylor's" (1949-1980), one of the most popular drive in restaurants during the Golden Age of Hollywood. Many movie stars would go to this "space age" styled building to eat, because they could be served their meal in their cars and remain unnoticed. The restaurant was open 24 hours a day and was a great example of "Googie" Architecture.

This is the same corner where McDonnell's Drive-in (not to be confused with McDonalds) once stood in the 1930s and early 1940s.




(1949)^ – View looking toward the northwest corner of Sunset and La Brea showing Tiny Naylor’s Drive-in Restaurant. Note the old style traffic signal (semaphore traffic signal) on the corner. Photography by Marc Wanamaker–Bison Archives  


Historical Notes

Tiny Naylor’s was also distinguished with its menu. Besides burgers and shakes, the menu at Tiny Naylor’s also included corn on the cob, ribs, steak, and baked potatoes—all of which were unheard of for a drive-in. Everything served at the restaurant was made from fresh ingredients, never frozen.^




(1949)** – Nightime view of Tiny Naylor’s Drive-in with it's "Googie" style architecture. Photo by Marvin Rand  


Historical Notes

The fabulous Tiny Naylor’s Drive-in Restaurant was built in 1949, from the mind of googie architect Douglas Honnold. He, along with John Lautner, also designed the Googie-style Coffee Dan’s on Wilshire Boulevard.

Click HERE to see more on Googie Architecture.

Douglas Honnold (1901 – 1974) was an award-winning Canadian-born American architect. He, along with John Lautner, designed the Beverly Hills Club. They also designed the Embassy Shop in Beverly Hills, which won an Honor Award from the Southern California Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 1947. Additionally, they designed the Coffee Dan's Restaurant buildings on Vine Street in Hollywood as well as on Broadway in Downtown Los Angeles in 1946.

Honnold is also known for turning down the offer to design the famous McDonald's golden arches.^




(1952)*# – View showing a couple in an MG being served by a carhop at Tiny Naylor's. Photo by Julius Shulman  


Historical Notes

Although Tiny Naylor was best known for his Tiny Naylor's restaurant chains, his first restaurant was Biff's Coffee Shop – named after his son, in 1948.  It was located on the corner of Cahuenga and Yucca in Hollywood.




(1950s)^#^^ – Close-up view looking at the northwest corner of Sunset and La Brea showing Tiny Naylor's and homes that still stood on the west side of La Brea. The house in the background is now a strip mall.  





(1970s)* - Family packed in a Chevrolet Caprice Estate station wagon being served at Tiny Naylor’s. Reflection in window shows Copper Penny Restaurant across the street.  





(1980)* - Nighttime view of Tiny Naylor's Restaurant, located at Sunset Boulevard (left) and La Brea Avenue (foreground). Photo by Roy Hankey  


Historical Notes

Unfortunately, Tiny Naylor’s went out of business in 1980 and the Googie-style structure was subsequently demolished to make room for a shopping center. The Naylor family is still alive and well in the restaurant business, however, with the Du-Par’s chain of restaurants.

Today an El Pollo Loco stands at the corner where Tiny Naylor's once stood.

Click HERE to see more Early Views of LA Drive-in Restaurants.



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