For Hollywood history and sheer coolness, it’s hard to beat Horace Heidt Estates. Although this resort-living rental community officially celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, it’s actually been the living quarters for some of Hollywood’s hardest-working musicians and “industry people” ever since the early 1940s.
In 1939, the renowned New York City Big Band leader Horace Heidt, Sr., was called to Hollywood.
“What was different about my dad than any actor or comedian was that he had a 30-piece band that came with him,” said his son, Horace Heidt, Jr. “So he did something unusual: he bought an old horse ranch property in Sherman Oaks so that he could put up his band while he was out here. That’s how this place started.”
By 1955, he’d begun construction of 45 elegant apartment units in classic Palm Springs Resort style, with swimming pools and an 18-hole golf course. In the mid 1960s, he added a “Hawaiian Village” consisting of 115 more apartments, a ballroom, and ten stand-alone houses, each with a pool. By now, the property had 150 palm trees, 14 swimming pools, the golf course, health club, aviary, and seven waterfalls.
The aviary and three waterfalls have since been replaced by a tennis court, and Heidt Jr. added the new Haleakala Apartments in 2006, but other than that, the property is much the same as it was when Heidt Sr. had it.
Horace Heidt Estates is located at 14155 Magnolia Blvd. in Sherman Oaks. For information, call (818) 784-8211 or visit horaceheidtestates.com.