Princeton Drive, Venice
Laurie Jacoby wanted to shake up her life, which had been rooted in the Westside Village house where she raised two children. She looked at condos but found them confining. Then she came upon the Prince-ton Lofts, a factory conversion in the historic Oxford Triangle in Venice, and felt a familiar frisson—of her early life in New York among that city’s yawning interiors. “There was an open, wonderful feeling, like a house but without the doors,” she says of her 1,800-square-foot space.
The 1960s building, a tilt-up construction, had been the factory for White Stag, the venerable outdoor and ski wear company that was a Portland institution until it was snapped up by the Warner Brothers textile firm. The apparel maker’s move to the Oxford Triangle, a small commercial hub fed by a Southern Pacific railroad spur, also put it next to the manufacturing center of the iconic Shelby Cobra cars. That detail enchanted principal developer Arnold Bernstein, who decided to preserve the vintage industrial connection as he transformed his 2003 purchase into lofts.
For Jacoby, a TV talent agent who works in Beverly Hills, the biggest challenge was deciding which furnishings to keep. In paring down her houseful of belongings, she ended up with a mix of pieces from New York, some L.A. acquisitions that blended seamlessly into her new space, and a couple of family heirlooms. Between the downsizing, which was liberating, and weekend excursions on her speed bike, “I feel like I’m on vacation all the time,” she says.
Photographs by Tom Fowlks