The rich and famous were some of downtown’s earliest adopters, bypassing mega mansions for multilevel lofts

Arts District

The Biscuit Lofts have seen their fair share of big names. Nicolas Cage rented the four-story penthouse in 2008 before filmmaker Vincent Gallo bought it in 2009. Director Justin Lin owned it next, moving his production company there in 2012. Seven floors below is Kevin Spacey’s Trigger Street Productions, where he no doubt is plotting Frank Underwood’s next move.

Financial District

Athletes and hometown celebrities live in luxury at the Ritz-Carlton Residences. Dodger pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu enjoys a short commute, as does Laker director of scouting Jesse Buss. Galaxy forward Landon Donovan also kicks it in this building. Former TV host Mary Hart and Coachella founder Paul Tollett also call the five-star  tower home.

Historic Core

If there were a “World’s Sexiest Dwelling” contest, the Eastern Columbia would win. Johnny Depp scored a penthouse unit in 2007. He could borrow sugar from John Stamos, who moved into the building in 2008. While his career was on the rise, Ryan Gosling shacked up a few blocks east of Depp’s and Stamos’s abodes.

Fire Station

Unseen DTLA: Fire Station Number 23

225 E. 5th St.


Despite the neoclassical firehouse’s gleaming tile walls, pressed-tin ceilings, and Hollywood pedigree (it appeared in 1984’s Ghostbusters), the structure has been closed to the public for more than 50 years. Long-term ambitions to develop the property have been stalled by government ownership and competing proposals.


Photographs courtesy: Biscuit Lofts: William Anthony; Eastern Columbia, Fire Station Number 23: Squire Fox; Ritz-Carlton Residences credit not listed