Then and Now, a Vital Cultural Thoroughfare
The Broadway Lofts are located in The Bumiller Building, built in 1906, just before Los Angeles’s Broadway District started to take off. Designed by Morgan & Walls, the building’s floor-to-ceiling light wells and innovative design were praised for channeling natural light to each floor — a feature preserved today in The Broadway Lofts.
Originally housing a high-end department store, Le Bon Marché, the building quickly drew interest from Broadway’s then-booming theater district. By 1907, the Bumiller had made its move from shopping center to theater hub.
The building was the first home to the western branch of the New York-based Eden Musee, a theater for motion pictures and vaudevillian acts. Promising “a show on every floor,” the Musee drew downtown’s growing populace with daily shows in the afternoon and evening. After the Musee moved, the Bumiller housed the Wonderland Theater. Subsequently, the building housed what was known as “The Jade Theater,” named ostensibly for the brilliant and distinctive jade coloring of the building.
The building was born when Los Angeles was a “wild west” frontier town at the turn of the century and found itself by the 1930’s at the core of a vital cultural thoroughfare. By 1931, the world’s highest concentration of movie theaters was found not on Broadway New York, but on Broadway Los Angeles. The Broadway Theatre District’s dozens of theaters could collectively hold over 15,000 patrons, all of whom walked down the neon-lit streets at midnight.
Today, The Broadway Lofts preserves the building’s prominent role in the Historic Broadway Theater District. Blending unique historical architecture with modern design elements, the building is now available for lease to residential tenants.