The name evokes exotic sights, smells and sounds of the orient, along with savory foods and unusual souvenirs. Walking its street, you don't have to use your imagination much to believe that you might be in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Shanghai or Kuangchou.
Old Chinatown Plaza, located at 943 North Broadway just northeast of downtown Los Angeles and south of Dodger Stadium, bordered by North Broadway, Hill Street, College Street and Bernard Street. One easy access is by downtown Dash Minibus B from downtown LA. The other is the Pasadena Freeway with the Hill Street/Dodger Stadium turn off.
The shops, restaurants, fortune tellers, associations and financial institutions of Old Chinatown give out a colorful appearance by day and a romantic glow by night, when the neon signs all light up (especially the two gateways).
For the past sixty years, it is a popular tourist spot. The East Gate, with it bright neon lights, is one of the many famous golden landmarks in Old Chinatown Plaza. Also the Golden Pagoda, which stands approximately fifty feet high. The Seven Star Cavern Wishing Well, where you can make a wish, and come see all the buildings with its magnificent architecture.
As you walk through the gateway, you will recognize some of the settings used in many Hollywood movies, television shows and commercials. Some of the television shows include Hunter, The Rockford Files, Hart To Hart, Beverly Hills, 90210, and Melrose Place. Motion Pictures include Lethal Weapon 4, Rush Hour, 8 Millimeter and, of course, Chinatown.
Old Chinatown Plaza is one of the oldest plazas dating back to June of 1938. Beautiful Chinese arches beckon the visitor to step into a traditional Chinese environment. On the long list of items favored by visitors and residents alike, the following are probably the leading choices; craft items of porcelein, wood and jade, paintings, art, art supplies, herbs, teas, pastries, books, restaurants and banking institutions for all your needs.
l5 shops, 7 eateries and restaurant, 2 bakeries (Wonder Bakery and Phoenix Bakery), 2 Banks (Standard Savings & Loan and United Savings Bank) to serve you.
Los Angeles Old Chinatown Merchants Association
c/o Wonder Bakery at 943 N. Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90012