Friday, May 30, 2014

Vintage Photo Friday - Ship's Coffee Shop

1995.  Ship's, Culver City

1995 was the year. 19 years ago.  Is that vintage?  I dunno. I've been looking through a lot of my old photographs lately and to me, any photograph where my hair is NOT gray, I've labeled "vintage."

 It appears that I'm obsessed with coffee shops
Looking north on La Cienega

We frequented all three of the Ship's Coffee Shops, but this was OUR Ship's Coffee Shop on La Cienega, just south of Olympic, L.A., Beverly Hills adjacent.  This particular building was built in 1968 and closed in 1995.  The original Ship's in Culver City and the restaurant on Wilshire Boulevard in Westwood were opened in 1956.  All three are gone now.  Emmett Shipman built the futuristic coffee shops in the classic "googie" rocket ship style.  The architect was Martin Stern. Ship's was distinctive for it's toasters on every table.  I do remember smelling lots of burnt toast whenever we walked into Ship's.  This was my maternal Grandfather's favorite coffee shop.  Of course, it was across the street from Temple Beth Am, a place he frequented every day.  I can see him now, ordering the "diet" plate which consisted of a hamburger patty with lots of ketchup, cottage cheese and a canned peach. 
Ship's Culver City
Ship's Westwood.  Photo from Martin Stern Archives, 1961
Ship's Westwood.  Photo from UCLA Archives, 1984
Interior, Ship's, 1995

Larry and I went during the last days of the La Cienega shop to take some photographs of this classic coffee shop.  Yes, they're blurry.  I was sad.
One of the signs of the Ship's La Cienega is still there, gracing a car repair shop.  The iconic, triangular "never closes" signs are below the circular one.

Ship's, La Cienega

Ship's, Culver City

So many of the restaurants from my youth are gone.  True, Los Angeles is now known as a restaurant haven.  During my youth, it was known for hamburger stands, coffee shops and tiki bars.  Sigh.

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At 5:02 AM PDT, Blogger Unknown said...

I came across this blog googling ships. My mom, grandma and older sister worked there. Im pretty sure thats me my sister and neice walkin out on that pic with the red car....crazy

At 6:38 AM PDT, Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Wow! That is crazy. That photo with the red Thunderbird was taken in the early to mid 1990s

At 7:00 AM PDT, Blogger Yvonne Tunnyhill said...

I showed my sister. It was an awsome find. Thanks for posting it, im sure we were visiting my mom that day. I wonder if uhh went there if u knew her...wanda. anywho, my mom passed away and this brought a hap p y memory for us.

At 7:39 AM PDT, Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Sorry, I didn't know Wanda, Yvonne. Glad you found the photo though. That's my husband, Larry, bending down and taking the photo of the red Thunderbird. I was talking a photo of Larry taking a photo and you and your family just happened to be walking out of the restaurant!!


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