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Hollywood Center Motel

May 8th, 2009 | By | Category: Movie Locations


A few weeks ago, Mike, from MovieShotsLA, called me up to ask me if I knew that my latest Hollywood crush, Simon Baker, had one of his earliest acting roles in the 1997 movie  L.A. Confidential.  And I almost fell out of my chair!  Even though I’ve seen that movie about a hundred times, I never realized that SB had acted in it.  The then-unknown Mentalist star had the small, but pivotal role of homosexual actor/prostitute Matt Reynolds in the film.  That’s him in the above screen capture. I can’t believe how young he looks!!!!  


Mike also told me the address of the location where SB’s character meets his untimely demise towards the middle of the movie – Room 203 of the Hollywood Center Motel.  So, of course, since I was in the area yesterday, I just had to stalk it.  🙂



In the scene filmed at the Hollywood Center Motel, Hush-Hush  magazine editor Sid Hudgeons (Danny DeVito) and Detective Jack Vincennes (Kevin Spacey) set up a sting operation to catch the Los Angeles District Attorney in an illicit rendevous with homosexual prostitute SB. 



But, at the last minute, Jack has a change of heart and shows up at the motel early to warn SB of the set-up. 





Unfortunately, he is too late, and when he enters the seedy motel room he finds SB’s character dead on the floor.  🙁  Poor Simon!


Hollywood Center Motel is an odd little place, with what appears to be a large central guesthouse surrounded by small motel rooms.  I am guessing that most of the motels’ guests live there full time.  Aside from a change in paint color, the Hollywood Center Motel looks pretty much exactly the same today as it did twelve years ago when it appeared onscreen in L.A. Confidential.  Unfortunately, other than the fact that it was built in the 20’s, I couldn’t find out much information about the small motel online.  And I can’t say that I’d really recommend stalking the place, as it is pretty seedy and run-down.  But being that it definitely has that Old Hollywood vibe to it, it’s easy to see why producers chose to use it in their film about a 50’s era Los Angeles. 


While I was stalking the motel, the manager happened to be outside sweeping the parking lot, so, of course, I had to ask him what other productions had been filmed on the premises.  He looked at me like I was absolutely out of my mind, laughed, and then walked away without saying a word.  LOL LOL LOL  I am fairly certain, though, that, due to its historic and unique look, the motel has to have been used in other productions besides L.A. Confidential.   I am going to have to keep my eyes open for it from now on.  🙂 


Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: Hollywood Center Motel is located at 6720 West Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. 



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  1. Chris Ablin says:

    So, as a child in the 1970’s I spent a great deal of time at “The Motel” as I know it. My grandparents John & Harriet Ablin were assistant Managers when Dorothea Merril was the manager. I learned how to swim at the pool in back. I was walking through the driveway when I heard someone’s radio announcing the news that “Elvis” was dead. The Jackson Family stayed here upon their first arrival to Hollywood at the beginning of “The Jackson 5”. Janis Joplin was seen walking on Sunset out front with a drink in her hand many times.

  2. JFV says:

    Hi fellow commentators. I’d thought it be intresting to share that my grandparents owned the whole front block in the mid 60’s . Where the Rite Aide is now was a garage called Shafer Auto Service. The Hollywood Center Motel was on a sign thats still on the fence. A beam above the entrence to the driveway read Motel and Theatre. The Theatre located on Las Palmas had a sign that said Hollywood Center Theatre, Director Gerald Gordon and was playing “The Fantastics”. I have some picture if anyone is doing research. My grandmother told me a few stories of how hard it was to earn a living with these businesses during these times. The 60’s and 70’s were a difficult time for business.

    • Canelo Hollywood says:

      Greetings. Very happy to read your post. I’m researching this building, and would love to see any photos you have related to the motel, or that area. Also, if you have any additional information on the site, that would be great. Thank you!

  3. Ron Powell says:

    i just toured some spots in Hollywood a couple of weeks ago and came across this place. I took a few pictures from the street and hurried away because my tour guides said the person that owns it will run you out if you come on the property. so i didnt get up close and personal and now wish i had. i have just 3 or 4 photos if anyone would like to see them.

  4. Charles Franklin says:

    I am not from Los Angeles, and I have never set foot in L A, but I am a geek when it comes to addresses. I was watching a documentary called “A Certain Kind Of Death”, that takes place in L A county, and one of the deceased men had a California drivers license with this address. And he had checked in to another hotel, where he was later found dead. A very good documentary, you can find it on YouTube.

  5. Mandrew says:

    The parking lot of this motel was used for an establishing shot in a Perry Mason episode (The Case Of The Singing Skirt, 1960). At that time there was an I-beam across the top of the privacy wall spanning the two cement block sections and the words “MOTEL AND [something]” were tacked to the front of the I-beam. A sign at the entrance reads “Furnished Apts”. In the shot, Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) drives his car into the motel lot and parks in front of the first unit. The camera was located in the parking lot and the shot shows only a perspective looking out onto Sunset Blvd. Also, in the shot can be seen a four-story ‘motel’ across the street named the El Rancho (now gone).

    • Jarod says:

      That’s cool! I have wondered about this place a lot too. I live in Raymond Burr’s old house right now, so this is a cool connection.

      • Canelo Hollywood says:

        I love this site & Perry Mason. Did Raymond Burr live there when he was on the show?

        • Jarod says:

          He lived in the house (which I’ve now moved out of) from 1970-1983, so this was after the Perry Mason television series, and before the Perry Mason TV movies.

    • Canelo Hollywood says:

      Thanks for sharing this. IMBD didn’t even have that listed for filming locations (I just submitted an update). This must be the earliest date the motel was used on tv or film. The updates shown were done ca. 1958.

  6. The L says:

    I stayed there during some strange time in my life around 2001-02 I was charged 65 bucks. it was the real-deal a straight up drug den. with prostitutes and cockroaches looming around after hours. I like the “the D’ lived there in the mid 70’s. and other than being in a motel it was kinda like an apartment. quiet, manager dealt with issues. I am shocked at how far down they let the place go. but, then again I was a small child when I lived there and it was probably a dump then too.

  7. Terry Guy says:

    I just saw this location used in the 1975 Rockford Files episode THE REAL EASY RED DOG, where James Garner as Rockford checks in so as to shake two cops who are tailing him.

  8. Berroci says:

    It’s interesting that the words on the marquee are still exactly the same as they were in the movie. I wonder if the producers decided they were already appropriate for the era and didn’t need to be changed, or if the hotel owner just never got around to changing them once the shoot was over.

  9. J. V says:

    The motel is also featured in the 1977 film “Fun with Dick and Jane” staring George Segal and Jane Fonda. It was the location of their first successful robbery when they decided to start stealing. I live near the motel and wandered onto the property one day with a friend. We were just looking around the outside as the property is so old and I am facinated by Hollywood history. Suddenly a man came outside and asked what we wanted. We told him we were just looking around and he yelled at us to get out. he was foreign and very unfriendly / shady. Can’t seem to find much about the place online either.

  10. Clarkus says:

    I worked at the little theater around the corner on Las Palmas in the early 60’s. If I recall correctly, the motel was owned at that time by Mike Stokey, the host of Stump the Stars TV show (a.k.a. Pantomime Quiz). The place was in considerably better shape then.

  11. Scott walker says:

    The motel appears in the film ‘dark blue’ a police movie featuring Kurt Russell and Scott Speedman. Russell’s character Eldon Perry walks past it and stays there at a point in the film where his life is falling apart. Excellent choice you might say!! Lol

  12. the D says:

    I actually lived there in the 70’s, in that center building. I visited it a year ago to show my wife some of my history and the owner was a complete creep. I recommend people avoid it and leave the guy alone. he’s from another planet and treats everyone like garbage. he could be nice, let me walk around and take some pictures, instead he started yelling in whatever dialect he holds and made us leave.

    • tovangar2 says:

      Hey D, do you know anything about the history of the house (the center building)? Sunset Blvd used to be lined with homes like that in 1904-1915
      and I’m sure this is one of the originals. It must have looked much better before it got a motel built in the front yard.

    • ck says:

      Would you mind sharing about your time in the motel? What was around, neighbors, etc. I’m working on an article on it and some first person takes would be wonderful.

      You can email me at

    • Canelo Hollywood says:

      Hello. I am also doing research on this site. It would be great to connect with you on your first-hand memories of the building(s). I cannot find much about the interior, and am not sure how much was ever filmed inside when it made numerous appearances in TV & film. Thank you!

      • LG says:

        Not much was ever filmed in the interior. Mostly stage sets. They used the exterior quite a bit. Think run down 70’s motif for the interiors.

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