Monday, June 30, 2014

Mapping Hollywood

The interactive/animated map that was once on my Disneyland Photo page took an insane amount of hours to put together. It speaks to my crazed attention to detail when I feel passionate about something. It was one of those projects where once I began, it was difficult to stop. Flash forward about 7 years to the present, and my map had caught the attention of author Martin Turnbull, who has written a series of novels that take place at the legendary (but now leveled) Garden of Allah Hotel on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.

Here's a photo of Lance Reventlow (son of heiress Barbara Hutton) and actress Jill St. John at the Garden of Allah Hotel's final party in August 1959 before it closed permanently. I sure would have liked to have been there; what a bash that must have been!

Martin remarked to me that he sure would love to have a vintage Hollywood map similar to the one I created for Disneyland. It had been 7 years since I'd created that monstrosity, and I knew my Flash skills were more than just rusty. Still, the idea of doing a vintage Hollywood map was right up my alley, so I immediately took on the project.

Some of the landmarks on my map already existed in vintage line art form and merely had to be scanned and cleaned up (I say merely…but typically 45 minutes per landmark for that task), like this rendering of the Chateau Marmont:

Others I had to do a line art rendering myself, such as the ones for The Garden of Allah:

and Preston Sturges' Player's Club:

Although I do want to animate this map at some point, 7 years without using a program means that the static version will have to suffice until I re-learn Flash again.

To see the map and the accompanying legend, visit Martin's website.

Did it take a ton of time? Sure it did, but I enjoyed every minute.

See more Daveland vintage & current Hollywood photos at my main website.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Upper Main Line Y

Growing up near Philadelphia, I lived in an area called the Upper Main Line, which refers to the "Main Line" of the Pennsylvania Railroads, which ran parallel to Route 30, aka Lancaster Avenue. One of the jewels of this area was the Upper Main Line YMCA, which was built around the 1908 Cassatt Mansion.

Out for a walk one day when home last month, I decided to take the back route to the "Y." As a child, I have many happy memories of this wooded area where I attended summer camp, played Capture the Flag, and also participated in Indian Guides.

The beauty of this area still remains; it was wonderful to leisurely stroll through the paths that I had romped through some 40 years ago.

Once through the wooded area, the Cassatt Mansion becomes visible, still impressive in its ornately detailed style. The modern YMCA facilities that have been tacked on around it make me cringe, but I am still grateful that the historic Mansion has been able to survive.

I recall racing through the interior of the Mansion, whose once grand rooms were converted into classrooms.

What a change from the Southern California landscape I have become accustomed to over the last 15 years. Being completely surrounded by these majestic trees gave me a welcome feeling of peace and tranquility.

And then my allergies kicked in. Oops. Forgot about those. I guess every Eden has its drawbacks!

See more Daveland Upper Main Line photos at my main website.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Grand Floridian Celebration!

26 years ago, the Grand Floridian Beach Resort hotel (now the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa) at Walt Disney World opened its doors. Its location on the Monorail route, makes it extremely convenient for hotel guests to shuttle between areas of the resort.

As you can see, it was inspired by the Hotel del Coronado on the west coast:

The photos in today's post were from a June 2002 trip to Orlando, where I got to see this hotel for the first time.

In the background, you can see The Polynesian Resort.

Although it's a beautiful hotel, like the rest of Walt Disney World, I find that its gargantuan size precludes it from having any intimate charm. The basic concept of most WDW hotels is the same; the skins are just different. Here's the grand lobby area:

The band was playing during my visit:

Just as they were on my most recent visit in 2010:

We were given a tour of Citricos Restaurant:

Looks like one of the desserts was celebrating a 100th anniversary; any readers remember the significance of 1902? Maybe it's a leftover garnish celebrating Walt's 1901 birthday.

Happy Birthday, Grand Floridian!

See more Daveland WDW Grand Floridian photos at my main website.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Down in New Orleans, June 1969

Two vintage images of New Orleans today, beginning with this June 1969 shot of Toulouse Street.

Anybody care for some international cuisine at Dan's? According to the sign, you enjoy a delicious Chinese Feast or Japanese Imperial Dinner until 2am!

Across the street is The Dungeon, which had recently opened when this photo was taken. It was a private key club until 1988. I can only imagine what went on inside. Probably best that way.

If you're getting overheated today, a nice slice of ice cold watermelon probably sounds good!

See more Daveland vintage New Orleans photos at my main website.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

The Viewliner: 57 Years Ago Today in 1957

EVERYONE'S heard of the Monorail at Disneyland, but most of today's guests would probably have no idea what The Viewliner was if you asked them. I would call it Walt's temporary solution to a long-term dream. Wanting a futuristic mode of transportation in Tomorrowland, Walt had Bob Gurr quickly concoct this cross between a train and a car. This is how The Viewliner was born, debuting on June 26, 1957.

Doesn't Walt look proud? Probably not as proud as he would be two years later when he rolled out the Monorail.

Here, new meets old, as the two train tracks meet up and allow the C.K. Holliday to run parallel with The Viewliner.

Wouldn't you love to hear what they were saying to each other?

Time to explode into full color with this shot of the Tomorrowland Viewliner (the Fantasyland Viewliner was blue).

This June 1958 Skyway aerial shot has it all.

Taken just 3 months before the Viewliner's early demise, you can see the Fantasyland Viewliner at the Tomorrowland Station.

A closer look at the signage:

My collection is sparse as far as shots of the Fantasyland Station go:

Happy Birthday, Viewliner! You paved the way for the Monorail, and for that, we are grateful!

See more Daveland Disneyland Viewliner photos at my main website.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Happy Anniversary Number 5!

Nine years ago today, The Disneyland Railroad put Locomotive No. 5, The Ward Kimball, into service. It was named after the late Ward Kimball (seen in the cab in photo #1), a legendary Disney animator, musician, and railroad aficionado. Upon first glance, you might think that photo number 2 is showing the New Orleans/Frontierland Depot at Disneyland. Nope…it's Ward Kimball's backyard railroad setup, The Grizzly Flats in 1962. Yup…Ward loved trains!

Today's post shows a few shots that I have taken over the years of the #5 at Disneyland. Hope you enjoy!

Zooming in for a closer look at the headlamp, you can see one of Ward's beloved creations, Jiminy Cricket.

See you back at the station!

See more Daveland Disneyland Railroad photos at my main website.