Fine early promotional brochure for the Westwood Hills and Holmby Hills, published for the Janss Investment Company.
Development in Westwood was opened in 1922 by Harold Janss, vice president of Janss Investment Company; at the time that this promotional pamphlet was issued a headline stated: "ultra-smart residential area architecturally unique 5000 homes now built in this desirable district" with images of five such residences, from a modest "charming gray French Provincial" to a huge "colorful Mediterranean with red tile roof."
It was also noted that "Many investors, recognizing the logical demand for rental properties in a University vicinity, are buying in Westwood Village where the high rental figure has been maintained." The map is a street map of the area, with the Bel-Air Golf Course at top, with the University of California campus just to the south. Sepulveda Boulevard marks the boundary to the southwest; the map extends as far as Pico Boulevard, with the studio of 20th Century Fox and the Westwood Public Golf Course between it and Santa Monica Boulevard; at the right edge of the map runs Benedict Canyon Road.
The Janss Investment Company, one of the pioneer real estate firms in Los Angeles (1895 to 1995) is perhaps best known for having donated the land in Westwood which would become the campus of the University of California's southern branch (UCLA).
In 1911 Harold Janss married Arthur Letts' daughter Gladys. In 1923 after Arthur Letts, Sr. died, they took control of the 3,300-acre William Wolfskill ranch on Rancho San Jose de Buenos Ayres. In a deal to get the University of California, Los Angeles in 1925, Janss Investment Company sold 375 acres to the cities of Los Angeles, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills at the bargain price of $1.2 million - about a quarter of its value. The cities, whose voters had passed bond issues to pay for the site, turned around and donated it to the state. While the UCLA campus was being built, Janss Investment Company went to work developing the Westwood Village commercial area and surrounding residential neighborhoods.