Photo Record

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Title Thelma Todd's Sidewalk Cafe, Pacific Palisades
Date mid 1900s
Description Constructed in 1928 as a shopping center for the Castellamare area of Pacific Palisades, this building became a Hollywood hot spot when movie actress Thelma Todd opened Thelma Todd's Sidewalk Cafe and a private club, Joya's Studio. Upstairs were apartment quarters where she lived with boyfriend Roland West, a director and her business partner. On December 16, 1935 Thelma was found dead in her car in the garage. The cause of death was determined to be carbon monoxide poisoning, but mystery surrounds the circumstances with suspicion of murder. The building is located at 17575 Pacific Coast Highway, previously Roosevelt Highway. In the early 1960s, the private residence became a place of business for Paulist Productions, a producer of religious movies and TV shows.Upstairs, she had an apartment and a private club, Joya's Studio, that Roland West helped her run. Her body was found in her car on December 16, 1935, in the garage of West, not only her business partner but also her director and paramour. Her death still remains a mystery. In the early 1960s, the property went from being a private residence to a place of business for Paulist Productions, a producer of religious movies and TV shows.
Collection Santa Monica History Museum
Catalog Number 36.2.3801
Object Name Print, Photographic
People Todd, Thelma
Search Terms Architecture
Automobile
Building
Business
Cafe
Castellammare
Joya's Studio
Pacific Coast Highway
Pacific Palisades
Restaurant
Thelma Todd's Sidewalk Cafe
Year Range from 1931
Year Range to 1969