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Perino's Restaurant

Los Angeles, USA
James Ruebsamen, 1983 Herald Examiner Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
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James Ruebsamen, 1983 Herald Examiner Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
James Ruebsamen, 1983 Herald Examiner Collection, Los Angeles Public Library

Establish in 1932 by Alexander Perino, a popular Hollywood restaurant located on Wilshire Boulevard. In his unpublished memoirs, "Rambling Recollections", actor Anthony Dawson recalled dining with the Hitchcocks and fellow Dial M for Murder actors Grace Kelly and John Williams in 1953. After Alfred Hitchcock became an American citizen on April 20th 1955, C.O. "Doc" Erickson arranged a celebratory drinks reception at the restaurant for the Hitchcocks and Paramount staff.

During its long history as a Los Angeles landmark, Perino’s Restaurant and its owner, Alexander, immediately became favorites of both Hollywood elite and the city's demimonde. Perino's popularity would last over 50 years. On August 15, 1934 a fire gutted the interior of the original restaurant, but the eatery reopened better than ever. Sinatra played the piano in the bar, Bette Davis permanently reserved her booth, the mobster “Bugsy” Siegel was a regular patron in the '40s, and Cole Porter supposedly wrote a song on the back of a Perino’s menu.

Eventually Alexander moved his restaurant to a better location at 4101 Wilshire Blvd, the former site of a Thriftmart food store. Paul R. Williams was commissioned to design a new, improved and enlarged Perino's. Costing over $400,000 Williams' New Orleans-inspired redesign opened to much fanfare. On September 10, 1954, another fire gutted the building, causing over $250,000 in damages. Fire investigators believed it started when someone left a lighted cigarette in an upholstered chair. The restaurant reopened in 1955 with new interiors designed by Williams. Perino's was enlarged to seat 360 and Williams added two private dining rooms. The restaurant closed in 1986 and was torn down in 2005, replaced by a 4-story, 47-unit apartment building.

3927 Wilshire Blvd.