Along the street, there are several of Los Angeles’ attractions and institutions. For example, the section in Hollywood is also called Guitar Row, because there are a number of well-known music studios, retailers and guitar shops here. many famous bars and restaurants have a Sunset Boulevard address, among them being the restaurants House of Blues and Spago, the bars Tiki Ti, Whisky a Go Go and Rainbow Bar and Grill as well as the Night Club Viper Room.
There are a few places where Sunset Boulevard isn’t easy to navigate. Next to the almost metaphorical potholes, which have over the years become something of a trademark for the street, there are quite a number of difficult curves and during rush hour, the boulevard is almost always jammed. In West Hollywood, however, traffic is always a little slower at all times, because here lies the most famous section of Sunset Boulevard, the so-called Sunset Strip.
It is not a coincidence that right here, in this location, the highest concentration of clubs and bars can be found. The reason lies in the past: Sunset Strip is located outside of the Los Angeles city limits and thus stood in the 1920s - 1940s, when those establishments were founded here, outside of the jurisdiction of the tough Los Angeles Police Department but instead was in the area of the somewhat more lenient Sheriff’s Department. Thus, in the Twenties, a few casinos were set up around what is today the Strip and in the times of the prohibition, it was relatively easy to get alcoholic beverages in the back rooms of the bars and clubs here. In the following years, the Strip founded the reputation it enjoys to this day, when more and more show business personalities discovered the clubs for themselves.
The 1930s, the golden era of the night and music clubs began. Back then, everyone with a name and a reputation went dancing at the Mocambo or the Trocadero. Many celebrities of the time also lived near the Strip. That image gradually changed after World War II. The movie stars kept away from the area, instead the average, normal people came here and the tourists who had heard of the trendy location and in the Sixties, the Hippies began to meet here. Out of that culture, a music scene developed that quickly gained significance, driven by the clubs offering live music. Guns’n’Roses, The Doors and The Byrds were among the bands performing here. In the 70s in particular, Sunset Strip and to an extended degree the legendary Rodney Bingenheimer’s English Disco were the world center of Rock and Glamour. The boulevard as a whole became a synonym for nightlife. But the more popular Sunset Strip became, the more expensive rents became and soon enough the wild, energetic subculture that had developed here had to make room for a more settled audience.
Sunset Strip is still easily recognizable by the high density of billboards along the street and the long lines of people waiting in front of clubs and restaurants in the evenings. During daytime, a number of boutiques draw some crowds and as a matter of fact, sometimes one may even actually spot a celebrity here. The houses in the hills directly above Sunset Strip are in what is regarded as one of the highest-priced residential areas; some well-known stars make their home there.