A week or so ago I visited the Last Bookstore for the second time and was still blown away by the stellar vibe of the place. The Last Bookstore is located at the heart of Downtown Los Angles in the Spring Arts Tower, on the corner of Spring St. and 5th, just a block away from Pershing Square. Said to be in the Historic Core of Los Angeles: “The streets of the Historic Core are the birthplace of modern Los Angeles.” The streets used to be lined with historic buildings, but all except one were destroyed within 24 hours on June 7th and 8, 1914 due to broken construction contracts. The one remaining building, holding the Citizens National Bank on the basement and first three floors, remained in tact. (source) Although the Last Bookstore has been in operation since 2005, it just moved into the Spring Tower area in June of 2011. Much of the original architectural accents from the old bank are still present in the bookstore, which is what caused me to stop and learn the history of the area.
The store itself sells, buys, and trades all sorts of books, along with selling vinyl records, CD’s, and housing their own art gallery with shops. Even with all of these things, this bookstore is probably most widely known for their towers and architectural feats made entirely out of books.
Something that we haven’t discussed much in class is the upcoming modern culture of Los Angeles. I think that modern Los Angeles can be defined by anything from the increased technological advances and thriving businesses, to the popularity of the hipster/ Bohemian culture in todays youth. Although old paperback books and vinyl records are a thing of the past, this culture continues to appreciate these things and cherish them for the experience that their modern alternatives couldn’t possibly match (in their eyes).
The tagline of the Last Bookstores’ website is “What are you waiting for? We won’t be here forever.” I think that this says a lot; not only about the bookstore and the changing culture replacing printed books with electronic ones, but also the ever changing appreciation of culture. The world is a constantly changing place, but I hope that books, vinyl records, and amazing places like this one can stand the test of time.