No, that title is not a typo.
Living and working around Belmont Shores, I drive by some pretty bizarre things. One building in particular rises above the rest. One, because it is a rather tall building. Two, because at night the name is lit up in neon green lights: Gaytonia.
In all of my years visiting and then living in Belmont Shore, I never knew what that building once was, or what it was now. I figured now would be as good a time as any to take a look.
The building was an apartment hotel that was built in the 1930’s. Named after the owner-contractor George Gayton, was catered towards Naval Officers stationed in Long Beach. Gayton also built the Belmont Theatre in Belmont Shores. The building was fairly expensive and high-end for its time, offering services such as maid service, valet and included furnishings like dishes and linen.
Remember that neon sign I mentioned earlier? It is the only remaining aspect of the original building that is in tact. It’s so-called “interesting” architecture has been remodeled over the years, but is said to be a combination of old-Gothic and the “Norman Revival” style. The outside looks like an old castle: old bricks and stone, a few turrets, and a somewhat out-of place red tile roof (now where have we seen that before)?
Studio and 1-bedroom apartments can still be rented from this building. While they might not have all of the modern tech updates that many people look for today, these rooms, and the entire building, comes with a long-standing history that can only mean its here to stay.