December 12,2019



CJ, Owner of the Torch – A candle shop


By any measure, Jon Favreau has had a very good year. But visit him at his Playa Vista studio and he’ll tell you he’s much more interested in what 10 years from now will look like in Hollywood. The technology deployed on his photoreal retelling of Disney’s The Lion King, which he directed and produced, helped it earn $1.65 billion at the worldwide box office. More important to Favreau, however, is the tech is at the heart of his new venture, Golem Creations, which he says is designed to advance the virtual production systems he took to new levels on Lion King and the Disney+ flagship Star Wars series The Mandalorian (which introduced the world to “Baby Yoda,” now melting the internet). The tech allows filmmakers to use virtual sets and real-time rendering to “shoot” on location in far-flung areas of the world (or imaginary universes) without leaving a soundstage. It has broad implications for the future of filmmaking, impacting everything from storytelling to budgets. Favreau says his pals at Marvel already have come calling to explore its possibilities. This year, Favreau also indulged his love of food and cooking — he made 2014’s Chef — as creator, producer, writer and director of Netflix’s The Chef Show. And he found time to reprise his role as Happy Hogan in Spider-Man: Far From Home and Avengers: Endgame, which together grossed nearly $4 billion worldwide.


Virginia-based Harbor Group International is raising its bet on Los Angeles, investing $24.3 million in to the Silicon Beach Live Apartments. Work on the Playa Vista development is expected to begin later this year. Once completed, the property will have 176 units. Amenities will include a pool with cabanas, a yoga room, a gym and a game room. “As we witness the ongoing expansion of many technology giants and industry elites to West Los Angeles, Playa Vista has become the epicenter of Silicon Beach, bringing jobs, new development and a highly educated workforce to live in this market,” Matt Jones, director of acquisitions of Harbor Group International, said in a statement. The complex is being developed by Sherman Oaks-based Sandstone Properties Inc. Other Sandstone properties include the Variety building at 11175 Santa Monica Blvd., 881 Alma Real Drive in Pacific Palisades and 14724 Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks.

Future developments from Sandstone include The Jeff, a 175-room hotel at 11469 Jefferson Blvd. in Culver City and The Albany at 1330 W. Pico Blvd., an industrial building downtown that will be turned into a hotel with bars and restaurants.Silicon Beach Live Apartments is Harbor Group’s third investment in California this year.  In June, the company took a $3.25 million stake in a 60-unit multifamily property in West Hollywood. The property was purchased by an affiliate of Concord Capital Partners Inc. for $17 million.

Harbor Group President Richard Litton Jr. told the Business Journal at the time that the company would invest in more apartment buildings in the area and was also interested in office buildings with stabilized rents and long leases. Harbor Group’s other investment in the state was in a San Francisco property. The company opened an office in L.A. in 2018 to drive expansion on the West Coast.


Lori, Late Bloomers Design Studio


Check out just some of the exciting events happening in the Playa area the next month.

•    Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade
o    Saturday, December 14, 2019, 12:00 – 8:00 PM
o    13650 Mindanao Way, Marina Del Rey, 90292

•    Bread Bake
o    Saturday December 14, 2:00- 4:00 PM
o    Holy Nativity Church
o    6700 W 83rd St., Westchester, 90045

•    Songs of the Season
o    Sunday, December 15, 4:00 PM
o    Westchester United Methodist Church
o    8065 Emerson Ave. Westchester, 9004

•    Beach Winter Wonderland
o    Saturday, December 21, 2019, 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
o    Dockweiler Youth Center
o    12505 Vista Del Mar, Los Angeles, 90293

•    Operation Jack Marathon
o    Thursday, December 26, 2019, 7:30 AM
o    Dockweiler Beach
o    12000 Vista Del Mar, Playa Del  Rey, 90293

•    Refuel and Refill
o    Saturday, December 28, 9 -11 AM
o    Alana’s Coffee
o    12511 Venice Blvd. Los Angeles 90066

*PLAYA VISTA PEOPLE–Only Originals Allowed!:


Michael Martino:
Retired Attorney

1. Where were you born?  New York City.

2. Where do you work, and where did you go for your job training? I retired in 2017 after practicing Law In NY & NJ for forty-five years.  I attended Georgetown University and Rutgers School of Law, graduating respectively in 1969 and 1972.

3. How did you end up in Playa Vista? I frequently traveled to LA on both business and pleasure since the late 80’s.  I closed my Practice in July of ’17, after a professionally rewarding forty-five year career.  I was never fond of cold weather/Winter and I had made a decision to relocate to LA many years prior to my retirement.  In fact, I actually relocated here almost a full year before a closed my Practice and commuted back to NY when necessary.  Beginning in the early 90-s,when here, I stayed in MdR and became very familiar and comfortable with the Westside.  I knew that is where I would eventually live. I saw Playa Vista on my drives to and from LAX and made a decision to live there when the time came.

4. Where are your favorite places to go on weekends?  .       DTLA, too many restaurants to mention, Santa Monica, The Palisades, The Broad, The Peterson, MOCA, Walt Disney Concert Hall (we really enjoy going to Patina), The Grove, Farmers’ Market on Melrose, The Art’s District.

5. Any local traffic shortcuts that you would choose to share? Dependent upon the day, time and direction of travel.  I  try to avoid the Freeways whenever possible.  Traffic here has become so bad in the last twenty years that at certain times it’s unavoidable.

6. Do you have family in Playa Vista? No, my daughter resides in Portland (OR) and my Son in NYC

7. Are there any community events you go to in Play Vista? Some. We like the summer concerts and a few restaurants but essentially most of recreational time is outside Playa Vista. We especially like Culver City for dining and movies

8. Do you like to go to the beach and if so which would be your personal favorite? MdR, Santa Monica and Venice, on occasion

9. What motivates you most to keep succeeding in your life? .   For the last approximate twenty years, my practice was heavily weighted to commercial litigation. The totality of my practice was in the field of Civil Litigation.  That included not just actual litigation, but resolving matters through negotiation, arbitration and mediation. Litigation is both costly and time consuming.  On innumerable matters I was able to effectuate a favorable resolution without the need to allocate substantial time and resources in matters that would take several years to resolve, if litigated. Those methods are in many instances applicable regardless of jurisdiction and venue.  Accordingly, I am available to consult of various commercial/business matters toward a relatively quick and economically viable resolution. There are certain general business principles that are applicable to resolving disputes regardless of whether those disputed are in CA, NY or anywhere else.   Time and money are equally valuable and certain principles and strategies can be put to use in almost any commercial dispute.


Deborah Schneider, executive chef at Sol and Solita restaurants, has written “The Essential Mexican Instant Pot Cookbook,” which showcases the vibrant flavors of Mexican food with fresh and authentic recipes for soups, tacos, burritos and tamales, as well as side dishes, salsas and desserts. Shown here: chicken-tortilla soup.


Tania loves coffee in Playa Vista.


LMU is opening a new campus in Playa Vista, expanding its growing presence on the Westside and in Silicon Beach, school officials announced Thursday. The Jesuit university, which in recent years has dramatically built its programs and local partnerships in film and tech, will house its new campus in , a new 425,300-square-feet commercial development in the 12100 block of West Waterfront Drive that also will lease office and retail space to other tenants. School officials plan to open the Playa Vista campus in the fall of 2018 and are in the process of designing classrooms and creative production spaces through a long-term lease agreement with the property owner, Tishman Speyer.

The new campus will host events and house the School of Film and Television’s graduate program, which has partnered with such entertainment companies as Disney and 20th Century . The location allows the film school to continue building partnerships and internship programs that could better position students for careers in creative fields, officials said. LMU, which brands itself as “,” will also explore other academic possibilities that could benefit from the culture and industries centered in this new location. Having a campus in Playa Vista “is a game-changer,” said LMU President Timothy Law Snyder. “Silicon Beach is one of the world’s fastest-growing startup ecosystems — an ideal counterpart for LMU as the definitive center for global imagination and its impacts.” Loyola Marymount enrolls more than 9,100 students at its main Westchester campus and its law school near downtown Los Angeles. The Playa Vista campus marks the school’s first major expansion project since 1999, when its acquisition of University Hall added roughly 1 million square feet of space to its main campus and extended its entrance to Lincoln Boulevard and the Pacific Coast Highway. Originally built by Howard Hughes, the building was purchased from Raytheon.


1. ***Playa District 3’s acre campus rethinks the way we work. Playa is built for collaboration and community, with social spaces to thrive. Relax in our hammocks, unwind in our game area or utilize our 10,000 sf of flexible indoor and outdoor event space. – Industrious Office

2. ***You’re invited to an Ugly Sweater Christmas Party. Sunday, December 14th from 9-11 p.m. RSVP: or (310) 496-3966. Remember, ugliest wins! —– Gulp Playa Vista

3. ***The Leg Lamp is an iconic prop from the cult holiday classic “A Christmas Story,” and now it’s also a festive part of the seasonal cocktail menu at SALT, the Marina del Rey Hotel’s harbor bar and restaurant.The Leg Lamp cocktail, true to its name, is served in a glass shaped exactly like the father’s prized lamp from the film. A frothy white mixture of gin, white cranberry peach rosemary syrup, house-made coconut syrup, a shot of Real McCoy rum, BroVo Douglas Fir Liqueur, Fee Brothers Falernum Liqueur  and lemon juice fills up the tall glass — topped by a sprig of rosemary for an aromatic and “Christmasy” flourish, says the drink’s creator, Pacifica Hotels mixologist Ricky Mendez. Sip this one slowly next to the waterside fire pit during cocktail hour, or better yet learn how to make the drink yourself during one of SALT’s upcoming Merry Time on the Marina mixology classes, held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays through Dec. 19. — Merry Time on the Marina classes are held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays through Dec. 19 at SALT Restaurant + Bar, 13534 Bali Way, Marina del Rey. Tickets are $45 at

4. ***Wanted: New, creative, photographer to test for P.R. firm clients and event. Send some photo samples and complete contact details. Must be available to Westside of L.A. – E-mail:

5. ***If you know anybody in the PDR area that has a folding electric bike like ours (pictured here), that has been recently stolen send me a FB message. I saw one by the lagoon ridden by one of our resident encampment druggies this eve. He had completely spray painted the whole thing in a crazy pattern to hide what it was. I approached him and his buddy in a non aggressive manner and said, “cool bike…..what kind is it?” The dude immediately thru his hood on and took off down the street with the bike and his buddy in tow. He was definitely zoo’s out. Having a fast bike too I hit caught up to them as they were about to cross Ballona Creek bridge asking again, “just curious, what kind of bike is that?” He was so sketchy he wouldnt answer or look me in the eye. His older friends tried to run interference and made up some bogus story and name of the bike. I nodded my head and was like ya right and we parted ways. Lock your bikes and don’t leave them outside guys. The will disappear! —–.Nico Espinosa

6. ***Do you have a message for your neighbors in Playa Vista? Post on the Playa Vista People Bulletin Board for FREE. Send your 50-word message to us at:


Playa Vista People Edited By: Aurora DeRose  

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