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Google Moves Into Hip, Gehry-Designed Pad at 340 Main Street in Venice Beach (PHOTOS)

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Wed, Jan 26, 2011 at 11:00 AM

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Welcome to Venice, Google! Your 6,000 new employees will be pleased to hear that Lindsay Lohan's new four-bedroom is located a convenient four-minute drive south [Voila! Driving directions! Have we told you lately that we love you, Goo-Goo?] and the weird sushi/hamburger/bar-food blend at Firehouse Grill waits one or two blocks north. (Annoyingly, the bar's only open until 12 a.m. Maybe you guys could drop a few hints?)

In print this morning, the Los Angeles Times is showering its own share of hugs and kisses on the new Westside slice of economy-boosting star power. And L.A. City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, glad to be dealing with filthy-rich Internet geniuses instead of righteous RV dwellers for once, is more stoked than the entire blogosphere united...

His statement reads:

"I am ecstatic that Google will be opening offices in Venice. I am particularly happy that its large number of employees will be contributing to our local economy. This should be a huge boon to the restaurants and shops on Main Street, Rose Avenue and Abbot Kinney Boulevard."

Boon. We like that. Sweet vocab per usual, Rosendahl.

The Times also notes that the binocular sculpture out front the new Google offices, designed by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen, is "perhaps befitting of the company's search theme." Rascals! Always finding the punny befits in life.

But we digress. Let's talk real estate: The rental is located at 340 Main Street, in a massive, 100,000-square-foot complex consisting of three buildings -- one designed by L.A.'s beloved Frank Gehry -- and the binocs.

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Google is based in Mountain View and already has a nice 45,000-square-foot setup in Santa Monica, but, after announcing yesterday that the company would hire 6,000 more worker ants in 2011, it's clear execs were on the lookout for something more.

And oh, did they find it. Get a load of the real-estate listing for this beast.

To be honest, the spot they picked is on the dingiest possible stretch of Main Street -- mostly crumbling chain-link fences and apartments that stay crappy because landlords know they'll rake in gobs of beachside rent no matter what -- but as long as the Google-ites stay seated safely around their posh new boardroom tables and order delivery, they'll be set. And can still brag about their arty, crimey new locale to the suburban nerds back in Mountain View.

Another bragging point: Jay Chiat of the Chiat/Day ad agency, L.A.'s own consumer-savvy "mad man," was a previous tenant.

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From the Times:

"Los Angeles is a world-class city with a talented workforce, and we're thrilled to expand our presence as we enter our biggest hiring year in company's history," said Thomas Williams, a senior director of engineering at Google. ...

The hiring spree comes as Google fights for top talent against upstart rivals including Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. -- so a marquee location in Los Angeles could help the company score points with potential hires. In its recruiting efforts, Google has bragged that its Santa Monica offices "are strategically located just a few short blocks from sunny beaches" and benefit from "over 300 days of sunshine."

We'll be keeping tabs on hires, fires and any other drama Google's grand arrival rouses in the neighborhood -- so don't go anywhere.

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