If you’re searching for the ghosts of old “Los An-je-leez,” that paradise of re-created Eastern Anglo rectitude, opulence and taste displayed in such films as Chinatown and L.A. Confidential, head downtown to the Alexandria Hotel. Built in 1906, today the imposingly dense, wide-shouldered eight-story Alexandria building is home to a range of attractions. It is the location of a vibrant, somewhat gritty and diverse bar lounge (the Down and Out), an equally happening, gastro-innovative restaurant (the Gorbals), and the important, historical repertory theater group Company of Angels. The Alexandria is a tourist destination for its ornate and mighty architecture, and also a recently renovated residential building featuring “microlofts” that rent for about as much as a large parking space in Brentwood. The weirdly baroque heart and soul of this place, however, lies in the abandoned, nearly desolate ballrooms and dance halls on the lower levels, where you expect to be tapped on the shoulder by a tuxedo-clad Noah Cross, whispering conspiratorially in your ear about water rights to be had and vast fortunes to be made. 501 S. Spring St., dwntwn. (213) 626-7484, thealexandria.net.
—Adam Gropman

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