Sunday, August 19, 2012

#236: Los Angeles Police Academy Rock Garden

Talk about a hidden L.A. treasure! The rock garden at the L.A. Police Academy Revolver and Athletic Club in Elysian Park reminds me of an ancient Aztec temple. It's a city landmark, and was designed by Francois Scotti in 1937.  The garden features waterfalls, four pools, walking paths and stone benches.

When I saw pictures of the garden on the website Big Orange Landmarks, I knew I had to check this place out. The problem is, since it's a private club, it's not open to the public unless you make an appointment to see it. They rent out the space for weddings and other events (it costs $550), so if you want to see the rock garden, you can call the athletic club and request to see the space with the intention of possibly renting it. They'll give your name to the guard at the front entrance, and he'll give you directions to the garden.

The perfect setting for a "Raiders of the Lost Ark" themed wedding. 

When we visited on a Saturday morning, we were the only ones enjoying the garden. It was peaceful, and our girl loved the soothing sound of the rushing water. Note that there are many stairs at the garden, so we left the stroller in the car and just carried the little adventurer. 

Morning bicep workout

It was nice having the whole garden to ourselves, but it is too bad that the general public can't have regular easy access to the place. With a little planning, though, you can also see this beautiful garden. 

1800 North Academy Drive

Have you been to the L.A. Police Academy Rock Garden? What did you think of it? Leave me a comment below!


  1. Thank you for the tip! What a beautiful place! Is it $550 for the whole day to rent?

  2. I'm using this AMAZING website as a guide to seeing the unique side of LA rather than just the usual. When I tell friends back home what I've been doing INSIDE Los Angeles, they are shocked and jealous! Thank you so much!! You are truly making my weekends a better experience!

  3. I've seen it at the park but couldn't get in. It's awesome that you had a chance to explore it!

  4. Eugenia: I'm not sure... I asked how much it was to rent for the day, and got $550 as the quote.
    Ron: One day your garden will look like this ;)
    Anonymous: Thanks so much! Glad you like it!
    Melanie: Thanks for the comment--Yes, you gotta go back now. :)

  5. I wish it was open to the public! I could use those stairs for a good exercise.

    Just discovered your blog and you inspired me to explore my own city. :)

  6. thanks for the comment Emily! yeah, the stairs are definitely a good workout. have you checked out the baldwin hills scenic overlook stairs? they're even crazier.