Yamashiro Hollywood


Yamashiro Restaurant


The related history of Hollywood’s Yamashiro Restaurant goes back more than 100 years.


The year after the first motion picture studios settled in Hollywood, Adolph and Eugene Bernheimer, leading New York importers of oriental goods, arrive in Hollywood and purchase 3 1/2 acres on the crest of a high hill at the head of Orange Drive. The following year, they began construction on a home whose architecture is reminiscent of mansions of lordly Japanese rulers. During the period of construction, and additional 29 lots were purchased, increasing the estate to about 7 acres. After approximately 2 years of construction, the Bernheimer's Yamashiro (Palace on the Hill) was completed in 1914.


The grounds were reached by two approaches, one from the main road at the base of the hill, the other a long flight of stairs broken into short runs, first by a huge entrance gate, flanked by its characteristic Japanese sentry boxes, and beyond that by kiosk covered resting platforms to the lower terrace of the hill. The main building was 120 ft. square, with a sunken inner meditation court or patio forty feet in either direction. All of the living rooms of the castle opened upon this inner court, set in the center of which was a splendid example of anti-Japanese modeling in the form of a bronze fountain.


Heavy timbers, carved woodwork, luxuriously finished teak wood, redwood and mahogany and exquisite inlay enamel work Clay and an important part in the ornate Japanese architectural style of this palatial home. The manicured gardens, circular terraces and white retaining walls loomed upon the view like a vision from the skies. The interior was furnished by one of the rarest and most valuable collection of Chinese and Japanese furniture in existence. After having spent two years and approximately $120,000, the Bernheimers had the distinction of owning one of the most beautiful and unique homes in Hollywood.


After his brother passed away, Adolph Bernheimer sold a home in 1923 and build a similar residence in the Pacific Palisades overlooking the Pacific Ocean.


During the next 20 years, the property passed through several hands causing the once magnificent gardens and structure to decline to a horrible state of disrepair. In 1945, Leo Post purchase the adversarial and increase the size of the second floor by adding several apartment units. At the same time, he established a cocktail lounge on the ground floor.


Four years later, he sold the rundown mansion to Tom Glover, who continued with the same operation. Glover embarked on an extensive restoration program, which when completed, allow the public to enjoy the original beauty of the fabulous palace. In addition, he began restoration of the intended gardens, which included regular Bonsai trees, miniature palms, and beautiful oriental plants. After seven years of painstaking manicuring, the palace landscaping was restored to its original beauty. It was at this time that Glover began using the name Hollywood Hill Hotel in addition to the name Yamashiro.


As the cocktail lounge increasing popularity, the patrons prevailed on the owners to serve hors d'oeuvres. Shortly thereafter a small restaurant operation was started. As the dining facilities were enlarged during the next few years, the first floor apartment tenants were forced to move out. The last resident moved from the second floor in the fall of 1976, thereby bringing the apartment hotel function to end.  However, several celebrities, including Richard Pryor, Jerry Dunphy and Pernell Robert lived in apartment on the property.


During Glover's ownership, the “Palace on the Hill” has been filmed in several motion pictures and television productions including “Sayonara”, “I Spy”, Perry Mason”, “Hollywood Backstage”, and many others.


In early 2016, the Glover family sold the famous Yamashiro Restaurant to JE Group, a Beijing company for nearly $40 million.  The saale represents the first purchase in the United States for JE Group, a hotel operator know for refurbishing historic properties on it own turf. Kang Jianyi, Chairman of JE, said there will be few changes to the site, except for sprucing up the aging buildings, including a small hotel, apartments and the restaurant building, a replica of a palace near Kyoto, Japan.

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Yamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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Yamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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Yamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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Yamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
Yamashiro HollywoodYamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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1973
Yamashiro HollywoodYamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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1973
Yamashiro HollywoodYamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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1973
Yamashiro HollywoodYamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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1973
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Yamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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Bernheimer residence.  Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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The Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
Yamashiro HollywoodYamashiro Restaurant in Hollywood
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1973
Yamashiro HollywoodBernheimer residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1915
Yamashiro HollywoodBernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1915
Yamashiro HollywoodThe Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1918
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The Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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The Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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The Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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The Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
Yamashiro HollywoodThe Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1918
Yamashiro HollywoodThe Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1918
Yamashiro HollywoodThe Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1918
Yamashiro HollywoodThe Bernheimer Residence. Now the Yamashiro Hollywood
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1918