downtown los angeles, south park

Backyard Bowls Taking Over Lobby at 8th/Hope Tower in Downtown LA

Backyard Bowls opened their first location in Santa Barbara in 2008, and will open their second LA location here in DTLA

Can you believe it’s been exactly two years since 8th and Hope was completed? The 22-story glass tower with 290 rentals developed by Wood Partners replaced an ugly, anti-pedestrian surface parking lot, helping to bridge the urban landscape for pedestrians walking between South Park and the Financial District. The tower’s ground floor retail has filled up over the last two years with three new eateries (Philz Coffee, Hoke Poke, and Jersey Mike’s Subs) that have helped activate the sidewalk with much-needed pedestrian activity, contributing to the growing urban energy that makes Downtown LA so exciting. Well, I’m glad to report there’s one more eatery that will be opening here.

According to downtown broker Justin Weiss of Kennedy Wilson, Backyard Bowls from Santa Barbara will be opening soon at 8th and Hope. The new shop will offer a simple menu geared toward healthy eating including their main item the acai bowl. Other items will include a variety of breakfast porridge and grain bowls as well as smoothies served throughout the day. As a huge fan of anything with ginger, I have a feeling my favorite smoothie would be the Tropical Ginger blended with ginger, banana, mango, pineapple juice, coconut milk, and honey.

Backyard Bowls is slated to open before the end of the year and is actively building out its new DTLA location here on the northern edge of South Park. Interestingly enough, the 2,000 square foot space facing Hope Street was originally designed to be a residential lounge as part of the tower’s expansive lobby. However, the space was — not surprisingly — underutilized and sat empty 99% of the time. When will developers realize that useless amenities that residents won’t use don’t add value to the building, but allocating as much ground floor retail as possible (activating the sidewalk outside) will truly add value to an urban community dependent on generating foot traffic.

Visit Backyard Bowls online to learn more about their menu items.

Currently under construction, Backyard Bowls takes over a portion of the tower's lobby once used as the residential lounge that was empty 99% of the time

Currently under construction, Backyard Bowls takes over a portion of the tower’s lobby once used as the residential lounge that was empty 99% of the time

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  1. Asim Bharwani says

    That lounge may have been underutilized, but it definitely added value to the building. The lobby went from having both a fancy sitting area with a Starbuck’s coffee machine (that turned into an extra office for management that isn’t used as much as what it replaced) and a funky lounge space with fun chairs, a huge TV and lines of tables for hanging out or working — to a lobby limited to a quaint sofa near the Hope entrance. The lobby is rather small and depressing now. But business is business. Management rented the lounge space out for filming a handful of times rendering it unusable by tenants so it only makes sense that they wanted to put a long-term tenant in. But let’s hope it offers something extra to the residents — discounted or free meals on certain days would be worth the price of taking away that zen lounge.

  2. Chris De Pretis says

    Good call — I’d much rather live above dining (and shopping) options than a useless lounge. This is awesome news! Go DTLA!

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