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A Sense of Place

February 28, 2020

| Posted in Arts & Culture

Infuse your meeting with authentic Pasadena heritage 

Art and culture are an integral part of Pasadena’s identity, and you can bring the city’s rich and storied past to life by selecting venues steeped in local history. From architectural landmarks and world-renowned cultural institutions to historic estates and the legendary Rose Bowl stadium, Pasadena offers planners an abundance of compelling offsite venue options. Make Pasadena’s legacy your muse and let your guests experience our must-see attractions with activities and events staged at these noteworthy locations.

The Gamble House

Pasadena was an incubator of the American Arts & Crafts movement back in the 1800s and early 1900s, and the Gamble House is a beautifully preserved example of the style. Designed by architects Charles and Henry Greene for David and Mary Gamble of the Procter & Gamble Company in 1908, the National Historic Landmark is described as “Architecture as Fine Art.” Docent-led tours of the property can be arranged for private groups of up to 45 people.

The Norton Simon Museum

In 1922, the Pasadena Art Institute was founded by a group of local residents on a mission to foster fine art education and create a museum for the community. Today, their efforts live on in what is now the Norton Simon Museum, named for industrialist turned art collector Norton Simon. The intimate museum showcases Simon’s personal collection, considered one of the world’s finest private art collections which includes works by the likes of Picasso, Rembrandt and Degas. The museum offers private tours of the collections and sculpture gardens led by professional museum educators. Tours can be arranged during public hours or after hours. Larger parties will be split into groups of 25 with concurrent tours led by multiple docents.

The Huntington Library, Art Museum & Botanical Gardens

The Huntington is one of Pasadena’s cultural crown jewels bequeathed to the community by Henry and Arabella Huntington in 1919. The library, art collections and 120 acres of botanical gardens on the grounds of their former estate in San Marino are a sight to behold and delight to explore. In addition to private guided tours, The Huntington is a premier venue for meetings, weddings and events, offering a choice of outdoor settings, auditoriums, classrooms and gallery spaces. With a professional event planning team and onsite caterer, you can expect a seamless experience from planning through execution.

Pasadena Museum of History

Pasadena Museum of History is situated in an idyllic residential setting on “Millionaire’s Row.” The two-acre estate features the museum’s main exhibition galleries along with the Beaux Arts-style Fenyes Mansion, a Finnish Folk Art Museum and lush gardens. Bring your group for an hour-long docent-led tour of the Fenyes Mansion, a Pasadena Cultural Heritage Landmark. The museum grounds are also open for event venue rentals. Host a garden party for up to 200 guests with the mansion as the backdrop or book the garden view conference room with capacity for 50 attendees.

Pasadena Playhouse

First opened in 1917, Pasadena Playhouse is one of the most prolific theater companies in the country. In the 1930s, it was officially designated the State Theatre of California, and between 1920-1945, the Playhouse earned the nickname of “Star Factory” due to the number of celebrities discovered on its stages. Today, major acting talents still grace its main stage. Take your attendees behind the scenes of the cultural landmark on a private tour that reveals the fascinating insights on its history and architecture. Or, rent the Playhouse to stage your own party, event or awards ceremony.

Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden

Storrier Stearns Garden was conceived by Japanese landscape designer Kinzuchi Fujii in the 1930s as an oasis on the estate of Charles and Ellamae Storrier Stearns. It’s the only intact example of a Japanese-style garden created before WWII remaining in Southern California. The two-acre garden was lovingly restored in recent years and the estate is available for events accommodating up to 150 people.

Rose Bowl Stadium

Opened in 1922, Rose Bowl Stadium is a National Historic Landmark that plays host to the annual New Year’s Day Tournament of Roses college football game—along with countless other major sports and music events. Considered “America’s Stadium,” it’s a highly memorable venue for private events with many locations and set-ups to choose from, including right on the field. If you don’t opt to stage an event at the Rose Bowl, you can treat your attendees to a private guided tour so they can get up close and personal with a true American treasure.

Pasadena City Hall

Pasadena’s striking City Hall built in 1927 was part of the “City Beautiful” movement of the 1920s. Influenced by Spanish and Italian Renaissance architectural styles, the picturesque civic building was featured in the TV series “Parks & Recreation.” The rotunda and courtyard are available for event rentals and can accommodate up to 250 people.

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