Los Angeles is a city built on views. The abundant hillsides and valleys make for plenty of opportunities to view the surrounding landscape all the way to the Pacific Ocean. There are, however, views that stand out from the rest–views that are peerless in their expansiveness and beauty. These are the views that are talked about, whispered about, and shown off by proud property owners who proclaim that they have “the best view” around.
What really makes a view extraordinary? Intrigued by claims of hearing about the “Best view in Los Angeles” for years without a true measuring rod for comparison, Partners Trust decided to create a grading criteria to better define the ultimate bragging rights within the City of Angels.
Based on six core criteria with a grading scale from 1-10, the average of those six scores reveals where the property fits on the overall scale. With a grade of one being a modestly desirable view and ten representing the small handful of top-tier properties in Los Angeles that offer a truly extraordinary vantage point, we can now start to better articulate who may actually claim that their view represents the “Best of Los Angeles”.
The Partners Trust View Standard Criteria:
Explosiveness—Explosiveness is defined as the ‘wow’ factor, the type of jaw-dropping view that offers both height and breadth with an expansive vista showcasing the city. A panoramic expanse along the lines of a 270-degree view would warrant a 9 or 10 on our scale. However, unsightly obstructions like power lines or poles would cause a reduction in points. Massive ocean views can also be considered as explosive provided that they are dramatic and wide-ranging however in our opinion, they won’t receive as high a rating as the staggering city lights view because these views go “dark” at night. The best views dazzle by day and by night.
Texture—Texture can be described as a type of softness, a gradation of local hillsides, light and shadow, and differing vantage points that add character to a view. The view from a tall building or hillside property can be explosive but still lack the type of texture t
hat makes a view pleasing at all times of day or night. A view that is both explosive and textured creates tremendous view enhancement and must be awarded points on our scale.
Exclusivity—Does the property offer relief from the street? Is it accessed via a private drive or through a set of gates? Does it occupy a promontory or other spot that is not accessible to others? The longer the drive and the more unique and rare the view, the more points it receives in this category. The more exclusive the view, the higher the ranking and if no one else can claim the same vantage point then you can add 10 points to your score.
Proximity—An ideal view property also offers reasonable proximity to civilization. If there are many switchbacks up a twisting, narrow road, miles to travel, and a level of inaccessibility, points are to be deducted against the view’s ultimate dynamic composition. No one wants to drive a long distance for the proverbial quart of milk. If you can get easy access to your convenience store without burning through much gas, rank your property accordingly.
Iconography—Los Angeles is a town defined by both its natural beauty and its landmarks. The ideal view should include as many of these landmarks as possible: the Hollywood sign, the Griffith Observatory, Dodger Stadium, the downtown Los Angeles skyline, and the Capitol Records tower. The view should also extend all the way to the Pacific Ocean. If you can pick up 10 iconic “Hollywood” landmarks in your view, go ahead and give yourself a 10 in this category.
Privacy—Does the property offer the utmost in privacy? Are there houses nearby at the same height? Is it easy for someone to look in the windows or observe you on the deck, balcony or lawn? Is anyone looking down onto the property? The ideal view property is one that offers complete protection from prying eyes. If your view affords a “paparazzi-proof” vantage point, go ahead and tack on another “10” on our scale.
To illustrate the use of this scale, Nick Segal applies it to The Gary Johns House on Los Tilos Road (pictured) in the Hollywood Hills. This property defines what makes a stellar view on the Partners Trust scale. It has jaw-dropping views that sweep from the city to the ocean (10 points) and yet it also offers exposure to softer, more intimate hillside vistas (9 points). It is situated on a promontory accessed via a long private drive (10 points). It is located in an area that offers relatively easy access to the city (8 points). The city’s landmarks can be easily pointed out in the view (10 points) and the property is beautifully situated so that residents can enjoy the views with limited access to voyeurism (7 points). Tallying our score, The Gary Johns House delivers a score total of 54 for an average “9” on the Partners Trust View Standard.
-Source- Partners Trust Voice Blog