Skip to main content

The High Tower Apartments and The Long Goodbye

Photograph by Dwayne Moser.

This beautiful apartment complex in Los Angeles is called the Hightower or High Tower Complex (the High Tower name refers to the central elevator, I believe), and was designed in 1935-1936 by architect Carl Kay - and made famous in 1973 by my favorite film, Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye (see Why I Love Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye).

Although Altman used the building as Philip Marlowe's apartment in his somewhat post-modern Long Goodbye (the film plays with references to Old Hollywood and opens and closes with the song, Hooray For Hollywood), the building has another direct connection to Raymond Chandler.

It was apparently the inspiration for Chandler in his book, The High Window (the first Chandler novel I ever read), in which Chandler describes the residence of Philip Marlowe as being on the cliffs above High Tower Drive in a building with a fancy elevator tower. (Thanks to the Society of Architectural Historians Southern California Chapter webpage for that.) 

This photograph was taken by our internationally-exhibited artist friend - and fellow Long Goodbye aficionado - Dwayne Moser

Dwayne, my wife, Charong, and I all visited the High Tower building in the late 1990s and rode in the elevator that, along with Philip Marlowe's apartment - and his hippie-dippie neighbor girls - is such an integral part of the film.

Marty Augustine, the wonderfully colorful - and violent - Jewish gangster, played superbly by film director Mark Rydell, also uses the elevator to visit Marlowe, bringing along with him his ethnically-mixed gang of thugs, including a muscle guy played, in a very early role, by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Duplex apartments at the High Tower do become available occasionally. The address is: 2185 Broadview Terrace, Hollywood. 


  1. Great post, Alexander. Very interesting, and so good to know that it's still there! I was briefly in LA in 1980 and have always thought that the Long Goodbye is the film that most pictures the city as I remember it. Obviously it's not the whole of LA - but its a picture that I remember. Is that still the case ?
    I posted the following on the TLG facebook wall - but it doesn't always show up when I visit it, so if you haven't seen it, here it is again: An interview with Vilmos Zsigmond on the cinematography of TLG and McCabe & Mrs Miller, and working with Altman in general.

  2. Isn't this apartment a little too scary?

    apartments for rent in minnetonka mn

  3. Why did you have to bring up Schwartzenegger? He means nothing to the film but irrelevant trivia. Also, he was never in any scene at these apartments-- didn't arrive with Augustine's other muscle.

  4. Thank you all for your comments, and apologies for such a huge delay in replying - I have only just found a way around my browser settings that actually permits me to reply! Before that, I would write replies and they would vanish into the ether!

    This post is, astonishingly, the most popular all-time post on my blog. The Long Goodbye must have legions of fans lurking in the noir shadows!

    As for the comment about why did I mention Schwarzenegger: he hardly seems irrelevant; it's quite amusing that he's in the film, even in a very minor role, and he is quite evident in the "Everybody get naked" scene at Augustine's pad, even if not at the High Towers Apartments. It's interesting (though trivia, indeed) in the same way that Sylvester Stallone's appearance as a subway thug in Woody Allen's Bananas is interesting.

    Thanks to all,'s okay with me.


Post a Comment

Please note that for reasons I have not been able to solve yet, I have enormous difficulty posting replies to comments - so I apologize if you ask a question or just make some wonderful remarks and I am not able to respond. I am working on this, because it is very frustrating, but apparently it involves rewriting some of the code of the template! So do not hold your breath...

Thank you for taking the time to comment, and for reading my blog - Alexander

Popular posts from this blog

Thank You Sonora ER, Dr Trujillo and Dr Johnson.

Microphone stand designed by Hudson. Our eight year old son, Hudson, has been having severe abdominal pain over the past week to ten days, and this week we took him to see Dr Jennifer Neufeld-Trujillo , one of our regular pediatricians at the Forest Road Pediatric Clinic in Sonora, and also to ER at Sonora Regional Medical Center. We just want to say a big thank you to everyone - including all the very friendly and helpful staff at ER - for their care of and concern for Hudson, who is gradually starting to feel better. We would also like to make a special mention of Dr Lisa Johnson , who was on call tonight for Forest Road Pediatrics, and who had a long telephone conversation with me, in which she answered many questions with a depth of knowledge and experience that was both highly reassuring and informative, and who left us feeling confident that we are on the right path for the weekend - always a difficult time when your child is not feeling well. Hopefully, Hudson will cont

Please Sign Up For Email Updates To This Blog And My Writing Workshops

The Malteste Falcon, 1941. For those of you wishing to keep up to date on my writing workshops at the Central Sierra Arts Council , the most efficient way is to sign up in the "Follow This Blog By Email" box in the right sidebar beneath the Buddha. You will then receive an email update every time I post to the blog, including any changes in times or dates or other details of the workshops (although I shall try not to mix things around). I would also greatly appreciate it if you would "Like" this blog on Facebook , by clicking on the "Like" button also beneath the Buddha. This lets you follow the Facebook page associated with this wesbite, , which frequently has additional content not included in the blog. Blade Runner, 1982, courtesy of artist Gavin J Rothery. In the meantime, the first Writing Workshop of the New Year will be on Saturday January 21st 2012 , at the Central Sierra Arts Council, 193 S. Washington Str