Starting in the silent movie era and continuing thru today, Toluca Lake has been home to hollywoods most beloved stars. Perhaps its biggest draw was the Lakeside Golf Club which brought famous stars like Bob Hope and Bing Crosby who were famous for the love of golf. Lakeside Golf club was an exclusive place where stars could unwind and be themselves. Hope, is perhaps the celebrity closest connected with Toluca Lake and that’s because he and his wife Deloris lived in Toluca Lake for over 60 years. But that still didn’t stop Hope from poking fun at the area every now and then. Hope has famously referred to the San Fernando Valley as “Cleveland with palm trees”. But those barbs and many others still didn’t stop the area from naming the near by Burbank Airport after him when the comedian passed in 2003. There must be something special in those waters of Toluca Lake because Hope lived till the ripe old age of 100 and his wife Deloris, who still lives at there home in Toluca Lake, celebrated her 100th birthday back in 2009.
Many other Hollywood Celebrities have owned homes in Toluca Lake. Actor W.C. Fields lived right on the lake. Legend has it, he use to paddle his boat across the lake when he wanted to squeeze in some rounds of golf. Aviator Amelia Earhart lived in Toluca Lake for the last 7 years of her life in a home that still exists today. And it is believed she planned her fateful flight in 1937 when she disappeared in the Pacific Ocean in the backyard of this home. Oliver Hardy of the famous Laurel and Hardy comedy act, owned a home in Van Nuys, but was a well known member of the Lakeside Golf Club. In fact, Hardy was known to prefer golf to work. As one time Laurel found Hardy at the Lakeside Golf Club, and when Hardy asked Laurel what he’d been doing, as legend has it, Laurel said “I’ve been at the studio doing your work.” Many other famous celebrities of Hollywood’s golden era also lived in Toluca Lake.
Many hip celebrities have chosen Toluca Lake as there home in recent years, but just remember it was the Golden Era celebrities that made it the fashionable zip code that it is today.