The best things to do in Pasadena
Formerly owned by chewing gum magnate William Wrigley, Jr., this grand old mansion is now home to the offices of the Tournament of Roses Parade. It’s open for tours six months out of the year, and is worth a look as much for its stately gardens as for its handsome interior.
The California Institute of Technology, one of the world’s preeminent science and engineering universities, sits on a picturesque 124-acre campus in Pasadena. In addition to housing some of the generation’s finest minds, Caltech also offers the chance for laymen to attend musical performances and to stroll the historic grounds, laid out with the sort of obsessive organization you would expect from a bunch of rocket scientists.
This Pasadena establishment has been a mainstay in the comedy scene since 1960. While its lineups are neither as edgy nor as hip as some of the L.A. clubs, it’s an intimate, no-frills room that manages to pull in some big names (or at least, names that were once big).
This nearly two-acre private Japanese garden and traditional teahouse opens its doors to the public a few days each week. First constructed in the late 1930s, the garden features two ponds, four bridges and a cascading waterfall, all centered around a Japanese tea house. The current structure was painstakingly restored after a fire in 1981; the original was created in Japan by landscape designer and craftsman Kinzuchi Fujii.
This singular, leafy and quiet neighborhood contains over 800 homes from the Arts and Crafts movement. Bordered by Orange Grove and Washington Boulevards and Lake and Hill Streets, the mostly intact bungalows are a showcase of the handmade craftsmanship that swept Pasadena in the early 20th century. Once a year, the district holds tours with docents set up throughout the neighborhood.