Exploring Brentwood: A Suburban Neighborhood In The Heart Of Los Angeles

Brentwood rests between Bel-Air and the Pacific Palisades. (TierneyMJ, Shutterstock)

Over time, the Westside Los Angeles neighborhood of Brentwood has quietly joined the ranks of affluent enclaves such as Bel-Air, Holmby Hills and Pacific Palisades, thanks to its steady supply of multimillion-dollar properties that are often occupied by the rich and famous. Although it has a reputation as one of L.A.’s most exclusive neighborhoods, Brentwood had more humble beginnings. The area, originally part of a Mexican land grant along the Santa Monica Mountains, grew throughout the early 20th century. Today, the population is estimated at about 65,000. Brentwood has long attracted high-profile homeowners who value privacy as well as proximity to the rest of the city. Some of Brentwood’s well-known residents include LeBron James, Reese Witherspoon and Tom Brady.

The Vibe

Though only minutes from bustling Los Angeles, Brentwood has something of a suburban feel. This is not to say, however, that it lacks character. Renowned restaurants, boutiques and cultural institutions make Brentwood a destination despite, or perhaps because of, its slower pace. Residential streets are often wide, clean and lined with trees, possessing a tranquility usually reserved for outer suburbs. Like much of Los Angeles, homes in the area vary in size and style, ranging from smaller mid-century gems to ultra-luxe modern mansions. Mild weather and access to a wealth of hiking trails make for an active community. 

The Getty Center campus features gardens, dining and fantastic views of the city. (Alexandre Olive, Shutterstock)


The Getty Center, one of the L.A. area’s most iconic public spaces, is as much of a visual marvel as the artworks it houses. Opened in 1997, the campus encompasses the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Foundation and the J. Paul Getty Museum, collectively dedicated to the preservation, study and advancement of art and culture. The grounds feature exceptional views of the city. 

Lovers of mid-century architecture will find themselves at home in the Crestwood Hills subdivision. This area features “architecturally controlled” mid-century-modern properties in the hills at the northern edge of Brentwood. Crestwood Hills has been one of the few postwar cooperative housing projects in the U.S. for more than 70 years.

The Brentwood Country Club is at the southern end of the neighborhood. Established in 1948, the private golf and tennis club was recently remodeled and features state-of-the-art fitness facilities. 

Mandeville Canyon borders Brentwood’s westernmost areas. Many residents visit the Mandeville Canyon Trail for mountain biking along a seven-mile route.

Shops at the Brentwood Country Mart shopping center include Jenni Kayne, Christian Louboutin and DIESEL, A Bookstore. (4kclips, Shutterstock)

Dining and Shopping

Brentwood Country Mart is an iconic shopping center in Brentwood. It’s been a go-to destination for organic food, luxury brands and personal care services since 1948. 

The Brentwood Farmers Market on Gretna Green Way is one of California Certified Farmers Markets’ 20 locations in the state. The Sunday market draws visitors from all over the city for its local produce and freshly prepared foods. 

You’ll find many places to eat and shop on San Vicente Boulevard, the main street in downtown Brentwood. If you’re fond of Mediterranean food, visit A Votre Santé near Brentwood Country Mart. Jon and Vinny’s Brentwood, Sor Tino Restaurant and Toscana all serve Italian dishes. Meat lovers should try the steaks at Baltaire Restaurant.

Interstate 405 runs along the eastern boundary of Brentwood. (Jon Bilous, Shutterstock)

Need To Know

Los Angeles International Airport is 30 minutes from Brentwood. Access to Interstate 405 and other major highways makes for simplified commuting for Brentwood residents. 

Top-ranked public schools near Brentwood include the New West Charter School, for grades six through 12. Private school options are plentiful, including the Mirman School, Berkeley Hall School and Brentwood School.


Properties You Might Also Like