A PRONUNCIATION KEY FOR L.A.'S MOST COMMONLY MISPRONOUNCED NAMES AND PLACES

  1. Eli Broad
    The billionaire philanthropist's last name rhymes with "road" not "rod" -- something to remember when the Broad Museum opens this fall.
  2. Richard Neutra
    The architect's mid-century structures (including this Case Study house) are considered some of LA's signature landmarks. His last name is pronounced "NOY-tra" not "NEW-tra."
  3. San Pedro
    The port district was colonized centuries ago as part of "New Spain" which would make "San PAY-dro" accurate. However the popularization of the anglicized "San PEE-dro" has made it the correct/common pronunciation by locals. Thoughts, @scoutregalia?
  4. Wilshire
    Land developer and publisher Gaylord Wilshire was a millionaire socialist who named one of LA's early east/west boulevards after himself in the late 19th century. The street is pronounced "Wil-SURE" vs. the more Hobbit-like "Shire."
  5. Sepulveda
    This one really trips up Waze: Sepulveda Boulevard gets its name from a prominent Mexican family when the area was known as Alta California in the 1700s. Somewhere along the way the accent over the "u" was dropped, but the boulevard, pass, dam, and basin are still pronounced "Se-PULL-veh-dah" not "Say-pull-VEE-dah." (Photograph from LA Times 1930 archive)
  6. Beaux-Arts
    The early 20th century French-inspired architecture style is all over mid-city and downtown. It's pronounced BOH-zar.
  7. Los Feliz
    Area of longstanding debate. Is it the "gringo-cized" Los FEE-lus or authentic Los Fel-EES? The LA Times recently published a story on the increasing use of Los Fe-LEES as culturally more respectful, but longtime residents will tell you that sounds pretentious. Around the office we say Los FEE-lus, but we're always open to change.
  8. RVCA
    Ok, so this is a brand, not a place, but its home base is SoCal and a few of us only recently learned its "ru-ca" not "R-V-C-A." (Hey, we never said we were cool.)