Relaxing at Plaza Las Fuentes in Pasadena

Jul 21, 2009 by Lisa Newton

Currently all the rage, as made popular by Facebook and Twitter, short phrases which complete the idiom “Travelin’ Local is,” are all too common, vernacular, and often times lose the entire context.

However on this previous Saturday, its true meaning was the sine qua non of my visit to Pasadena; it was a day of the week—a workday of guilty pleasures– of walking, photography, relaxing, and discovery of art in our everyday world and life here.

The “Plaza of the Sources” is the direct translation from Spanish into English, of “Plaza Las Fuentes.”

From my visit, it’s obvious that Plaza Las Fuentes is a modern day equivalent of the Piazza’s of Rome or the Spanish Villas from Madrid.

Tile Pool

Although I was originally slated to visit Pasadena’s Old Town, my eye and my heart put that off partly because of what I saw below.

I love the sound of a fountain

This multi-layered fountain and its placement in the foreground of the Plaza, was the work and brilliant design of the world famous landscape architect Lawrence Halprin. The entire courtyard and surrounding grounds is an oasis of art, fountains, architecture, and unique sculptures.

So for this visit, since every picture tells a story, I’ll let the photographs of the Plaza Las Fuentes tell you its own tale:

Pasadena, the City of Roses

With over 80 public art works within a few city blocks, Pasadena is far and away a leader in bringing art into people’s everyday civic life. Above is the sculpture “Pasadena, the City of Roses” by Joyce Kozloff.

City Hall in the Background

With the distinct hexagon shape, color, and design of the Malibu Tile Factory, its frequent display and use takes you to a faraway place; although it’s at the forefront of Pasadena City Hall in the background.

California Pizza Kitchen

As my stomach frequently reads my mind, across from the plaza from the photo above, is a California Pizza Kitchen, with its stable of delivery bicycles for the area’s workers and patrons. What could be better, Pizza, “green” transportation, and a strapping young college guy on a bike delivering your favorite food?

Bubbling Snail

Although I spent over 2 hours in Pasadena this morning, today’s story is but a tiny precursor to everything that the great City of Pasadena has to be enjoyed, celebrated, and appreciated.

As I’m Travelin’ Local more and more, the sights, sounds, and images of my hometown become intertwined with other movers and shakers that view Los Angeles as a treasure to be protected and sustained—rather than the daily newspapers giving us mostly the bad, and the ugly, rather than more of the good.

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7 Responses to “Relaxing at Plaza Las Fuentes in Pasadena”

  1. Diane C. says:

    I had no idea Pasadena was so beautiful. Looks like Plaza Las Fuentes has an abundance of outstanding art, architecture, fountains, and colorful tiles!

    Diane C.’s last blog post..Urban Wildlife


    LisaNewton Reply:

    @Diane C., I was surprised to see so much street art in one place. It was really a great place to relax in the afternoon. I’ll have to go back on a weekday and see how busy it is.



    [...] entirely different light.  Bloggers such as Lisa Newton of Travelin’ Local are pointing out hidden treasures in Los Angeles and environs.  Websites like Hometown News Atlanta are a wealth of information on places to go [...]

  3. David says:

    Beautiful artisan tile work and design, and the fountains and archways of many of the building’s facades are incredibly sublime.


    LisaNewton Reply:

    @David, The entire Plaza is a mixed-use area with an hotel and an office building, too. What a wonderful location to work.


  4. History and Grandeur meet in Pasadena | Travelin' Local says:

    [...] palace should design its hallways just like this—I then walked across the street and visited Plaza Las Fuentes. Upon returning, a wedding was taking place in this very [...]

  5. Well, Almost Every Day | Hometown Pasadena says:

    [...] a lot of public art in Pasadena–sculptures, mosaics, etc. At Plaza Las Fuentes just east of City Hall you’ll find fountains, sculptures and brightly colored tile walls [...]

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