The Most Beautiful Place in the World

By Benjamin and Christina Schwarz

October 2001 ATLANTIC


Dodger Stadium is best from its cheapest seats. From there, at the rim of the Chavez Ravine, the players are too small to distract you from the view of the green-and-gold Elysian Hills, fading to blue in the sunset. What makes this vista beguiling makes Los Angeles as a whole winning: whimsical artificiality set against natural grandeur. A straight line of tall, absurdly skinny palms strings across the closest ridge, and a soda-pop-orange Union 76 ball appears to float among them—magically, a scene charming rather than vulgar. Seemingly just beyond these trees, and beyond the Police Academy’s idyllic Spanish-style, eucalyptus-laced campus, loom the San Gabriel Mountains, among the most abruptly rising in the world and sometimes still snowcapped on opening day. In the other direction, out past the Dodger Dog stand, the whole of downtown, Art Deco to postmodern, appears smack at eye level, behind a grove of ficus trees, with their dense, vibrant-green, broccoli-like crowns. Some people hate Los Angeles because they perceive it to be artificial, but perched at the top of Dodger Stadium, you can see the city’s art. L.A. has taken nature and made it better. 

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