The Teriton Apartments were constructed in 1949 and designed by Sanford Kent AIA (1918 – 1997) who had an established practice in Beverly Hills. This two- and three-story vernacular Modern style garden apartment complex is sheathed in stucco with its primary elevations either facing a landscaped center courtyard or north towards San Vicente Boulevard. Low, red brick planters flanking most entrance areas enhance landscaped courtyards, which consist of a mixture of mature trees, clipped hedges, grassy areas, low shrubs, concrete pathways, and decks of scored concrete.
Vernacular Modern style apartment buildings erected just prior to and following the Second World War are relatively common in the residential areas north of Wilshire Boulevard, particularly along Montana Avenue and San Vicente Boulevard in the City of Santa Monica. Starting in the late 1930s and continuing into the post World War II period in America, Modern architecture became the predominant architectural style applied to buildings of every type.
The origin of the garden apartment reaches back to the period of the Los Angeles region’s rapid growth in the early decades of the twentieth century when the bungalow court as a building type appeared and evolved. From its origins as tourist accommodations to its prevalence as high-density housing, the bungalow court became a common Southern California building type prior to World War II. Bungalow courts integrated the automobile without allowing it to dominate the building environment.