There are plenty of sad, poorly staged houses and apartments for rent out there, but finding the few truly beautiful ones is pretty hard. Page after page of listings run together in a jumble of predictable amenities (stone counters, fancy appliances, some kind of smart-home system), but this collection highlights 10 that, for whatever reason, didn't quite get lost in the sea of luxurious sameness. The results run the gamut from glassy, high-rise corner units to two-story, 1920s-era apartments to contemporary cottages tucked away in the Hollywood Hills. Behold, some seriously lovely rentals:
↑ This mysterious 1929 Los Feliz two-bedroom is two-stories tall—the bedrooms are upstairs; the kitchen and fabulous living room area—dominated by statement windows and accented with a little under-the-stairs built-in bookshelf—are on the first floor. The kitchen, while not huge, is nicely appointed, with stone countertops and stainless steel appliances. Rent is $3,700.
↑ "Note that parking is ONLY permitted street parking and there are 80 steps to reach the house," warns the listing copy for this 1923 Mediterranean on a step street in Whitley Heights. Those who are willing to make the trek on the regular will be rewarded (and not just with tighter tushes): the front courtyard opens onto a main living room with a standout fireplace and huge windows that look out into the adjacent hillsides. The two moderately-sized, well-lit bedrooms and two tiled bathrooms appear to be upstairs. Wood floors run throughout the dwelling. Rent is $3,950.
↑ There's plenty of room to spread out in this City West two-bedroom—a "coveted corner residence"— in the 1100 Wilshire building. While it's unclear exactly which floor the apartment is on, from the view it appears to be high enough. The 1,870-square-foot unit sports an open floor plan, wood floors, two bathrooms, and a spacious master bedroom with its own views. The kitchen has a central island and stainless steel appliances. Both bathrooms are tiled, and the master bathroom has a steam shower. Rent is $5,500.
↑ If money were no object, there would be a lot more people renting on the coast. This 2,100-square-foot beach place in Santa Monica is a nice find, with its backyard prepped for party guests. Interiors of the four-bedroom, three-bathroom house are wood-floored and bright, thanks to a combination of plentiful windows and equally plentiful white paint. A nice bonus, especially when entertaining, is that the driveway can fit five cars. The property is just three blocks from the water, and has the "Best walkability score in SM- 93!" Rent is $13,875.
↑ Though this one-bedroom in Koreatown is vacant and, well, a one-bedroom, there's a certain awesomeness to the cool Los Altos building and its old-timey charm. It offers French doors, that nice entryway, and 1,100-square-feet of space equally close to the museums of Miracle Mile as to the bustling nightlife of Koreatown. Rent is $2,600.
↑ That view is nuts. This two-bedroom Mid-Century in Montecito Heights is located on a hilltop cul-de-sac and has a backyard that, in addition to the vistas, offers space to entertain, plus a bounty of avocado trees (when in season). Inside, it's all beamed ceilings, wood-burning fireplace, and a fancy stove. The counters in the kitchen are granite and the appliances are all stainless steel. The master bedroom is simple but opens directly onto the backyard. Rent is $3,295.
↑ Talk about curb appeal! This lower half of a Hancock Park duplex holds four bedrooms and two bathrooms within its 2,900 square feet, plus beamed ceilings, spacious rooms, built-ins, recessed lighting, and "ebony wood stained floors." The kitchen's stainless steel appliances and Caesarstone counters link up to a brightly-lit breakfast nook. A nook! Adorable. There's also a detached room off the two-car garage out back that could be used as "an exercise room." Rent is $4,950.
↑ The view from the twelfth floor of South Park's WaterMarke Tower looks pretty amazing, especially from this two-bedroom apartment's large balcony. The U-shaped kitchen meets the living/dining area, and has a line of sight to the balcony, making it a great party pad. The apartment also has fancy counters, in-unit laundry, wood floors, and, of course, central air and heat. Living in a swanky pad in the middle of Downtown's richie-rich sector isn't cheap. Rent is $4,950.
↑ This cool Laurel Canyon number seems to offer the quaintness of a quiet-retreat-type cottage with the high-maintenance demands of people who have like 40 pairs of shoes they need organized just so. Walls of glass allow the line between inside and outside to blur, if you're in to that kind of thing. Aside from being set back from the already quiet street, the house further ensures privacy among occupants with its three-bathrooms-to-three-bedrooms ratio. Though the listing doesn't offer much of a look, its does say that the house features a "galley style kitchen" and a steam shower and a large walk-in closet in the master bedroom. Rent is $7,500.
↑ The listing for this one-bedroom in Hollywood's Versailles building restrains itself for two whole sentences before letting it slip that the unit was "Formerly occupied by Scarlett Johansson" (though it doesn't say when). Since Ms. Johansson's departure, the unit has been completely renovated. The furnished condo comes with two full bathrooms, hardwood floors, a built-out closet, dark marble counters in the kitchen, and an eye-catching bar. The balcony, though slim, affords views of the Griffith Observatory, Downtown, and the Hollywood Hills. Rent is $3,400.
· Renters Week 2015 [Curbed LA]