Tehrangeles, located in Los Angeles, is home to a vibrant Iranian-American community who have left their home country, Iran. The name “Tehrangeles” is derived from the combination of Tehran, the capital of Iran, and Los Angeles.
This well-known location has made significant contributions and improvements to the cultural, economic, and political landscape of Los Angeles.
Located within Tehrangeles, Westwood Boulevard is one of the largest communities of Iranian-owned businesses in the city. An Iranian can feel right at home surrounded by so many Persian stores, restaurants, and bakeries.
However, for the past few years following the Covid-19 pandemic, the number of Persians visiting this community has decreased. Therefore, a lot of local business owners have reacted by closing down their businesses.
Ruben ́s antique shop, is one of them.
This is Rubens antique shop
Ruben Saeedian (72) and his wife, Minoosh, own a small jewelry and rug gallery in Westwood, home to one of the largest concentrations of Iranian-owned businesses in Los Angeles, California. Saeedian sells a variety of old jewels and antiques in his store. Starting from gold rings and necklaces to handmade Persian rugs, silver handicrafts, and all kinds of old antiques, some dating back to a hundred years ago.mIn addition, you can witness wares from the ancient Iranian regime leader, the Shah, which are illegal to possess in Iran.
Since the start of COVID, Ruben’s shop and almost all the shops located in Westwood have seen a significant drop in visitors and sales. As a result, a sign with the words, “Retirement Sale” hangs from the front door of Ruben’s shop. However, Ruben is preparing to face a challenging procedure in order to retire permanently, as he must first get the business back on its feet, sell everything he owns in the shop, and avoid financial loss in any type of way.
"My family has sold Persian artifacts and historical handicrafts for decades, so I became involved in this business through my ancestors. But that is not the only reason why I continued their legacy, It is also because of my love for Persian artifacts."
It is the handicrafts that I appreciate the most in this shop; you can tell they have been made with love, and they are full of incredible details.
"The reason I chose Westwood as the location for my business is because there were a lot of Persians living in this area back then, but you don’t see many of them around here now."
“Even though I love my job, but sometimes you must look at the age too. I hope I can sell these items and be retired, because I want to relax with my family and go on vacations, but I don’t know when I can sell all these items.”
-“Please don’t lean on the glass.”