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Vroman's Bookstore, Pasadena

4.8
Gift & Specialty Shop · Hidden Gem · Shopping
Vroman's Bookstore is the oldest and largest independent bookstore in Southern California. Founded in 1894 by Adam Clark Vroman, the original Vroman's Book and Photographic Supply store was located at 60 E. Colorado St in Pasadena, California. Mr. Vroman loved books and loved giving back to his community. Mr. Vroman was also a passionate photographer, specializing in scenes of the American West and his portraits of Native Americans. When Mr. Vroman died in 1916, he left the bookstore to longtime employees.
Vroman's Bookstore holds an important place in Southern California’s history. For many years, Vroman's was the largest bookstore west of the Mississippi, and it continues to be the oldest and largest independent bookstore in Southern California. During World War II, Vroman's donated and delivered books to Japanese Americans interned at nearby camps, returning on several occasions despite being fired upon by camp guards.

Through the years, it has continued to be an independently owned family business. In 2009, Vroman's bought another beloved independent bookstore, Book Soup in West Hollywood, after its owner died and the store was in danger of closing.

Vroman's is also famous for its world class author signings and events. The store hosts over 400 free community events a year including children's storytimes, trivia nights, craft classes, bake-offs, and special launch parties, and has hosted such authors as President Bill Clinton, President Jimmy Carter, Irving Stone, Upton Sinclair, Ray Bradbury, David Sedaris, Salman Rushdie, Walter Mosely, Joan Didion, Barbara Walters, Anne Rice, Neil Gaiman, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and Bernie Sanders.
In 2008, Vroman's was honored with the Publishers Weekly Bookseller of the Year award.
To visit Vroman's Bookstore on your holiday in Pasadena, and find out what else Pasadena has to offer, use our Pasadena.
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Vroman's Bookstore reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
221 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Had never been here before but always wanted to go. After a Facebook plea from the owners to help their business during Covid, a friend and i made the trip out to pasadena for breakfast and...  more »
  • Just came back from a long weekend in Pasadena. I have to say that Vroman's is a local gem. Warm and inviting. I really appreciated how the various sections were set up with related materials...  more »
Google
  • My favorite bookstore! A well-curated collection of reading material, thoughtfully presented. I always find a new "must read". They also have an amazing selection of magazines, cards, gifts and home accessories, I picked up some tea towels on my last visit! They are in the process of adding a wine bar - Vroman's keeps getting better.
  • I can't say enough about this amazing store. If you go in you will not want to come out. They have the most amazing selection of books as well as lots of luxury home decor and luxury personal items.They even have stationary greeting cards decorative napkins etc. The children's book section is absolutely amazing and beautiful. They have lectures and even have a coffee shop. You couldn't ask for anything more! We drive 50 minutes just to go to this place and make a day out of it.

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