The Girola Building at 4430-4432-4434 Telegraph Avenue has had a variety of uses over the years. It opened in 1919 as the Girola Brothers Garage. Other uses included a restaurant, an indoor miniature golf course, a glass and paint store, and Reed Brothers Security.

Girola Brothers

The Girola brothers were Giuseppe (Joseph), Honoret (Henry), and Armando (Armand). Their sister Josephine Girola was the bookkeeper. In 1921, the Girolas were living not far from the garage at 455 - 44th Street. Along with storing and repairing cars, in 1922 they became distributors for International Trucks, and in 1925 dealers for Moon Motor Cars and its subsidiary, Diana Motors. 1


1925 1



In 1930 it opened as Golfland, the first indoor miniature golf course in Oakland. The "greens" were covered in "genuine Pullman carpet, the nearest creation to a putting green." It  was run by Otto Lafranchi and Arthur Rodgers, and included Barney's, a refreshment stand. 2 It was one of the locations for the 1930 Oakland Tribune miniature golf tournament.

Note that by 1930, the front facade had been changed from a peaked center with gentle curves to a rectangular one.

1930 21930

Italian Village

In 1933, Armand Girola opened the Italian Village restaurant, featuring dancing and live music. They hired Chef Valade, "famous Italian Cook." The restaurant featured murals of the Italian Riviera and Genoa. 3 J. Girola was the name on the cabaret license.

1933 31933 3

Other tenants

  • Pacific Gas Appliance Co., 4434 (1938-)
  • Gateway Radio and Furniture, 4434 (1941-)
  • Central Oakland Glass, 4432 (c.1953-1962)
  • Pacific Hospital Equipment and Supply, 4432 (c.1967)
  • Henry Albers, Furniture Dealer, 4434 (c.1967)
  • Reed Brothers Security, 4430-4432 (c.1991-)

1938year unknown, courtesy Emeryville Historical Society

The car on the left might be a 1955-1956 Cadillac Series 62. The car near the center might be a 1955-1956 Dodge La Femme or a Dodge Custom Royal.

1950 Sanborn excerpt

Links and References

  1. Associated Dealer Appointed For Moon and Diana Oakland Tribune August 16, 1925
  2. Golfland Is Oakland's 1st Indoor Course Oakland Tribune August 22, 1930
  3. Italian Village Page Oakland Tribune July 14, 1933
  4. Season Distributors Make Prospects Want 'Em The Harvester World February 1924