Hollywood is very large. There's a West Hollywood (which is the area that you are referring to) that borders Beverly Hills and Hollywood Hills. The homes and condos are pretty pricey there. So... if you have a minimum of $500,000, you might be able to find a starter condo. The attraction there is lots of trendy shops and restaurants. You are close to Sunset strip which also has a lot of entertainment venues.
This area is usuall West of Cresent Heights, between Hollywood Blvd. and Santa Monica.
Hollywood, East of Crescent Heights, is a little less expensive. The community changes dramatically the further east you head - towards Western, etc.
Overall, there's a lot of traffic and it's quite fast paced. Depending on your age,activities and budget, it might work well for you.
I LOVE SUN TOO!
If you are buying today to call a home a home, and give the market time to rebound, I can't help but think that your investment now will be worth more come the time all this development is completed.
Let me know if I can be of any further assistance, I service Antelope Valley (still declining market, but if you want to live like a king for la lot ess money this would be the choice, good medical and aircraft/aerospace jobs, upper desert), Santa Clarita Valley (very desirable area, lot of LA commuters, great access to freeways, excellent sought out schools, straight shoot on Hwy 126 to the beach!), San Fernando Valley (less commute if working in LA area, lots of job possibilities, city life, smog etc.) and Venura County (great areas, less property tax, closer to the beach so it is cooler). I know large territory...born and raised in one, office in another, live in one of the other areas. I love working with first time buyers, their excitement fires me up! Put your running shoes on and let's get in the game!
There is lots of new construction and refurbishment going on which can only enhance property values in the medium to long term.
West Hollywood (an incorporated City) is well known as being a "gay village" and is an exciting and vibrant city to live in. It is generally more expensive than Hollywood with a great choice of condo buildings as well as single family homes.
Hollywood is split into 2 parts, West Hollywood (Incorporated) and Hollywood
True Hollywood is bordered by these streets: Mulholand Dr (N) Western Ave (E) Santa Monica (S) La Brea (W). West Hollywood (ignoring the border of incorporation) Sunset (N) La Brea (E) Melrose (S) La Cienega or Doheny (W).
Hollywood is in a rapid stage of flux. West Hollywood is getting tired and looking very 80's. I think you can find deals in Hollywood, Condo's will be dropping in price quite a bit. (A lot of overbuilding going on). There are also a lot of virtual tear-down bungalows around in the SE of Hollywood, if you can beat developers to the punch and fix it up you will have yourself quite a deal.
West Hollywood? Forgetaboutit. Sellers there still in the mass grip of 2006 delusion.
As for the gay issue... It's hard to generalize... but here goes. The main concentration of gay commerce is on Santa Monica - La Brea to Doheny. So unless you're gay you have the rest of the city to play in. Having said that... some of the BEST neighbors I've had were gay. They REALLY take care of their properties and most are really welcoming. If you're a messy guy (like me) you may run afoul from time to time.
One thing to remember is... the traffic in Los Angeles is a freakin' nightmare so mby get a rental until you find out where you're going to work. Then get something close. You can always drive into Hollywood to rave!