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Culver Center Partners-East #1, L.P. v. Baja Fresh Westlake Village

June 14, 2010

CULVER CENTER PARTNERS EAST #1, L.P., PLAINTIFF AND APPELLANT,
v.
BAJA FRESH WESTLAKE VILLAGE, INC., DEFENDANT AND RESPONDENT.



APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Norman P. Tarle, Judge. Affirmed. (Los Angeles County Super. Ct. No. SC101407).

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Perluss, P. J.

CERTIFIED FOR PUBLICATION

Culver Center Partners East #1, L.P. (Culver Center) sent by e-mail a notice to pay rent or quit to the leasing manager of its tenant, Baja Fresh Westlake Village, Inc. (Baja Fresh). The parties' lease authorized electronic service of notices, as well as service by personal delivery and certified mail, but did not identify an individual to whom notice should be directed or provide an electronic notification (e-mail) address at which Baja Fresh agreed to accept service. Although Baja Fresh actually received the notice, the trial court granted Baja Fresh's summary judgment motion in this unlawful detainer action because Culver Center failed to present any evidence the electronic notice had been delivered to the street address specified in the parties' lease. We affirm.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

1. The Lease

On May 16, 2001 Baja Fresh entered into a five-year commercial lease with Culver Center's predecessor in interest, Westside Walk, LLC, to occupy the property located at 10768 Venice Boulevard in Culver City (the property). On January 18, 2006 Baja Fresh exercised its option to extend the term of the lease through August 31, 2011.

Paragraph 5.3 of the lease provides the minimum monthly rent for the property--$8,268.75, for the period September 1, 2006 through February 28, 2009--is due and payable on the first of each month.

Paragraph 31 of the lease provides, "All notices, consents, approvals or demands required under this Lease shall be in writing, and shall be deemed delivered when either (a) deposited in the United States mail, certified or registered, postage prepaid; (b) transmitted by telegraphic or electronic means, with proof of service provided, or (c) delivered in person; in any event addressed to or delivered to the appropriate party at:

TENANT: BAJA FRESH WESTLAKE VILLAGE, INC. 225 West Hillcrest Drive #351 Thousand Oaks, C[A] 91360

LANDLORD: WESTSIDE WALK, LLC 589 N. Venice Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90291

or to such other address as either party may from time to time designate for this purpose."

2. Change-of-Address Notices

In May 2007 Culver Center notified its tenants, including Baja Fresh, that it had purchased the property from Westside Walk and that all rental payments were to be sent to "Culver Center Partners-East #1, L.P., c/o Preferred Bank, 325 East Valley Boulevard" in Alhambra.

In May 2008 Baja Fresh sent Culver Center a change-of-address notice pursuant to paragraph 31 of the lease advising it that its new address for service of any notice under the lease was 2000 East Winston Road in Anaheim. The change-of-address ...


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