Known as Home Ice during the early 1900s, the company was owned by a gentleman named Dick Cleveland, and Carlo Nicoletti worked under him on an ice route. Delivering mostly to homes and small stores, in the classic image style of carrying blocks of ICE using ice tongs.
Mr. Nicoletti was born in Italy, and raised in New York where he worked as an iceman and also sold coal. He moved to California in 1942 with his wife Beatrice and their children. His oldest son Paul Nicoletti worked with him at Home Ice Company when he was only 8 or 9 years old. Young Paul loved working alongside his father. When Paul was older, he moved back to New York and stayed there until his father became ill with cancer. Paul returned to California to help support the family and took over his father's route at the age of seventeen and supported his family until his father passed away.
Paul continued to work his father's ice route after he was married to his wife Mari Ann. Soon they would have five daughters. With a larger family to support Paul wanted more and asked Mr. Cleveland to sell him the company. Mr. Cleveland was getting older and admired Paul, so he decided to sell him the company along with the property. Paul renamed his company to what is now the North Hollywood Ice Company.
At the time, the company was only capable of storing 400 lb blocks of ice that had to be crushed and placed into 100 lb burlap sacks. The sacks or blocks of ice would then be delivered, or customers would come to the faciclity to pick the ice up.
In the mid 70's the business was going so well that Paul decided to build a bigger storage unit that processed block ice and purchased the machinery to make packaged ice.
Being so close to Hollywood and Burbank, Paul was able to find new ways to provide ice services for the movie industry. Paul created the first real snow effects for the movie industry and winter wonderlands for private residences.
North Hollywood Ice created many snow scenes for the movie industry, including North Dallas Forty, The Shining, The Bodyguard, and many more.
In 1992, Paul and his wife Mari Ann decided to retire to Del Mar, California. Their third daughter Beatrice, who had worked with her father over the years, loved the company so much that she took it as her own responsibility. Representing the tradition of the Nicoletti name, Beatrice has made it her priority to provide the same service and dedication her father so proudly provided for so many years.
I can remember in 1966 being out on the playground with my classmates when one of the teachers asked me what my father does for a living I answered, full of pride, 'my father's an ice man!'. Boy, the look on the teacher's face. I will never forget what she said, "what's that, an Iceman? We have refrigeration, the Iceman no longer exists!". I became confused, wanting to defend my family and thinking about my father's passion for his work. After all, he was able to trade ice for the cost of me being born! The hospitals cafeteria was one of his accounts. How cool is that?
My life as I knew it was being raised around the ice house, one ginormous hard working family. My father was the mentor to a tough bunch of guys, most of whom still remain employed with us today. He cared so much about providing an excellent product and unparalleled service, as a result he passed that standard of service onto us. There is something very special about people in the ice industry, you either have it or you don't.
When my parents retired in 1992, I purchased the business, servicing the movie industry caterers, restaurants, bars, supermarkets, residences, hospitals, you name it...always something different. It keeps it fun and exciting! What stays the same is the pride we share as a family and maintaining the standards and integrity that my father set forth. What I love about being in the ice business - it's my roots, my family, and I have a great passion for it.
We love our customers, so feel free to visit during normal business hours.
5257 Craner Ave, North Hollywood, California 91601, United States
7 days a week
5:00 AM - 10:00 PM May be open later on busier days. Call for info.
24 Hour Emergency Service Available