We report on the physical characteristics of horizonthally-grown Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (h-al-SWNT) arrays and their potential use as transparent and conducting alignment layer for liquid crystals display devices. Microscopy (SEM and AFM), spectroscopic (Raman) and electrical investigations demonstrate the strong anisotropy of h-al-SWNT arrays. Optical measurements show that h-al-SWNTs are efficient alignment layers for Liquid Crystal (LC) molecules allowing the fabrication of optical wave plates. Interactions between h-al-SWNT arrays and LC molecules are also investigated evidencing the weak azimuthal anchoring energy at the interface, which, in turn, leads to LC devices with a high pretilt angle. The electro-optical reponses of h-al-SWNT/LC cells demonstrate that h-al-SWNT arrays are efficient nanostructured electrodes with potential use for the combined replacement of Indium Tin Oxyde and polymeric alignment layers in conventional displays.