L.A. Itineraries

    The question, "where should I..." is as frequently asked as FAQ's can get over here at goop. We live to source, scour, dine, and meander our way to the leanest and best info for you. This week we start with a city broken down by personality.


    This week's goop collaboration
    • Kids

      Thanks to its impeccable weather, beach, hills, and everything in between, Los Angeles is a pretty top-notch playground. What makes it even better is that there are plenty of activities for kiddos that parents might enjoy, too. See everything on one map.

      • Viceroy
      • Viceroy

        1819 Ocean Ave. | 310.260.7500


        Sure, Shutters and Casa Del Mar are right on the beach, but the Viceroy is just steps away: That, and the fact that it's cheaper and has a much better pool scene (Shutters and Casa del Mar had to elevate theirs, since they couldn't drop them into the beach) make this a better pick for little kids.

      • The Apple Pan

        The Apple Pan

        10801 W. Pico Blvd. | 310.475.3585


        This Los Angeles classic is still staffed by many of the same people who worked the U-shaped counter when we were kids: It has staying power for great reason. The menu is edited, the paper-wrapped burgers are no-frills and excellent, and the pie always comes a la mode. Cash only.

      • Brentwood Country Mart

        Brentwood Country Mart

        225 26th St. | 310.451.9877


        This 1950's old-time country mart got a renovation and restoration about a decade ago, when it again became one of Brentwood's biggest draws. Home to a spate of great boutiques (Jenni Kayne, Turpan, Broken English), it wins huge points with little ones for its interior food court, where you'll find the world's best chicken (Reddi Chick), burgers (Barneys), and tacos (Frida's). There's also an old-school candy shop (Edelweiss), an ice cream parlor (Sweet Rose Ice Cream), a book store (Diesel), a toy store (Toy Crazy), a fancy kids clothing boutique (Poppy), and a mini carousel.

      • Huckleberry


        1014 Wilshire Blvd. | 310.451.2311


        With lines out the door by 10, this is one of those spots where parents with early risers win: We go for the quinoa, veggie, and egg bowls, while our kiddos are bigger fans of the homemade donuts and Cheesy Eggs & Toast.

      • John's Garden

        John's Garden

        3835 Cross Creek Rd. | 310.456.8377


        Located adjacent to the playground in the Malibu Country Mart, you can grab a seat and bite while the kids go nuts on the swings. The sandwich and salad options here are seemingly endless—from PB & J to soy baloney to classic Reubens and Tuna Salads. They also have a full roster of shakes and smoothies.

      • Blue Plate

        Blue Plate

        1415 Montana Ave. | 310.206.8877


        The emphasis here is on healthy comfort food, which means that it hits all the bases for kids—there's chicken tenders, there's grilled cheese, there's quesadillas, pasta, and turkey hot dogs. There's even a pint-sized protein plate if your little one only eats cucumbers and cheese.

      • Hot Dog on a Stick

        Hot Dog on a Stick

        1633 Ocean Front Walk | 310.470.1421


        For many reasons, the Santa Monica Pier is a like a siren song for the under 10 set, so you will invariably find yourself on the hook for a few turns on the Ferris Wheel. Don't eat there, though, as Hot Dog on a Stick is just a few steps away: Head down to the beach, and over to the side a way for seriously delicious veggie corndogs and fries.

      • Larder at Tavern

        Larder at Tavern

        11648 San Vicente Blvd. | 310.806.6464


        The atrium-like Tavern—helmed by one of L.A.'s biggest food stars, Suzanne Goin—is a good option for big groups, but it's a bit fancy for little eaters. No bother, because up front, there's Larder, where you can get prepared sandwiches and salads, pastries, and plenty of caffeine. This is the perfect place to stock-up on lunch for a picnic at one of the city's parks, or on the lawn at The Getty. There's also a Larder on Burton Way in Beverly Hills.

      • Loteria Grill

        Loteria Grill

        6333 W. 3rd St. | 323.930.2211


        The down and dirty Mexican food here appeases even the pickiest palette (they have the basics, like quesadillas and simple chicken tacos), and it's in the long-standing Farmer's Market, which is adjacent to The Grove. There, you'll find an American Girl Doll and a Dylan's Candy Bar.

      Children's Book World's Recommended Reading

      10580 W. Pico Blvd. | 310.559.2665

      Boasting 80,000+ children's books, this is a local siren song for any kiddo who likes to read—from board books for the under 2 set, to more involved chapter books for pre-teens.

      • book1

        Good Night Los Angeles, Adam Gamble and Cooper Kelly


        "This is a very sweet board book for introducing small children to Los Angeles, including the La Brea Tar Pits, the Hollywood Bowl, The Santa Monica Pier, and more."

      • book2

        The Wonderful Towers of Watts, Patricia Zelver


        "This is a beautifully illustrated picture book about the Watts Towers, the history of the man who made them, and how they came to be what they are today."

      • book3

        Larry Gets Lost In Los Angeles , Michael Mullin and John Skewes


        "Larry Gets Lost in Los Angeles is about a boy and his dog, Larry, who visit Los Angeles; when Larry briefly gets lost, he travels around Los Angeles, seeing so much of the city and the unique things it has to offer."

      • book4

        City of Angels, Julie Jaskol and Brian Lewis


        "This is an illustrated history of Los Angeles landmarks that children and adults will equally enjoy. With fantastic illustrations from Elisa Kleven, there are so many wonderful details in this book that everyone can learn something new."

      • book5

        Pedro the Angel of Olvera Street, Leo Politi


        "This is a classic Los Angeles picture book. It's a Christmas story, for the slightly older child, but it's also a beautiful look at the community of Olvera street and their special Christmas celebration."

      • book6

        One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street, Joanne Rocklin


        "This middle-grade chapter book takes place on a street in Southern California and centers around a majestic orange tree that ties four children's personal stories together, with themes of friendship and community."

      • book7

        Ballpark Mystery #3; The LA Dodger, David A. Kelly


        "This younger middle-grade mystery takes place at Dodger Stadium, following Mike and Kate as they follow the strange happenings at Dodger Stadium and try to solve the mystery!"

      • book8

        The Neddiad, Daniel Pinkwater


        "This is a fantastical book following Neddie as he travels from Chicago to Los Angeles in the 1940's and all the wacky characters he meets along the way."

      • book9

        Weetzie Bat, Francesca Lia Block


        "This is a modern fairy tale from quintessential L.A. author Francesca Lia Block that takes place in Los Angeles in the late 1980's. Weetzie starts off in high school, feeling very out of place until she meets like-minded friends. The entire book screams Los Angeles on every page, and you'll feel like you're reading about the most magical place in the world."

      • book10

        Starters, Lissa Price


        "This dystopian teen novel takes place in Beverly Hills. After the Spore Wars take out everyone between the ages of 20 and 60, Callie and her brother are on the run. Desperate for money, Callie agrees to be a donor and rent out her body to seniors who want to be young again."

      • Annenberg Community Beach House

        Annenberg Community Beach House

        415 Pacific Coast Hwy | 310.458.4904


        Sitting on the site of what was once a giant mansion that Randolph Hearst built for actress Marion Davies in the '20s, this is now a 5-acre, completely public beach house, complete with the home's original Olympic pool (the house was irreparably damaged by an earthquake, which led to its demolition). When it's not pool season (Memorial Day through Labor Day), there's still a lot to do, including a toes-in-sand cafe and beach volleyball for kids.

      • California Science Center

        Courtesy of the California Science Center

        California Science Center

        700 Exposition Park Dr. | 323.SCI.ENCE


        The Space Shuttle Endeavor is parked on-site, there's an IMAX theater, and you can ride a high-wire bicycle perched 43-feet above the ground. Those are just some of the flashiest thrills: Little ones can experience the ice walls of the arctic, the aridity of the desert, and a view of the ocean floor. Plan to spend multiple hours.

      • Noah's Ark at The Skirball

        Noah's Ark at The Skirball

        2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd. | 310.440.4500


        The Skirball Center, a Jewish cultural institution that offers everything from exhibits to readings to recitals, is also home to architect Moshe Safdie's Arc, an incredible installation that occupies an 8,000 square foot gallery. Kids can climb aboard the wooden ship and interact with the animals, crafted from rope, to recycled newspaper, to keyboards, to vegetable steamers. Make reservations well in advance.

      • Serenity Bird Sanctuary

        Serenity Bird Sanctuary

        11301 Wilshire Blvd.


        Located in the back of the Veteran's Garden, a 20-acre oasis that's dedicated to rehabilitating vets with PTSD, you'll find a sanctuary, where injured, abused, and abandoned cockatoos, parakeets, macaws, and parrots can find relief. They're tended and nursed back to health by veterans, who apparently find a certain satisfaction in helping something so frail get back in the air. It's open to the public, and the birds love visitors.

      • Tongva Park

        Tongva Park

        1615 Ocean Ave.


        When the family tires of the Santa Monica Pier, cross the street to this brand-new, space-age park. It's composed of (soft), pebble-y rubber, making it excellent for crawlers and early walkers, though there are things to appease kids of all ages: Long slides are built into the hills, there's a slanted climbing wall, plus huge jungle gym-like cones that aren't for the acrophobic.

      • Will Rogers Park

        Will Rogers Park

        1501 Will Rogers Park Rd. | 310.454.8212


        Nestled at the base of the Santa Monica mountains, this 186-acre state park boasts horse stables, a polo field, and a riding ring, along with a host of trails that feed into other state park systems. Whether you come for a riding lesson or a trail ride, or just want to throw down a blanket and have a picnic while a polo game unfolds, it's a pretty idyllic place to spend the day. Tours of Will Rogers' homestead are also available.

      • Boone Children's Gallery @ LACMA

        Boone Children's Gallery @ LACMA

        5905 Wilshire Blvd. | 323.857.6128


        While the kid-friendly galleries at LACMA are packed with inspiration, on the second floor of Hammer Building you'll find a space where little ones can actually put brush to paper and make art. While on-site, sign them up for a free LACMA youth membership—they can visit the museum for free whenever they want (and bring one adult guest along).

      • Natural History Museum

        Photo by Ryan Miller/Capture Imaging

        Natural History Museum

        900 Exposition Blvd. | 213.763.3466


        Since the early 1900s, L.A.'s Natural History Museum has been playing host to millions of artifacts from the past five or so billion years—and the collection keeps growing. (In 2011, they opened Dinosaur Hall.)

      • Petersen Automotive Museum

        Petersen Automotive Museum

        6060 Wilshire Blvd. | 323.930.CARS


        Though its an equal draw for car-obsessed adults, this museum—immediately across the street from LACMA—has huge kid appeal. For one, in the third floor Discovery Center they can climb aboard a California Highway Patrol Motorcycle, a Ford Model T, and a racecar. They can also race Hot Wheels and pick up a few tidbits about what makes a car tick.

      • Sky High Sports

        Sky High Sports

        6033 De Soto Ave., Woodland Hills | 818.346.6300


        While a warehouse lined in trampolines (walls, too) sounds like a special version of hell, it's pretty much kid crack. Foam pits, dodgeball, a special jumping area for the smaller set, and a Wifi-equipped lounge check all the boxes—understandably, this spot is huge on the birthday party circuit.

      • Toyota Symphonies For Youth

        Toyota Symphonies For Youth

        111 S. Grand Ave. | 323.850.2000


        Designated for the 5-11 set, this LA Phil concert series at Walt Disney Hall touches on everything from Tchaikovsky to the incidence of repetition in minimalist music. When school is out, don't miss Summer Sounds for kids at The Hollywood Bowl, which pairs world music with art.

      • Wi Spa

        Wi Spa

        2700 Wilshire Blvd. | 213.487.2700


        Open 24-hours-a-day (convenient if the family is supremely jet-lagged), this multi-level Korean spa also caters to kids. While there are two floors that are strictly single sex (no bathing suits allowed), one floor is co-ed (Jimjilbang), complete with a series of mineral saunas that little ones love. If that's not enough, there's a Korean restaurant, a kids zone, and a comic book library.

      • Zimmer Children's Museum

        Zimmer Children's Museum

        6505 Wilshire Blvd. | 323.761.8984


        This two-floor play-centric museum is the perfect place to spend the afternoon with kids of all ages, including those who aren't yet walking. There are tons of separate zones that all have a help-the-world/social responsibility bent, including a water-way, a mini-theater, a construction zone, and a music room.

      Kiddos L.A. Playlist

      The perfect songs to get you in the right frame-of-mind.

      Listen to the playlist

      Classic L.A.Playlist

      • Acorn


        1220 5th St. | 310.451.5845


        Though its just two-blocks from the Third Street Promenade, which sucks up a lot of the area's oxygen, this is inarguably one of the most special toy shops in the country. Everything here is made of wood, from the pint-sized grocery store stands (including farmers market fruits and veggies) to the rainbow-hued teethers.

      • Lost & Found

        Lost & Found

        6320 Yucca St. | 323.856.5872


        Occupying a stretch of adjacent buildings on Yucca Street, which is tucked away above Hollywood Boulevard, you'll find one of L.A.'s best shopping destinations. While there are spaces for women and home, we particularly love the kids edit, which revolves around feathered headbands, papier-mached masks, and t-shirts emblazoned with everything from motorcycles to birds.

      • Un Deux Trois

        Un Deux Trois

        11670 San Vicente Blvd. | 310.820.7565 (plus three other locations)


        Tweens love this boutique, in no small part because the shop's suite of “personal stylists” pre-assemble entire looks—with the accessories to match. It's pretty much grade-school heaven, from the vegan leather leggings to the sequined tops.

      • Eggy


        8365 W. 3rd St. | 323.658.8882


        Inarguably one of the coolest selections of baby and kids clothing in Los Angeles, everything here is pretty much something we'd wear in adult sizes, from the Valentina silk dresses to the striped tank tops from Milk & Honey.

      • Poppy


        225 26th St. | 310.260.4777


        Situated in the Brentwood Country Store, the racks at Poppy are exquisitely tasteful, from the mini striped shirts from Petit Bateau to the Makie t-shirts stamped with zebras. The pricetags match the taste level, which makes this better for gifts than wardrobe basics.

      • Wonderland


        11677 San Vicente Blvd. | 310.207.6100


        You'll find everything from car seats and strollers to swaddling blankets and bouncers here, though they get the biggest snaps for their toy selection and clothing, which goes up to a size 14.

    • Hipster

      The East Side of Los Angeles is booming: Almost everything noteworthy—from restaurants to boutiques—is popping up over in Los Feliz, Echo Park, Silver Lake, or Downtown. Here's where LA's most pace-setting crowd hangs out.See everything on one map.

      • Ace Hotel
      • Ace Hotel

        929 S. Broadway | 213.623.3233


        In one of the more ambitious remodels in the city's recent history, the just-opened Ace transformed the United Artists theater into a huge pull for locals and visitors alike. While downtown L.A. is undergoing a greater Renaissance, this 1920s institution is inarguably one of its crown jewels. Besides hotel rooms, there's a popular restaurant, a coffee bar, and a brand-new outpost of Acne just across the street.

      • Bar Amá

        Photo by Dylan + Jeni

        Bar Amá

        118 W. 4th St. | 213.687.8002


        Puffy tacos, frito pie, queso, and other evolved Tex-Mex dishes are mainstays at chef Josef Centeno's latest operation. Do not miss the perfectly caramelized sweet potatoes, the fried Brussels sprouts, and the guacomole, which just might be the best in the city. The '50s hall-like space also offers its fair share of tequila and mescal drinks, along with homemade fruit mashes and Bäco-Pops.

      • Bestia


        2121 7th Pl. | 213.514.5724


        In an industrial-inflected, warehouse-like space in Downtown L.A.'s Arts District, you'll find Bestia, a relative newcomer helmed by husband-and-wife duo, Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis. While the scope of the menu is ambitious (and innovative, as Ori hates to waste meat, meaning you'll find the occasional beef and lamb heart or chicken gizzard dotting the offerings), you should really go for the pizza: Ori gives his dough a good 24-hours to rise and fall before it heads into the wood-burning oven, and you can tell. A trip here requires Uber, as this place draws huge crowds—the bar is a fun place to wait, and the cocktails are delicious.

      • Forage


        3823 W. Sunset Blvd. | 323.663.6885


        Local, sustainable, and fresh ingredients are the focus at this rustic-meets-modern spot, so much so that if you bring your own home-grown produce, they'll exchange it for credit. And the credit is worth it: The roasted salmon bowl is particularly excellent, though there are very few misses on Forage's constantly changing chalkboard menu.

      • Messhall Kitchen

        Messhall Kitchen

        4500 Los Feliz Rd. | 323.660.6377


        Occupying the former home of Willard's Chicken Inn (and perhaps more notably, an outpost of The Brown Derby), MessHall serves gussied up versions of the items you might have had at camp, like hot wings, macaroni and cheese, and pie in a jar. Camp probably didn't come with a huge selection of craft beer, though, or $1 Oysters on Tuesday nights.

      • Santouka Ramen

        Santouka Ramen

        3760 Centinela Ave. | 310.391.1101


        This now global Japanese chain offers absolutely nothing in the ambiance department—but everything and more in a singe bowl of ramen.

      • Barbrix


        2442 Hyperion Ave. | 323.662.2442


        Here, you'll find Spanish tapas, cheese plates, and a handful of pastas, all served in a lowkey homey setting—homey indeed, as the restaurant lives in a 1940's house in the Silver Lake hills. In fact, a select few can grab a seat at kitchen counter, and watch chef Don Dickman cook.

      • Covell Wine Bar

        Covell Wine Bar

        4628 Hollywood Blvd. | 323.660.4400


        With walls lined in vintage cameras, keys, and other antiques, the old-fashioned vibe here is complemented by the service, which aims to guide you to your wine soul-mate.

      • Little Dom's

        Little Dom's

        2128 Hillhurst Ave. | 323.661.0055


        A smattering of always-packed bistro tables on the sidewalk outside beckon from this Italian classic, which is the little sister to Dominick's in West Hollywood. We like eating our lasagnette at the dimly-lit bar inside.

      • Mohawk Bend

        Mohawk Bend

        2141 Sunset Blvd. | 213.483.2337


        Though it calls a former Vaudeville theater home, we like to sit outside, near the giant, wood-burning fire. Here, you'll find locally sourced ingredients, and a host of craft beers and wines from small California producers. Though vegans can rejoice in their dairy-free pizzas (they do lactose-dependent iterations as well), the real pull here is the beer.

      • Sqirl


        720 N. Virgil Ave. | 323.284.8147


        What started out as a toast and jam pop-up now commands long weekend lines: A quick scan of the outdoor tables reveals that most people are digging into their signature Kokuho Rose Brown Rice Bowl, complete with nut-free pesto, preserved Meyer lemon, feta, black raddish, and a poached egg. Don't leave without picking up a bottle of the jam that made them famous.

      Skylight Book's Recommended Reading

      1818 N. Vermont Ave. | 323.660.1175

      There's a lot to love about the neighborhood bookshop: Spot-on staff recommendations, a shop cat, and a literary star-studded calendar. (Plus, we love the book illustrations on their site.)

      • book1

        Middle Men, Jim Gavin


        "In Gavin's stories, L.A. is a purgatorial place occasionally shot through with great uplifting beauty and fire. Sometimes, just like one character who feels “blessed as he noticed something both beautiful and preposterous, the kind of thing that was only possible in Los Angeles,” we see, from the bridge we stand on, the darkness and the light of this city come alive and we feel grateful, too: for a city like this and a book like this."

      • book2

        The Lew Archer Novels, Ross MacDonald


        "Los Angeles. Somewhere between Raymond Chandler and James Ellroy is Ross MacDonald and the coolness of Lew Archer, for hire. Lew isn't as suave as Marlow, but he's smarter. He's not as tough as Ellroy's cops, but that's because he has a heart. Los Angeles."

      • book3

        Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Joan Didion


        "Prerequisite reading for anyone interested in post-war California. From individual stardom in Los Angeles to collective peace in San Francisco, Didion examines the rampant aspirations of a culture being pulled from all sides. Through cranked up prose and calm introspection, Slouching Towards Bethlehem captures the dissonance of a landscape characterized by slackers and hustlers."

      • book4

        A People's Guide to Los Angeles, Laura Pulido, Laura Barraclough, Wendy Cheng


        "Decades of tourism have sanded and smoothed out this radical, historically charged city into an easy to sell, uncontroversial gem. A People's Guide To Los Angeles provides an unexpurgated look at LA through 115 lesser-known sites that have been home to the struggles of race, gender, class, and sexuality that are central to the city's true history. If you want Disney, go to Disneyland; if you want Los Angeles, go here."

      • book5

        The Most Special Day of My Life, The Clayton Brothers


        "We couldn't give you a list of LA books without including the art of Rob & Christian Clayton, two brothers based out of Pasadena. Drawing inspiration from hand-painted advertisements to religious iconography, infused with the normalcy of life, the Claytons capture an image of LA that speaks to its layered and mixed-messaged history. In a single painting you can walk around Los Angeles for a day."

      • book6

        If You're Reading This, There's Still Time, Jacqueline Morley


        "This is the new book about street artist Morley, who creates bold, typographic posters which he pastes around Los Angeles. Today, he continues to paste his work in any city that doesn't enforce their vandalism laws through caning. Also, he made us promise to include the fact that he can hold his breath for over an hour, and that 'if anyone challenged him to a breath holding contest, they would totally lose,'' but he was probably lying about that. He is appearing Skylight Book on April 21."

      • Griffith Observatory

        Griffith Observatory

        2800 E. Observatory Rd. | 213.473.0800


        Griffith Park is one of those spots where you think you'll spend an hour, and end up staying for the day. Complete with an observatory, a planetarium (there's a live show every 60-90 minutes), loads of displays, and even more hiking (it sits on more than 3,000 acres, and offers 53 miles of trails), this draws a crowd from across the city. On weekends, it's packed.

      • The Last Bookstore

        The Last Bookstore

        453 S. Spring St. | 213.488.0599


        A hugely successful used books and record shop may seem like an anachronism but this shop keeps expanding. Partnering with local institutions like CalArts and Crossroads Cultural Center, there's a comprehensive schedule of open mic nights, readings, and talks.

      • Hollywood Forever Cemetery

        Hollywood Forever Cemetery

        6000 Santa Monica Blvd. | 323.469.1181


        As the name suggests, a lot of glamorous silver-screen stars are buried here—but the cemetery has a second life. The beautiful grounds play host to outdoor movie screenings and some of the city's best concerts.

      • Vacation Vinyl

        Vacation Vinyl

        3815 W. Sunset Blvd. | 323.666.2111


        This great little record store features a tight edit—but that shouldn't dissuade you from asking them to help you track down something that's not out on the floor. During the week, they're open until 9pm.

      Hipster L.A. Playlist

      The perfect songs to get you in the right frame-of-mind.

      Listen to the playlist

      Classic L.A.Playlist

      • Beatrice Valenzuela

        Beatrice Valenzuela

        1547 Echo Park Ave. | 213.986.8914


        This Mexico City native's hand-sewn leather booties and sandals are the sort of thing you'll never want to take off (in L.A. weather, at least). This just-opened boutique also offers the work of Valenzuela's friends, like Kathleen Whitaker's jewelry and Samatha Grisdale's slouchy totes.

      • Garbstore Case Study

        Garbstore Case Study

        603 N. La Brea Ave. | 323.549.9668


        Just a little bit north of La Brea's busiest shopping stretch (which seems to welcome a new boutique every week), this just opened shop is the L.A. outpost of London's much-loved Couverture & The Garbstore. You'll find designer Ian Paley's line of classic, heritage-style basics, along with pieces from Engineered Garments, Rydal Sports, and Garbstore x Reebok sneakers.

      • Opening Ceremony

        Opening Ceremony

        451 N. La Cienega Blvd. | 310.652.1120


        Occupying Charlie Chaplin's former dance studio, this second home to the much-loved New York City-born retailer is one of our favorite places in L.A. to shop: The brands—from Christopher Kane to Altuzarra—are equal parts hard-to-find and excellent, and the maze-like rooms make it feel like a fun treasure hunt.

      • Creatures of Comfort

        Creatures of Comfort

        7971 Melrose Ave. | 323.655.7855


        Along with their own expanding line of basics, the breadth of Creatures of Comfort mix will always draw a hugely-devoted clientele. The industrial racks are lined with labels like Patrik Ervell, Rachel Comey, J.W. Anderson, Perks and Mini, and more.

      • Otherwild Goods & Services

        Otherwild Goods & Services

        1932 Echo Park Ave. | 323.546.8437


        Owners Marisa Suárez-Orozco and Rachel Berks focus exclusively on artist and designer-made clothing, jewelry, pottery, posters, and prints. Part shop, part graphic design studio this is one of those stores where you never know what you're going to find, whether it's a simple turquoise drop necklace or a Gravel & Gold toiletry case, emblazoned with line drawings of boobs.

    • Classic

      We've found that when our New York friends come west, they abide by a very specific Hollywood itinerary: Here's classic L.A., no curveballs allowed. See everything on one map.

      • Hotel Bel-Air
      • Hotel Bel-Air

        701 Stone Canyon Rd. | 310.472.1211


        With a guest list that ranged from Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly, to Prince Charles and Richard Nixon (randomly, he wrote his memoirs here), it's not that surprising that after a comprehensive remodel in 2011, the old-guard's feathers were a bit ruffled that Hotel Bel-Air isn't exactly the same. But we still love it: We just don't go there expecting to see the original. The lobby, in particular, is so chic.

      • Chi SPACCA

        Chi SPACCA

        6610 Melrose Ave. | 323.297.1133


        This wonderfully tiny, six-table spot is the latest addition to the Mozza family. With a homepage distinguished by a giant cleaver, Chi Spacca essentially revolves around meat, including innumerable versions of pork and beef chops, which should definitely be shared (many are 42 to 50 ounces). Like any great steak house, even of the Italian variety, all that carne comes with a bountiful menu of delectable sides; the mashed potatoes are insane, as are the squash blossoms and grilled cauliflower. And, as this is California and all, you can trust that there's a simple grilled fish on the menu, along with a hearty kale salad.

      • Fountain Coffee Room & The Polo Lounge

        Fountain Coffee Room & The Polo Lounge

        9641 Sunset Blvd. | 310.887.2777


        We're always happy to check into the Beverly Hills Hotel, after all, it's also home to the Fountain Coffee Room and The Polo Lounge. At the latter, iconic forest green walls, latticed mirrors, and squishy banquettes are just the beginning of the appeal: It's drawn a great crowd for decades, and the food stands up as well. Meanwhile, digging into a milkshake and grilled cheese at the counter at the Fountain Coffee Room is one of L.A.'s most comforting thrills.

      • Kiwami


        11920 Ventura Blvd. | 818.763.3910


        It's a bit of a hike out in the valley, but Kiwami, which comes from the original Katsuya team, has all the appeal of the original Katsuya Studio City location with a bit more atmosphere. Try to snag a reservation for the omakase with Katsuya himself—pricey, but worth it.

      • Madeo


        8897 Beverly Blvd. | 310.859.4903


        An unassuming exterior, and below ground-level space belie the reliably-delectable fare inside: Here, you'll find the best eggplant parmesan in the city, and what is probably the most delicious linguini al pesto outside of Liguria. Their fish with red sauce is also crazy delicious. The emphasis is on classic Northern Italian dishes, all served in the charmingly clubby space—the bill is invariably steep, but the quality of the meal erases any sticker shock.

      • Pace


        2100 Laurel Canyon Blvd. | 323.654.8583


        Though its just a few miles from L.A.'s busiest stretch, Pace feels like it's in the middle of the nowhere. It's actually in the residential hillside enclave, Laurel Canyon, right below a sweet little neighborhood grocery store. It's one of those rare restaurants that works equally well for big, lively dinners with friends or more romantic dates. The food—Italian—is strong, but it's really more about the cozy, tucked-away vibe than culinary fireworks.

      • Dan Tana's

        Dan Tana's

        9071 Santa Monica Blvd. | 310.275.9444


        The menu is long and hand-drawn here, which gives you an idea of how infrequently it changes: All the Italian classics are represented, from Chicken Marsala to Spaghetti Carbonara. Though the fare is decent, it caters to a regular, show business clientele that makes it one of Hollywood's veritable cafeterias. It's an LA institution, through and through.

      • The Ivy

        The Ivy

        113 N. Robertson Blvd. | 310.274.8303


        It's so overly touristy it almost didn't make the cut, but if you don't mind pushing through the papparazzi on the sidewalk out front, the grilled vegetable salad with shrimp is pretty delicious—and the patio does offer some of the city's best people-watching.

      • Joan's on Third

        Joan's on Third

        8350 W. Third St. | 323.655.2285


        Joan's on Third is pretty perfect: A coffee bar with pastries, a counter for prepared salads and sandwiches to go (or linger over), and a mini-grocery's worth of delicious cheeses, wines, snacks, and frozen treats. Though there are a million tables, they're generally always full; and parking in the area is scarce. That said, it's great for a mid-week breakfast or lunch.

      • Musso & Frank Grill

        Musso & Frank Grill

        6667 Sunset Blvd. | 323.467.7788


        Well-worn red leather banquettes, stiff martinis, bowtied waiters, and what was the first pay-phone in Hollywood, are just the beginning of this fabled restaurant's story. Thanks to its proximity to the Screen Writer's Guild, literary stars like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Faulkner, and Aldous Huxley wrote while they snacked on liquor. The chop-centric menu has evolved since they opened in 1919, but it still pales in comparison to the atmosphere.

      • Tower Bar

        Tower Bar

        8358 Sunset Blvd. | 323.654.7100


        Jeff Klein's art deco jewel (another great place to stay, though the rooms can be a bit tight) has one of our favorite restaurants: The walls are lined in walnut, the lighting is low, and the vibe is hushed and discreet—fitting, as it lives in what was once Bugsy Siegel's apartment.

      • Urasawa


        218 N. Rodeo Dr. | 310.247.8939


        While it's known for being one of the country's most expensive restaurants (depending on your order and sake consumption you can expect to spend about 1K per person), it's also known as one of the most superlative. Chef Urasawa sources exquisite wagyu beef, sushi, and caviar, which he literally gilds with gold. The space can accommodate about a dozen people max.

      Book Soup's Recommended Reading

      8818 Sunset Blvd. | 310.659.3110

      Just about as famous as the city itself, Book Soup is the sort of place where you stop by to pick up a book, and end up sitting in an aisle, picking through its literary feast for hours.

      • book1

        Ask the Dust, John Fante


        "A classic portrait of depression-era Los Angeles, Fante's novel is an evocative and largely autobiographical novel of a young writers' struggle in a city still struggling to define itself. L.A readers will particularly enjoy Fante's descriptions of the bygone neighborhood of Bunker Hill, the quintessential locale for L.A Noir. To get into the poetic space of this book, imagine you're standing outside the downtown Library on 5th st and looking east, orchards and cattle ranches as far as the eye can see..."

      • book2

        Riot on Sunset Strip, Domenic Priore


        "Domenic has written one of the very few comprehensive surveys of The Strip's '60s heyday. It includes a huge list of attractions from back in the day, the roots of the music scene, the musicians and the revelers, the recordings and the publicity, all culminating in the famous youth culture vs. police riots and the ultimate demise of the Strip as an entertainment district. Stuffed with little-known info, this is an incredible resource for anybody who loves L.A. history."

      • book3

        Railtown, Ethan Elkind


        "This is a book about the future of Los Angeles as a city, and how crucial it is to learn from our past. It's a history of public transit in L.A. (the rise and fall of the Pacific Electric "Red Car" is a story that has taken on the status of classical myth to many Angelenos) as well as a thoroughly researched and entertainingly told account of the current push to resurrect our public transit through the expansion of the popular 'Metro Rail' system. If it ever bothers you that Angelenos spend a collective 490 million hours a year stuck in traffic, then this book is for you!"

      • book4

        Miss Lonelyhearts & Day of the Locust, Nathaniel West


        Together in one lovely new paperback edition, this is big city disillusionment at its finest. Miss Lonelyhearts is a short but heart pulverizingly dismal proto-postmodern gem, and The Day Of The Locust is probably my favorite L.A story of all time. It's a lovely skewering of the lovable and awful weirdos that exist at the fringes of the film industry to which anyone who has ever looked for work in Los Angeles can appreciate.

      • book5

        Coldheart Canyon, Clive Barker


        What if the icons and starlets of decades gone by never really left the hills? What if, in death, they became far more depraved, sinister, and fascinating than you could imagine? A dark, wholly unique, rich and powerful ghost story, and a lot of fun as well.

      • book6

        Los Angeles Stories, Ry Cooder


        "Legendary country/roots musician, and L.A native Ry Cooder recently published his first book of short stories, and it is fantastic. Conjuring up the L.A of his youth, these stories take place in, and are largely about, the postwar Los Angeles of the '50s, '60s, and '70s—a diverse, working class city that is being consumed from within, and also fed by, a rapacious film, TV, and recording industry looking for more grist for the glamour mill. Neither cynical nor naive, these beautifully crafted stories evoke the sunshine-y haze of mid-century L.A, and the strange and compelling ambiguities of life in a city that both persists and is resigned to memory."

      • Arclight Cinema

        Arclight Cinema

        6360 Sunset Blvd. | 323.464.1478


        It always blows visitors minds that at most of the city's movie theaters, you can pre-book specific seats, meaning that you can eat dinner and wander around until minutes before the show starts, and not have to jockey and jostle for position. We love the Arclight, not only for its location in Hollywood, but also because there's an on-site bar and during 21+ screenings you can sip your wine while you watch.

      • Hammer Museum

        Hammer Museum

        10899 Wilshire Blvd. | 310.443.7000


        There's always something excellent on display at this UCLA museum—it's also nicely manageable, making it the perfect way to spend a few idle hours. The adjacent museum store is one of the best in the city: The bookstore is gigantic, and they have some great gifts from L.A.-based designers, but they win the biggest points for their kids room in the back, where you'll find art and design-specific tomes for little ones, along with a handful of well-conceived toys.

      • The Hollywood Bowl

        The Hollywood Bowl

        2301 N. Highland Ave. | 323.850.2000


        Though parking (and the accompanying traffic) can be a total nightmare, it's well worth it, because once you've settled into your seat, and busted out your picnic dinner and wine, you're in for one of the more special outdoor concert experiences in the country.

      • The Getty

        The Getty

        1200 Getty Center Dr. | 310.440.7300


        Offering some of the city's best views, you can spend a good half-day picnicking on the lawn above the central gardens, or wandering around the Richard Meier-designed exterior (construction employed about 1,200,000 square feet of travertine) before you even head inside. The exhibitions are always varied and interesting, the permanent collection is important, and there are excellent hands-on activities for kids. You only pay for parking at the bottom; admittance is otherwise free.

      • The Getty Villa

        The Getty Villa

        17985 Pacific Coast Hwy | 310.440.7330


        Modeled after a first-century Roman country house, The Getty Villa was the original home for The Getty's permanent collection. Now, beyond touring the exquisite home and gardens, you can see J. Paul Getty's collection of 44,000 antiquities, with treasures that range from 6,500 B.C. to A.D. 400.

      • Huntington Botanical Gardens

        Huntington Botanical Gardens

        31151 Oxford Rd. | 626.405.2100


        At 120 acres, almost every iteration of plant life is represented at this San Marino resource: Fortunately, it's broken out by themes. There's a Rose Garden, a Palm Garden, a Chinese Garden, a Japanese Garden, and so forth—but what really stands out is The Desert Garden, where you can see some 5,000 species of cacti and other succulents.

      Classic L.A. Playlist

      The perfect songs to get you in the right frame-of-mind.

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      • Curve


        154 N. Robertson Blvd. | 310.360.8008


        This is one of Robertson's most popular mainstays, and for good reason: Everything here is reliably excellent, and on-trend without being slavish. Many of the labels are Parisian—Carven, Iro, Isabel Marant—mixed in with a spot-on roster of denim from brands like Mother and Genetic.

      • Jenni Kayne

        Jenni Kayne

        225 26th St. | 424.268.4765
        614 N. Almont Dr. | 310.860.0123


        Jenni Kayne is big in Los Angeles, in no small part due to the fact that she nails the polished-yet-relaxed aesthetic. Floor-skimming dresses that are easy to dress up or down, leather pencil skirts, and perfect little blazers are typical of what she turns out every season, along with her signature D'orsay flats. Her Brentwood Country Mart boutique also offers spot-on picks from other designers (Tom Binns necklaces, Clare Vivier pouches).

      • Turpan


        226 26th St. | 310.899.6711


        Everything at this pristine home store in the Brentwood Country Mart is a design classic—past or future. While it's the sort of spot where you duck in for a hostess gift, it's invariably the sort of store where you end up re-thinking your china and splurging on some steak knives too. They also have impeccable stationery, beautiful blankets, and every conceivable size and color of Comme des Garçons pouch.

      • Elyse Walker

        Elyse Walker

        15306 Antioch St. | 310.230.8882


        Though its Pacific Palisades location feels a little far-flung, this mini-department store justifies the trip: At 2,000 square feet, it's expansive but manageable, and the racks are filled with everyone from Alexander Wang and Rag & Bone, to Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen. Don't miss the shoe and bag selection, which includes the greatest hits from Balenciaga, Christian Louboutin, and Lanvin.

      • Nickey Kehoe

        Nickey Kehoe

        7221 Beverly Blvd. | 323.954.9300


        Interior designers Nickey Kehoe put out their own line of perfectly-textured home goods (solid cast brass hand sconces, tufted headboards, hassock ottomans), which he's mixed with an eclectic range of accessories at his subtly-industrial shop. You'll find Japanese bear bookends, pillows cut from vintage Hmong embroidery, black-bristled brooms, and Astier de Villate journals—and you'll want to buy it all.

    • Art & Architecture

      While Los Angeles may have a reputation as a one industry town, the burgeoning art scene, and the city's incredible, endemic architecture, tell a wildly different story. While the LACMA and MoCA may be the city's most well-known icons, Los Angeles is packed with treasures. See everything on one map.

      • Chateau Marmont
      • Chateau Marmont

        8221 Sunset Blvd. | 323.656.1010


        Originally constructed in the ‘30s as an opulent apartment building (its design takes after the Gothic chateaus of the Loire Valley), the Chateau quickly morphed into a hotel. It has official historic landmark status for a million reasons: It's played host to everyone in Hollywood (sadly, John Belushi died here), and despite an André Balazs re-do in the ‘90s, it still feels wonderfully old-world. Its popularity has never waned, to the extent that you generally can't grab a bite or a drink here unless you're checked-in, or meeting a guest.

      • A-Frame


        12565 Washington Blvd. | 310.398.7700


        This space is just that: An open A-Frame, dotted with communal picnic tables lined with flimsy paper napkins and a smattering of condiments. The menu is modern, Asian-inflected comfort food (it's helmed by Roy Choi), and it's all intended to be shared: Beer can chicken (complete with Kimchi) and Kitchen Fries (made from Korean sweet potatoes) are must-orders, as is the punch bowl (not to be attempted alone).

      • Grand Central Market

        Grand Central Market

        317 S. Broadway | 213.624.2378


        Built in 1917, restored in the '90s, and then revamped in the past few years, this downtown market—which has operated continually for the past century—still maintains its original façade in the Homer Laughlin Building. Nowadays, you'll find specialty shops like Belcampo Meat Co., Valerie Confections, Eggslut, and DTLA Cheese, along with small food joints serving up Mexican, Chinese, and Japanese food, ideal for the downtown office crowd and tourists alike.

      • Il Tramezzino

        Il Tramezzino

        454 N. Canon Dr. | 310.273.0501


        Affectionately known as "Il Trem," this is a great place to grab a sandwich on your way to check out all the commissioned architecture in the Rodeo Drive area: It's surrounded by Beverly Hill's most notable architectural gems, which include Frank Lloyd Wright's Anderton Court Shops from the ‘50s (one of his only forays into retail), and Rem Koolhaus and Ole Scheeren's 2004 Prada store on Rodeo Drive.

      • Perch


        448 S. Hill St. | 213.802.1770


        This terrace bar overlooks downtown's Pershing Square, the home of several prime examples of classic L.A. architecture including the art deco building it tops. It has a French, bistro-themed restaurant and all the cocktails you'd want, though the real draw here is the view.

      • Sycamore Kitchen

        Sycamore Kitchen

        143 S. La Brea Ave. | 323.939.0151


        Smack in the middle of the La Brea design corridor, the seating at this little sister to the Michelin-starred Hatfield's is almost entirely outdoors. The sweet and the savory camps are equally strong here: There's salted caramel pecan bapka and chocolate chip rye in the former, and a generous Farmhouse Chop Salad and Turkey Sandwich in the latter.

      • Father's Office

        Father's Office

        3229 Helms Ave. | 310.736.2224


        This popular burger joint—which fronts Helms Bakery's giant furniture shop, H.D. Buttercup—is just a stone's throw from Culver City's gallery scene. Order the Office Burger, complete with bacon, caramelized onions, gruyere, and blue cheese (no substitutions allowed), with a side of sweet potato fries, and one of an encyclopedia's worth of craft beers.

      • Lukshon


        3239 Helms Ave. | 310.202.6808


        This lovely, loft-like restaurant—located in the booming Helms Bakery complex—serves Southeast Asian fare that nimbly straddles tradition and inventiveness. Don't miss the crab fritters, which come with Singapore-chili jam, the spicy chicken that's served in the form of a pop, and the pork-laced dandan noodles. There are plenty of heat lamps on the patio, making this the perfect spot to dine outside.

      • Patina


        141 S. Grand Ave. | 213.972.3331


        Frank Gehry acolytes come from across the globe to see this curvaceous masterpiece—so why not make a meal of it. The buttoned-up Patina is the crown jewel in Joachim Splichal's empire of eateries at cultural institutions. Over the years, Patina has earned its fair share of Michelin stars, and now with young up-and-comer Charles Olalia at the helm, the artfully prepared French fare has been modernized.

      • Republique


        624 S. La Brea Ave. | 310.362.6115


        With long and star-studded resumes (Walter Manzke has worked at El Bulli, for one, while his wife, Margarita, worked at Melisse), nobody expected this ambitious duo's newest LA venture to be anything less than extraordinary. Occupying the former home of Campanile (i.e., Charlie Chaplin's film studio back in the '20s), the focus here is on French-inflected staples, like duck confit, oysters, and tartes flambées. The uni toast is insane, the baguettes are absurd (Margarita is a pastry-chef), and the space has been reworked beautifully: The heavy floor tiles and mahogany tables were all imported from The Philippines, where Margarita was born. (Should you ever find yourself in Manila, the Manzkes also have a small chain of successful cafés there called Wildflour.)

      • Tsujita LA

        Tsujita LA

        2057 Sawtelle Blvd. | 310-231-7373


        This L.A. outpost of a popular Japanese restaurant is somewhat of a mecca for noodle snobs: Made all the more elusive because Tsujita only serves their artisanal ramens at lunch (come dinner, it's traditional Japanese fare). Fortunately, they just opened an Annex on the opposite side of Sawtelle, where you can get bowls of Tsukemen-style ramen all day long.

      Hennessey + Ingall's Recommended Reading

      214 Wilshire Blvd. | 310.458.9074

      As the West Coast's largest art and architecture-centric bookstore, this is the sort of place where you can easily rack up excess baggage charges with beautiful coffee table books.

      • book1

        Never Built Los Angeles, Sam Lubell, Greg Goldin, Thom Mayne


        "This is a brand-new book that's really fascinating: These are architect ideas—from airport designs to theaters—of what would be wonderful buildings, houses, and commercial structures that were either impossible to build or never got funding."

      • book2

        Fashionable Selby, Todd Selby


        "This is a really interesting book of totally far-out designs. He does a lot of annotating in the book with his own writings and drawings."

      • book3

        Llyn Foulkes—A Retrospective, Ali Subotnik, Jim Lewis, Jason Weiss


        "Foulkes is a Pasadena artist who deals in multi-media, like found objects, paints, and clay. This is a great overview."

      • book4

        Iconic Vision: John Parkinson, Architect of Los Angeles, Stephen Gee


        "This book is devoted to John Parkinson's work from the '20s, '30s, and '40s—he designed Union Station, L.A. City Hall, and many other important institutions. It's a mix of vintage photographs and new color photographs, and is a great read about the early development of Los Angeles."

      • book5

        James Turrell Retrospective, Michael Govan


        "This is just a great book from the recent LACMA exhibit: It keeps selling and selling."

      • book6

        California Cool: Residential Modernism Reborn, Russell Abraham


        "This is a survey of the work of about 20 California architects and the houses they've build in the last decade: It includes designs from Dean Nota, Swatt - Miers, Jim Jennings, Scott Johnson, Kim Coleman, Craig Steely, Steven Shortridge and Jonathan Feldman."

      • Annenberg Photo Center

        Annenberg Photo Center

        2000 Ave. of the Stars | 213.403.3000


        A view of the Century Plaza Towers from below (the duo were designed by Minoru Yamasaki, the architect behind The World Trade Center, and the visual similarities are eery), and free admission are just bonuses: The photo exhibits here are both excellent and manageable. A stunning overview of National Geographic's 125-year history runs through the end of April.

      • Culver City Galleries

        Blum & Poe

        Culver City Galleries

        La Cienaga Ave. & Washington Ave.


        The art world's heaviest hitters all have a space here—Gagosian, Blum & Poe, Regen Projects. Unlike the rest of Los Angeles, which requires the use of a million valets, you can park and walk the triangle, making it the perfect way to spend an afternoon. When you've had your fill, head to the Mandrake for a drink, where gallerists and patrons wind down at the end of the day.

      • Frank Lloyd Wright Tour

        Ennis House

        Frank Lloyd Wright Tour

        Across L.A.


        While there are a handful of Frank Lloyd Wrights in L.A., none are currently open to the public (Hollyhock House is under renovation). That shouldn't deter you, though, as there are several “Textile Block” homes on the list, including Ennis House, which you'll likely recognize from Bladerunner. The house is composed of ornately stamped blocks inspired by Mayan temples that are so stunning, you won't care that you don't get to go inside.

      • MAK Center

        MAK Center

        835 N. Kings Rd. | 323.651.1510


        R.M. Schindler's 1920's home is the headquarters for this Art & Architecture Center. There are exhibitions and events throughout the year, but the main pull is visiting the house that Schindler designed as a communal live/work space. It's an icon of modern design.

      • Murphy Sculpture Garden

        Murphy Sculpture Garden

        UCLA Campus | 310.443.7041


        Sculptural works from the likes of Alexander Calder, Barbara Hepworth, Henri Mattisse, Isamu Noguchi, and others, sprawl across five acres of UCLA's campus. You can wander around yourself, or arrange a tour, though they book up far in advance.

      • Neutra VDL Studio and Residences

        Neutra VDL Studio and Residences

        2300 Silver Lake Blvd.


        Richard Neutra built the “VDL Research House I” in the '30s as a live/work space where he proved, with sweeping windows, that spatial limitations need not constrict one's lifestyle or budget. It's a premier example of modern architecture in California and is under continual renovation by researchers at Cal Poly Pomona; these same architecture students give excellent tours on Saturdays from 11 to 3.

      • Barnsdall Art Park

        Hollyhock House

        Barnsdall Art Park

        4800 Hollywood Blvd. | 323.644.6269


        Overlooking the Hollywood Hills and crowned by Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House, built in the early ‘20s for oil heiress Aline Barnsdall, this park draws locals and tourists alike for art classes, outdoor movies, and Friday afternoon wine tastings. Though the Hollyhock House is closed for renovations, the exterior is in plain sight and alone, justifies a visit.

      • Eames House

        Eames House

        203 Chautauqua Blvd. | 310.459.9663


        While it will cost you (a lot) to take a tour of the inside of Charles and Ray Eames' house/studio, it's pretty incredible to see how warmly this husband and wife team lived, as well as their iconic, modern furniture in situ. While indoor tours range from $275-$400 (depending on group size), it's only $10 to walk the grounds and see its iconic, Mondrian-esque exterior. Reservations for both are required.

      • Gamble House Tour

        Gamble House Tour

        4 Westmoreland Pl.| 626.793.3334


        An architectural survey of Los Angeles isn't complete without seeing the work of brothers Charles and Henry Greene who pioneered the Arts & Crafts movement in California. The Gamble House in Pasadena is a particularly outstanding specimen of their endemic architectural style, as Greene & Greene custom-designed every single joint and beam in this 1908 bungalow, from the remarkably crafted staircase, to the stained glass doors in the entryway, to the furniture and even the textiles—all full of references to the local natural surroundings. There's a standard hour-long tour, though architecture buffs and carpentry aficionados will appreciate the longer, more intensive options, one of which is led by a woodworker.

      • Mid-Century Modern Home Tour

        Crestwood Hills

        Mid-Century Modern Home Tour

        Trousdale Estates, Crestwood Hills,
        Mar Vista


        In the ‘40s, Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra and Rudolph Schindler were the catalysts that turned Los Angeles into a hotbed for modernist architecture. Today, you'll find entire neighborhoods full of their work. Start at the Trousdale Estates in Beverly Hills where you'll see some of the glitzier (but still, generally one-story) specimens by Paul Williams, Wallace Neff, A. Quincy Jones, and more. Next, head to Brentwood's Crestwood Hills, where, besides the occasional Frank Lloyd Wright or Richard Meier, you'll see 30-plus A. Quincy Jones homes, all part of the Mutual Housing Association's planned neighborhood from the ‘50s. Finally, drive the two streets in Mar Vista known for their low-slung, modest “Modernique” homes, a case study project pioneered by Gregory Ain.

      • Santa Monica Museum of Art

        © Copyright Santa Monica Museum of Art, Photo by Elizabeth Pezza

        Santa Monica Museum of Art

        Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave. | 310.586.6488


        Though its much less sung than its bigger museum brethren, the Santa Monica Art Museum, which anchors the corner of the gallery-packed Bergamot Station, is always showing something interesting—plus it's boutique-sized, meaning it won't eat up much of your day.

      Art & Architecture
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      The perfect songs to get you in the right frame-of-mind.

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      • A + R

        A + R

        1121 Abbot Kinney Blvd. | 171 S. La Brea Ave. | 800.913.0071


        Though this design shop got its start in a space on Abbot Kinney, a huge, second outpost on La Brea is finally letting A + R stretch its legs a bit, and show larger pieces, like Bend Good's metal chairs and Scholten & Baijings' techni-colored rugs. It's all arranged with smaller, more suitcase-appropriate picks, like Hay's Kaleido trays and Y'a Pas Le Feu Au Lac's vases.

      • Just One Eye

        Just One Eye

        7000 Romaine St. | 888.563.6858


        Launched last year by Maxfield's former fashion director, Paola Russo, Just One Eye is an example of a gallery-cum-boutique that's executed perfectly. The racks are sparingly stocked with labels like The Row, Proenza Schouler, and Tsumori Chisato, you can snap up Warhol prints and Calder carpets, and there are always spot-on art/fashion collaborations, the most recent of which are painter Nate Lowman's limited-run Converse chucks.

      • Noodle Stories

        Noodle Stories

        8323 W. 3rd St. | 323.651.1782


        This airy, all-white space is a fitting back-drop for the avant-garde lines on offer: Here you'll find Maison Martin Margiela dresses, asymmetrical tanks and tees from Clu, and Comme des Garçons jackets. There's a Noodle Stories temporary space down the street that's singularly devoted to Issey Miyake.

      • RTH


        537 & 529 La Cienaga Blvd. | 310.289.7911


        Styled like an other-worldly trading post, RTH takes much of its inspiration from the Southwest. It makes sense, as he owner (and designer), René Holguin, hails from El Paso and did stints at Ralph Lauren, J.Crew, and Levi's before setting out on his own. There's a house line of perfectly aged leather bags, smocks, and Liberty print scarves, along with seed bead pins and bracelets.

      • Des Kohan

        Des Kohan

        671 Cloverdale Ave. | 323.857.0200


        With her unerring eye for architectural and envelope-pushing labels, Desiree Kohan has amassed a stable of unique designers—Juan Carlos Obando, Osman Yousefzada, Damir Doma—that you can't find anywhere else. Everything is airily arranged in her light-filled space, which is tucked out-of-the-way near Museum Mile. Beyond the beautiful clothing, Des will always help you put a look together.

      • Mameg


        9970 S. Santa Monica Blvd. | 310.556.2600


        Mameg is tucked away behind the mirror-fronted Maison Martin Margiela on Little Santa Monica, and should you not know to look, you'd never know it was there. But search it out, and you'll find a pretty rarified world. Here Eatable of Many Orders sweaters mingle with Cosmic Wonders dresses, and Jil Sander cardigans rest next to Hussein Chalayan hats.

      • OK Store

        OK Store

        8303 W. Third St. | 323.653.6301


        Everything at this long-standing, architecturally-minded boutique—from Noguchi lamps, to Heath bud vases, to Alice Park wallets—would look just right inside, say, a Schindler or a Neutra home. The emphasis is on great gifts (almost everything comes pre-gift wrapped in basic brown butcher paper), whether it's a framed beetle or Carl Aubock designed book-ends.

      • Tortoise General Store

        Tortoise General Store

        1208 Abbot Kinney Blvd. | 310.314.8448


        Taku and Keiko Shinomoto, the owners and curators of this much-loved shop, urge customers to slow down (like the animal the store is named for) and enjoy life's small pleasures. The focus here is on everyday items, made beautiful, whether it's gardening shears, beautiful Tenugui cloth napkins, coffee grinders, or sake pitchers.

    • Health-Conscious

      People may laugh at L.A.'s juice-cleansing, namasté-ing, ways, but the thrilling reality of sunny, 75-degree days is no joke. Here, vegan food, daybreak hikes, and artisan-made goods—which can pretty much all be enjoyed al fresco. See everything on one map.

      • Shutters on the Beach
      • Shutters on the Beach

        1 Pico Blvd. | 310.458.0030


        Shutters may look like it was lifted straight out of Cape Cod, but a quick survey of the endless sand out front suggests otherwise. Excessively-comfortable, elevated beds may make it harder to get up in the morning, but should you manage to get your running shoes on, an ocean-side path stretches miles in either direction. Bike rental kiosks dot the beach and there's obviously welcoming surf just a few steps away—it really don't get much better.

      • Axe


        1009 Abbot Kinney Blvd. | 310.664.9787


        Dotted with simple wood tables and benches, and perfectly earthy Heath Ceramics plates, everything here is both considered and low-key. We could wax poetic about their entire, locally-sourced menu, from the 9-grain pancake to the flatbread and spreads to the sake-marinated filet of beef. If you can, snag a table outside.

      • Kippy's Ice Cream Shop

        Kippy's Ice Cream Shop

        326 Lincoln Blvd. | 310.399.4871


        While Kippy's Ice Cream is a bit of a trek from the center of Venice (it's on Lincoln Boulevard, across the street from Whole Foods), this tiny storefront is what vegan dreams are made of. Their completely organic, coconut-based ice cream is made from fresh, locally-sourced fruit, and sweetened with raw honey. Our picks: Mojito, plain and simple, or Strawberry Coconut with Chocolate Magic Shell Topping—after all, it's essentially good for you.

      • Malibu Farm Pier Café

        Malibu Farm Pier Café

        23000 Pacific Coast Hwy | 310.456.1112


        Located at the end of the Malibu Pier, you can watch surfers as you munch on organic and locally-sourced salads, grass-fed burgers, and crab cakes. This is the perfect pitstop after a leisurely Malibu hike.

      • Moon Juice

        Moon Juice

        507 Rose Ave. | 310.399.2929
        2839 W Sunset Blvd. | 213.908.5407


        Situated in a storefront no larger than a walk-in closet, Moon Juice kind of feels like a new-age pharmacy. There, you'll find tonics for every malady or desire (we swear the turmeric cup, with cayenne pepper, black pepper oil, and oil of oregano will kick any cold). All this cold-pressed goodness doesn't come cheap (the green shake will set you back $14), but it's all delicious and effective.

      • The Trails Café

        The Trails Café

        2333 Fern Dell Dr. | 323.871.2102


        While The Trails Café in Griffith Park is a bit out-of-the-way, it's the perfect pitstop before a hike up to the art deco observatory (and its sweeping views of L.A.). The avocado sandwich is epic, particularly when enjoyed at a picnic table amongst the trees and string lights.

      • Café Gratitude

        Café Gratitude

        639 Larchmont Blvd. | 323.580.6383
        512 Rose Ave. | 424.231.8000 2


        Everything on the menu is an affirmation, so if you can stifle the giggles at names like "I Am Connected"—which is actually an amazing zucchini cilantro hummus—you'll find that the vegan food here is delicious, even for those who normally refuse to go meat and dairy-free. There are picks for every sensibility, from coffee milkshakes (made with almond milk), to cashew cheese topped corn tacos to Indian curried lentils. There are two locations—Hancock Park and Venice—and the Café Gratitude team just opened Gracias Madre, a Mexican iteration in Hollywood.

      • Crossroads


        8284 Melrose Ave. | 323.782.9245


        For whatever reason, vegan food never seems to get the upscale touch—but not so at Tal Ronnen's newest venture, a dimly-lit, luxurious bistro that serves sublimely inventive fare. It's also a major scene, which would probably only happen at a vegan restaurant in LA. There's no mention on the menu of the fact that every dish is plant-based: Hearts of palm masquerade as crab cakes and calamari, and almonds pretend they're cheese. Without the clever naming conventions, the food would still stand on its own. In short: You won't miss dairy or meat. There are also lots of workarounds for the gluten-intolerant as well.

      • Gjelina


        1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd.


        It's been five years, but Gjelina—a restaurant that ushered in a new sort of veggie-centric California cuisine—is as mobbed as ever. The crowds make a lot of sense: Everything is always excellent, from the aforementioned vegetable sides to the whisper-thin jalapeño and smoked mozzarella pizza. Come when they open so you can snag a table on the patio out back. (If the lines are too long, grab something to-go at GTA, their take-away spot next door.)

      • Shima


        1432 Abbot Kinney Blvd. | 310.314.0882


        Tucked away behind an unmarked gate (only visible because of its smattering of lanterns), Shima flies wonderfully under the radar on a street full of high-profile restaurants. At this elegant Japanese spot, you'll find brown rice sushi that's mouth wateringly fresh. Menu adds like spicy lotus root and mushrooms sautéed in white truffle oil make this more than your typical sushi spot.

      DIESEL, A Bookstore's Recommended Reading

      225 26th St. | 310.576.9960
      23410 Civic Center Way | 310.456.9961

      With two ideal, L.A.-area locations—one in the Brentwood Country Mart, the second in the Malibu Country Mart—these bookstores are the perfect size. Manageable in scope, but packed with classics and must-reads, it's rare to leave with only one book in tow.

      • book1

        Crazy for the Storm, Norman Ollestad


        "Riveting, visceral memoir at it's best. After surviving a deadly plane crash high in a California mountain range, an 11-year-old Ollestad must rely on his extreme experiences from surfing and skiing with his father in the 1970's."

      • book2

        Inherent Vice, Thomas Pynchon


        "This is Pynchon's drug fueled and hilarious homage to Los Angeles noir. A very fun, accessible, and wacky take on the Westside by a great American novelist."

      • book3

        Secret Stairs: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles, Charles Fleming


        "This awesome book that reveals all the locations of L.A.'s famous staircases. Great for incredible views, fitness, and people watching."

      • book4

        The Wave, Susan Casey


        "The story of the surfers and the scientists who chase epic waves. A vivid look at the ocean at its most extreme, and the people who put themselves in its way."

      • book5

        The History of Surfing, Matt Warshaw


        "In this coffee table book, Warshaw lays out the entire history of surfing. It's a brilliant and colorful story that every beach bum should know, even if they were born with saltwater in their blood and a surfboard in their arms."

      • book6

        City of Style, Melissa Magsaysay


        "This is a popular guide to quintessential LA fashion: Everything from surfer cool to Silver Lake bohemian."

      • Brentwood Village Farmer's Market

        Brentwood Village Farmer's Market

        741 S. Gretna Green Way | 818.591.8286


        No matter if you're visiting and don't have a fridge to stock: Beyond the fruit and veggie stands, this neighborhood farmer's market offers all sorts of organic prepared foods, like gluten- and dairy-free treats from Coco Bakes, hummus from Mom's, and amazing fresh tamales. There's also a petting zoo for the kids.

      • Paseo Miramar Hike

        Paseo Miramar Hike

        Pacific Palisades


        This five-mile round trip hike gives epic views of the ocean—the trailhead is at Paseo Miramar just off Sunset, making it easy to get too, as well (just park on the street). Then, end your trip with gluten-free pancakes at Café Vida.

      • Surf Lessons

        Surf Lessons

        Venice, Santa Monica, and Malibu


        El Porto, Sunset Beach, and Point Dume are probably the most talked about swells along the Los Angeles/Malibu coastline, but you don't necessarily need to be a pro to surf them (for Point Dume, you do need to have a key, unless you paddle over from one of the adjacent beaches). Fortunately, L.A. is packed with surf instructors. You can find one just by walking out to the beach in front of Shutters, though friends swear by Chris "Crash" Carson, who will swim out with you and push you in, making it an all around fun and successful endeavor.

      • Yogaworks


        Multiple Locations


        There are hundreds of Los Angeles yoga studios (including the original Bikram), though it's hard to beat Yogaworks for their breadth of studios and wealth of classes. (There are about a dozen outposts in LA). We like Vinny's classes best.

      • Inspiration Point Hike

        Inspiration Point Hike

        1501 Will Rogers State Park Rd. | 310.454.8212


        If you've got little ones in tow, or only an hour or so to stretch your legs, this hike is your ticket: It's under 2.5 miles, and starts and ends in the stunning Will Rogers State Park (which is also perfect for a picnic).

      • Sunset Ranch Hollywood

        Sunset Ranch Hollywood

        3400 N. Beachwood Dr. | 323.469.5450


        Sure, you can drive to the base of the Hollywood sign, but why not horseback ride around it instead? Located in Griffith Park, Sunset Ranch leads one- or two-hour trail rides, offering unparalleled vistas of Hollywood (and the sign). Kids, in particular, love this adventure.

      • Temescal Canyon Hike

        Temescal Canyon Hike

        15900 Pacific Coast Hwy


        There's a seasonal waterfall on this 2.5 to 4.6 mile trail (we like to do the Skullrock extension to get in a bigger workout)—and there's also stunning water views. It's a dog-free trail, great for kids, and parking is simple (there's a lot at the bottom that costs $7).

      • Venice Canal Walk

        Venice Canal Walk

        Court A to Court E


        In the early 1900s, Abbot Kinney resolved to make a “Venice of America,” and decided to turn modern-day Venice into a system of canals. While many of the waterways have been filled in during the intervening years, a small patch remains—though they had fallen into disrepair, they were restored in the ‘90s, and are now lined with some of Venice's fanciest homes. It's a totally random yet awesome enclave, and worth a stroll on a nice day.

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      • The Detox Market

        The Detox Market

        8380 Beverly Blvd. | 323.782.0421


        Situated next to the Beverly Hills Juice Club, this simple and well-organized shop is a veritable mecca for safe cosmetics and skincare. Founded to combat the idea that some of the most toxic elements in a woman's life come straight from her beauty products, they sell lines such as RMS, Ilia, Rahua, and Odacité.

      • Zulu Tattoo

        Zulu Tattoo

        165 S. Crescent Heights Blvd. | 323.782.9977


        Although there are many famous tattoo parlors in Hollywood, Zulu is different: Here, the ink is vegan and eco-friendly, and they pride themselves on working with you to bring out the sacred marking within. It's a totally unintimidating experience.

      • The General Store

        The General Store

        1801 Lincoln Blvd. | 310.751.6393


        AWhile its unlikely location on a grungy strip of Lincoln Boulevard keep this spot slightly under-the-radar, The General Store always justifies the trip. While it's set in a big lofty space that could theoretically hold hundreds of items, the impeccably-curated store is an exercise in restraint: You'll find hand-done ceramics, brass trivets, thread wrapped bows and arrows, and rare, vintage books.

      • Heist


        1100 Abbot Kinney Blvd. | 310.450.6531


        While many stores on Abbot Kinney quickly come and go, Heist has become a long-standing staple, evolving and expanding with the ever-changing Venice. The large, modern boutique brims with labels both well-loved and still-unknown: You'll find a huge range of Isabel Marant and Raquel Allegra, along with Newbark, Golden Goose, and Crippen.

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