845 S. Broadway, Downtown
With Francesco Fucci (formerly of The Row) at the helm, things are about to get a lot more exciting over at Theory, which is quietly shedding any vestiges of its wear-to-work basics past. This new 1,600-square-foot space in DTLA is meant to support the brands fresh new point of view—it will play host to collaborations, new product innovations, and a rotating roster of events. No doubt urban storefront with its the concrete walls, steel columns, and big windows will serve as the ideal backdrop for the luxurious wide-leg pants, car coats, and midi-dresses that Fucci dreamt up for spring 2019.
400 S. Main St., Downtown
Chef Josef Centeno scored hits with his DTLA restaurants Bäco Mercat and Bar Amá, and he’s done it again with his latest venture, P.Y.T. It sits next door to those two and across the street from another Centeno restaurant, Orsa & Winston, but here, vegetables are the stars of the menu. Ingredients are sourced mostly from an urban farm in nearby Montecito Heights, and used in dishes like charred cauliflower with lemon and walnuts, cold smoked baby carrots, and a perfectly-roasted sweet potato with nori butter and apples. Still, the place isn’t entirely meat-free. If your fellow diners are craving some protein, there’s the grilled kanpachi with seasonal greens, citrus and fried lentils, and a pork collar steak with French potatoes. We also love the space—with its soaring ceilings, huge windows that let in plenty of sunlight, and big, potted ficus trees, it almost feels like you’re eating outside.
Los Angeles Yoga Club
1206 Maple Ave., Downtown
The Los Angeles Yoga Club is a traditional Ashtanga yoga school that follows the teachings of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois (an Indian yogi and Sanskrit scholar who’s credited with bringing Ashtanga into the mainstream). A sister school to Eddie Stern’s Brooklyn Yoga Club, the aim is to assist students in the development of their personal practice, with the disclaimer that it’s within a class setting. This sounds unusual, but it works in the sense that yogis take the asanas at their own speed, and the focus is on personal form and ability rather than keeping up with everyone else. This type of self-practice has all—or at least most—of the benefits of a one-to-one class minus the price tag.
1124 San Julian St., Downtown
LA has no shortage of incredible Italian restaurants—Mozza, Bestia, Officine Brera to name a few—but Rossoblu has a very distinct specialty: Bolognese-style food. You won’t find a long list of pizzas on the menu; the focus is on Bologna’s culinary claim to fame, which is handmade pasta—and lots of it. Chef Steve Samson’s tortellini in brodo—a mix of ground pork, chicken, mortadella, prosciutto, and a little umami-rich Parmesan to bind—are salty and satisfying. The pappardelle is swirled into a rich sausage ragu and peppered with shreds of broccoli. For secondi (come hungry and order a proper four courses), the milk-braised pork and cabbage so caramelized, it’s almost sweet. The cavernous, warehouse-like space is totally at home downtown, with a full patio out front for long summer nights.
HotBox Infrared Sauna Studio
835 S. Hill St., Downtown
The first thing you'll notice when you walk into this sauna studio is how spotless it is. Impeccable, in fact. That can be said of the décor, as well: A streamlined, all-white aesthetic reigns—up until you enter one of the sauna suites. Here, you can choose to cast a colored light based on your mood (we chose orange for its mood-elevating, stimulating, feel-good effect) during your sweat. Then you sit back and do just that—sweat—for forty-five minutes. Each suite comes with an iPod and a vitamin C–infused rain shower. Given the potential benefits of using an infrared sauna, there are plenty of reasons to come here. But what keeps us hooked is simple: We always leave feeling calmer, clearer, and just all-around better. (An added perk: HotBox just started carrying goopglow.)
The NoMad Hotel Los Angeles
649 S. Olive St., Downtown
You know a hotel is doing something right when the locals are rushing to book staycations. that's exactly what happened when New York's NoMad made its way to LA. The LA outpost is in a former bank building on Olive Street (the massive vault in the basement now leads to the restrooms), and the lushly decorated ground floor is where you'll find the lobby restaurant and coffee shop. Both are excellent, but for dinner, you want to be up in the Mezzanine. The rooms, with their freestanding tubs, marble counters, and floral fainting couches, have been known to send overnight guests home with heads full of redecorating plans. And while room service is as standard a room amenity as, say, a flat-screen TV, here the experience is elevated to an art form. Everything on the menu is a slam dunk—though several goop staffers have come back from staycations waxing poetic about the breakfast sandwich.
500 Mateo St., Downtown
Chefs Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis (both of Bestia fame, still, after all these years, a hard table to land) have opened Bavel. The duo’s roots span Israel, Morocco, Turkey, and Egypt, so the menu has a strong Middle Eastern bent. There’s the expected hummus, baba ghanoush, and assorted flatbreads, in addition to a Wagyu beef tagine and grilled lamb, finished in Menashe’s signature flavor-happy style—all meant to be shared. And because interiors can be just as much of a draw as the food, particularly downtown, where raw and industrial spaces prevail, Gergis tapped Studio UNLTD to collaborate on the light and bright décor (skylights, hanging planters, whitewashed brick walls, brass fixtures, and Moroccan tiles). Food photos: Nicole Franzen. Interior photos: DYLAN + JENI.
416 W. 8th St., Downtown
The Freehand is a thoroughly modern interpretation of the hostel-meets-hotel concept in DTLA.
225 S. Garey St., Downtown
A decade ago, the heading to Garey Street–a warehouse-packed, somewhat desolate stretch in DTLA–for dinner wouldn’t have even been an option. Now it's a go-to, thanks, in part, to nearby Hauser & Wirth gallery, Wurstküche, and most recently this chic robatayaki restaurant. The space is modern through and through, with custom oak furniture complemented by handmade glazed tiles and tons of greenery. The layout is anchored by a huge central grill, which also has some of the best seats in house (you can watch the chefs flame-grill your prawns). With your drink order taken care of by a can’t-go-wrong list of Japanese beers and sake, you can turn all your focus to the food menu. Anything you order will be great, but don’t miss the salmon fillet with grapefruit and romaine with spicy cashew miso. This is a good option for celebrating with a large group.
Hipcooks East Los Angeles
642 Moulton Ave., Downtown
Monika Reti, owner and founder of Hipcooks, has a gift for bringing people together. Her classes–some taught by her, others by her brilliant culinary staff–are equal parts art lesson, community gathering, and culinary experience (one goop staffer describes it as the best dinner party–only better). “When you cook for someone, it’s an artistic expression,” Reit says. “It’s a feast for all the senses.” At every session, guests take part in the entire process of the meal, from the prep, to the cooking, to the gathering at the table to dine (with wine, of course). The all-inclusive experience was Reit’s vision when she founded Hipcooks back in 2004 after leaving her job as an economist. Fast forward more than a decade, and there are seven Hipcooks outposts, including three in the LA area (the DTLA location is the original location), all of which offer a range of globally inspired cooking lessons, from Thai, to Argentinian, to Persian, that ultimately support the idea that there’s an inner chef in all of us.
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