Los Angeles, California, is the ultimate vacation destination. During the day you can spend time on beautiful beaches ideal for surfing, swimming or relaxing, hit up the world’s best shopping strip (Hello, Sunset Blvd!) and spend hours celebrity spotting in cafes and restaurants. At night the city comes alive, and stars mingle with civilians at some of LA’s coolest night spots. Here’s the lowdown on how to enjoy the most exclusive side of LA.
Swap or Rent LA’s Coolest Properties
West Hollywood is LA’s unofficial capital of cool, and sometimes all the glamour and excitement can be a little overwhelming. So it’s nice to stay somewhere quiet where you can escape. Nestled on a tree-lined street within walking distance of Santa Monica Blvd, the house has everything you’ll need for a relaxing stay – even a piano for those who like to unwind by tinkling the ivories.
Residents of Los Feliz, LA’s hipster capital, enjoy access to the nearby Griffith Park, with its magnificent observatory and hiking paths teeming with nature. This chic, 1920s colonial property fits in perfectly with the neighbourhood – and it’s right across from the park, where you might just spot local girl Kristen Stewart. Spend time roasting smores by the outdoor fireplace or cosy up indoors with a book.
At this gorgeous home in centrally located Mar Vista you’ll have access to a private garden, pool, and gym. This architecturally designed home is 10 minutes from the local hot neighbourhoods Venice Beach, Beverly Hills, and Santa Monica. At this gorgeous home in centrally located Mar Vista you’ll have access to a private garden, pool, and gym. This architecturally designed home is 10 minutes from the local hot neighbourhoods Venice Beach, Beverly Hills, and Santa Monica.
Dine with the Stars
This exclusive restaurant serves some of the finest foods in the star-studded LA suburb of Brentwood (hence the name). Featuring dark woods, sultry amber lighting and cozy leather chairs, this hip eatery serves some of LA’s finest food. The fries are legendary, and the chef’s salad also draws acclaim. But make sure you save plenty of room for dessert, be it banana split, chocolate bread pudding, or strawberry cobbler.
Hot Tip: Make a reservation if you’re arriving in a big group, or you’ll be faced with long wait times, particularly on the weekends.
Old Hollywood glamor seeps out of every crack in the walls – this grand old hotel has seen stars of every generation. This is the place where stars James Dean and Natalie Wood met rehearsing for Rebel Without a Cause, and where Elizabeth Taylor booked out the penthouse to help Montgomery Clift recuperate.
An afternoon soaking up some history – and some sun – by the pool will almost certainly be sprinkled with a few celebrity sightings, so pony up for the $20 drinks and enjoy this oasis just off the Sunset Strip. Recent celebrity sightings include Lady Gaga, Lindsay Lohan, Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Tobey Maguire.
Waterloo and City
Located just down the road from Mar Vista in nearby Culver City, Waterloo & City is a high-end British gastropub that serves delicious, hearty meals in a laid-back but classy environment. Celebrated UK chef Brendan Collins serves up traditional “pub grub” like Chicken pot pie alongside British traditional desserts like sticky toffee pudding and his signature homemade doughnuts, served warm.
Hot Tip: Come before 7pm for exclusive happy hour deals, featuring half-priced appetizers and $5 glasses of wine.
The Short Stop
Located in the heart of Echo Park, near the corner of Sunset and Echo Park Ave, The Short Stop is part-dive bar, part dance floor. The drinks are cheap, the people are chill, and the atmosphere inviting. Get down with local scenesters and make friends by challenging them to a game of pool or pinball.
Hot Tip: Come before or after taking in the game at the nearby Dodger stadium.
If you’re looking for somewhere local to drink after your dinner, Bar Stella opened last year to great acclaim from locals. Expert mixologists prepare sumptuous cocktails that go down a treat. Yes, they’re a little on the expensive side, but that allows you to really savour the drinks – and the atmosphere.
Hot Tip: Saturday evening always gets a little crowded, so stop by here early on before heading out to dinner or the club.
One of LA’s most exclusive restaurants, CUT lies inside the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. It’s almost impossible to get a reservation unless you have one movie coming out and another one already in theatres – but that’s because this is the A-listers’ preferred restaurant. Eva Longoria is a big fan of Wolfgang’s signature steak, even going so far as to open her own female-oriented steakhouse in Vegas.
Hot Tip: Start pitching those movie ideas now!