Following on from Part1 of our USA Guide we are now heading to LaLaLand so don your Raybans and denim cut-offs and get ready to party – SoCal style!
WHERE TO STAY – LUXURY
– HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD, LA
I stayed here the first time I visited LA and my my, what a wonder this hotel is. Being the site of the first ever Oscar’s ceremony back in the day I knew it would be everything you would look for in a hotel and indeed it was. The monochrome décor rooms made me want to redecorate as soon as I got home, the location is ideal – across the road from the Kodak Theatre, a shopping mall and The Chinese Grauman’s Theatre, and the hotel has the infamous Teddy’s Club (hotel guests can get into the club and party with its celeb clientele), and the Tropicana Bar sits alongside the sun-loungers and pool – an ideal way to lie-back and drink a cocktail, or 2 and bask in the California sunshine. www.thompsonhotels.com/hotels/la/hollywood-roosevelt
WHERE TO STAY – BUDGET
– 5920 HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD, LA
LA isn’t as expensive as NY to stay in and you can find many budget hotels that will cater for all your LA needs. The Banana Bungalows is a hip & funky hostel based in the furor of Hollywood Boulevard and features dormitory style rooms as well as single rooms. Facilities include free continental breakfast, a bistro, small store, communal kitchen, internet access, gym, laundry, swimming pool, library and car rental agency. Movies are shown nightly on a large screen TV, parties thrown throughout the week and free shuttles provided to area attractions. www.bananabungalow.com
WHERE TO SHOP – VINTAGE
–1001 ROSEBOWL DRIVE, PASADENA, LA
Every second Sunday of the month, LA descends on the Rosebowl Flea Market to pick up some flea market bargains. Flea Markets are the equivalent of a masssssive car boot sale with wares such as clothes, jewellery, antiques, home furnishings: and with over 2,500 vendors – you could spend a whole day here.
WHERE TO SHOP – DESIGNER
– BEVERLY HILLS, LA
Yes, yes, indeed this is the street from the infamous Pretty Woman scenes. Surrounded by palm trees, open-top cars and wads of money, Rodeo Drive is a haven for all fashion-loving, designer label loving hipsters. Chanel, Dior, Cartier, Armani, Gucci, Harry Winston, Prada, Tiffany’s and Versace all have branches on this infamous, world renowned drive with every A-Lister worth her Jimmy Choo’s shopping here as well. An LA must-see!
WHERE TO SHOP – FOR SHOPAHOLICS
– 8500 BEVERLY BOULEVARD, LA
With over 160 specialty boutique stores such as Diesel, Louis Vuitton, Thomas Sabo, Tous, Banana Republic, Burberry, H&M, GUESS?, Prada, Victoria’s Secret and department stores Macy’s and Bloomingdales: designer and high-street fanatics will LOVE this mall. www.beverlycenter.com
WHERE TO GO FOR TV FANS
– 100 UNIVERAL CITY PLAZA, LA
I checked out the Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Carson Daly Show last time I was there where you get to sit in the audience of world-famous chat shows. The lovely Ellen De Generes has her show on this lot too which was also the set for shows such as E.R. Warner Brothers do electric cart tours of the lot where you can check all these studios out and see the sets for current TV shows such as Two and a Half Men, The Mentalist, and Chuck. www.vipstudiotour.warnerbros.com
WHERE TO GO FOR PEOPLE WATCHING
So-Cal at its best! There is no better place for people-watching – or rollerblading for that matter – than sunny Venice Beach. The Venice Beach Boardwalk is infamous so make sure you check out all the little shops, cafes and performers along it before checking out the Pacific Ocean waves (and the lifeguards) on one of the dreamiest beaches in the world.