From ritzy Beverly Hills to hip Silverlake to bohemian Venice, Los Angeles is one of the most dynamic—not to mention sprawling—metropolitan areas in the country. With an overwhelming number of places to eat, drink, stay, and play (and see celebs), it takes some strategizing to even make a dent in the list of must-hit spots in the City of Angeles.
Anything Kelly Wearstler puts her stylish stamp on is going to be stunning—and the Santa Monica Proper Hotel certainly fits that description. Lauded by locals and out-of-towners, this luxurious yet laid-back 271-key property turns heads with its coastal California-meets-Art Deco design. It also has three restaurants, a posh spa, and a rooftop pool deck.
An Instagram-worthy hangout on a side street just off Hollywood Boulevard in Los Feliz, the Cara Hotel feels like a hidden gem (although, tastemakers certainly know it well). The leafy, tree-accented central courtyard invites guests to linger longer. Rooms and suites are equally breezy. Besides being undeniably aesthetically pleasing, this intimate East Side oasis is also super chill with warm service to match.
Farmshop goes all in on California cuisine. The restaurant menu celebrates seasonal ingredients for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The bakery and market hit the same high notes with housemade baked goods, gourmet prepared food, and artisanal specialty products (rarely have we been so excited about a condiment selection).
An essential Los Angeles restaurant, République is one of those rare unicorns in the dining world that’s vibey, well-designed, and delicious. Not surprisingly, it’s always bustling (and has been for years). That’s because locals keep coming back for the pastries, baguettes, and French bistro fare.
Why would you drive to Encino for sushi when there are so many top-notch spots in more central neighborhoods? Because the newly opened Sushi by Scratch Restaurants is worth contending with traffic for the anything-but-traditional omakase-inspired nigiri and beverage pairings served in an intimate 10-seat space.
A classic for good reason, Laurel Hardware is a West Hollywood staple that’s known for its wildly creative cocktails like the lavender margarita—which comes with the option to add a swirl of malbec—a well-curated wine list, and tasty nibbles. It’s a great spot for happy hour or drinks that inevitably extends into dinner
We find ourselves returning to Bar Bandini in Echo Park because of the interesting selection of natural wines from small, local California producers and lack of attitude. This cozy neighborhood joint that’s covered in dark wood also has awesome outdoor space and hosts free comedy shows on Wednesday nights.
Without question one of the best places to go hiking in greater Los Angeles, Griffith Park covers 4,210 acres of wild and landscaped natural beauty. There are scenic hikes that range in difficulty levels and length (Mount Hollywood is a must). It’s also home to the world-famous Griffith Observatory and the Los Angeles Zoo.
Housed inside an eye-popping building designed by architectural firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro, The Broad displays an absolutely dazzling collection of contemporary art from big names like Andy Warhol, Cindy Sherman, Jeff Koons, and more. The fact that it offers free general admission gives visitors an excuse to buy a few more cool souvenirs at the gift shop.
Our perfect Sunday in LA looks like an early morning hike, brunch, and then spending the afternoon sifting through the racks for treasures at Melrose Trading Post. The weekly open-air market at Fairfax High School is a local favorite with vendors selling everything from vintage clothes to original artwork.
Los Angeles has a lot of pinch-me places. The Getty Villa is very much one of them. Located in the upscale seaside community of Pacific Palisades, it’s a grand museum that’s built to look like an ancient Roman country house. So visitors can admire antiquities from Greece and Rome and stroll through manicured gardens while soaking in spectacular ocean views.
The most recognizable street in Venice, palm-framed Abbot Kinney Boulevard runs from Washington Boulevard to Main Street. The walkable, mile-long strip is lined with fashionable boutiques, galleries, and buzzy restaurants such as Gjelina and Felix Trattoria.
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