California, especially an enourmous City like Los Angeles, was always something that inspired me somehow. You’ll see tons of different People every day, even just like sitting in a cafe, and I caught myself many times wondering about their stories. LA is for sure the City of dreams for most, awaiting to get lucky and be discovered. Some People will succeed, others won’t. Others will Keep on trying for the rest of their lives.
Well, I didn’t come to LA to become famous, I literally wouldn’t have any idea where to start. I came back for the third time, just to be here. Actually just to BE. I love the vibe, the different parts of the City, you can catapult yourself in different worlds in the same place and have a bunch of good conversations. I have a lot of friends that have been here already, and everyone tells me to get a car. Why? I mean, don’t get me wrong, I could totally have needed a car if I wanted to go way out of town and see places around that are far away. But I wanted to stay in the City, I wanted the Feeling to be part of it, and I wanted to be surrounded by normal People. It’s nice to get a car that brings you fast to your main Destination, but actually you could miss a lot on the journey itself.
So I went by bus (yeah, by bus!), and it really isn’t bad. I didn’t have big schedules or appointments, so I really enjoyed the rides that took me around one hour everytime for a very fair Price ($1.75).
All I wanted was to relax, so one of the first Thing I’ve done was getting a spa day, including massages, the whole mani-pedi stuff that I wouldn’t do in Switzerland. I even got a shampoo at a salon because I thought it fitted to the whole day 🙂
My rental was in West Hollywood, well surrounded by Shops and Restaurant. And the very famous madness of the Walk of Fame was a couple of minutes walk away. After regenerating from a hard year (I know, it seems I live a golden life but it can also get a wee stressful sometimes :D), I decided to take my friend Sandra and wander around to a couple of places that really are my favourites here in LA.
I love Venice. I really do. It’s one of those places I would like to live. It’s a colorful place right on the ocean, covered in streetart, that embraces People from every class and race. It doesen’t seem to matter what you’re wearing, or if you feel weird: you’ll find another Person weirder than yourself a couple of seconds later. You feel accepted. And it’s a beautiful place as well. I’ve seen the best sunsets here, and I wasn’t disappointed this time too. You can see how the sky gets pinker, and the colours really Change until the sun is totally disappeared. Venice offers a couple of good places to hang out as well. Treat yourself well and have a drink during sunset on the Roof of Hotel Erwin, or get a coffee just before hitting the sometimes very busy boardwalk at Cafe Collage, or if you’re hungry, just have a seat facing the ocean at one of the waterfront Restaurants. There is a mexican sugar skull store that’s absolutely to die for! I already bought two handmade pieces for my Apartment.
Santa Monica is reachable from Venice in an approximately 45 minutes walk along the boardwalk. You can really see how the mood changes from beachy-hippie-whatever place to a very cute, more luxurious quarter. The Pier, at the very end of route 66 is a must for every Tourist. I’ve been there several times already and I like it how you’re able to walk out over the water, go and Play games or just have a bite. Santa Monica offers also a lot for Shopping, and they really have good (italian, sorry!) coffee on 3rd street in a place just in front of the Nike store. Thai Dishes is another good Restaurant for a bite if you find yourself in the area.
|Meeting my friend Will in Santa Monica|
I went to Santee Alley the first time. I had no idea. Usually People told me NOT to hit downtown LA. This place is crazy! You’re basically not in California anymore, you’re in Mexico. But you know what? It’s fun! If you’re not afraid of People screaming around (because it’s normal, not because their angry), then go! It’s a big marketplace that includes clothing stores, 1$ places to buy the impossible, and eat some real street tacos.
Where To Sleep
Hollywood: If you wanna stay in the very epicentre of the Happening, and live just behind the Kodak Theatre, then I can highly reccommend the Celebrity Hotel. You’ll have huge rooms for a reasonable Price.
West Hollywood: I opted for Neda’s Airbnb Apartment this time. It’s a two bedroom, vintage Apartment with garden and cool neighbors, you’ll feel at home instantly.
Venice Beach: Hotel Erwin is the best and fanciest choice. I loved staying here and, as I’ve already mentioned, nobody can beat the view over Venice from the rooftop bar.
Food & Drinks
L’Assiette on Melrose is a nice Restaurant offering different kinds of meat and portobello mushrooms plates.
Dress nicely and hit the pool bar at the Roosevelt Hotel for People watching. Watch out, it’s a bit pricey, and they automatically add around 10$ tip on two Drinks.
How to get around
As I told you, buses are totally ok. Otherwise Uber is another good friend too. Just in case you’ll be discovered on the street and invited to an Audition you should be punctual at 🙂
Mainstream: Everywhere on Hollywood Boulevard and the streets surrounding. Same for Santa Monica (Santa Monica Place)
Alternative: Venice Beach – you’ll find a bunch of good stores there selling good laid back fashion
Fun and Cheap: Santee Alley7Fashion District (see above)