I grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles (Norwalk, Torrance, and Cerritos to be exact). While I love living in New York now, the West Coast will always be a part of me. When I visit my family in California, these are a few of my go-to spots in LA.
M Street Kitchen
Formally known as La Grande Orange in Santa Monica, M Street is just a few blocks away from the beach and super Californian with a mix of organic, seasonal, and fresh foods. If I ever moved back to LA, Santa Monica is where I’d make my home. I love the beachy vibe and great shopping.
I can’t resist the latte art. Warning: a bit pricey and can be crowded. Various locations all over and near LA: Santa Monica, Melrose Avenue, Beverly Hills, Pasadena, and more.
The Griffith Observatory
I like to get here early for easy parking. There are a few hiking trails nearby that are quick and easy work-outs to great views of the entire LA basin and the Hollywood sign. Afterwards, have a picnic outside and explore the planetarium. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
It takes up multiple city blocks in the Mid-Wilshire district of the city. And here you will find some of the world’s best Korean food, night clubs, and karaoke bars. Click here to watch Anthony Bourdain’s review of K-Town.
New Yorkers love to debate about who has the best hamburger. In my opinion California has everyone beat with In-N-Out. Everything on their menu is fresh, never frozen. The prices are cheap. And the secret menu is the best. (HuffPost reveals what it is here.)
But I haven’t lived in LA for over 10 years. So I’m probably not the best source of recommendations. Melissa Magsaysay’s new book CITY OF STYLE: Exploring Los Angeles Fashion, from Bohemian to Rock is an updated tribute to LA style and it features her inspirations, a little LA history, and her favorite places to shop.
The book is gorgeous with more than 200 classic and modern photographs.
Cool places to get a copy of CITY OF STYLE:
Lulu Mae gift shop in Pasadena, CA
Lundeen’s Gifts in Culver City, CA
Fred Segal in Los Angeles, CA
Pickett Fences in Los Angeles, CA
Firefly in Venice, CA
Have you been? Any LA recommendations of your own?