Hello my friends! Can you believe it? I can't... :P The Los Angeles articile went finally live, whooop! I'm sorry that it took so long..! We went to LA in August! Before we start, I want to tell you that it was always my dream to go to LA and I'm more than happy about my first experience in the US! I had such a great time, I would go back immediately. To begin, let me tell you a bit about La La Land! The city has no centre, it has multiple nice neighbourhoods to visit like Venice, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Hollywood and Malibu. In LA, you need a car, apparently public transport is not recommended. We did everything with Lift, it's like Uber - very easy and super cheap, and we rented a car. Good to know - taxes are not written on the menu or on the price tag during shopping, they're added to the bill so don't be surprised if the price is different when paying! And finally, the tip. In Europe, we tip if we want to, not in California. Here, the waiters are poorly paid by their bosses, so it's your job to paid them, gratuities are customary. This is why the service here is on top! Generally, the average tip is 15% to 20% of the total meal cost.
Waking up in Venice
First location - Venice beach. Jetlag baby! We woke up at 5 am in our Air Bnb and went to explore the empty streets of this wonderful neighbourhood full of palmtress, vintage cars, wooden houses, messy electrical cable poles above the houses.. Ahhh this is how I imagined it ! And the people are so nice here! The early birds we met said hi, the cars stop in the middle of the road to let you cross the street..
Abbot Kinney Boulevard
Breakfast - Brunch
Time for breakfast! A few steps away from our current home we found the Abbot Kinney boulevard. It's the most popular boulevard in Venice! Here you find many hipster boutiques, coffee shops and lunch spots. We decided to have breakfast at The Butcher's Daughter, a popular plant-based restaurant, juice bar. Look at this wonderful interior! Good to know: Water is always free. When you enter a restaurant or café, they'll bring you a pitcher of tap water, very nice!
We saw here to coolest wall art! So clean and inspiring! I liked to see graffiti as a marketing tool of shops and cafés and that everything harmonise so well together as if one person had designed the whole street. Very tasteful !
On Abbot Kinney, I took photos of every wall, shop and café, everything inspired me here on this street! You'll find here the cutest stationery shops too, like the Burro, pure joy! Also, many fashion boutiques selling local labels.
The most popular coffee shop on Abbot Kinney is Intelligentsia. The industrial interior is full of workaholics sitting in front of their macbooks. I discovered here my new addiction, the matcha croissant, a classic croissant covered with matcha chocolate. Foodporn.
Absolutely must-go on Abbot Kinney - the beautiful and delicious Wabi-Sabi. Amazing sushi, one of the best I ever had. And look at this interior design, I mean, really??!! The chef cook was so nice, he gave me a seashell and a sushi shaped lolly pop as a souvenir. So cute.
For dinner, I recommend The Rose Café!
Quick stop in Malibu where you find fancy lounge bars and hotels on the beach like the famous Nobu. Here I saw some German celebrities hanging out.
Off to Beverly Hills! What you can do here? Check out designer boutiques on Rodeo Drive. The neighbourhood is known as one of the most fashionable places to stop. From Gucci to & Other Stories, you can find a large range of shops but I recommend to do your shopping in Europe as the prices as lower here. Nevertheless, it's worth a visit! I loved recognizing the streets I've seen in Pretty Woman!! :D
I absolutely needed to try the cookie dough ice cream with the red velvet cone at Sprinkles! They also have a cupcake atm, so fun! But it's pretty expensive.. Also you can also visit a few parks in the area like the Will Rogers Memorial Park or Franklin Canyon Park. Bloggers like to stop by at the legendary Beverly Hills Hotel for a selfie.
Hollywood for the next few days! So, I recommend you to hike the trail around the Hollywood sign towards the Griffith Observatory where you have the best view for a dramatic sunset and an impressive view over the city! But be careful, when the sun goes down, it gets dark and you won't see a thing! There are no lanterns or anything, a bit scary and I've read that last week a blogger called the police because they were lost. xD
Walk of Fame on Hollywood Boulevard - I don't recommend. Ugly, overcrowded, absolut not interesting. I then preferred the Melrose Avenue, located between Beverly Hills and West Hollywood. A nice, clean street with shops and cafés aaand, some most instagrammable walls (like the one with the huge wings or the pink Paul Smith Wall). Here we stopped for some coffee at Alfred Coffee, a poular hipster place among Instagrammers, nice coffee, nice matcha croissants too!
We had dinner at Catch, a popular rooftop on Melrose Avenue, known for creative seafood-focused food & cocktails. Good food, service is okay, guests can be weird! A chic lady put her feet on the table, her boyfriend was so ashamed and tried to stop her but she wouldn't until a waitress came over. I laughed my ass off, I mean, what the hell? xD
We arrived at the Fairfex District where we discovered a cute place.. the Grove which looks like a grown-up theme park. Colorful, stylish, cheerful - I love it! A shopping paradise for the whole family! We spent here a few hours with entering many shops, eating colorful ice-cream and drinking XXL cokes. I was amazed by the decoration outside, they even have a little train!
In Downtown LA we visited The Broad, a huge museum with collections from Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Joseph Beuys or Jeff Koons! Buy your tickets in advance and be prepared for a long queue..
Back in Venice!
So after a few days spent in Hollywood, we came back to our sweet Venice. My favourite neighbourhood especially because of the cute streets behind the boardwalk and the Abbot Kinney area. But let's finally show you the Venice Boardwalk! Here you will find the muscle beach, a popular open-air fitness centre, the skatepark, and of course, the beach. I preferred walking along the beach instead of following the boardwalk as it's not that sexy, many touriststs, souvenirs shops and merchants.
Sunset in Santa Monica
For our last night in LA, we walked to Santa Monica one more time to see the sunset next to the famous Santa Monica Pier. It was a magical moment full of warm colours shining behind the sea. I could stay here forever - walk along the beach from Venice to Santa Monica all day long haha. There were not too many people around us which I enjoyed a lot!
So what can I say. I can't wait to explore the rest of California, but La La Land already stole my heart. The sun is shining all day long, city life next to beach life, how cool is that? The people are kind, the food is healthy, I don't know - positive vibes are in the air. I can't really describe the feeling but I miss this contagious positive energy at home. Can't wait to be back!