California Dreaming

what to do in los angeles

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If you follow these pages, you know that the star-studded city that’s beckoned dreamers for decades is one of our all-time favorite destinations. Whenever we return, L.A. never fails to romance us with its laid-back vibes, sunny skies and new hot spots. Read on for the latest crop of local haunts to add to your list.

STAY

CHATEAU MARMONT

CHATEAU MARMONT

Inspired by an actual French castle in the Loire Valley, Chateau Marmont exudes old-Hollywood glamour without feeling overly glitzy. Most suites as well as the bungalows and cottages that dot the grounds come with a full kitchen and luxurious touches throughout. It’s the perfect setting to channel your inner Greta Garbo or Humphrey Bogart.

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THE DREAM HOLLYWOOD

One of the most anticipated hotel openings of 2017, The Dream certainly lives up to its name. Boasting spacious rooms with mid-century modern finishes and stunning views of the Hollywood Hills and an 11,000-square-foot rooftop with a pool under a retractable roof, it’s destined to become one of the most-loved local playgrounds.

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HOTEL COVELL

Step into the shoes of George Covell, a fictional character whose imagined life inspired the five apartment-style suites in this boutique hotel. Whether you stay in “Chapter 1,” reminiscent of rural Oklahoma, “Chapter 2,” the New York bachelor pad, or “Chapter 4,” the opulent 2-bedroom with a patio, this whimsical establishment is guaranteed to delight.

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SUNSET TOWER

Elegant and luxurious, the West Hollywood gem features art deco details, floor-to-ceiling windows in every room and an Insta-perfect rooftop pool. The glam Tower Bar looks down over the Sunset Strip (hello, cocktail hour!). The hotel is also pet-friendly. Think mini-beds, bowls, treats and a pet dining menu.

EAT

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BESTIA

Rustic Italian dining is at its best at Bestia. Tucked away in the industrial corner of the Arts District, its intimate interior teamed with the impressive wine and charcuterie list is the ideal spot for a date. Just make sure to book way in advance—it’s one of the hardest reservations to get in town.

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GJUSTA

This nouveau cafeteria with no signage is best summed up as the smorgasbord of your dreams. Think sliced porchetta with melted Fontina, pomegranate limeade, fish smoked to perfection, artisanal croissants and other palate pleasers. Grab a plate and find a spot in the sunny parking lot that functions as a casual dining room. Mellow Venice Beach afternoon, sorted.

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NORAH

This restaurant with an eclectic menu of new-American dishes and a chic, spacious dining room featuring a long marble bar is not to be missed. Memorable items include skillet cornbread with rosemary butter, sausages with kaffir lime chili jam, heirloom tomatoes with whipped ricotta and braised pork socca.

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KISMET

For a chic, minimalist vibe head to the airy Kismet on the bustling Hollywood Boulevard in Los Feliz. Israeli-inspired dishes on the rotating menu are light, vegetable-intensive and fabulously flavorful. Many, like the rabbit platter, lamb belly with turnips, Persian cucumbers and marinated feta are meant to be shared.

DRINK

Birds and Bees

BIRDS AND BEES

Pass through the hidden entrance and descend down the staircase straight into the age of “Mad Men.” This clandestine cocktail bar serves delicious concoctions in vintage-inspired glassware.

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DOHENY ROOM

If celebrity sighting is a must, pay a visit to the Doheny Room. Since it opened a year ago, the bar/lounge has played host to multiple V.I.P. birth- day parties and secret shows. To beat the line on weekends, make a late dinner reservation and don’t forget to strike a pose by one of the two neon signs by artist Lauren Baker before calling it a night.

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PACIFIC SEAS

You’ll find this Polynesian paradise at the top of the secret staircase in the back of Clifton’s Cafeteria in downtown L.A. The ornate décor includes rattan chairs, plenty of colorful hanging lanterns and a full-sized vintage speedboat jetting out from the bar. Mai Tai, anyone?

Red Bird

RED BIRD

Situated inside a former rectory of Downtown’s St. Vibiana Cathedral, Red Bird has the dramatic setting down. Put it on your list as a great spot for before-dinner cocktails that are sure to set the mood for a divine evening.

PLAY

San Clemente

SAN CLEMENTE

For a change of scenery, head to this laid-back surf village just off Interstate 5. You’ll be charmed by stucco adobe facades, red-tiled roofs, farm stands and a mix of eclectic boutiques and vintage shops.

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RUNYON CANYON

A weekend on the West Coast isn’t complete without a hike, and this canyon offers easy walks and trails that lead you to magnificent vistas in every direction.

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GETTY VILLA

This stunning replica of an Italian country home is packed with art and curious antiquities. Spend an arty afternoon checking out the galleries, then head out to admire the manicured gardens, lily ponds and reflecting pools.