Travel with blondewalk: Los Angeles

The City of Angels is one of the greatest cities in the world. We are here to give you an insider’s guide to this fabulous city. Not a touristy guide, but what we consider some of the best-kept secrets with regards to restaurants, shopping and where to visit.

SLEEP

We felt rather spoiled staying in a lush beach front property in Santa Monica. Our experience booking with Air B&B was seamless and we highly recommend these apartments if you can get your hands on them. The view from our BED was comparable to a painting and the vibrant Santa Monica Pier was just in the edge of sight. It is walking distance to Third St Promenade which has an array of restaurants, pubs, coffee shops and retail. The only downside to these apartments is no garage/parking. We took advantage of the parkade’s (although they can be pricy) and lucked out with finding street parking some evenings, but would recommend looking into renting a spot nearby for our next visit.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

FEAST

For breakfast, we discovered Café Chez Marie. A petite and tranquil French cafe hidden away from the hustle and bustle of Westwood. The moment you enter the concealed courtyard you feel like you’re in Paris! Instantly greeted by the marvelous owner and chef, Marie, we were treated as if we were the only customers there. Menu favorites included Gaufre de Belgique (belgian waffles) and Eggs Norvegien (poached eggs, smoked salmon & hollandaise sauce on an english muffin). With superb service, exceptional cuisine and a charming atmosphere, there is no doubt we will be back here soon.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Kings Road Café has a reputation for the best stout coffee in Los Angeles. We always make a point of stopping here for a strong cuppa and gigantic bowl of oatmeal to jet fuel our day. Located in West Hollywood (just kitty-corner from the CBS television studios), it’s the perfect setting to start your day bright and early. Don’t forget to buy a package of in-house roasted beans before you go. After your first cup, you’ll want to make it your daily brew.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

You don’t need to look much further than Third St in Beverly Hills to find a perfect lunch spot. Located in between the Beverly Centre and The Grove, Joan’s on Third, wins the draw for lunch every time. From her famous Chinese chicken salad to the mouth-watering short rib sandwich, you will be overwhelmed with the amount choices. And that’s just half the store! The other half is a deli/shop where you can buy fresh meat and cheese, oils, sauces, books, etc. Snagging a table (or a parking spot) isn’t easy, but the food (and possible celeb sightings) are worth the wait. The Joan’s bakery is also a sight to be seen. They offer endless amounts of daily baked goods, small packages of homemade candies or desserts for easy gifting.

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Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

If you appreciate quaint candies and simple Scandinavian decor, Sockerbit is the place for you. Just down the road from Joan’s on Third, this beautiful Swedish candy store is easy to find and one of the highlights of our trip. All of the candies are free of transfats, made from natural coloring, and free of genetically modified ingredients. With only two locations in the world (the other in New York), we feel lucky to have experienced the sweetness of this store.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

SHOP

There is great shopping all over LA (obviously). We tend to focus on more of the consignment shopping BECAUSE IT’S THAT GOOD. Crossroads and Wasteland are among our favorites. They have various locations across LA and we rarely leave without a great find. Stayed tuned for our post on favourite shopping “finds” in LA!

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

WONDER

As we mentioned earlier, Third Street Promenade is located in the heart of downtown Santa Monica, just a few blocks from the beach. The street is closed to vehicular traffic allowing pedestrians to stroll down the middle of the street at a more leisurely pace. A variety of mainstream clothing stores, unique book stores, restaurants and British pubs surround the area giving off the same feeling as a ‘high street’ in England. Don’t be surprised if you come across various street performers and entertainers – most often parked there for the weekends.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice is one of the coolest areas in LA. It’s like stepping into a culture and neighborhood of its own. Eclectic shops, vibrant cafes and restaurants – you will be surrounded by locals and are bound to feel like one as well. Make sure you stop by our favorite coffee joint, Intelligentsia while you’re in the area. It’s no secret that we love this place, as we have written about in a former blog post – Intelligentsia Coffee: From Abbot Kinney to 20th St. The location is hidden away, but you can’t miss it thanks to the giant queue that often extends onto the street.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

The Grove is a well-known outdoor shopping center that could easily double as a film set. In fact, the entertainment news program, ‘Extra’ has been notorious to film live there. Located next to the farmers market, you could literally spend all day here.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Travel with blondewalk - LA

Getting our modern art fix was fulfilled thanks to an afternoon trip to the LACMA – The Los Angeles County Museum of Art. One of the best modern art museums in the country, the LACMA is a wonderful destination to experience. The urban lights, charming café and astounding gift shop, not to mention the countless exhibitions – you might want to plan more than an afternoon here if you’re art savvy.

Travel with blondewalk - LA

a lifestyle blog

Photos: blondewalk | Café Chez Marie | Kings Road Café | Joan’s on Third – Remodelista | Sockerbit | Crossroads | Wasteland | The Grove | LACMA | Google

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