If you have never been to LA, we’ve got the ideal weekend itinerary for first timers who want to experience as much as possible! At least for us, this custom-made itinerary was the perfect balance of iconic landmarks, culture, leisure, dining and yes….lots of shopping!
We arrived at the Beverly Hills Hilton Hotel early Friday evening and immediately after checking out our lovely room and grounds, took an uber to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. To get an idea of the feel on the Walk of Fame, envision Time Square, Las Vegas and Nashville all rolled into one. Unfortunately, we did not see any famous people. Sorry, Mom, Hugh Jackman will have to wait to meet you another time.
As the sun began to set on the star studded streets, we headed to Rodeo Drive and spent the evening strolling in and out of quaint cafes and lavish boutiques. Having never been to Beverly Hills, we had no idea what to expect. With regards to opulence, it was exactly what we anticipated–$5,000 dollar sneakers, $4 Million dollar wedding dresses, etc. What pleasantly surprised us was how down to earth everyone was, knowing very well we couldn’t afford a glass of water here. JK! I guess we prejudged a pretentious vibe that was actually nonexistent.
Our very favorite part of Beverly Hills was the Alexa Meade Living Art Museum. There are no words to describe this other than surreal!
We only had a ten minute walk back to our hotel and the weather was a balmy 60 degrees, so we grabbed a gelato and cappuccino and returned to our hotel.
The breakfast at Circa 55, the Beverly Hills Hilton restaurant, is top notch. Do not miss out on this buffet!!!
After breakfast, we headed to Santa Monica Pier and from there took a beautiful morning walk along the coast all the way to Venice Beach. Around noon we decided we wanted to see Malibu and headed to a beautiful outdoor farm to table restaurant on the Malibu Pier. The views were stunning.
By late afternoon we headed back to Hollywood, knowing we wanted to be at the Griffith Observatory by sunset. We had an hour to kill so we walked around and just happened Crumbs and Whiskers. After a little coaxing, I was basking in kitty heaven. All of the cats here are rescues and are up for adoption. Two were adopted while we were there!
We concluded day two at Mom’s highlight of the entire trip–Griffith Observatory. We will let the pictures do the talking for this magical place. Do not exclude this destination from your LA trip.
On our way back to the hotel, our driver asked if we had visited the Grove. We didn’t even know what that was so he insisted on taking us there. Wow! The Grove is an outdoor dining and shopping area with more holiday lights than I’ve ever seen. There is an enormous tree that could challenge Rockefeller Center. A huge Santa’s workshop that you can walk through and a trolley that runs around the center of the square. The Grove is absolutely amazing!
On our final day, we headed to the Venice Canals. Having been to Venice, Italy, we knew it would never measure up, but honestly, the Venice Canals in LA are beautiful. The homes here are so eccentric and each has such unique and artistic character.
Before heading to the airport, we had one more stop–Abbot Kinney Boulevard which is known as “The Coolest Street in America.” And you know what? It is!
From the minute we landed in LA, I literally said, “Mom, I’m home.” I am planning on looking at colleges there and definitely envision my future in The City of Angels.
Wishing you peace, love and joy in 2019! Here’s to a “Good Year” for us all!