everydaycities
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los angeles

The sprawling footprint of LA is one that is daunting yet alluring in its own right. The pocketed suburban context and the rise of the strip-mall, defines Los Angeles at its core. It is a city of destinations and the vehicle as a means of getting you there.The drive to that cool restaurant in Silver Lake? The drive up to Runyon Canyon to hike the hills? The drive to get In-N-Out Burger? All of these destinations are quintessential LA and the city wouldn't thrive as it does today if the suburban landscape differed in the slightest. Through all the driving to each destination, you can't help but get wrapped up in the magic that is La La Land; picturing the streets that Frank Sinatra and Fred Astaire once roamed. While there is a small truth the popularly depicted stereotypes you see in movies or hear about the overall feel of the city, it is easy to carve out your own humble interpretation and experiences. Los Angeles is beaming with art, culture, cuisine and design, that are not hard to find if you seek them out.


population

3.9 mil

currency

USD

distance from LAX airport to downtown

25km

average summer temp

85F

ideal travel time

4 days


the standard hollywood

Hotel

 

When you venture down Hollywood Boulevard, you are greeted by a blue and white mid-century modern facade and a small red and white sign that indicates you have arrived at your destination. Upon entry to the lobby, the furry textured walls, hanging bubble chairs and dimmed lighting, makes you feel as though you have been transported back to LA circa 1998 when they first opened. The hotel's first establishment is quirky and eccentric in its decor, sound, and staff. The rooms overlook and envelop the vibrant pool that is known to be the place in the city to live out your LA pool day and be seen. Here, you are on standard time which means you can pick and choose when to check in and out. Be sure to spend your much needed time at the Cactus Lounge for drinks, floating in the pool, or people watching on your curved yet spacious balcony.

Area / West Hollywood 

Vibe / The epitome of smart and sophisticated New York with refined details.

 

sqirl

Cafe

 

Sqirl is an LA staple...an institution if you will. This tiny-counter breakfast and lunch all came to be when Jessica Koslow initially started making and selling her incredibly sweet and satiating jams. What quickly grew into a cult following resulted in the opening of Sqirl, which is a place that is targeting local SoCal ingredients and serving all the classic favorites such as seasonal porridges, and brioche brick toasts finessed with ricotta and her homemade jams, to name a few. The attention to detail and the quality of the local produce permeates through each dish leaving you with the feeling of sheer comfort and delight. For the perfect early start to a Saturday morning, Sqirl is the spot to enjoy the perfect cup of coffee, the delicious sorrel pesto rice bowl and a nut butter toast. What makes Sqirl even better is that you can replicate Jessica's recipes at home by picking up her cookbook, Everything I Want to Eat.

Area / East Hollywood

Vibe / Hip and minimal breakfast and lunch space that is not only delicious, but thoughtful in its conviviality.

griffith observatory

Public Space

 

It should be noted that finding respite on the busy streets of Manhattan is a rarity, which makes the High Line an ideal retreat to gallivant along  without ever having to press a sidewalk crossing. Designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro architects, this innovative, linear public park was intended to revitalize an extensive elevated transit rail line. Walking the city is made easy here, where you can meander past public steps, markets, and gardens from Hell's Kitchen to the Whitney Museum. Promising views of the city and bountiful greenery have quickly become a quintessential part of the city's urban form, where the public can meander in unscripted ways. 

Area / Los Feliz

Vibe / Elevated train line makeover into an elongated public square.

silver lake

Neighbourhood

 

New York is a composition of cultured pockets and varied urban atmospheres, which is why visiting it is akin to being in twenty places at once. This juxtaposition is even more amplified in LES, which has over the years become a mecca for New York's underground creative culture both new and old. It is easy to spend an entire day here wandering through pocketed galleries or museums, touring the many unique shops, or sampling its vivid restaurant scene. For your dose of the latest art currency, a visit to the New Museum of Contemporary Art is always encouraged, followed by a sweet treat at Morgenstern's Ice Creamery around the corner.

Area / Silver Lake

Vibe / Trendy yet gritty exuding uncanny charm at the heart of urban cool.

gjusta

Restaurant & Cafe

 

This day to night New York establishment in the heart of Nolita has rapidly become a desirable eating destination in the city for busy city-dwellers. The sun-drenched space is equal parts funky and minimal, while the kitchen dishes out healthyish takes on New American fare seven days a week. An entirely female-led restaurant with inventive and seasonal dishes are plated and served with precision and grace in pretty pastel coloured ceramics. Whether its a slow and lazy breakfast or a quick power lunch, a meal here will not only leave you feeling satiated but strong and empowered too. 

Area / Venice

Vibe / Vibrant and funky female-united cafe run by women, for anyone and everyone.

stahl house

Architecture

 

Many changes to the public realm have occurred in the last few years at the WTC site, however it's the transportation hub that demands your attention. The sublime steel structure, also referred to as the oculus for its eye-shaped atrium, is a convincing symbol of freedom and prosperity for the city of New York. Designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the arched canopies extend outward creating the dramatic and grandiose effect of a widespread wingspan on the exterior. The inside, which straddles the identity of a subway hub and shopping mall, is a shield of safety and an ideal place for observing New Yorkers as they move through the city.  

Area / Hollywood Hills

Vibe / A centrepiece of transportation, housed in a protective and soaring atrium.

the broad museum

Museum

 

This innocuous building is one of New York's newest Renzo Piano designed projects at the centre of the Meat Packing District and ultimately, marks the southern entrance to the High Line. Many of the art museums in the city can be daunting and become over-saturated with visitors, however the scale of the Whitney doesn't demand your entire day for a visit, making the experience of the art and architecture alike quite relaxing. A visit to the Whitney ends at the rooftop vista with unparalleled views of Manhattan, but be sure to follow with a stroll along the High Line and into the Chelsea Market for lunch. 

Area / Downtown Los Angeles

Vibe / Ship-like architecture and refined lines in the heart of cobblestone Manhattan.

majordomo

Restaurant

 

As chef and writer, Gabrielle Hamilton, wrote in her memoir Blood, Bones, and Butter, 'Prune' was the nickname her mother gave her as a young girl. Naturally, she would go on to name her restaurant of 18 years just that. Prune is ambitious and creative in its delivery of eclectic new-American dishes as well as Italian and French classics. However, its highly regarded reputation is earned from being a well-rounded and timeless restaurant that feels just as relevant now as it did upon opening. A restaurant essential in the East Village, the food and warm service is nothing short of comforting and innovative. For a dining experience that is quaint, memorable and impervious to the newest trend, Prune fires on all cylinders.

Area / Chinatown

Vibe / No frills classic and charming bistro, with a local neighbourhood atmosphere.

petit trois

Restaurant

 

An excellent meal is next to guaranteed at this quaint establishment on Sullivan Street in Greenwich Village. At a time when the ambiance of many grand restaurants is all the rage, and the food is often overlooked, Mimi is evidence that returning to the vibe of a small and intimate eatery with highly focused cooking works exquisitely. She has it all - mood, sophisticated and exquisite French food, impeccable drinks and service. A standout dish through their always-changing menu is the perfectly sweet and salty boudin noir. It is a must to finish with the baba au rum, a classic dessert that is unapologetically doused in fresh whipped chantilly cream. You'll be feeling wonderfully tipsy from the amount of rum in that slice of goodness alone.

Area / West Hollywood

Vibe / Romantic and contemporary bistro that feels unequivocally like Paris in SoHo.

hotel covell

Hotel

 

The Lower East Side has for a long while felt a little void of boutique resting accommodations, until Ian Schrager's project popped up on the corner of Bowery and Houston. The building, designed by prolific architects Herzog and de Meuron, is first experienced through Japanese maples and magnolia trees gracefully residing in the hotel courtyard providing for a serene outdoor experience. The rooms, complete with minimal built-in bed furniture, are comfortably chic and the rooftop lounge offers a stunning view of the city. Satisfying design details aside, the hotel's whole mantra is luxury for all, meaning affordable rates all year round.  

Area / Los Feliz

Vibe / Hip and happening design hotel with atmospheric spaces and luxurious details.

 

other recommendations

 

The Line  -  Hotel

Verve Coffee Roasters  -  Cafe

Los Feliz  -  Neighbourhood

Eames House -  Architecture

Jon and Vinny's  -  Restaurant

Kismet  -  Restaurant

Grand Central Market  -  Food Market

Jeni's -  Ice Creamery

Lincoln Center  -  Public Space & Theatre

Venice Canals  -  Neighbourhood