Los Angeles is known worldwide as a glamorous creative hub filled with unlimited ways to eat, drink and be merry. From Santa Monica to Downtown LA, you’ll find a city full of people indulging in the good life underneath the Southern California sun. Celebrity chefs, top performing artists and unparalleled nightlife locales are all a part of the city’s one-of-a-kind landscape. If you’re looking to experience the best destinations to see and be seen, embrace LA’s trendy culture with these selections for the ultimate guide to Los Angeles.
You’ll find plenty of hotels in Los Angeles that will provide everything you need for a relaxing stay. If the focus of your trip is strictly business, places like the modern, elegant Kimpton La Peer Hotel will meet your needs with its ideal West Hollywood location bordering Beverly Hills. The 1 Hotel West Hollywood sits in a prime location on Sunset Strip, offering a scenic domain to retreat to after a day of meetings. In Downtown LA, consider the Italy-inspired Nomad Hotel, boasting sleek furnishings and sits just minutes from the popular LA Live entertainment complex.
For the pleasure-seekers of the world traveling to Los Angeles to soak up the city’s lively atmosphere, consider choosing a hotel like The Mondrian that places you right in the center of the action. Relish in the unparalleled views from their Skybar pool deck, or head to one of the many nightlife venues in the area nearby. You’ll also be walking distance to the action when you stay at the chic Dream Hotel, positioned right next door to some of the hottest nightlife spots in Hollywood. The artsy Freehand Hotel in Downtown LA is also in a great area for a night on the town, with their rooftop bar Broken Shaker being the perfect place to start your evening.
Food lovers are sure to enjoy their time in Los Angeles with the spectrum of restaurants available for you to taste your way through the city. Those in town for business may be in need of a dining location that can also act as a professional setting. You can’t go wrong with Nobu Los Angeles or Malibu for Japanese cuisine in a trendy setting. Craig’s in West Hollywood is known for its celebrity sightings, but also acts as a refined place for conversation with colleagues. Gracias Madre’s light and airy environment also makes for a great place to meet as you enjoy their delicious menu of plant-based, Mexican fare.
Restaurants for Fun
Los Angeles may not be the city that never sleeps, but it sure knows how to party even when it comes to dining. If you’re preparing to head out for a night of fun, you may want to make a reservation for Hollywood’s Beauty & Essex—a stylish fine dining locale with an upscale pawn shop speakeasy entrance. You also can’t go wrong starting your night with bites at Harriet’s Rooftop in West Hollywood, located at the top of 1 Hotel. The view of LA’s skyline acts as the perfect backdrop for toasting glasses to a night on the town. Toca Madera is also a go-to hot spot with Mexican eats and an upbeat lounge vibe that will have you kicking your evening off right.
Restaurants for Brunch
Locals consider brunch a necessity in Los Angeles, with restaurants just as busy during daylight hours as they are for the dinner rush. Take advantage of the beautiful weather with brunch at EP & LP, a West Hollywood restaurant offering up bottomless mimosas along with a rooftop bar where you can continue your Sunday fun-day with a perfect view of the Hollywood Hills. For a sophisticated hot spot, Republique in Mid City serves up French-inspired dishes to start your day with a bevy of delicious flavors. Santa Monica’s Elephante is also a quality selection for a weekend brunch, with a simplistic, beachy atmosphere overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Locals are also a fan of brunch at Sqirl in East Hollywood, a daytime-only destination with a variety of appetizing dishes in a cozy atmosphere.
| Read More: 15 Best Brunch Spots in LA |
Best Dining Experiences
Sometimes the best part of your dining experience is the experience itself, with ambiance and style adding elements of creativity to your meal. The Los Angeles outpost of Tao will have you in awe from the grand, layered seating style and larger-than-life Asian-inspired artwork. You’re sure to also have a magical experience at The Bazaar, a West Hollywood classic created by Nobel Prize nominee Chef Jose Andres, where innovative dishes and whimsical cocktails continue to bring guests back for more. See the city from great heights when you book a reservation at 71Above, the Downtown LA restaurant that offers up an unparalleled dinner view from the 71st floor.
Best Cocktail Bars
With Los Angeles being the entertainment capital of the world, the city’s bars take hints from the entertainment industry with impressive venues that ushering you into a new world of wines and spirits. If you’re looking for the best cocktails in the city, look no further than Melrose Umbrella Company—a neighborhood drinkery known for its warm hospitality and palate-pleasing mixtures. You’ll also get the best of the best at Everson Royce Bar, a cool venue with an inviting outdoor patio along with a “Big Book of Spirits” filled with an endless selection of booze. You can also head to Koreatown to duck into The Walker Inn, an award-winning hidden bar within The Normandie Club that serves handcrafted cocktails to sip and savor.
| Read More: 10 Best Cocktail Bars in Downtown Los Angeles |
Best Date Night Bars
If you’re visiting the city hand-in-hand with a loved one, certain bars will be better than others in making the most of your intimate night on the town. Start your night at Bibo Ergo Sum in Beverly Hills to clink glasses in the stylish, art deco space. You’ll be able to cozy up for drinks at The Nice Guy in West Hollywood with vintage décor and dim lighting to set the mood. Employees Only is another great option for having a great conversation while enjoying a laid back crowd and late night DJ.
| Read More: LAs Top 20 Coziest Date Night Bars |
You may be coming to Los Angeles searching for the hottest bars to mix and mingle with beautiful crowds. If meeting new people and dancing the night away is your goal, Good Times at Davey Wayne’s is a go-to for locals in looking for a lively night. The 1970s-themed bar is a known favorite with an old school playlist and living room feel complete with a backyard-style patio. You can also head to the Eastside for dancing at Tenants of the Trees, a Silver Lake destination with an indoor-outdoor setting and multiple DJs playing something for everyone. One of Hollywood’s most theatrical bars, No Vacancy, will also entertain you from start to finish with its speakeasy entrance and burlesque performances throughout the night.
Best Bar Experience
Aside from dancing and great drinks, sometimes the atmosphere of the bar itself is enough to keep patrons coming back for more. The Bungalow in Santa Monica has proved itself to be a staple in the city with an indoor-outdoor location allowing you to watch the sunset over the Pacific Ocean. Hollywood’s rooftop bar Mama Shelter is also a great sunset destination, with vibrant furnishings complementing the Southern California sunshine. You’ll also have a one-of-a-kind experience at East Hollywood’s La Descarga, a Havana-themed lounge filled with salsa dancing, live music and a smokey cigar room out back.
LA is known for its exclusive nightlife venues that draw in some of the world’s biggest performing artists to take the stage in energetic, glamorous settings. If you’re looking for a club with a great dance floor, head to West Hollywood to visit Nightingale, a venue filled with neon lights and modern décor. The nearby Doheny Room is also a prime location for dancing as their upstairs lounge fills with partygoers and a live DJ in the old-Hollywood inspired hotspot. 1OAK is also an exclusive spot for revelry with space to dance along with impressive performances from hip hop’s finest.
If you’d rather go out with a group for bottle service, head to Warwick in Hollywood, known for its rotating theme of extravagant furnishings and also its celebrity clientele. Bootsy Bellows also has a reputation for a star-studded guest list with live performances in a chic, Palm Springs-inspired setting. Another worthy venue for bottle service is Poppy, the whimsical garden space with a built in lounge to give you the best of both worlds. Avenue’s Los Angeles outpost mixes a garden lounge with a spacious interior fit for partying in the heart Hollywood.
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