Ah Los Angeles, the City of Angels as it is known, La La Land. This sprawling metropolis has a lot more to offer visitors than Hollywood, Santa Monica Pier, Venice Beach and Rodeo Drive. Here’s our guide to the venues that are well worth checking out. Some may be off the beaten path, but here born and bred Angelino, Paige Vreede has given us the real Los Angeles, so if you’re in need of a holiday across the Pacific, be sure to make LA one of your stops.
Words Paige Vreede
THE ACE HOTEL
If coming to Los Angeles means wanting to feel like you are on the set of Entourage, then The Ace Hotel is certainly where you want to be. Though you may feel like an elitist on their rooftop bar, the crowd it attracts is generally laid back. In the afternoon, go for a dip in the rooftop pool then at night throw on your classiest attire and indulge in their signature cocktail: Make Mama Nice Again – a gin, limeand cinnamon infused cocktail – a strange, but indeed, delicious combination.
929 S Broadway, Los Angeles CA 90015
T: +1 (213) 623 3233
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 11am-2am
If the walls of Clifton’s Cafeteria could speak, they would have decades of stories to tell. Clifton’s was built in 1935 and still has much of the same architecture and design that it had over 80 years ago. With four different themed bars, this Disneyland for grownups is truly one-of-a-kind. Enjoy classics like Hurricanes and Mai Tais in their secret Tiki lounge, sip on some whiskey next to a giant Redwood tree or order a bottle of Champagne while listening to some live jazz in the ballroom. There is a surprise around every corner in this magnificent, historic building.
648 S Broadway, Los Angeles CA 90014
T: +1 (213) 627 1673
The Monarch Bar: Weekdays 11am-closeWeekends 10am-close
Gothic Bar: Thurs-Sat 6pm-2am
Pacific Seas: Wed-Sun 6pm-Close, Mondays Closed
Established as El Carmen Café on Sept 15, 1929as a family style restaurant by Mrs. Encarnacion Gomez, El Carmen moved from its location on 3rd and La Brea to where she is now at 8138 West 3rd Street in 1950. El Carmen was purchased as part of Committed Inc. in 1997and transformed by Sean MacPherson into what has now become a staple of Los Angeles and the famous West 3rd Street. Once you pass the red curtains you’re transported into another world. Featuring 400 plus Tequilas, a curated selection of Mezcals, Sotols and Bacanoras along with authentically flavoured south of the border Mexican dishes using hormone free and grass fed meats. When you’re in town, come in and enjoy.
8138 W 3rd St, Los Angeles CA 90048
T: +1 (323) 852 1552
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 5pm-2am
HARVARD & STONE
With exposed pipelines, caged hanging lights, and an overall industrial atmosphere, the last thing you would expect to find are burlesque dancers debuting five-inch heels while dancing on pipelines, but alas, you could certainly find this at Harvard & Stone. The beer menu is unique and there are two bars to order from ensuring nobody is left without a cold one. Go late on a weekday and you may just catch a live local band. Whether you are admiring some seriously talented dancers, or rocking out to live music, any night of the week is a good night at Harvard & Stone.
5221 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90027
T: +1 (323) 466 6063
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 8pm-2am
GOOD TIMES AT DAVEY WAYNE’S
For some people, coming to Los Angeles means strolling down Rodeo Drive in hope of spotting celebrities. For others, Los Angeles is all about meeting the locals and having a good time, which is exactly what you’ll get at Good Times at Davey Wayne’s. Enter through a fridge converted into a front door, and you’ll be transported back to the era of bell bottoms and afros. Sip on one of their dangerously delicious cocktails while grooving to ‘stayin’ alive” on the dance floor or grab an alcoholic snowc one from their outdoor retro camper. Whatever you decide to do, you will not leave this appropriately named venue disappointed.
1611 N El Centro Ave, Los Angeles CA90028
T: +1 (323) 962 3804
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 5pm-2am Sat-Sun 2pm-2am
Los Angeles is undeniably known for its music scene, but it is rare to find a music venue that can also double as a local watering hole. Beyond Los Angeles’s industrial stretch, past buildings adorned in street art, cut across a few alleys and pass two taco trucks and you’ll find a hidden gem, Resident. Try one of their refreshing margaritas while enjoying live music, or feast at one of the food trucks parked in their beer garden. If the round is on you, be sure to take advantage of their shot and beer special for just $10!
428 S Hewitt St, Los Angeles CA90013
T: +1 (213) 628 7503
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 10am-2am
MANHATTAN BEACH POST
Overlooking one of California’s most beautiful beaches, you can find Manhattan Beach Post. The post office turned restaurant not only has an impressive drink menu, but the atmosphere itself is something to lure you in. Long wooden tables occupy the space, trying to fit in as many customers as possible. As one of the South Bay’s trendiest restaurants, reservations are highly recommended. While you’re waiting for a table, be sure to head to the bar and try a Vic Vega – a refreshing take on a classic old fashioned infused with coconut. They have an exceptional tapas style menu that you do not want to miss out on. Who could say no toa charcuterie plate, replete with blue cheese and truffle honey, 3-year aged acorn prosciutto, and the most mouth-watering marinated olives.
1142 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach CA90266
T: +1 (310) 545 5405
Opening Hours: Mon-Thur 5pm-10pm Fri 11:30am-10:30pm Sat 10am-10:30pm Sun 10am-10pm
THE WALKER INN
The Walker Inn might just be Los Angeles’s best kept secret. Enter through the Normandie Club and head towards the bathrooms. To the left you will find a wooden door with a redlight hanging above it. Press a button and a bartender will let you in… that is if you made reservations of course. Upon entering the dimly lit, intimate bar, you’ll feel like James Bond, although you’ll want to order more than a martini. Expect superb cocktails without the highfalutin vibe. The bartenders are kind enough to explain in detail all of the hard work that goes into each ambrosial cocktail placed in front of you. Indulge in a frozen grapefruit cocktail right out of the fruit itself, or use tinctures infused with various flavours to construct your own mixed drink. The drinks are based on what is in season and without a doubt, the talented staff behind the bar will know exactly what to serve up all year round.
3612 W 6th St, Los Angeles CA 90005
T: +1 (213) 263 2709
Opening Hours: Tue-Sun 6pm-2am