As a graduation gift to my daughter Vivian (and to me shhh…), we ventured out to sunny LA for a 5 day getaway.
I was excited to spend uninterrupted, girl time together, and as per Vivian’s request, we were to ‘go with the flow’ each day. I was not to plan anything (painful) except lunch and dinner reservations of course.
We arrived at the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills, our favorite in LA. We then decided to order in room service, get cozy, and watch a movie in bed. It was already late in the evening and we were pooped.
Our day began with some cardio at the hotel gym and a hearty yet healthy breakfast to follow.
With the heat wave in full force, Vivian and I decided it would be best to lounge poolside at the chic Viceroy in Santa Monica. We relaxed, ate a light lunch, and then it was off to Opening Ceremony, a kitschy boutique, and the famous Ron Herman for some afternoon retail therapy.
In the evening, we drove down to Nobu Malibu. I’m not sure what site was more beautiful -the dreamy sunset or full on view of Gerard Butler and Rob Lowe dining together. Vivian’s celebrity moment was satiated when Kourtney Kardashian made her way through the restaurant.
Our entire day was spent in Venice Beach, specifically on Abbot Kinney Blvd., one of my absolute favorite streets ever. The vibe here is part hippie, part new age and 100% cool.
We wandered into many unique boutiques, made friends with shopkeepers and walked away with some fab pieces of clothing and trinkets.
Though I could have literally bought something from each and every store, my recommendations are below:
Strange and Invisible Perfumes – Certified organic perfumes that are designed, hand blended and bottled in Venice. The boutique also stocks authentically pure apothecary products. I’m addicted!
Open The Kimono – Beautiful, understated, and artistically inspired, one of a kind loungewear.
For lunch (and my favorite meal of the trip), I suggest Gjelina. Dinner that evening was at Cecconi’s, an LA staple.
The first half of the day was spent at Universal Studios, in Harry Potter World. We experienced the awesome 3D ride and then a family type rollercoaster. We thankfully skipped the butter beer but waited out the 40 minute line to purchase a wand that supposedly (but not really) chooses you.
Vivian, a hard core Harry Potter fan, was in heaven as we walked through Hogsmade and sampled chocolate frogs and jellybeans from the Honey Dukes candy store.
Next, we were on to lunch at the Chateau Marmont and then spent a couple of hours on dreamy Melrose Place. Though each boutique on this block is equally elegant in design and landscape here are my favorites:
Violet Grey – A hidden treasure of highly curated luxury beauty products by the who’s who in the industry in an uber sexy setting.
Elodie K – You will feel as if you were instantly transported to St. Barths with a fashion forward selection of beach wear from Poupette and Lolita Jaca to name a few.
Zimmerman – A favorite Aussie label of mine.
Around the corner, on Melrose Avenue is Ten Over Six, a cool hipster boutique with a strong edit of clothing, gifts and accessories.
We spent our last morning at Urth Cafe for breakfast, my daughters favorite, and then we had an hour to wonder the local streets before saying peace out to LA.
All in all it was an awesome trip. Best company, great food and in Vivian’s words, “ the trip had a relaxed vibe with cool and nice people.”
Thanks to my daughter Vivian for making this trip a memorable one. I love you always and forever!