Welcome back to the blog. If you follow me on social media you will know that I am just back from an amazing trip to Las Vegas and Los Angeles. I had an amazing time when I was there and I wanted to share some of the highlights with you. This post will be all about Los Angeles which we visited for four days at the end of the trip. I have also posted a vlog of the trip to Youtube. You can view that video here.
I hope you enjoy this post and if you have any questions be sure to contact me.
Until next time,
If you are planning on visiting both Las Vegas and Los Angeles you will want to catch an internal flight during your trip. We flew directly from McCarren International Airport (Vegas) to LAX (Los Angeles) which took about an hour. We then flew directly home to Dublin from LAX with Aer Lingus. There are currently no direct flights between Vegas and Dublin so you will need to do a stop over at some point on your journey.
If you are not hiring a car in LA, taxis are the best way to get around. We hailed a taxi from the airport to our hotel which was situated in Beverly Hills and it cost about $50.
Where we stayed
We stayed at the beautiful Mr.C Beverly Hills. The hotel has a stylish, Hollywood vibe complete with a quirky 60s aesthetic. We were greeted with a cocktail on arrival. The bar takes centre stage in the lobby and the reception desk is actually behind it! This creates a really relaxed atmosphere when checking in and we sipped bellinis as our bags were brought to our rooms. The lobby is decorated with movie set lighting and leather couches and there is even a glass pool table that guests can enjoy playing or just admiring. The whole interior exudes Hollywood glamour with black and white photos adorning the walls and storage in the room resembling old luggage dressers – I felt a bit like Marilyn Monroe! The hotel has an indoor and outdoor pool as well as a fitness centre. It is in a great location too, just a fifteen minute walk from Rodeo Drive, an upmarket shopping area and a must see when in LA.
You can book a night at Mr.C here.
What we did
We were in LA for our days and we managed to do so much!
Beverly Hills Sign and Rodeo Drive
As mentioned above we were staying in Beverly Hills so on our first evening we walked to the Beverly Hills sign and took a leisurely stroll around Rodeo Drive. Rodeo Drive is one of the most luxurious shopping streets in the world. It is also home to the hotel Beverly Wilshire which you might recognise from Pretty Woman – a serious must see!
Perch, Downtown LA
Our second day was Mother’s Day so I surprised my Mum and took her to one of the top ten restaurants in Los Angeles. Perch is a rooftop lounge in downtown LA and was such a lovely treat. It describes itself as ‘an elevated resting place’ and it certainly had that feel, with jazz music and a view of the city it was the perfect setting for brunch. My sisters had arranged for flowers to be delivered to the restauarnt and they were sitting pretty on the table when we arrived. We sat outside on this beautiful Sunday afternoon but the main bar is just as beautiful with a 30 foot ceiling, antique decor and sweeping archways.
They have an extensive and exciting cocktail menu as well as interesting brunch options. I picked the french toast and it was honestly one of the best french toasts I’ve ever had. We finished with coffee and a cardamon creme brulee and when my Dad had finished taking photos for us the waiter was kind enough to take some too!
Book a table at Perch here.
Hollywood Walk of Fame and Chinese Theatre
One of the most iconic areas of Los Angeles has to be the Hollywood Walk of Fame. We got a taxi to the bottom of the boulevard and walked all the way to the top reading the names in stars along the way. We then visited the Chinese Theatre where we saw a homage to Sid Grauman and the hand prints of a number of famous movie stars. We also went to the second floor of the Hollywood and Highland Shopping Centre to get a great view of the Hollywood sign!
Santa Monica and Venice Beach
On a bright Tuesday morning we lathered ourselves in suncream and headed to Santa Monica. This was probably my favourite part of the trip. It is the final stop on the Route 66 trail and has a fun and carefree atmosphere. We took a walk along the pier, checking out the amusements along the way and I picked up the coolest flip flops. We then hired bikes and cycled out to Venice Beach. This bike ride is so much fun as you pass Muscle Beach and then cycle straight into the bohemian epicentre. Artists throng the streets selling paintings and crafts and you’re tempted to quit your job and stay here forever! We dismounted our bikes and walked to the end of Venice Pier to take in the sea views before cycling back to Santa Monica.
A serious highlight of the trip for me was Universal Studios. I was thrilled to go full nerd and immerse myself in the wonderful world of Harry Potter. This area of the park opened last April and it completely lived up to my expectations. We walked through the magical streets of Hogsmead drinking butterbeer (which tastes incredible by the way) and watching as children tested the magic of the wands they’d picked up in Olivanders. It truly is an experience like no other and I was close to pinching myself as I entered Hogwarts to try out the ride. The attention to detail throughout the park is incredible and you can even hear Moaning Myrtle in the bathrooms. My Dad was the one who noticed this first, proving he too is a HP fan!
The park also has Springfield and as I am a big Simpsons fan I loved this. You can grab a Duff in Moe’s or get your picture taken under the Springfield sign.
We also took the studio tour which brought us through some of Universal’s most used outdoor Studios and gave us a glimpse into the world of movies. We even took a trip down Wisteria Lane.
Where we ate
As mentioned above, we had a lovely brunch in Perch LA but we also tried some other exclusive restaurants during our visit. We dined like celebrities in The Nice Guy which is known for having Justin Bieber and co as patrons. We booked this a few weeks before our visit as it fills up quickly. There is a strict no photography policy though, so unfortunately I don’t have any photos. The interior is dark and it has a sort of prohibition vibe. We were left waiting quite a while to be seated but the cocktails were to die for and the food was well worth the wait.
Book a table at The Nice Guy here.
We also ate Picca Peru which was a Peruvian tapas style restaurant just beside our hotel. It wasn’t until afterwards that I found out Nas (as in Nas the rapper!) was sitting just across from us- only in LA right? Staff were incredibly friendly and again, great cocktails!
Book a table at Picca here.