THE IN­SID­ERS WEST HOL­LY­WOOD

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE - GREG HAR­LESS STU­DIO HEAD

GO: West Hol­ly­wood, af­fec­tion­ately known as WeHo, is ev­ery­thing you love about Los An­ge­les in three square kilo­me­tres, as the promo says. While there’s plenty to see and do, talk­ing with a lo­cal will help you get just why this part of the city is so cool. For movie and TV buffs, it has a fab­u­lous his­tory. The Lot stu­dios, which I head, was de­vel­oped in the early 1920s by Mary Pick­ford and her hus­band, Dou­glas Fair­banks. Re­named United Artists in 1927, truly great films have been made here. It’s fas­ci­nat­ing to see places you recog­nise on the screen. En­tourage fans get a real kick out of vis­it­ing Urth Caffe; vis­itwest­hol­ly­wood.com; urth­caffe.com.

STAY: You can’t go wrong with Sun­set Mar­quis, tucked away on a quiet res­i­den­tial street, yet just steps from all the ac­tion on the Sun­set Strip. I dig the ho­tel’s rock ’n’ roll his­tory; it has been home to stars old and new (in­clud­ing Bob Mar­ley and Bruce Spring­steen) and even has a record­ing stu­dio where dozens of Grammy-win­ning records have been made; sun­set­mar­quis.com.

EAT: While WeHo has some of LA’s most sought-af­ter restau­rants, there are plenty of low-key places to en­joy a good meal. I of­ten go to Jones Hol­ly­wood, lo­cated just across the street from the stu­dio. It’s a lo­cals’ hang­out with an old-school Hol­ly­wood feel that serves Ital­ian favourites and strong house cock­tails; joneshol­ly­wood.com.

DRINK: If you’re a dive bar kind of per­son and en­joy meet­ing friends over a beer, The Surly Goat is a good go-to with more than 25 craft beers on tap, in­clud­ing many lo­cal Cal­i­for­nian brews. Rock & Reilly’s on Sun­set also has a pub-like feel and im­pres­sive whisky list; surly­goat.com; rockan­dreillys.com.

PARTY: I tend to keep it mel­low these days — young at heart but a lot of mileage. But some im­pres­sive in­dus­try parties have been held at the iconic Sun­set Tower Ho­tel’s Tower Bar and it sure is worth check­ing out; sun­set­tow­er­ho­tel.com.

SHOP: I al­most never wear a suit, but pre­fer jeans, blazer and sneak­ers for work. Rag & Bone on Mel­rose Av­enue suits my style. There is also a John Var­vatos store a few blocks down that has help­ful staff and a good se­lec­tion of boots; rag-bone.com; john­var­vatos.com.

Greg Har­less is man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of The Lot, a West Hol­ly­wood stu­dio for TV, film and com­mer­cial pro­duc­tion. More: th­elot­stu­dios.com.

In­sid­ers ed­i­tor:

Gra­ham Er­bacher Gra­ham.Er­bacher@news.com.au

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