Go glam in Beverly Hills, a small but iconic city under the sun
Check in to your hotel, then set out on foot to experience that California sunshine firsthand. People say no one walks in Los Angeles, but strolling the streets of the city of Beverly Hills is a pleasure. Make your way to the Golden Triangle, the city’s unsurpassed shopping district bordered by South Santa Monica Boulevard, Wilshire Boulevard and Canon Drive, with Rodeo Drive at its heart. Here, crazy-expensive boutiques like Harry Winston, Chanel and Cartier sit side by side with more mainstream fare, such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Z Gallerie and Paper Source. I spent more than an hour browsing through & Other
Stories, a scrumptious fashion and accessories store owned by the H&M Group. Stop in at some of the many gourmet food shops in the area, and savour everything from cheese and macarons to cupcakes and candy. Still hungry? Grab a table at Sharky’s
Woodfired Mexican Grill for a leisurely lunch and watch the haute world go by.
When you’ve had your fill of seeing and being seen, head back to your hotel for a dip in the pool and then dress up for dinner (nothing too fancy – California is very casual). End the day with a drink at the one-year-old Waldorf Astoria’s The Roof
top by JG (3) bar, which offers spectacular views over Beverly Hills and Los Angeles as the sun sets.
Start your morning in healthy California style with a cycling tour of Beverly Hills led by the pros at Bikes and Hikes LA. The electric Celebrity Bike Tour covers all the city’s best spots, from Greystone Mansion, with its incredible gardens and grounds, to the whimsical storybook Spadena House (affectionately known as the Witch’s House) to the Pacific Design Center.
For lunch, make a reservation at the not-to-be-missed iconic Beverly Hills Hotel (2) (don’t forget to take a selfie underneath its famous sign
(1)). Order either the signature McCarthy Salad (5) poolside at the Cabana Café or a burger and fries in the Polo Lounge or on the patio.
The whole storied hotel is beyond lovely; it’s the perfect place to imagine yourself rubbing shoulders with past celebrity guests like Frank Sinatra and Elizabeth Taylor – that’s if you’re not already spotting current stars at a neighbouring table.
Stroll across the street from the hotel through the tranquil Will Rogers Memorial Park, and then continue walking down North Beverly or North Canon Drive underneath the iconic palm trees (8). Both roads meet Santa Monica Boulevard at Beverly Gardens Park, a long strip of verdant green space dotted with fountains and paths.
Across the road is the Beverly Hills Civic Center, housed in a chic Spanish Revival meets Art Deco meets Post Modern complex of buildings adorned with stairways, balconies, gardens and palm trees. Take a few minutes to contemplate city hall’s grand eight-storey tower, with its blue-, green- and gold-tiled dome and gilded cupola (6).
When you’ve worked up an appetite, walk over to Citizen (9), a quirky ’60s-inspired eatery. Opt for a cocktail (I’m partial to the Violette) in the open air lounge before ordering your meal. Follow up all that good food with a relaxed ramble back to your hotel.
Another sunny California morning beckons. Style lovers will want to rent or hire a car to tour the design district in West Hollywood, just east of Beverly Hills. Start off along Melrose Avenue, stopping in to view the exhibits at the Museum
of Contemporary Art (MOCA Pacific Design Center) and browsing at spots like the Jasper Showroom, an outpost of Michael Smith’s design empire, and Rose Tarlow
Melrose House, to see the venerable designer’s furniture and textiles. If you’re here on a Sunday, don’t miss Melrose Trading Post, an outdoor market held on the grounds of Fairfax High School.
Once you’ve had your fill of vintage treasures, head south to scope out Heath Ceramics (7) on Beverly Boulevard. I was in this store for at least an hour, figuring out how many pieces I could fit into my carry-on to take back home. (The answer? Three.) Go next door to Rolling Greens Home & Garden (4), hands-down my favourite shop here – its lush decor had me all in a swoon. When you can tear yourself away from Rolling Greens, go for lunch nearby at either Terroni, if you fancy Italian, or Escuela Taqueria, for a quick Mexican bite.
Hop in your transport and head west along Beverly Boulevard to Robertson Boulevard; in the area you’ll find RH Modern, Restoration Hardware’s contemporary design extension, as well as a number of other modern furniture stores. Carry on to Mayfair House for upscale accessories, Ann Sacks for oh-so-chic tiles and Foundry for luxury lighting. Stop for a blood orange lemonade at – where else? – Lemonade.
You’re now on the border of Beverly Hills, so make your way back to your hotel and relax by the pool until it’s time to pack up your purchases and head home.
The pool at The Beverly Hills Hotel has underwater speakers; music is piped right in while you swim!
9 Number of days to spend here 3 1960s-inspired decor – and cocktails! – is the order of the day at Citizen restaurant.
7 5 6
BOLD Holidays – or Beverly Hills Open Later Days – starts in November; enjoy special spec events and longer shopping hours.
4 Executive editor Suzanne Moutis couldn’ t get enough of Rolling Greens Home & Garden.