How to See and Be Seen on the Scene in LA
Having friends in town is always an excuse to do things I know are available but never take advantage of. When Lauren and Ana came to town they wanted to experience Los Angeles from a girls’ weekend angle so Maxine and I put our heads together and organized some very “LA” experiences for them.
First up was dinner and vodka tasting at Nic’s Beverly Hills. Nic’s is a Beverly Hills staple with an eclectic mix of people and experiences, a place where you can eat oysters and sip vodka cocktails while laughing with friends and listening to live music. After dinner, slip on a hat and a faux fur coat and transport yourself into the world of vodka in the Vodbox, a room chilled to 28 degrees Fahrenheit and loaded with bottles of vodka from around the world. Your hostess will describe the vodkas you taste and explain the subtle differences in how the vodkas are made. Even gin drinkers, including Ana and me, had a great time learning and sipping.
The next morning we were off for a full day of glam in West Hollywood, beginning with a fashion showroom fitting and styling at Fragola, a high-fashion online boutique. At Fragola, guests can be fitted with the season’s latest fashions, by appointment only. The girls were in couture heaven with shoes, handbags, and apparel all pulled to suit their unique personalities and styles. But what outfit is complete without a piece of amazing jewelry? Friend and jeweler to the stars Gerald David Bauman showed up with what he called his “bag of jewels.” Splayed across the table at Fragola was a nine-carat diamond ring, a broach with a vintage diamond once owned by Barbara Hutton, and other fantastic pieces of glittery fabulousness.
When we were done with our fittings and jewelry pageant, the girls and I headed into downtown West Hollywood for some scrumptious pre-dinner snacks and cocktails at Tortilla Republic. The churros are a favorite, and the specialty cocktails should not be passed up. Then it was off to SUR Restaurant and Bar. Owned by entrepreneur and “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” cast member Lisa Vanderpump, this explicitly sexy restaurant was the perfect backdrop for our day of glam. Where else would four fashionistas dine in Los Angeles? The restaurant is full of people wanting to be seen. Aside from the staff members—the stars of the “Vanderpump Rules” reality show—I am sure a celebrity sighting here isn’t too rare.
We also had an extra-special treat organized for us, the ultimate in LA experiences. Ana arranged for Flytographer to meet with us and shoot pictures of all of us enjoying our time together in West Hollywood at dinner. Really, a visit to LA would not be complete without a photographer following you around shooting pictures as if you were a celebrity.
The next day’s events were much less strenuous. We spent the afternoon in Santa Monica at the beach with Perry’s Beach Butler service. What lady wants to drag towels and chairs from her car onto the beach? We were completely spoiled with lounge chairs, umbrellas, towels, a cooler of cold water, and lunch service. Our butler was great, and he answered our every whim. After a hard day of relaxing at the Santa Monica beach, we needed a refresh so we headed to Exhale Spa at the Fairmont Hotel. The spa is great if you are heading to dinner and just need to get freshened up. We showered, did our hair and makeup, changed into our dinner attire, and headed out to meet up with some friends at Border Grill. Owned by celebrity chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, Border Grill has some outrageously delicious Mexican food. If you are a lover of Latin flavors, this restaurant should be on your list.
The weekend was coming to an end, and the next day Lauren and Ana were leaving LA. We weren’t ready to say our goodbyes just yet so we headed to The Craftsman Bar and Kitchen for a nightcap. It’s the perfect relaxing setting for the end of the night. We finished our drinks and said our goodbyes but looked forward to reuniting in Ana’s stomping grounds, the United Kingdom.