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Reviews, Rants and All That Other Good Stuff

Shopping It Up June 21, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — meganclose @ 9:38 am

    Beverly Hills is a town that caters to the rich, but you don’t have to be

  a millionaire to spend a day like one.  Put on a comfortable (and yet

  chic) pair of shoes and enjoy all of the over-the-top opulence and Old 

  Hollywood charm that 90210 has to offer.  A quick note about parking –

  while you can occasionally find street parking, a garage is usually your

  best bet.  Parking rates aren’t too painful – usually around $7.00 for the

  day – and lots are everywhere.

    Start the day off with breakfast at Nate n’ Al’s.  The delicatessen is a

  bit pricier than an average establishment of its kind, but stick with the

  basics (a shortstack of buttermilk pancakes for $6.95 or a design-your-

  own omelette from $7.95 up) and you should be able to leave without

  hurting too badly.  There are very few places in Los Angeles that can

  pull off a true blue New York vibe and Nate n’ Al’s is one of them.  The

  waitresses can come off as a bit brash, but the service is quick and

  efficient and the food is tasty.  If you don’t mind soup for breakfast,

  definitely try their matzo ball ($4.75 for a cup).

    Spend the rest of the morning and early afternoon window shopping on

  Rodeo Drive.  Popular spots include Gucci, Prada, Bulgari and Neiman

  Marcus.  Channel your inner Julia Roberts and gawk at jewels in Tiffany’s

  or the high fashion at Chanel.  Perhaps even treat yourself to a small

  something.  I treated myself to a $75 bottle of perfume at Yves Saint-

  Laurent a year ago – the bottle is still half full and I feel glamorous

  every time I put some on.

    Before leaving this neck of the woods, swing by Sprinkles and pick up a

  cupcake or two.  The tasty treats are $3.25 each and come in a variety

  of flavors.  I recommend the black-and-white and red velvet.  Flavors

  vary daily, and lines are often out the door.  The cupcakes are huge and

  the best in town.

    All of the luxury daydreaming will have you worn out and hungry, so

  head to the also chic Robertson Boulevard area.  Have lunch at the Ivy

  (make reservations in advance) and request the patio, though it can be

  difficult to snag during certain times of the day.  The famous power

  lunch spot hasn’t changed much since it’s opening in the 1980s, but the

  floral prints and tuxedo-clad waiters make you wish you were having

  lunch with a studio head.  The menu can be pricey, and the service

  encounters are a mixed bag, but the experience is worth it.

    After lunch, your shopping energy will have returned and you can

  explore the shops on Robertson.  While not technically in Beverly Hills,

  it is right nearby and definitely worth a stop.  Check out stores like

  Kitson (very popular with the “it” crowd), and Lisa Kline.  Petit Tresor is

  such a cute and hip baby shop it may make you want to have one.  Take

  a break and people watch as you enjoy your Sprinkles purchase. 

  Celebrity sightings are frequent in this area, so keep your eyes peeled.

    The Beverly Center is another stop you should make on your day of

  shopping.  The mall has a massive selection of stores, including H&M,

  Macy’s and Sephora.  There are also several restaurant options (P.F.

  Chang’s China Bistro, Grand Lux Cafe, etc.).

    If you don’t feel like dinner at the mall or a chain restaurant, stop by

  Crustacean for Euro-Asian or Grill on the Alley for a steak

    Round out your evening with a drink at the Beverly Hills Hotel’s Polo

  Lounge.  The “Pink Palace” has stayed true to its roots.  You will never

  meet friendlier valets, and once you walk into the hotel you will feel

  transported back to the days of Grace Kelly and Cary Grant.  Your drink

  in the famed Lounge will be more than you expect (around $16 for a

  cocktail), but it will also be strong enough so that you’ll get some bang

  for your bucks.  Lean back and enjoy the ambience.  The hotel also has

  a small row of shops on their bottom floor (take the stairs near the

  Lounge).  There is the Fountain Coffee Room diner there as well, but it

  closes at 7:00pm.

    You will definitely have to come back to Beverly Hills for another day

  (other sights include the Museum of Television & Radio, now the Paley

  Center for Media), but feel satisfied in your day of excess.

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