I'm goin' to LA - Whatever shall I do? Wherever shall I go?

OK, Los Angeles beckons me (well, actually a hunky boy who lives in Los Angeles beckons me, but that’s best saved for another thread).

I’m going to be in LA for 9 days at the beginning of August and I’m looking for activity suggestions. We’ve already decided we’re going to go to:

Disney Land - I’m 33, I’ve never been - apparently that’s a sin.
Surfing (Which is funny, since I don’t know how to swim)
The nifty Shwanko Movie Theatre that I have written down somewhere that serves beer and has actual barka loungers to sit in to watch the movie.
A Japanese beef restaurant (which is funny, since I don’t eat beef - I’m hoping I’ll be able to get some miso or something :D)
Dino’s??? (It’s a buffet type restaurant up by Ventura, apparently - I might have the name wrong)

So - some things that I need info on:

  1. A really good, authentic Sushi restaurant. No Mexican sushi chefs, please! :slight_smile: Big fish, little rice, Uni in good and fresh supply. I’m REALLY a fuss-ass when it comes to sushi. :slight_smile:

  2. There’s a Jean store where you can get custom made jeans that do…impressive things to your ass. My friend who read about it can’t remember the name but it’s in LA - any hints would be a big help.

  3. Any other suggestions. :slight_smile:

Thanks in advance all!

There are some great places in Little Tokyo-

Sushi Komasa
Sushi Gen
Izayoi

and Azami Sushi Cafe in West Hollywood have gotten rave reviews from some of my fave L.A. food bloggers (Daily Gluttony is a great blog to check out if you want to take a gastronomic tour of L.A.).

If you want a great little place in Little Tokyo that serves not only well-reviewed sushi but izakaya, then I strongly recommend Haru Ulala. My best friend from undergrad was just visiting me and she adored it and swore up and down it was very authentic (she used to live in Japan). I don’t think izakaya is one of those things you’ll be able to find widely so I’d recommend it strongly. When we went it was 4 of us stuffing our faces and 2 of us swilling sake and the bill was only in the low-100s. Sadly the night we went they didn’t have okonomiyaki, which my friend was really looking forward to eating.

Anyway, Little Tokyo, it has the great eats. Also, on this site, you can often get 10% off coupons (we scored one for Haru Ulala).

I’d recommend getting reservations to the Little Tokyo hotspots if you’re planning to go on Friday or the weekend. They are packed.

Ooooh, apparently the purveyors of izakaya goodness at Haru Ulala run Sushi Go 55. Look it up on the japanese restaurant site, it looks very tasty.

I don’t know which jeans store you’re refering to, but this page on citysearch lists several denim hotspots, including some place called WORK where you can get custom-fit jeans for the bargain price of $350.

Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica is pretty fun - basically a pedestrian shopping area spiced up by the multitude of interesting street performers.

For serious LA-style shopping, don’t miss the boutiques on Melrose Ave, between about Fairfax and La Brea. In general, they’re not too expensive, and there are some cool second-hand clothing stores that are worth checking out.

Personally, I like people-watching, and there’s no better place to do it than Venice Beach. Pack a picnic or grab some tacos, park yourself on a grassy knoll, and watch the lively human spectacle.

One thing about LA is that it’s big. For example, I wouldn’t plan on having a buffet in Ventura the same day I go to Disneyland - they’re 95 miles apart, across some of the busiest interstates in the country!

So… plan wisely. Keep in mind that distance matters - the only major city that is larger is Houston TX… but I really don’t believe that because I’ve spent plenty of time in both cities and while Houston is Big, LA is BIG.

IMO the only reason to go to LA is the La Brea tar pits. Or a hunky guy in your case, I guess.

So…what are YOUR interests? And are you spending all 9 days with him, or do you have some time on your own?

Also, what JohnT said.

If you head east about 60 miles, you’ll be in Palm Springs. Nice place, that.

Warm, this time of year. (As in, not as @!#&@! hot as Las Vegas or Death Valley.) August, too.

Sounds like the Arclight which I can’t recommend enough. While you’re in Hollywood, I would recommend you eat at Roscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles. It’s a couple of blocks from the Arclight. If you’re there on the weekend, there WILL be a wait, but it’s totally worth it.

If you’re doing the touristy thing, I’d say you should go to Hollywood and Highland. It IS very touristy, but it’s great for people-watching. Plus, it’s right next to the Mann’s Chinese Theatre, so you can go compare your foot size to stars of yore. C’mon, you know you want to.

Also, you’re in town at the perfect time to see a concert at the Hollywood Bowl. There’s something so magical about going to a concert there. However, you’ll definitely want to take a shuttle or a park and ride. The parking situation is… well, I was going to say that it’s indescribibly bad, but it’s worse than that.

Lastly, the Garment District in downtown LA is really, really fun. Bring cash, and be ready to haggle.

Palm Springs is vastly overrated, IMO.

If you want weird people-watching, try Melrose Avenue (between La Brea and Fairfax) and/or Venice beach.

And a quintessentially L.A. thing to do is to eat a hot dog at Pink’s, near Fairfax and Melrose – supposedly it’s a good place to watch celebrities, but I was never good at that.

For shopping, I prefer The Grove open-air complex – a tad cramped, but very shiny and purty, and close to lots of other El Lay attractions.

Definitely watch the distances, though. A good map is essential for visitors, especially for stalking out the freeways.

I was gonna say you could see me, but I see you’ve already got a hunky guy. Your loss.

Hey - thanks for all the replies so far!

I’m not super interested in shopping - well, actually I am, but I don’t want to waste 9 days with my hunky man dragging him around shopping, 'cus I really don’t think that would be much fun for him. So, I wanna check out an Anthropologie store (we don’t have them in Canada), and I was sort of interested in the jeans place, and he wants to take me to Victoria’s Secret because we don’t have those in Canada either, but that’s about it.

I’m not sure how much time I’ll have with Mr. California - he’s saying all of it, although he might have a few work things to take care of. He’s rather graciously said that I could take his truck and drive around, but I’m not sure that’s a super good idea - there’s an excellent chance that I’ll get lost in east LA or Compton or some shit, and I’m not sure how much cache the “I’m Canadian!” thing is going to carry in a really bad neighbourhood.

Soo - I think that Sushi Go 55 looks good - I checked out their site and their prices look reasonable, and they have Uni right on the front page! wOOt!

Also, the Tar Pits are tentatively on the itinerary as well. I dig fossils – I live close to Drumheller, AB so it would be interesting to compare notes.

I did find the [url"http://www.thebunnymuseum.com/"]Bunny Museum which actually looks super creepy. I mean, I as much into bunnies as the next gal, but EEEEEUCHHHH! That’s some seriously whacked out shit.

We’re also going to go to San Diego for a day or two because I want to see the Zoo (or the animal park, or whatever). He used to live there though, so he probably knows most of the hot-spots.

Thing is, he’s just moved to LA in the last couple of months so he’s not super familiar with things either.

One other thing - does LA have any “Really Big Things”? You know, like a big shoe, or a big truck, or a huge turtle or an enormous Easter egg- those goofy roadside attractions that places put up for no apparent reason? I think we would both be keen to see one of those.

Please keep the suggestions coming!

Finally, Rigamorole, this is Mr. California’s and my first date - perhaps we’ll hate each other and I’ll need to sleep on your sofa. :wink:

LA **used ** to be the world capital of junk like that. Unfortunately most have crumbled away or been torn down. But we still have a few big doughnuts, and one of them is only a few minutes from LAX!

There’s a pretty big Anthropologie on Lake Street in the Lake-Del Mar shopping area in Pasadena, plus there’s Old Town Pasadena which has Victoria’s Secret, Urban Outfitters, Guess, J. Crew, Blandana Republican, blahdeblah and is a nice walkable shopping area with several restaurants (there’s an Afghani restaurant, didn’t much care for their bland food, and a better Tibetan-Nepali restaurant around the corner from them, a Malaysian restaurant, two Indian restaurants…several sushi…about anything you could ask for).

Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters both look the same to me (overpriced raggedy boho clothes) but if you like that style I’d recommend looking at both of them. Also, they opened a Jigsaw in that mall on Colorado slightly up from Old Town, frock, I don’t remember what it’s called. That’s also overpriced raggedy boho, but from England!

‘‘The Best In Tar Entertainment’’.

I’m TOTALLY into overpriced raggedy boho! :smiley: Actually, it’s their shoes that really make me cream my jeans, if ya know what I mean - thanks for the tip tho.

The doughnuts look interesting - BUT, Canada is the home of the King of Doughnut shops - I’m afraid they might take away my citizenship, or restrict my intake of double-doubles if I go to some mamby-pamby US doughnut shop. I’ll have to tread very carefully I think. :slight_smile:

Hmm, don’t know if Urban Outfitters has shoes but it’s in the whole walkable Old Town area that most people seem to like a lot. I’m sure it does-UO does all of Anthropologie’s slinky shirts with frayed edges and the like for a wee bit cheaper. I don’t think they have the really beautiful dresses, though, which is Anthro’s one saving grace (in my urban-business loving estimation, so you see, I’m no better nor one to turn up my nose at any particular look). Definitely check out Jigsaw, it’s expensive but it has that same general look Anthro seems to go for, just a wee bit more European.

There’s also a huge DSW Shoe Warehouse at that mall that has Jigsaw.

Really, Pasadena is a pretty easy one-stop (well, concentrated driving area) destination for “well known boutique” shopping. At least you get to walk around on a street instead of in a stuffy mall.

Excellent - I’ll make that the one and only shopping destination. Mr. California isn’t supposed to let me shop at ALL, but I know exactly how long that’s going to last - not very long! :slight_smile:

The Disney Animation Office in Burbank has a ginormous wizard’s hat (from The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) in the front. Last I checked, it was visible from the 134 freeway.