As a seasoned businesswoman who frequently jets across the globe, international broadcaster and Consumer Insight Expert Kate Hardcastle MBE shares her personal guide to Los Angeles, which she sees not just as a city, but as a vibrant canvas of culture, luxury, and history - and a home from home.
Let Kate guide us through her favourite LA spots, each offering a unique blend of experiences.
Stay: The Beverly Hills Hotel
My journey in LA often begins at the iconic Beverly Hills Hotel, situated on Sunset Boulevard. This legendary hotel, fondly known as 'The Pink Palace,' has been a symbol of glamour since 1912. Its history is rich with Hollywood lore – Elizabeth Taylor honeymooned here, and the Rat Pack were regulars. Walking through its corridors feels like traversing the annals of Hollywood history. As you approach, you can't miss the signature pink exterior and lush tropical gardens – a true oasis in the city. Get a snack in the beautiful Fountain Room, or book a blow-out at Salon By Joseph - tell them Kate sent you and you will be looked after by the best team.
Breakfast at The Cove at Shutters on the Beach, Santa Monica
To start the day, I head to Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica. Driving down Santa Monica Boulevard, the scenic route is a delightful prelude, showcasing the city’s diverse architecture and vibrant street life. Cove, located within Shutters, offers a tranquil beachfront setting. Overlooking the Pacific, the morning here begins with a symphony of ocean waves and a panoramic view of the Santa Monica Pier. The cuisine is a celebration of California's rich produce and pairs beautifully with the serene atmosphere. Ask for a table outside overlooking the shore.
Lunch: Dante at The Maybourne Hotel
Nestled in the heart of Beverly Hills, Dante at The Maybourne Hotel is an elegant escape from the bustling city. A short drive from the Beverly Hills Hotel, along the picturesque streets lined with palm trees and luxury boutiques, this spot is perfect for a midday retreat. Dante’s ambiance is an amalgamation of LA’s chic style and a menu that’s a testament to culinary artistry, making it ideal for both business and leisure.
Shopping: Rodeo Drive Including Erewhon
A trip to LA isn’t complete without a visit to Rodeo Drive. This world-renowned shopping street, just a few minutes from The Maybourne, is a fashionista's paradise, offering an array of high-end boutiques and designer stores. Close by is Erewhon Market, an upscale health-food store offering organic and sustainable products. Erewhon is not just a market; it's an LA institution, reflecting the city’s health-conscious ethos. Enjoy the best of produce and stock up on Sea Moss.
Spa: The Four Seasons Spa
After a day of meetings or shopping, I unwind at the Four Seasons Spa, a short drive from Rodeo Drive. This spa is a sanctuary in the midst of the city’s hustle. Known for its luxurious treatments that promise rejuvenation, it’s a place where the stresses of the day melt away amidst serene surroundings. ~In my opinion, it’s the best massage in town.
Show: Largo at the Coronet
In the evening, I often find myself at Largo at the Coronet. A historic theatre on La Cienega Boulevard, Largo is a hub for LA’s creative community. The intimate setting makes every show a personal experience, whether it's a comedy night or a live music performance. Driving there, one can’t help but admire the city’s vibrant nightlife and the iconic LA neon signs. Celebrity special guests are common - in recent months I have seen Adam Sandler and Sarah Silverman.
Kate’s Quick Tips:
It’s A Wrap! Located in Burbank, this unique store is a short drive from the heart of Hollywood. It's a paradise for film enthusiasts looking to own a piece of movie history. I will be wearing clothes straight from the new Warner Bros movie - cashmere and silk all at 75% off!
Kosha Spa in Sherman Oaks - Heading north from Beverly Hills, this spa is a hidden gem in the San Fernando Valley, offering a tranquil escape with its holistic wellness treatments. The Buccal facial is a must. Waverley on Doheny - This charming antique store in West Hollywood is a treasure trove for vintage lovers, nestled amidst the bustling streets known for their vibrant arts scene.
Iota.com - In the heart of Hollywood, iota offers a chance to be part of the audience in shows like Jimmy Kimmel Live. It’s an exciting way to experience the glamour of LA’s entertainment industry.
Los Angeles is more than a city; it's a myriad of experiences waiting to be discovered. From the historic luxury of The Beverly Hills Hotel to the vibrant streets of Hollywood, each location tells a story. Whether you're here for business or pleasure, LA promises a journey filled with glamour, history, and unforgettable experiences.