New York, I love you, but occasionally an exit strategy is necessary for survival. Amirite? More often than not that “strategy” involves holing up in my apartment, revisiting back issues of Bon Appetit, imagining what my windowsill would look like if I were actually successful at keeping plants alive, and only dreaming of super-sunny climes. (I’d like to take a moment to debunk the myth that succulents are easy to nurture.) But this spring I was lucky enough to head west all the way to sunny California and land in Venice for a week. And boy was it fantastic. So while NYC is my boyfriend and Paris is for sure my lover, L.A. is that best friend I never (ever) want to leave. The sun! The weather! The outdoor life! The food! The shopping! (Spoiler alert: I did eventually get on the plane and head back east, but it wasn’t pretty.) Because L.A., like New York, is expansive and ever-changing, and also offers a little something for everyone, below is my volume one round-up of “don’t even THINK of not visiting” spots. In the works of Sinatra, “the best is yet to come.”
First stop: Gjusta. My long-distance love affair with this Venice bakery/cafe/deli was finally coming to an end— I was there!
And as I sipped my cappuccino in the garden, I realized my in-person-love-affair was only just beginning.
Next, a little retail therapy on Abbot Kinney. Not to be missed are my new faves, Cuyana, The Juicy Leaf (succulent garden pictured above), The Piece Collective, and Ilan Dei Venice.
When in Beverly Hills: Striiike. My eyebrow experience is next level. (And I will be flying back for maintenance.)
Beauty splurge: Violet Grey. The luxe, Melrose Place outpost of the inimitably chic, beauty e-tailer is beyond. Even more edited than the site, this jewel box boutique is a product junkie’s paradise— complete with every Tom Ford product imaginable, curated reading material, and Cary Grant’s makeup chair from the ’50s. In a nutshell: I would live here.
by Allison Beale