LA… perfect destination for solo travelers
1. Stay @ Mama Shelter, Hollywood
There are some travel experiences where, if you’re traveling solo, you can spend hours and days alone not talking to a soul. Staying at Mama Shelter LA, this is basically impossible. Staff are chatty and sweet… guests are cool and happy to start a conversation, their vibe is laid back, well-dressed and ready for a cocktail. This is was one of the things that made my stay in LA better than expected.
The rooms face the street, so it’s a little noisy, but the decor is understated cool, with chic features, a great king-sized bed and sleek bathroom. A little noise for a New-yorker is no biggie.
Designed by Thierry Gaugain, a luxury-focused designer (and previous designer for Phillipe Stark), the hotel is in a 30s-era building in the heart of Hollywood. The details are fun without feeling kitsch. The dark ceiling with cool art sets the tone. Artists Alex Becerra and Alex Ruthner and surrealist video artist/ painter Pearl Hsiung, help add a cool factor to the space, which draws the kind of interesting crowd you want to see at a boutique hotel in Hollywood.
Rooftop views are incredible and Sunday brunch is worth the visit – the Mediterranean style brunch is mouthwatering and as colorful as the decor, just make sure you’re hungry. Even if you don’t stay here, make sure you book for a sunset cocktail session.
2. Walk – down Melrose on a Sunday morning – farmers markets, stop at Alfred’s coffee for a matcha latte, and a peak into Elodie K store, which has incredible handbags and accessories crammed into a little store.
3. Hike: Runyon Canon – celeb spotting men without shirts and a whole lot of fit bods. The view is fantastic and you can even peek into the incredible luxury houses on the hills… its very 90210
4. Eat well… time to nourish your body, LA style. The land of green smoothies, kale wraps and vegan salads… how do they make it taste so good? Pop into Moon Juice store just near Melrose
5. Culture shock… yes LA now has culture too! Check out the gorgeous Broad museum… incredible architecture by Diller, Scofidio + Renfro, built by legendary Eli Broad. Houses some incredible art from Jeff Koons to Cy Twombly and Andy Warhol… is a feast for the eyes.
6. Get your surf on.. or at least try look the part. Head to Santa Monica beach for a bike ride in the warm LA sun or stroll on the sand
7. Eat… try experimental dining at Ink…or Curtis Stone’s new spot Gwen, Kali and gorgeous light-filled Norah.
10. The scene… where else but Cheateau Marmont. Still a favorite for tourists and celebs alike.