If you are a fan of shopping, you are going to be spoilt for choice in Los Angeles. From window shopping and celebrity spotting on Rodeo Drive to indulging your inner gourmet at the Los Angeles Farmers Market, you’ll soon find somewhere to spend your well-deserved holiday (not to mention your hard-earned dollars).
Head to one of the most famous shopping areas in LA, Rodeo Drive, and brace yourself for some serious designer shopping, Beverly Hills style. From Chanel to Cartier and from Prada to Hermes, here is where you’ll find the most stylish designer retailers in the city.
If you’re keen to people watch and window shop, as many of us are, rather than shelling out thousands on a handbag, Rodeo Drive is the perfect place to do just that. You certainly won’t be the only visitor wearing high street garbs and at only three blocks long, you can see everything in one or two hours. Keep your eyes peeled and you might just spot the odd celebrity or two – provided that they haven’t sent their assistant out for them – completing the Rodeo Drive tourist experience!
If you’re really keen on star spotting, then there are a few other streets worth taking a stroll down, including Melrose, Larchmont, and West Third Street to name but a few.
If high-end high street shopping is more your thing, then the Grove Mall at the LA Farmers Market should surely make your list of ‘must sees’ (more about the Farmers Market itself shortly). Located in the Fairfax District of the city, the Grove is home to flagship stores for chains including Abercrombie and Fitch, Barnes and Noble and Apple. Other shops in the outside mall include Nike, Gap, MAC Cosmetics and Barneys New York.
For those of you who like your shopping destinations to offer that little bit extra, then the Grove’s large park and musical fountain display – likened to a small-scale version of the Bellagio fountains in Las Vegas - shouldn’t disappoint. Try and catch the musical display which takes place every hour or so. As well as the fountains, you’ll also find many restaurants - chain and local, plus Gordon Ramsey’s Fat Cow - as well as a 14-screen cinema complex. If you are lucky enough to be in LA around Christmas then be sure to see all 110ft of the Grove Christmas Tree – the tallest in the whole city.
Adjacent to the Grove, on the corner of Third and Fairfax, you will find the historic landmark of the Farmers Market, which attracts thousands of visitors every year. First opened in 1934, the Farmers Market showcases much of what you would expect a farmers market to: food stalls, produce vendors, plus sit-down eateries and dozens of stalls serving cuisine from around the globe. A not-to-be-missed destination if you consider yourself a foodie, the Farmers Market offers the perfect opportunity to get acquainted with the many ethnic cuisines that have found a home here, including, Asian and Latin American.
A fairly recent addition to the pantheon of Hollywood landmarks, Amoeba Music on Sunset Boulevard opened in November 2001. Open every day until at least 9pm. Amoeba is the world’s largest independent music store and is a definite LA highlight if you are a music fan of any sort. Not only does the store house two floors – occupying an entire block – of records, CDs, and DVDs, it is also a unique hub of the local music community and an acclaimed music venue. Seeing a band here is certainly something to write home about.