A Luxury Weekend Getaway in Tinseltown: Dining & Spas
Our journey through Los Angeles continues as we explore some of our favorite restaurants and spas in Tinseltown…
Both International and local chefs flock to L.A. to open some of the most talked about, highly Zagat-rated hotspots. Which means, the culinary options here are endless, mouth-watering and undeniably delicious!
Some of our favorites include:
Upper West (Santa Monica) – Santa Monica’s newest dining destination, guests can enjoy modern American cuisine that’s both familiar and inventive. The 28-foot ceilings and 27-foot bar evoke a chic urban feel. The wine list is impressive (who knew we’d love the Lava Rock Merlot/Syrah!) and the specialty drinks have won awards around the world. Our favorites? The Upper West or Lychee Martini. Check out the crispy Ahi tuna tacos, pancetta wrapped prawns, and amazing short ribs. And, be sure to leave room for Chef Nick’s amazing basil-coconut sorbet! Located at 3321 Pico Blvd.
Citizen Smith Hollywood (Hollywood) – This “urban bistro” takes its name from a 1900′s Russian Novel, referring to “Citizen Smith” – the average, everyday man. Decorated in “goth-ly” style – with candles, chandeliers and mirrors, the place also offers an gorgeous outside patio. Trust us: walking by, one would never know that a unique treasure lays within. If in Hollywood, this is definitely a stop you should make – even if only to grab a drink and soak up the atmosphere – since its much more about the setting and the scene than it is anything else. Thought we’ve gotta say, the Frangipane Mocha Ice Cream Cake, served with blueberries and chocolate sauce was pure sweet indulgence! For the night owls out there, keep in mind: Citizen Smith stays open until 4 a.m., – except Sunday through Wednesday, when it closes early at 2 a.m. Located at 1600 N. Cahuenga.
Kazu Sushi (Studio City) – The San Fernando valley’s best kept secret, Kazu Sushi is an unforgettable mouthwatering experience for those with an appetite for sushi. Not surprising since the décor is anything but. With minimalist design and a feng-shui Japanese statues placed here and there, Kazu’s focus is on food, and food alone – which was just fine by us! Everything off this menu is heavenly, but we especially loved the toro tartare. oysters and kobe sushi And naturally, go for the omakase – which translates to “chef’s choice”. Just as the name implies, the Kazu’s chef will create a number of small dishes presented one at a time every five or so minutes. Talk about a tease to the palette – but then again, no need to rush such pleasure! Kazu is located at 11440 Ventura Blvd.
When its time for a pampering treat, the folks in LA know where to go for a real indulgence.
Here’s a peek at just some of our faves:
Sonya Dakar Skin Clinic (Beverly Hills) – The maven of skincare, Sonya Dakar opened this grand spa more than 20 years ago and it’s still one of the best spa destinations in the LA area (located at 9975 Little Santa Monica Boulevard).
A grand spot of more than 12,000 square-feet, the “complex” includes five floors, VIP Concierge Service (Gwyneth Paltrow, Debra Messing and Drew Barrymore are just some of the celeb fans), and a gourmet cafe. Known for developing and testing the products and treatments offered at the clinic for a “minimum of two years before they are offered”… we’ll leave it to you to imagine how good they really are!
LeSpa (Beverly Hills) – From the moment you walk through the door of this Beverly Hills hotel spa (located at Sofitel LA), you’ll immediately sense luxury and relaxation. Perhaps it’s the serenity, the calming scents and the soothing music, or maybe it just has something to do with the warm foot soak and personal tea service that each client receives prior to the real treatment.
LeSpa is a 5,000 square-foot spa, which consists of a gym, nail salon, steam room, Swiss showers and private luxury treatment suites. (You can tell you’re in LA when the treatment rooms have a spot for your bodyguard to wait!) Looking to reawaken after a night out on the town? Go for the “Balanced Beauty” – an 80-minute heavenly facial that starts with a neck and shoulder massage, using essential oils, balms and natural powders… perfect for that healthy radiant glow we all seek!