Love beer? Mikkeller Bar is definitely the authority on brews in DTLA. A discounted tire store turned massive craft brewery, the Mikkeller is a great spot to explore the world of micro brews and connect with friends. There are no TVs, so you’ll have to talk with your friends or coworkers! There’s plenty of seating, and the burger is a must.
Head to the arts district for a super cool garden/ music vibe. It’s a great place to hang outdoors with plenty of picnic benches and neat decor. Happy hour runs from 12-7 pm, and while the Resident doesn’t serve food the area is usually brimming with food trucks.
Clifton’s is a massive bar and cafeteria with multiple themes running wild throughout. From the red woods to the jungle and a Tiki bar, you can escape your day job and enter a world of fantasy for a few hours after work. While their food is so-so, their cocktail menu is excellent. Stop into Clifton’s Monarch bar after work for a happy hour menu.
B.S. Taqueria is the casual offshoot of lauded restaurant Broken Spanish. A bright and feisty taco joint in the heart of DTLA with an incredible food and drink menu make this an appealing spot to stop in after work. 5:30-7pm margaritas are $6 each!
The Library Bar is a longtime DTLA favorite for many Angelenos, and it happens to have a pretty great happy hour too! $5 margaritas paired with an extensive drink and cocktail list make this a great go-to any night of the week. The kitschy library theme will help you focus on your beer studies!
“New Year, New Me” is a tired phrase by now, but no one can deny that the idea of a fresh start and change is endlessly appealing. For that reason, we’ve compiled a list of the best DTLA locations to get a makeover, rejuvenate, and be the best you in the New Year!
Step one: work it out! You’ve probably already heard about soul cycle and its cult of loyal followers. If you’re into the idea of a makeover that will touch your body and your mind, try a Soul Cycle class and see what all the fuss is about. Known for its high intensity workouts in a candle-lit room, Soul Cycle is a one-of-a-kind workout dedicated to coaching you to be your personal best — hello New Year makeover!
Step two: rejuvenate. Whether you’re a Soul Cycle class or simply looking to refresh and relax at the spa, Desaur Spa is a great go-to in DTLA. Desaur is a down-to-earth spa that prides itself on being approachable and warm for all types of clients. Head to Desaur Spa for anything from facials and massages to waxing and body slimming treatments. Desaur Spa is a great reprieve from the hectic city in the heart of downtown LA, and as we know — relaxation works wonders from the inside out!
Step 3: Sweat out the bad stuff! Ever heard of healthy heat? Hot Box DTLA is an Infrared Sauna Studio that believes in health and healing from the inside out (are you noticing a theme?). For many years, peope have been swearing by saunas and their ability to help you detox, cleanse the pores and increase elasticity, and increase your athletic performance and build muscle. The difference between a traditional sauna and the infrared is the use of a light wave near the color red that is invisible to the eye but felt as heat. Essentially, this form of sauna is more comfortable than the traditional dry or steam and allows you to stay in longer.
Step 4: beautify. RA is named after the ancient Egyptian sun god, and is reflected in their mission to radiate light, energy, and warmth for their loyal clientele. While their mission speaks to beaming bright from within, RA will have you looking pretty damn good on the outside too. RA is on the cutting edge of beauty treatments, and uses all organic products to achieve incredible results. Take a peek through their social media pages to see what sort of beauty feats they’ve created for previous clients!
We know, we know — Southern Californians are truly “blessed” when it comes to sunshine. Rainy days are such a rarity in LA (so much so BuzzFeed made this hilarious video about it), that sometimes we’re stuck feeling clueless on what to do when a little moisture hits. Luckily enough for DTLA dwellers, we’ve got a multitude of museums and galleries at our fingertips — one for each rainy day of winter in LA!
Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary art is a world renowned museum housing some of the country’s finest contemporary art. You’ll always find a thought-provoking exhibit on rotation at MOCA from photography, to painting, and interactive artwork. Educators offer walkthroughs daily, no appointment necessary. MOCA is open every day of the week except Tuesday from 11-6. Thursday hours are extended to 8 and sometimes they have special events in the evenings, so be sure to check their site for details!
The Geffen is an arm of the MOCA that’s definitely worth paying a visit to on a rainy day. An old police garage renovated by architect Frank Gehry, The Geffen has been transformed into a contemporary art space with rotating exhibitions that will delight art enthusiasts. Located in Little Tokyo, The Geffen is the perfect place to spend a rainy day taking in modern art followed by a bowl of hot ramen!
The Broad is one of LA’s newest and most sought-after museums in Los Angeles housing over 2,000 works of contemporary art. The museum offers free general admission, although it’s best to reserve your ticket in advance! Some of their rotating exhibits do require advanced registration and ticket purchase, so be sure to check their site for special exhibitions instructions. The building itself is an architectural work of art, and the inside is just as appealing to the senses — you’ll be grateful a rainy day brought you into The Broad!
The Japanese American National Museum is located in DTLA’s Little Tokyo district right next door to The Geffen — hit two in one day if you’re feeling ambitious! The museum is dedicated to preserving the history and culture of Japanese Americans and has been around since 1992.
You can’t avoid pumpkin spice lattes in Fall, they’re everywhere you look as soon as Labor Day ends. And when a beverage is so inundated in the culture, you can be sure there’s some duds out there as well as some magical-tasty-spiced-just-right pumpkin lattes. Don’t waste your time sipping your run-of-the-mill PSL, seek out the best! Bring on the sweaters and the crispy leaves with a pumpkin spiced latte in hand: here’s our favorite PSLs in Downtown Los Angeles.
Go for the pumpkin spiced latte, stay for the ambiance. Don Francisco’s will wrap you in warm Cuban culture and the history of downtown LA as soon as you pass through the doors of the Spring Arcade building. The banana leaves and airy black-and-white elevated Caribbean decor will have you feeling like you’re on a serious daycation. The PSL here is truly something else, made with two shots of espresso, pumpkin pie sauce, whole milk (or alternative milk of your choice)! And if that combo isn’t impressive enough, they can also make you a mocha pumpkin spiced latte with real chocolate sauce. Ay carumba!
Sure, kind of obvious, but we’ve gotta give credit where credit is due. We’re not sure if Starbucks invented the PSL or just had great marketing, but credit to Starbucks has to be the most popular pumpkin spice latte purveyor around. Starbucks creates an entire season around the PSL, and we can’t pretend it doesn’t give us the warm fuzzies when it pops back onto the menu. Starbucks is probably the sweetest of the bunch, but it is the original and there’s something special about it no doubt. If you have a sweet tooth, look no further. And if you love the original Starbucks flavor but not the saccharine sweet vibe, ask for half the syrup! You can’t go wrong with the OG PSL!
Okay, so we must admit this one isn’t quite a pumpkin spiced latte, but it’s pretty dang good and oh-so-fall. Philz Gingersnap coffee is flavored with cinnamon and spices that will surely warm you up on a crisp fall day.
The Pie Hole is an awesome bakery that makes everything from scratch with the highest quality ingredients. Pie Hole uses only seasonal ingredients, so you can bet that when Fall rolls around they use their best stuff to craft a tasty pumpkin spiced latte. We recommend leaving with a slice of pie in hand to go with your PSL, what could be better?
Not necessarily ‘pumpkin’ spiced, but we would call this a shining example of Fall flavors: G&B Coffee’s Tumi Latte. Tumeric, ginger, honey, and black pepper, and milk make this creamy delight an interesting departure from the classic pumpkin spiced latte. The flavors come together to create something truly heavenly! G&B is on the back side of Grand Central Market and makes for the perfect coffee stop while you peruse the copious food options within the famous Grand Central Market (aka foodie paradise).
Living in Downtown LA can feel like a workout in itself some days. But, in the big picture, it’s really important in our day and age to stay active, think of our posture (raise your hand if you sit at a desk on the computer more time than not!) and get out and move. If you are looking to build up your core, build a better posture and have people noticing how toned you are looking, consider Pilates. Pilates was discovered by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century, and was designed to strengthen one’s self with proper alignment and breathing techniques.
While it can feel like a challenge as you enter these intense workouts, most begin to see results after 6 sessions. Whether you are brand new or a pro, we decided to round up some of the best Pilates studios here and around City West. Read on and get going on your hundred!
If you are looking to start a bit on the slower side, the classes at Club Pilates tend to be on the slower-paced side, except for their cardio sculpt class. While the cardio sculpt class BURNS and is basically a level 2 class, several other classes like their Foundation class will be ideal.
Club Pilates studios are some of the most well-equipped studios around, our Hope Street location included. Each class will utilize different equipment depending on the instructor and class level!
If you want a studio that is hip, fresh and classy, with killer views of Downtown LA to boot, check out The Main Barre on Main Street. They’ve got an incredible and very knowledgeable staff of skilled instructors who encourage and motivate while pushing everyone to do their best. They are also said to be great with first time students so newbies should feel very welcome and comfortable.
Ever tried Aerial Yoga, or how about a post-massage after Pilates? Well, then, check out The Bridge Mind Body Movement here in City West. Another Pilates studio with a fantastic staff, The Movement is a beautiful studio with such good energy and has everything you could want in classes but also popular sessions like myofascial release therapy and reike. Everybody raves that they always leave their Pilates classes feeling strong and flexible.
And, this is just a few to get you started. Downtown LA and our City West is bursting with terrific Pilates studios and, what a great time to get in shape with the holidays practically here! Tell us about your progress on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
When you live in Downtown LA, there is really no reason to do your retail therapy or shopping ventures to the common chain stores. One walk down any of our streets quickly shows you that there is such a wide array of shops awaiting for you to get that next pair of sunglasses or your wok outfit at. We thought it was time we share with you some of our favorite boutiques to hit up here in Downtown LA. Enjoy, and get ready to shop til you drop!
Please Do Not Enter
Don’t let their cryptic store name fool you, one walk into Please Do Not Enter and be prepared to be hooked from this day forward. From their one-of-a-kind progressive men’s luxury retail to their exquisite jewelry for both men and women, this is a gorgeous boutique in Downtown LA. Please Do Not Enter took up shop in an exhibition space in the heart of Downtown back in 2014 and is waiting for you to discover their eclectic array of exclusive, carefully selected and timeless contemporary goods. From design to art and fashion, each piece has a unique story behind it that the founders, Nicolas Libert and Emmanuel Renoird, are longing to tell you.
“Please Do Not Enter is the promise of a destination that exceeds today’s luxury consumers’ expectations. Step away from frantic shopping for brands and hype trends. Rather, sneak in “Please do not enter” ‘s private space, discover a genuinely subjective collection, an ode to modern life, where pleasing the eye goes hand in hand with timeless quality and functionality.”
Another incredible Downtown LA boutique is Vertigo, which was founded in 1984 and has made its way from Paris to our own City of Angels. An ideal boutique for casual work clothes, they also have several fashion options on hand for a night out on the town or for glamming up a bit for post-work drinks with your buddies!
Six Hundred Boutique on Spring Street may not be the largest shop you have ever visited, but, trust us: they fit a mighty fine collection within their small quarters! Known for posh female apparel, another reason Six Hundred is a favorite for Downtown LA is their children’s collection. In a pinch for a birthday gift or baby shower? Definitely stop by Six Hundred!
It doesn’t get more modern than Acne Studios on Broadway in LA. With a bustling coffee house, grab a latte in between buying such modern-chic items like skinny black jeans, or, make a throwback statement with their 80’s collections. Known for some of the best denim in the world, this Danish based boutique is a staple of Downtown LA and loved by many. Step into their world and see why. So, tell us, where will your next shopping spree be to? Give us the skinny (jeans?) on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
Who does not await a weekend brunch? Something may be wrong with you if you do not. We know we do. Luckily for us, living in Downtown LA and being whistling distance from our infamous Financial District, we thought it was time to share with you our top picks for brunch in our Financial District. We have had our faves for a while, but, we were keeping them a secret. We trust you. Enjoy!
Once you walk through The Financial District’s Ace Hotel’s lobby, you’ll fall in love with the checkered marble floors and elegant half booths lining the windows at their decadent restaurant, LA Chapter, before you even taste their fantastic cocktails and delicious food. Often said to be the best brunch in the Financial District (or anywhere in Downtown LA, for that matter), LA Chapter got their start with weekend brunch and have been serving satisfied diners with their coffee’s, mimosas and dishes ever since.
Other must-try’s is their Moroccan scramble, avocado toast and Bloody Mary’s. Writes one Yelp review, “One of the best brunch experiences I’ve had by far! The ricotta pancakes are simply amazing. Pair with a black coffee and you’re over the moon
Overall vibe and atmosphere is very casual. The staff is mega friendly, and had a great dining experience.
If you’re like me and get pancake cravings, make sure you come here because these pancakes are definitely worth it!” we second those ricotta pancakes. Just sayin’.
Blu Jam Café
A local favorite throughout Los Angeles, Blu Jam’s Spring Street location is always jammed (see what we did there?) but, well worth the often long weekend wait. Whether you want to go griddle crazy on their crunchy French toast and pancakes, or select a more healthy approach with their protein and egg white scrambles, Blu Jam truly has something for a brunch in the Financial District for everyone; keeping it allergen friendly with gluten free and vegan symbols.
Oh, Otium. Where do we begin? From their Cold Brew Martini to beers on tap and the traditional Bloody Mary’s and mimosas, we haven’t even mentioned their brunch! We adore their Hoe Cake and pork loin, as well as the more traditional eats like scrambles and crispy potatoes. Often, their special of the week is bacon French toast; that is a sure way to get your Sunday Fun Day off to a grand beginning!
Poppy and Rose
“Seasonally Inspired, Classic American Fare” is the motto at Poppy and Rose. Another beloved brunch spot in the Financial District, Our favorites at Poppy and Roses have got to be their rib tips breakfast burrito and their buttermilk fried chicken with waffles. “Pulled Pork hash was delicious topped with a fried egg.” Writes one reviewer, “The hash was thick and cooked perfectly. The pulled pork was the most delicious part & the egg yolk completed the awesomeness!
While another boasts, “Fried Chicken and waffles…best in the world! Next level from Roscoe’s. The fried chicken is what edges Roscoe’s out. Great service and people too!”
When the weekend rolls around, keep these brunch spots in mind to venture over to the Financial District, and let us know what you’re enjoying on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
We think it’s safe to say that Downtown LA and Los Angeles in general has made their mark on the map for some of the best craft beers and breweries around. The South Park district of DTLA is thriving with must-see (and drink) breweries. We are also loving this movement of spend the day at a brewery; start your day with terrific coffee and pastries, then check out the evening craft menus and apps! Read on to discover a few of our picks for when the feeling strikes for a cold one (which has been a lot lately, given our weather). Enjoy and drink responsibly!
“Come Early, Stay Late” is the motto at Mega Bodega. As it becomes a fast trend in Downtown LA to be half a coffee shop, half a brewery, Mega Bodega is one of the pioneers within this fun niche. After you stop by in the morning for coffee and donuts, return after work with your boo’s to have 12 crafts are always on tap, and, just in-case you want to mix it up, they have their day menu available all day, too!
Mikkeller is one of the newest (and fantastic) craft beer gems located in the South Park area of Downtown LA. With a slew of beers on tap starting at 45 degrees and going down from there, Mikkleller understands the importance of “A Cold One”.
“Very cool bar located in Downtown LA.” Writes a happy Yelp-er, “I visited on a Monday night after a group run. Mondays and Tuesdays are flight night. Pick any 4 drinks for only $15. I recommend you try the fries…they add a very delicious red wine seasoning. Plenty of seating at both the bar and tables.” While parking can be difficult (where is it not difficult in Downtown LA?!), if snag a golden ticket, parking is free after 8pm.
Bonaventure Brewing Co.
We love the Bonaventure for the ambiance while we eat and drink among the LA skyline. Their outdoor patio is one of the best while enjoying your craft beer overlooking South Park and Downtown LA. Their staff rocks and keeps the beer flowing and is extremely knowledgeable. Psst, their strawberry blonde is the bomb. So is their calamari and juicy steaks.
And, this is just a start. If we missed a spot you love to head to for some craft beer in South Park, let us know on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
Back in the day, coffee was a simple drink; something to lift the morning, fog from your eyes as you reached for the Folger’s or set your timer to start a brew in the AM. Nowadays? Coffee is on par with those who fall to their knees at IPA brews and wine tasting notes. Rightly so, coffee and the bean roasting process is an extremely detailed, elaborate process that can make or break the aroma and taste.
Here in Los Angeles, this is especially true. For those of us who like to go beyond Starbucks, LA is bursting with coffee houses and is quickly rivaling Seattle as the coffee capital of the world. We decided to get the scoop on one of our favorite spots for coffee in the City West end of Los Angeles.
Enter Blue Bottle Coffee. Quickly popping up in stores across the USA and several shop fronts in multiple metropolitan cities (and Tokyo). It all began in the early 2000s, in Oakland, California. When a group of musicians and artists were weary of the commercial coffee enterprise and stale, overly roasted beans, they decided to open a roaster for people who were clamoring for the actual taste of fresh coffee. Using a minuscule six-pound batch roaster, a historic vow was made and is Blue Bottle’s motto: We will only sell coffee less than 48 hours out of the roaster to our guests, so they may enjoy coffee at peak flavor. Only the use of the finest, most delicious, and responsibly sourced beans are used.
Pretty bold and deep for a cup of coffee, no?
Fast forward 15 years later, and Blue Bottle is continuing this mindset, and we are thankful for it anytime we hit up their coffee shop in Los Angeles’ City West in Downtown Los Angeles. Located in the beautiful Bradbury Building, this classic and historic center is the setting for many of Hollywood’s most famous scenes (mainly Blade Runner and The White Cliffs of Dover). Blue Bottle Coffee opens daily at 7 am and, while it can get that morning rush, they keep the line moving and the java coming.
“I’ve ordered the New Orleans twice, and Blue Bottle has never failed me.” Writes just one of their many happy Yelp reviews, “This drink is very creamy and refreshing. Their coffee beans are very exotic.”
While another adds, “I love the layout that they have. You can sit outside and enjoy the warm sun if you wish. They have comfy bean bags that will get you cozy. I love the stairs! Interior has the aesthetic minimalist look that everyone seems to want.”
We definitely can attest that Blue Bottle’s New Orleans coffee is the way to go. Add in a tiramisu shortbread cookie and you really are in for a treat. You can visit their website here and make sure to check them out when you venture forth to City West from Downtown LA.
Keep in-touch, too. Find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
There is nothing like a great getaway. When that bug for a Summer getaway from Downtown LA hits, rest assured if you cannot make the trek to Vegas or take that cross-country road trip (because, you know, adulting), we compiled a little handy guide of our picks for a weekend Summer getaway (or a day trip) from good ol’ Downtown LA!
Ventura (70 miles from Seven West)
Head up the iconic 101 to catch some waves, eat great food and get some shopping on over in Ventura. A haven for the laid back, Ventura is such an ideal beach getaway as it never really seems to be that crowded at the ocean. Looking to get a jog in while away? Ventura has a beautiful stretch along the coast line on Harbor Boulevard that lasts a good 6 to 8 miles of water, sea life and a nature trail. Bonus fun? Their legendary Ventura County Fair is currently going on this month, too
Solvang (130 miles)
Plan a weekend getaway this Summer from Downtown LA to ‘The Danish Capitol of America’! Dip your show into a life-sized clog at the Solvang Shoe Store, try an order of Aebeleskiver, see a show at their Solvang Festival Theatre, and, maybe, just maybe, spot some Vikings and faeries! Ok, maybe not the last two. But, Solvang, California is an incredible summer destination that Angelino’s thrive to for wine tasting, food and fun. Wondering what an Aebleskiver is? It’s their famous Danish sweet treat of 3 Danish pancake balls topped with raspberry jelly and powdered sugar. If you loved Hans Christian Anderson tales as a child, check out their museum dedicated to the Danish fairy tale writer within The Book Loft.
Ojai (80 miles)
A hidden gem as you head inland from Ventura, Ojai is boasting with incredible history, restaurants, hiking trails and art galleries. Theatre lovers will appreciate the fact that Our Town’s playwright, Thornton Wilder, was said to draw inspiration for his famous play from the city of Ojai. Known for their somewhat new-age vibes, you vegans’ and those following a gluten free diet will be in heaven at such hot spots like Food Harmonics and their natural health food market, Westridge Market.
Laguna Beach (70 miles)
Head south of Downtown LA and get your art on in Laguna Beach. Known for some of the most world renowned art events in the world, Laguna Beach is currently in full swing of their Pageants of the Masters, Sawdust Festival and Art Fairs. Seafood lover? Their restaurants are fantastic and easily has some of the freshest seafood in Southern California.
Claremont (35 miles)
Very much a hidden gem, Claremont lays in the heart of the Inland Empire and lays on the iconis Route 66. With a newly remodeled scene that involved the city transforming their old rail roads and stations into buzzing hot spot like Packing House Wines and delicious restaurants like Bua Thai, consider a stay at Casa 425. The ultimate cosmopolitan hotel, Casa 425 hosts incredible happy hour’s and music nights in their bar. Don’t miss their monthly events, too!
As you can see, a whole world awaits for that Summer getaway from Downtown LA. Where will you head?! Send us a post card to our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!