The Edison in Downtown Los Angeles

Discover the Hidden Bars of Los Angeles


Esther Tseng

The speakeasy bar concept is no secret to Los Angeles nightlife, but it can be hard to keep track of all the hidden entrances, secret passwords and changing menu themes. While there are plenty of bars to visit, each space is a worthwhile venue to crack the code - whether it’s to drink, dance and much more. Visit them all to collect each of their unique perspectives on imbibing in L.A., because not only does each place regularly rotate their cocktail menu, they all have their own unexpected twist. Whether it's karaoke, cigars, a glowing dance floor, or simply a hard-to-find entrance, these bars have surprises waiting for you.

Jackson Market and Deli in Culver City

Hidden Gems in Culver City


Esther Tseng

From its inception and then incorporation by Harry Culver in the early 1900s to the renovation and revitalization of its downtown that began in the 90s, Culver City is a city rich with motion picture, television and aviation history. Metro Goldwyn Mayer built their studios there in the 1920s; the facility later became Sony Pictures Studios. Howard Hughes opened his Hughes Aircraft plant in 1941 - at one time it was the largest employer in Los Angeles. Sony Pictures Entertainment is Culver City’s largest employer to date.

Iconic films such as "The Wizard of Oz," "Gone with the Wind," a portion of "Grease" and the Tarzan series were filmed in Culver City. By the early 2000s, parts of the Hughes empire had been purchased by or merged with General Motors, Boeing, NewsCorp and Raytheon, but Culver City’s imprint on aviation is evident throughout Martin Scorsese’s biopic, "The Aviator."

Read on to learn about the lesser-known destinations worth seeking out in “The Heart of Screenland.”

River Rock at Sportsmen's Lodge

Hidden Gems in Studio City


Esther Tseng

Formerly known as Laurelwood, Studio City is located on the north slope of the Santa Monica Mountains. It was part of the Rancho Ex-Mission San Fernando, a Mexican land grant, and named after the area's studio lot, opened by Mack Sennett in 1927. That studio is now known as CBS Studio Center. As a community that was born out of the entertainment industry, Studio City is regarded as the "Jewel of the Valley," attracting actors, musicians, and writers and serving as a hub of the San Fernando Valley and a gateway to the Westside and Hollywood. Read on and discover hidden gems in Studio City that are worth checking out.

Victorian manors on Carroll Avenue in Echo Park

Hidden Gems in Echo Park


Esther Tseng

Flanked by Elysian Park, Elysian Valley, Silver Lake and Chinatown, Echo Park is a historic and diverse neighborhood where you’ll find everything from Dodger Stadium, the home of our beloved Los Angeles Dodgers, to Echo Park Lake, which reopened recently after a $45-million renovation. Locals and visitors alike enjoy paddle-boating around the lake, while the surrounding area continues to experience a retail, recreation and restaurant renaissance. Read on to find out more about Echo Park hidden gems, and discover an entirely different side of the neighborhood.

Hidden Gems in Los Feliz


Esther Tseng

Whether the Hills, Estate, Knolls or Village of Los Feliz, this neighborhood is proudly inhabited by a diverse set of ethnicities, ages and incomes. Los Feliz, along with Griffith Park to the north, made up one of the first land grants in California, to Corporal José Vicente Feliz.

With Hollywood to the west, Silver Lake to the south and Atwater village to the east, the hillside neighborhood is home to some of the most outstanding architecture in Los Angeles County, but also the birthplace of many a motion picture and TV studio. Read on and discover the must-see, hidden gems of Los Feliz, from an architectural landmark to a red-hot dining destination.

Hidden Gems in Silver Lake


Esther Tseng

Silver Lake is one of L.A.'s most featured neighborhoods, named after one of two reservoirs around which it was drawn. Sunset Junction, Silver Lake's urban center, is located at the intersection of Santa Monica and Sunset Boulevards, two main L.A. streets that otherwise run parallel all the way to the Pacific Ocean. Until the mid-1950s, the Junction served as the site of the branching of two inter-urban railway lines. The neighborhood was also home to Walt Disney's first large studio from 1925 to 1939, located at Hyperion Avenue and Griffith Park Boulevard. Since then, the area has become renowned as a community that’s continuously in flux, home to a population that is diverse even by Los Angeles County's multicultural standards. Despite all the recent Silver Lake media coverage, it can still be hard to find the lesser known places worth visiting. Read on to discover Silver Lake’s must-see hidden gems.

Mothershucker Platter at Fishing with Dynamite

Hidden Gems in the Beach Cities of Los Angeles


Esther Tseng

The three sister Beach Cities in the South Bay of Los Angeles - Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach - represent a unique L.A. beach culture that can only be experienced in the flesh. The real estate in the area is consistently ranked as some of the most expensive in the country, thanks to spectacular coastal views and its proximity to the ocean. Aerospace, maritime and other industries fuel the economy here, but visitors will be privy to a beach community focused around activities taking place along The Strand, on beautiful beaches, and bustling piers located in each of these cities. Whether you're into biking, beach volleyball, sunbathing, surfing, swimming, body surfing, paddle boarding or simply walking and sightseeing or dining, the Beach Cities offer a slice of Southern California that you just can't miss. Read on and discover the hidden gems in the beautiful Beach Cities of L.A.

Hidden Gems in Century City


Esther Tseng

Century City originated as the backlot of 20th Century Fox. With the advent of television representing tough competition for the studio and a budget for the movie Cleopatra spiraling out of control, the studio sold portions of its backlot to Alcoa Inc. and William Zeckendorf with the option to lease 75 acres back.

Welton Becket - who designed landmarks such as the Capitol Records building, Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, and the Cinerama Dome - as well as other architects were hired to develop a masterplan for the brand new commercial and residential city-within-a-city, using aluminum for high rises. The city was designed with pedestrian bridges and wide boulevards to ease crowding. Today, Century City is a center of business and commerce in Los Angeles, so it can be easy to overlook the public places worth visiting. Read on and discover 10 hidden gems in Century City.

Hidden Gems in the Westside of Los Angeles: Part 2


Esther Tseng

The area of Los Angeles known as the Westside encompasses a diverse range of multicultural, historic and luxury neighborhoods. In this second part of our guide to the Westside, we cover Brentwood to Westwood and Sawtelle Japantown, including hidden gems of culture, history, shopping and nature.