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Weekender: An LA Summer

The finer side of the City of Angels.


A weekend at the beach is a no-brainer, but Downtown LA, 15 miles inland, has slowly been transforming into its own destination, complete with rooftop parties and some of LA’s best food. Do it right, and you won’t even miss the beach.

Nearly a century ago, butchers and fishmongers were hawking meats at Downtown’s Grand Central Market. One hundred years later, it’s a veritable sampler platter of some of some of LA’s most progressive food vendors (read: come very, very hungry). The gastronomic kingpin is Eggslut, which has a line akin to Tartine’s, so plan accordingly. Do as the locals do and order the Slut, pillowy potato puree topped with coddled egg poached in a glass jar. Just save room for other great eats, like the Oyster Gourmet’s succulent bivalves and old-school Jewish sandwiches with a modern twist from Wexler’s Deli.

Forsake an hour of beach time to peruse The Last Bookstore, the largest used and new book emporium in the state. Meander through this 20,000-square-foot gem on a fantastical journey through quirky sections, a book tunnel, art installations comprised of book parts, and odd graphic novels you couldn’t even find on the Internet.


Veer from the hipster crowds and hang out on the airy deck of aptly named Perch, a tasteful bar and bistro with panoramic views of the downtown skyline. Settle in with a craft cocktail and enjoy the sunset.

After opening last year, the Ace Hotel quickly became a downtown stronghold, with its epic rooftop scene and mind-bogglingly beautiful theater. The palatial, 1,600-seat, 1920s-era space is filled with ornate moldings that surround a gothic stage used for events from concerts to movie screenings. On the rooftop, artsy well-heeled patrons pack in around dusk for cocktails and nightly DJ sessions, book release parties, and pop-up shops in the warm summer air.


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