5 Things You Didn’t Know About Los Angeles

Dodger Stadium, the Capitol Records Building, Redondo Beach. These are just a few of the legendary attractions that everybody knows about in Los Angeles, but we’re willing to bet there’s a lot about the City of Angels that you didn’t know! Here are five things you may not know about Los Angeles:

Thomas Edison: The Father of Hollywood?

Well, not directly, but he did have a big hand in the reason for it. The great inventor Thomas Edison held hundreds of patents during his life, including patents over many of the technologies that were needed to create movies. In order to escape Edison and his Motion Picture Patent Company in New Jersey, many filmmakers “fled” to California where judges were less stringent on enforcing the patents and it was difficult for lawmakers to enforce the laws cross-country. Thus, Hollywood was born and became the premier location of the motion picture industry!

Beverly Hills Wasn’t Always a Destination of the Stars

Today Beverly Hills stands as an area of Los Angeles for the truly elite, but did you know this wasn’t always the case? In fact, in the late 19th century, Beverly Hills’ roots lied in the ground, as the land was used primarily for farming lima beans! It wasn’t until Thomas Edison forced the motion picture company to California that it begun its transformation into the glitz and glamour you see today.

Hollywoodland?

The Hollywood sign is one of the most recognizable American landmarks in the entire world, but like most things in Los Angeles, its origins were quite different! In fact, the sign itself used to read Hollywoodland, as a way to advertise the name of a new segregated housing development in the Hollywood district in the early 1920’s. The sign was initially designed to only stand for approximately 18 months and so it quickly suffered damage and deteriorated, and it wasn’t until a campaign in the late 1970’s by none other than Hugh Hefner where the sign was rebuilt and became the iconic symbol it is today.

The Melting Pot of the West Coast

One of the greatest things about Los Angeles is that it is a true blend of cultures and people unlike anywhere else in the United States. Did you know that only 40% of the people who live in Los Angeles speak English as a primary language? The people of LA are diverse and speak Spanish, Chinese, Korean, and much more! It is truly the melting pot of the West Coast!

Los Angeles Wasn’t Always the Name

It’s not uncommon for cities to change their names in their history, but to say the original name of Los Angeles was a mouthful would be an understatement! The original name for Los Angeles was “El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles sobre El Río Porciúncula,” or The Town of Our Lady the Queen of the Angels on the Portiuncula River; we think they made the right choice in shortening the name!

 

These are just a few of the things you may not have known about Los Angeles, and so we invite you to come stop by our city and learn even more about what makes it so incredible! And when you do, make sure to contact Luxury Rental Group. We can provide you with an amazing rental property here in the LA area that will truly make your next vacation unforgettable.

Top 5 Brunch Spots in Los Angeles

Everyone loves breakfast, but everyone loves sleeping in, too—how can we reconcile the two? With a wonderful brunch to start the day late! Los Angeles has a strong history of amazing restaurants, from the homey to the avant-garde, so whatever you wake up with a craving for, you’ll find it in LA dining.

Overland Café

With reasonably cheap bottomless champagne on weekends, it’s no surprise that Overland Café has a sizable following! Hearty waffles, huevos rancheros with a twist, and other specialties further Overland’s fame. It’s not a quiet place to eat, but it is a delicious one—especially for anyone who could live off of mimosas. The café is near northwest of Venice Boulevard, on Overland Avenue.

Lunetta All Day

Out near Santa Monica, you’ll find Lunetta All Day. (Despite the name, it’s open from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., opening at 8 on weekends.) It’s a diner that, like many places to eat in LA looks to capitalize on the eating-local, growing-local scene. Their breakfast is served until 4 p.m., so there’s no hurry! Come on in at noon for your eggs or your California-inspired breakfast sandwich. Lunetta is on Pico Boulevard, north of Cloverfield Boulevard.

Barbara Jean

Here’s a great go-to for those in West Hollywood. Not your father’s brunch, Barbara Jean takes soul food inspiration and turns it into a fantastic kick-start to your day. With options like omelets, wheat pancakes, and fried fish and grits, you can recuperate here no matter how hard you partied the night before! Find Barbara Jean on Melrose Avenue, between Gardner Street and Vista Street.

République

A French bistro where brunch takes center stage, République is a little on the pricey side but incomparable in quality among the places to eat in LA. Fancy dishes from savory pastries to delectable sweets, the bakery takes center stage here and elevates bread products to their pinnacle of addictive decadence. The bakery is in west Los Angeles, north of Wilshire Boulevard.

Winsome

This is another fine spot for a bite, with a lovely interior that lets you enjoy a cool and calming escape from the bustle of the city. The diner does a nice brunch with specialty classics like pastries and coffee that will set the bar for any other brunch you try. Winsome also features midday options like chicken salad for those feeling more awake. It’s conveniently close to Echo Park, on White Knoll Drive off of Sunset Boulevard.

After the LA Dining: Stay and Play in LA

With so much to do morning, noon, and night, it’s great to have food options for any time of day. For great relaxation options any time of day, book a luxurious rental property with Luxury Rental Group; call us at 800-712-2800 to learn more about our offerings!

The 5 Best Things About Fall in Los Angeles

Los Angeles has a bit of a reputation. Some say it’s loud, it’s crowded, and it’s hot. In fall though, things get more pleasant. Tourists pack their bags, and tempers and temperatures alike calm down. While Los Angeles is plenty of fun all year long, its ugly sides all but disappear as fall rolls through.

Fall in LA: Warm Beaches, No Crowds

Especially with the Santa Anas blowing across the state, the sea remains pleasantly warm in some spots for swimming in throughout September. The crowds are thinner though, meaning you’ll have plenty of ocean to yourself! It’s in the wake of summer that some locals enjoy beaches the most.

The Los Angeles County Fair

With a county the size of Los Angeles, it’s not surprising the County Fair is a big deal! For 2017, the Fair is running from the first to the twenty-fourth of September, open Wednesdays through Sundays. With themed areas, carnival rides, and of course, carnival food, this is one Los Angeles attraction that is completely seasonal—visit or miss it!

A Last Hurrah for Summer

This may not be so attractive to locals, but to tourists—especially thin-blooded ones—this can be a major selling point. Come to Los Angeles in the fall, and you can make summer last a little longer. Winter takes a long time to arrive here; if you live somewhere where it comes too soon, take a break and come visit Los Angeles in September for a nice final week of warmth for the year.

Color Comes Out

Compared to the swathes of brilliance in New England, Los Angeles’ fall colors are a little tamer. That said, Los Angeles can offer some much prettier scenery than the typical desert town, making it a great spot for Arizonans, Nevadans, and others to visit for the changing leaves. In places like the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, LA County Arboretum, and Mount Wilson Observatory, you can get some great pictures of the trees showing off at this Los Angeles attraction!

Lower Prices

And of course, everyone knows that summer is peak season for the hospitality industry, so it’s not a bad idea to wait until the summer crowds vacate their vacation lodgings to experience Fall in LA. This makes it a great opportunity to get an amazing bargain on a luxurious Los Angeles, Hollywood, Malibu, Palm Springs, or Beverly Hills location! The slow season between Labor Day and Thanksgiving is a hot spot for cool deals, so keep an eye on the prices!

You can even check ahead for fall prices; call us at 300-712-2800 to learn more about our rental rates and offerings!

5 Relaxing Activities in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a busy, exciting city—but sometimes it’s a little too much for out-of-towners! That’s why it’s good to know where you can go to get a break from it all. Look into one of these activities to catch a break from the bustling LA life.

Meditation/Yoga

There are plenty of places in the City of Angels that invite people in to declutter their minds and relax their bodies. If you’re interested in meditation in conjunction with other exercises like yoga and tai-chi, we’re your city. One of the most popular places to go is the Lake Shrine Temple, which carefully crafts a place away from the city noise.

Los Angeles Golfing

Blending a pleasant walk with a test of skill, golf is another great way to stay active while relaxing in LA. Plus, the Los Angeles area features over 16 courses, so you’re sure to find one near you that fits your Los Angeles golfing skill level. From Angeles National Golf Course in the north to Los Verdes Golf Course in the south, you’re never far from golfing here. Just remember that it’s just a game, and you’ll find the experience pleasantly relaxing!

Visit the Beach

The beach is the perfect place to clear your head—no matter how many other people there are, the calm call of the waves and the distant cries of gulls will always help wash away the stress. Whether you’re here to sunbathe or dip your feet, you leave a beach feeling refreshed. Los Angeles, of course, has plenty of beaches to choose from. There are the popular choices like Santa Monica State Beach and Venice Beach, but consider some of the smaller beaches such as El Matador State Beach and Will Rogers State Beach for some extra seclusion when relaxing in LA.

Walks in the Park

Even in Los Angeles, a park can’t help but be relaxing. There are numerous parks throughout the city where taking a walk, relaxing on a bench, or just people-watching never gets old. While some parks, such as Griffith Park and Los Angeles State Historic Park, are more famous, for a gorgeous spot of respite check out Descano Gardens. This botanical collection is a wonderful place to clear your head. Find it on Descano Drive, about 30 minutes north from downtown.

Spa Treatments

Another way to relax is with a spa—find the right masseuse and you may doze off in the middle of your treatment! There are over two dozen spas in the Los Angeles area, most of them clustered around central LA or in the south near Torrance. From detoxes to deep-tissue massages to hot spring/sauna treatments, it’s hard to beat a spa if you want to feel rejuvenated!

Relaxing in LA, Living in Luxury

At Luxury Rental Group, we know that vacation and relaxation must rhyme for a reason! That’s why we’re dedicated to helping our customers have the most relaxing vacation possible. Call us at 800-712-2800 to find out what we can do for you!

Five Healthy Los Angeles Restaurants to Eat at Post Fourth of July

Each holiday has its necessary foods, and for the 4th of July, that’s usually hamburgers and hot dogs. But, it may not be wise to enjoy these every day of the year! It isn’t just a matter of portions, either—Independence Day food is usually slathered in surprisingly sugary sauces, and loaded with condiments that are chock-full of preservatives. If you feel like you need to distance yourself from your culinary choices of this Tuesday, look for these restaurants for healthy LA dining:

M Café

M Café offers a surprising smorgasbord of everything you could want from LA dining, from fried rice to burgers to pastries to sushi. The one common theme? M Café specially avoids common health pitfalls, such as refined sugars and red meat. Plus, with three Los Angeles locations (Beverly Hills, Brentwood, and Melrose), it won’t be hard to find!

EVO Kitchen

EVO Kitchen makes this healthy LA dining list thanks not only to their healthy options—it deserves a spot here because it caters to virtually everyone. Their salads, wraps, and pizzas are highly customizable, making it a great restaurant for those with various dietary restrictions. Those looking to cut back can enjoy light dishes emphasizing vegetable, while the unapologetic carnivores can pile their pizza with meat! EVO Kitchen is on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood.

Madcapra

Don’t think vegetables can be a complete meal? Madcapra may change your mind! This falafel shop makes vegetables the star of every dish, from sandwiches to salad. If you need a great palate cleanser after a meaty Independence Day, then this restaurant is for you! It thrives in Down Town LA’s competitive Grand Central Market, so you know you’re in for a treat!

Café Gratitude

We all have that something we’re trying to cut—for some it’s fats, for others carbs. If you’re trying to cut preservatives, check out Café Gratitude, a chain that has spread across LA. They emphasize not only vegan options, but ones made with organic foods, locally sourced. Whatever you get here, you’ll know it’s as fresh as feasibly possible!

Mainland Poke Shop

Starring the Hawaiian raw fish delicacy poke, this restaurant is delicious and healthy too! The key is that poke bowls are highly customizable—pick the healthier options and both your heart and taste buds will be happy! Plus, their policy of never freezing their fish means you’re always eating fresh. This seafood shop is located near Marina del Rey.

Luxury Rental Group for Luxury Meals and Healthy LA

And of course, eating in is always an option, especially if you have an updated kitchen like those featured in our luxurious rental homes. Head to the farmer’s market and return with some great ideas for a meal that’s entirely you! If custom healthy eating sounds like a must for your dream vacation, call us at 800-712-2800 to book with us today!

5 Ways to Cool Off During in Los Angeles Heat

Los Angeles can get quite hot during the summer. If you’re visiting during a heat wave, you might be worried there’s no way to escape the temperatures. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to beat the heat! Read on to see five ways to cool off during the wave of Los Angeles heat.

Go to the Beach

With 81 miles of beach available, anyone in LA can find a perfect spot to pitch an umbrella and relax near the waves in the cool of the shade. Beach temperatures generally range 20 to 30 degrees cooler than inland areas.

Go to a Museum

With as many as 230 museums in LA, such as LACMA, the Getty Museum, and so many others, you can definitely find an exhibition that fits your interests! Learn something new by trying a museum you’ve never been to before. You may just find that special spot that becomes your go to on those hot LA days!

Coffee Spots

LA has a great coffee scene that includes forerunners of the specialty coffee industry such as Intelligentsia and Blue Bottle. Grab a book, a journal, or friend, find a table to claim as your own, and spend the day cooling off in these unique spaces while enjoying some of the best cold brew or espresso in the city.

Get Some Ice Cream To Stay Cool in the Los Angeles Heat

There is no better way to beat the heat in LA than getting your fill of LA’s best ice cream. Try Maggie’s Softserve, Sweet Rose Creamery or Rori’s Artisanal Creamery to experience new takes on your favorite traditional ice creams. It will be like reliving your childhood summers all over again—only better!

Night Time Cinema

Cinespia at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery is a favorite for LA locals and tourists who are looking for a way to enjoy the cooler nightly weather during the Los Angeles heat. The outdoor cinema screenings give viewers the chance to spend some time outdoors during the better half of the day while also enjoying classic films. Grab a picnic blanket or lawn chair and get ready to chill!

Contact Us

Contact us today so we can make sure you’re accommodated while you find spots to cool off in the Los Angeles area. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Ways to Spend Your4th of July in Los Angeles

Celebrating 4th of July in Los Angeles? Check out the best celebrations happening in the city for this special holiday.

Pacific Palisades

The Pacific Palisades celebrates Independence Day with a bang! Shortly before 2pm, a band of patriotic skydivers will descend from the sky kicking off the Palisade’s annual parade. Following the skydivers, baton twirlers and marching trombonists will begin their march down Sunset Boulevard. The night will top off with a concert and, of course, a fireworks show. Kids are free, but parents have to pay a fee of $10. The whole day is well worth it though! Make sure you don’t miss it.

Hollywood Bowl

At this year’s Hollywood Bowl, catch the incredible Pentatonix; they’re a five-piece contemporary a capella group that will provide the rockin’ tunes prior to this year’s dazzling fireworks show. This is an annual Fourth of July party that only gets better with each year. If music is your escape than the Hollywood Bowls is how you’ll want to spend it!

Marina del Rey

Every year in Marina del Rey, fireworks explode over the marina channel. Spectators can watch the fireworks burst over the ocean from a number of locations: Burton Chace Park, Fisherman’s Village, Mother’s Beach, on boats, or from waterfronts and restaurants. The show begins at 9pm and lasts about 20 mins. Make sure you show up early to find a quality parking spot!

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

For a family friendly Fourth of July, pack a picnic and enjoy an outdoor screening of Jurassic Park. Afterwards, stay on the lawn to watch a fireworks show. Along with the fireworks show, there will be a photo booth and a DJ to keep the festivities going!

The Rose Bowl

Americafest at the Rose Bowl is an incredible jam-packed event that includes classic American food, a motorcycle stunt show, and ends with a world-famous fireworks show. Though the fireworks won’t begin until 9 pm, plenty of rides, crafts, and games will be available for the whole family. The parking costs $20, but you can make it worth your while and spend the day tailgating outside the stadium until the events start.

Contact Us to Plan Your 4th of July in Los Angeles

Make sure you contact us to plan your stay during your 4th of July in Los Angeles vacation; we will take great care of you! You’ll want a comfortable and hospitable place to lay your head after a long day of celebrating with family and friends, and we have just the place!

5 Off the Beaten Path Things to Do in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is full of fun and exciting things to do. Whether you are looking to go to a theme park like Disneyland, Six Flags, or Knott’s Berry Farm, or just looking to go to the beach you have many things to choose from. However, many of these options fill up quickly or become crowded very easily. If you are looking for something less crowded, check out our list of top 5 off the beaten path things to do in Los Angeles.

Angeles Crest Highway

Angeles Crest Highway allows you to escape the city and enjoy the scenic drive through Angeles National Forest. This escape from the city is remarkably easy to get to, and it generally surprises visitors to see how quick you can go from concrete jungle to serene mountain landscape. All you need to do is turn off Foothill Blvd in La Canada and you will transport yourself to an entirely new, serene location.

Watts Towers

These architectural wonders were built by Italian immigrant Simon Rodia over 33 years. Watts Towers is a series of sculptures constructed of steel and mortar. The towers are embellished with whatever Rodia could find—mostly mosaic tiles, soda pop bottles, and shells; if he found it, he used it! The towers rise to almost 100 feet, the city limit for structures.

Silverlake

Once the home of gang-bangers of the Latin persuasion, in the last 20 years Silverlake has undergone a hipster gentrification. What was once a rundown area of the ghetto now houses nice cafes, restaurants, and thrift shops. Silverlake is easiest to get to through Sunset Blvd between Virgil Ave and Alvarado Street. This location is now home to young screenwriters looking to hit it big and actors taking classes. Be sure to visit one of our favorite things to do in Los Angeles!

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Located on Santa Monica Blvd is the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Visitors can see the gravesite of Johnny Ramone, Douglas Fairbanks, Cecil DeMille, Fay Wray, and Bugsy Siegel. This location is also one of the more interesting cemeteries you will ever see, with the rich and famous of days past attempting to outdo each other for eternity with fancy and elaborate headstones and mausoleums.

Old Town Pasadena

Pasadena was first settled in 1870s, and Old Town is a prime example of revitalization of an old city center to create a rather charming location. The buildings are mostly Spanish Colonial Revival and Art Deco, reflecting a golden age of Los Angeles.

Contact us today to learn about more activities and to book your next vacation rental in LA!

Top Places to Hear Live Music in Los Angeles

A city brimming with bright and shining talent in (and even on) all of its corners, Los Angeles is the ultimate destination for artists, actors, and musicians who wish to make it big—and those who wish to see and hear them perform.

Being home to a myriad of record labels, it’s no wonder that L.A. has collected as many music venues to match. From small, intimate spaces to enormous arena-style venues, check out our list of top destinations for live music in Los Angeles.

The Best Hotspots for Live Music in Los Angeles

Walt Disney Concert Hall
Immediately recognizable in the L.A. landscape, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is a fantastic upscale live music venue with both impressive acoustics and architecture. Famous for the nautical inspiration of its design, this concert hall utilizes its extraordinary concave design for the best sound imaginable. Pair the great sound with the extensive views from the steep incline of the seating and you’re in for an incredible concert.

The Troubadour
An iconic hotspot for live music in Los Angeles, The Troubadour has hosted industry powerhouse bands for decades now, from 70s rock giants to the funky stylings of Prince and the mellow ambiance of Coldplay. With a capacity of around four hundred seats, this venue somehow maintains a fine balance between large-scale venue and intimate concert stage, making it the ideal place to catch a show. You might even see some of L.A.’s local big-name talent, who frequently stop in for surprise performances.

The Wiltern
First opened as a vaudeville theater in 1931, The Wiltern has had its share of ups and downs over its many years, but still remains one of the city’s foremost live concert venues. Designated as a mid-size performance hall at just under two thousand seats, part of the beauty of The Wiltern is in its ideal layout. There are multiple levels for standing and great balcony seating. Both options allow you to see the performers from anywhere—even the back of the theater!

Luxury Rental Group – Your Guides to the Best of L.A.

Contact our team of reservation specialists to find out additional information on all that Los Angeles has to offer—from its hidden gems to its most tried-and-true tourist activities—when you reserve your trip accommodations in one of the elite vacation rental properties that the Luxury Rental Group has available for your stay today!

Top Los Angeles Summer Events

Los Angeles, California is one of the most epic centers of culture, art, and of course, fun in the entire world. This, paired with the incredible beauty of the city and surrounding area, has made Los Angeles one of the most visited cities. With all of these people and all of this energy comes a wide range of things to do and see. Throughout the summer months, LA becomes home to and incredibly wide range of events. There truly is something for everyone in the City of Angels. Here are some of the most popular Los Angeles summer events.

Lightning in a Bottle Music Festival is One of the Best Los Angeles Summer Events

Admittedly, this incredible music festival does not happen within LA’s city limits, but it is in the city’s backyard in Bradley, California. It is one of the most incredible music festivals of the year, so it is worth mentioning. Not only does the festival feature some of the hottest bands and artists, but it is equal parts a celebration of art, food, yoga, and wellness. You simply cannot understand the amazing energy that fills this event until you experience it. This year’s Lightning in a Bottle celebration takes place from May 24th to May 29th and you are not going to want to miss it!

LA Food Fest

This is the type of celebration that everyone can get behind! Joining the thousands of people that come to this event in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is the best way to get a taste for one of the most culinarily diverse and incredible places you will find anywhere. For this one day on June 10, 2017, you can enjoy cuisines from over 100 local vendors. The best part of the festival is unlike years past, there is only one door fee necessary to enjoy all the food inside. That is one price of admission for all of the tastes that you can handle.

Fourth of July Americafest at the Rose Bowl

Odds are you have never experienced a Fourth of July celebration of this magnitude. Every year, thousands upon thousands of people pile into the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena in order to celebrate everything red, white, and blue. After the gates open at 2 pm, visitors can enjoy endless excitements with motorcycle stunt shows, classic Fourth of July foods, games, inflatable rides, and so much more. At 9 pm, the celebration gets really interesting with one of the most renowned fireworks displays in the country.

It would take forever to explain all of the Los Angeles summer events that are happening these upcoming months. The three mentioned above do not even begin to scratch the surface of all the city has to offer. Check the city’s events page to find the perfect event for you, and get yourself out to Los Angeles, California!

Contact us today to learn about more events and to book your next vacation rental!