At one point the bus boldly stops in front of The Ivy where dozens of patrons are on the restaurant's front patio as the tour guide's commentary (a rant describing the hot spot as nothing more than an overpriced place for those desperate to be seen) blares from the speakers.
And, on the tour we took lat week, someone spotted Michael Jordon drive by. Luckily he was in his car or we would have had the further embarrassment of being dragged out on to the street while our tour guide tried to "interview" him.
The tour highlights include The Viper Room (where River Phoenix died), the corner where Hugh Grant picked up a prostitute, the apartment building where Elton John's toddler has his own penthouse, and the Chateau Marmont where the guide plays a TMZ clip featuring a 911 call Josh Harnett made once when he had diarrhea at the hotel.
The TMZ tour is worth the 50 bucks for anyone wanting to see the sights, and maybe a couple of stars, without fighting through traffic themselves (as long as they don't mind a little humiliation). It starts at Grauman's Chinese Theater, goes down Rodeo Drive, and even stops at a Hollywood Sign viewing point.
For more information about the tour, visit http://www.tmz.com/tour.
[Photo: John Matthews]