90027 Travel Guide
Brought to you by the producers...er, owners, of the Bungalow Club on Melrose, Barbarella is bringing a bodacious lounge vibe to Silverlake.
The gigantic 4300-square-foot bar-restaurant-lounge (wow, that’s a lot of hyphens) is inspired by Jane Fonda’s 1968 cult film of the same name. The décor looks like it could have been stripped from her groovy intergalactic cruiser, with touches like huge black leather banquettes for canoodling, plush red leather booths for dining, retro-glam chandeliers, and plenty of gunmetal nail heads to lend everything a slightly sexy yet militaristic tone. As spring approaches, there will also be outdoor seating.
We were all excited back in the fall of 2006 when the Griffith Observatory reopened after a four-year renovation. But the Visitor Access Program was a bit of a buzzkill since you had to book a timed-entry reservation on the website.
Well, some good news. Today there's no need for a reservation. The Observatory is wide open. However, as with most things in LA, the early bird gets the parking spot.
We showed up around noon and parking spots closest to the entrance were all filled up so we had to drive about a half-mile down the hill and then walk up to the Observatory.
Still the entrance was free (tickets to the planetarium show are $7) and the views are breathtaking, even with a slight touch of smog. Best of all, we loved being inside an educational place in Los Angeles. It felt like exploring a secret counterculture of some sort.
Frank-Lloyd-Wright-Map / Frank Lloyd Wright / Architecture / Architecture Travel / Buildings / → All Tags
High on a haunted hill, Frank Lloyd Wright's Ennis House just got a reprieve. In danger of crumbling completely after a 1994 earthquake and a rainy 2005, a restoration project has shored up the delapidated-but-distinctive concrete block mansion near Griffith Park.
The Ennis House has appeared in lots of movies and TV shows (Blade Runner, Predator 2, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to name a few), but its on-screen glamour can't conceal the fact that it suffers from the same thing plaguing the campus of Florida Southern College: Wright's avant-garde construction wasn't always time-tested. That didn't keep the architect from hyping the building in a 1924 letter to its owners, of course:
You see, the final result is going to stand on that hill a hundred years or more. Long after we are gone it will be pointed out as the Ennis House and pilgrimages will be made to it by lovers of the beautiful--from everywhere.
And while Wright's prediction turned out to be true, keep in mind that there aren't any tours or other activities happening. But if history is any guide, going to see the Ennis House now--while its still standing--might not be a bad idea.
No, not those kinds of stars--honest-to-goodness space fireballs. The kind of thing that visitors to the Griffith Observatory want to see. The storied lookout opened to the public in 1935 but has been closed since 2002. The doors recently swung back open, revealing a refurbished planetarium, an exhibit hall and a collection of public telescopes. But don't dash out the door just yet, as there's a trick to getting into this star-filled spot.
Because of huge public interest in visiting the newly-opened observatory, the LA Parks Department instituted a "Visitor Access Program." Think of it as a velvet rope you'll want to get past. To get on the A-list, you'll need to book a timed-entry reservation on the website. Don't expect to roll up to the front door, though. You'll need to head to one of two parking lots--they'll tell you which--and take the Griffith Observatory shuttle bus. Play nice, and you'll be inside in no time.
Transplants to L.A. are often introduced to Jumbo's Clown Room as "where strippers go to die". It had a certain bullet-hole-and-cigarette-burn charm to it for a long time, perhaps due somewhat to its association with Courtney Love, who got her Hollywood start upon Jumbo's legendary poles.
A recent trip there, however, proved that the place has taken a whole new turn: It's full of young partiers, the music is great, and the girls are smoking hot. Last year Hollywood instituted an "alcohol + boobies = illegal" ruling, (see Frottage v Classy, 2005) which means Jumbo's is more accurately described as a bikini bar than a strip club.
The girls, meanwhile, have made the restrictions work for them. Sure, there's still the requisite ass-slapping and coochie-grinding for the traditionalists in the audience, but some of the ladies are quite inventive. One dancer's performance involving Saran wrap and bungee cords caused chaos amongst the audience, who were momentarily turned into dollar-flinging monkeys. A word of advice: Come prepared to tip early and often, as the bartender will call you out if he sees you being less than generous with the talent.