Hollywood...Many Visits (World/US&C)

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Where I stayed
The Beverly Hills Hotel

Flag of United States  , California
Monday, September 24, 2007

I have been to Hollywood too many times to count with visits going back to when I was a child. It is a fun, fun place to go, and I can certainly see how it draws people in from all over the world. It has mystique, glamour, history, and a little bit of naughtiness. The area is filled with tourist shops, sex shops, and restaurants with wannabe actors pretending to be servers. It is a feast for the eyes at night; I love to roll the window down and listen to all the noise when driving down Hollywood Blvd.

I imagine people who go there for the first time are surprised at what it is really like, however. Hollywood is right in the middle of Los Angeles amongst the buildings and traffic, people of all shapes, sizes, and colors, a lot of lights, and noise, and all-around hubub.

You won't find movies or t.v. shows being shot on every corner or movie stars walking down the street with their entourage. It just doesn't happen. The stars are in the sidewalk (Walk of Fame), though, and you can go to Grauman's Chinese Theater and see their footprints and hand prints. You are more likely to see celebrities in areas outside of Hollywood (Beverly Hills, etc).

The author talks about going to Universal Studios in order to see movie magic. It is, of course, not located in Hollywood, but rather Universal City. We used to have annual passes, but didn't go that often. It is a park for adults and older kids; smaller children get bored or frightened--many of the rides and attractions are somewhat "scary." It is a fun place to go though, especially if you have never been there.

Another place that she mentions is The Ivy. It is a restaurant located in a quaint little bungalow in West Hollywood in between industrial looking, chic clothing stores. I have eaten there a couple of times. It is supposedly a place to see stars. Best I ever did was see a B-list t.v. actor there. It is also quite expensive. If I remember right, hamburgers were over $20. It is a charming place though; on a warm Southern California day, you can't beat sitting out on the patio at The Ivy.

Other places to see, not mentioned by the author, are the El Capitan Theater just down from Gruaman's. It is just beautiful and has been restored. Disney often has special showings of its movies there. There is also, in the same area, the Hollywood & Highland complex which is a huge mall. And just down from there is the Pantages Theater, which is also gorgeous and a great place to see big productions.

If you branch out to Beverly Hills, then there is The Beverly Hills Hotel, Rodeo Drive, a wonderful restaurant called Crustacean (fish swim beneath your feet), and don't forget the ever popular "driving around looking for stars' homes." (I did that as a kid with my parents, lol.) I still remember seeing Lucille Ball's house. Although I have to say, it is fun to see the opulent homes even if you don't know who they belong to. :)

So, hooray for Hollywood. It is worth visiting.
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