Get High In Los Angeles–First In An Ongoing Series

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Los Angeles surprises me a great deal in this respect: There are not a lot of places to get up high, eat a great meal and and enjoy the view. You would think with so much ocean front and the sheer size of the city, there would be more spots to do so. I will visit most of these places over the next few weeks and months and report back so when you have friends and family visiting, you can get them high in LA and show off your beautiful city. Click the above photo for a larger view.

Technically, I’m starting in Santa Monica. Yesterday was a gorgeous day, not too cold, not too warm and so clear! I joined two friends for a Merry Christmas/Bon Voyage lunch at The Penthouse Restaurant at the Huntley Hotel. The views were spectacular. One side of the place was full of the Malibu coastline, the other side had views all the the way down Santa Monica Bay to Catalina and to Downtown and the snowy San Gabriels. Even the last stall in the bathrooms had a full blown view of the Pacific. We could not have picked a more perfect day or spot to wish our good friend good-bye and good-luck and LA gave our friend a beautiful last image to remember her by.

Photos by my friend Sarah (cuz I forgot my camera!). Thanks Sarah.

Read more about lunch with a view after the jump.

The view: Spectacular. The food: Delicious. We had crab cakes and a flatbread pizza for starters. The crab cakes were light and tasty, the flat bread made with fresh basil and cherry tomatoes and burrata. (Where has burrata been all my life?) There was roasted chicken that was heavenly and skinny french fries that were hard not to wolf down all at once. The squash soup came in a tiny cauldron and we had a quick Harry Potter conversation. The service was friendly and unobtrusive, the bill was not terribly cheap ($160 with tax and 20% tip) but since we had two starters, two main courses, a soup, a green salad, coffees and a corkage fee for the champagne we brought, not off the charts. For a special occasion lunch and with that view, it would have been a bargain at twice the price.

We stayed for three hours, drinking in the city and having the last conversation we would have together in one place for a while. We will miss our friend very much and I’m so glad Los Angeles gave us such a stunning background to say our good-byes.

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The Huntley Hotel
1111 Second Street
Santa Monica
Hotel phone: 310.394.5454
Restaurant phone: 310.393.8080

6 Replies to “Get High In Los Angeles–First In An Ongoing Series”

  1. That guy who moved to the LA times noted how much better blogs would be without the personalized cheesy crap, I think this little piece is a good example. It really ruined a good idea with all the overemotional friend leaving nonsense, just talk about good views in LA. If you or your friends get attacked by a mountain lion or fall off a shitty Griffith park trail it’s one thing, but I dont want a damn overpriced restaraunt menu and terms of endearment ending when I want to see nice pics of the beach and city.

    Anyways (sorry for being bitter, but ugh), the getty center had the best views when I went on saturday. And check out elephant hill in lincoln heights, if the developer’s fence doesnt stop you (a tragedy of LA viewdom). No more cheesy narcissisitic isht pleeeeez.

  2. Well, everybody’s entitled to their own opinion – though “Art” could have expressed his far less rudely – but I for one don’t mind some personal asides within a blog post. I read blogs as much for the writers’ personalities as I do for the factual information.

  3. Hey, Art — Please take this spin on your own advice: No more mean-spirited, inappropriately personal criticism in your anti-personal critiques, pleeeeez.

    Julia, I think it’s a beautiful post about real life and real emotions and a REAL-ly great bunch of views on a REAL-ly beautiful day in Los Angeles. Thanks for your continued blogging!

  4. It may be a harsh criticism but I wasnt trying to be mean spirited, ergo my praise that the topic was good idea. I would assume that yall are just rying to defend the overemotional dribel that hollywood sells us as entertainment, I don’t get it.

    Anyways, same to you Julia, sorry for being a meanie. Off the 101 at Mullholland there is also a good view spot where you can walk down a hillside spine; City Terrace (east LA) and Monterey park’s westside hills also have many great views, I like the view of DTLA from the Eastside for some reason.

  5. The Penthouse is FANTASTIC!! My wife and I had dinner there for our anniversary last month. Excellent choice. Regarding other places for good views in LA, here are two random, but effective views: 1) Food Court patio of the Beverly Center. Believe it or not, it’s a good view from the middle of the city. (similar view from the top of the Grove parking lot) 2) The top of the Home Depot parking lot on Sunset/Western. Found this by accident when the lower lot was full, and was surprised by how good another inner-city view was.

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