West Hollywood is a city located on the West Side of Los Angeles County. West Hollywood is home to the famous Sunset Strip, with its nightlife and its rock-music history, and to the largest gay nightlife district in the Los Angeles area.
Though well-known for its population of gay men, "WeHo" also has large numbers of Russian immigrants and a large Jewish population.
The commercial area of the city mainly lies along Santa Monica Boulevard.
In the late '60s, West Hollywood welcomed music clubs such as the Whiskey A-Go-Go and the Troubadour, venues that eventually became renowned launch pads for many famous musical acts. More music clubs soon followed, establishing West Hollywood as a linchpin of the music industry.
The city was founded on November 29, 1984. Previous to that, it had been an island of unincorporated land entirely surrounded by the cities of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills.
The area of Los Angeles immediately adjacent to West Hollywood is known as the Fairfax District, which contains some attractions mistakenly thought to be in West Hollywood (like Canter's Deli)
From I-405 or US 101, take Santa Monica Boulevard about five miles.
From I-10, take Fairfax or La Cienega north about two miles.
Halloween Carnaval is an adult event in West Hollywood.
Many of West Hollywood's favorite restaurants line Santa Monica Boulevard. Many of these are as much about "seeing and being seen" as they are about food.
Mel's Drive-In, 8585 Sunset Boulevard (Sunset at La Cienega), ☎ +1-310-854-7201 (-7200 for to-go orders), . Open 24 Hours. Opened on the Sunset Strip in ’97, Mel’s remains happily caught in a time warp; it’s 1950s drive-in style décor and 24-hour home style cooking mirrors the San Francisco original, which opened way back in the late ‘40s and was made famous by filmmaker George Lucas who used the carhop eatery as a centerpiece for his now classic film American Graffiti. The West Hollywood outpost features a 50-seat outdoor patio that is nice for soaking up the sun and people watching. Inside it’s tabletop jukeboxes, classic movie photos on the wall, ‘50s tune blaring through the stereo and, most important, great diner food; the famous ‘Melburger,’ chili fries, milk shakes and really just about everything else. It’s one of those Los Angeles places locals and tourists alike flock to. Formerly "Ben Franks" (mentionrd by Frank Zappa, among others), it's long been one of the most famous spots in the city, as far as restaurants go.
Barney's Beanery, 8447 Santa Monica Boulevard, ☎ +1-323-654-2287 (firstname.lastname@example.org), . A semi-sleazy but popular restaurant and bar, popular with the straight college crowd.
Eat Well Cafe, 7385 Beverly Boulevard, ☎ +1-323-938-1300, . Great breakfast and lunch.
The Flowering Tree, 8253 Santa Monica Boulevard (A couple blocks west of Crescent Heights), ☎ +1-323-654-4332. A great vegetarian restaurant popular at lunchtime. Great soups, sandwiches, and veggie tacos, washed down with free cucumber water.
Real Food Daily, 414 La Cienega Boulevard, ☎ +1-310-289-9910 (fax: +1-310-289-9911), . Sun-Thu: 11:30am-10:00pm, Fri-Sat: 11:30am-11:00pm. Vegetarians and vegans from the world over swear by Real Food Daily. Watch your favorite health and eco-conscious celebrity seal a deal over a seitan stir fry before darting off in their Mercedes SUV. Branches in Santa Monica and West Hollywood.
Garden of Taxco, 1113 N. Harper Avenue (cross street is Santa Monica Boulevard), ☎ +1-323-654-1746. "Eees not hot, eees spi-i-i-i-cy." You may be surprised that this restaurant doesn't have a menu, until the waiter comes to perform the menu for you. They have beef, chicken, fish, or vegetarian entrees, usually three or four of each.
Hugo's, 8401 Santa Monica Boulevard, ☎ +1-323-654-4088, . A great spot for breakfast or lunch.
The Newsroom Cafe, 120 N. Robertson Boulevard (at Beverly Boulevard), ☎ +1-310-652-4444. A great place to refuel when hitting the shops on Robertson Blvd. Eclectic menu features tandoori chicken salad, Maui veggie burger, various smoothies, wheat grass shots and so forth.
Saddle Ranch Chop House, 8371 Sunset Boulevard (at La Cienega), ☎ +1-323-656-2007, . Daily, 8:00am-2:00am. Western-style steakhouse features a huge, ‘country’ bar and even a mechanical bull for those ready for a faux bull-riding adventure. The menu is vast and surprisingly inexpensive. And again, the saloon is a longtime trendy destination along the Sunset Strip for raucous good times.
Sunset Beach, 8240 W. Sunset Boulevard (at Roxbury Road), ☎ +1-323-654-8100, . . Housed in a mega space on the Sunset Strip, formerly home to the uncomplicated, Irish watering hole known as Dublin’s, the glitzy, beach-themed restaurant and lounge features sunset colored walls, white plastic furniture, a sand pit and many other ocean-related décor. Menu offers modern American cuisine, but the buzz-worthy ‘scene’ is surely what will draw patrons initially. The grand opening party was held November 28 (’06), so word of mouth on the food and the experience has just begun to matriculate.
Ago, 8478 Melrose Avenue (at La Cienega Boulevard), ☎ +1-323-655-6333, . Chef Agostino Sciandri – with a Hollywood assist from Robert DeNiro, among others – continues to delight with his chic, Italian trattoria. A sophisticated interior with blond wooden tables, white tablecloths and cozy, rustic décor add an authentic touch. Chops, pasta and fish underscore the menu. House specialties include mixed fried fish, Tuscan-style chicken and Bistecca alia Fiorentina. Allure still thrives since its ’97 debut as evidenced by the crowded bar scene and bustling dining room.
Asia De Cuba, 8440 W. Sunset Boulevard (inside the Mondrian Hotel), ☎ +1-323-848-6000, . Unashamedly post-modernist, with Latino/east-Asian cuisine and a choice of white-party indoor dining or outdoor seating among the oversized flowerpots.
Koi, 730 N. La Cienega Boulevard, ☎ +1-310-659-9449, . An indescribably trendy Japanese restaurant, popular with young hot celebs and those who want to be them or at least catch a glimpse. Reservations are recommended, as is dressing the part.
BOA Steakhouse, 8462 W. Sunset Boulevard (at La Cienega), ☎ +1-323-650-8383, . Upscale, post-modern steakhouse located inside The Grafton Hotel - smack dab in the middle of the Sunset Strip. Classic steakhouse cooking fills up the menu.
BIN 8945, 8945 Santa Monica Boulevard, ☎ +1-310-550-8945, . A European-style wine bar and bistro care of restaurateur David Haskell. The dark and inviting 35-seat café features a six-stool bar and 13-foot wine cellar; they offer 80 wines by the glass. The cuisine is a blend of modern European emphasized with Caribbean and North African flavors; blackened catfish on risotto and jerk chicken with pineapple chutney are two tasty examples. There is a traditional five-course tasting menu, with the option of a wine pairing, for just under $100.
Dan Tana's, 9071 Santa Monica Boulevard (at Doheny), . Open Daily 5:00pm=1:30am. Since 1964 this revered, Italian eatery has been packing them in – from Hollywood powerbrokers and cinema stars to anyone that craves exquisite food in one of the coolest hangouts in Los Angeles. The waiters all look to have been there from day one, so a patron knows they’re in for a great culinary experience. The tiny bar in front of what is a tiny restaurant is often crammed three deep. It’s still a place one could be having a drink next to a movie star or ‘someone of note.’ Cocktails flow as waiters rush by carrying popular menu items such as linguini, spaghetti carbonara, steamed clams and a 16oz. New York steak dubbed the Dabney Coleman (an actor). The joint is always crowded and serves late into the night; a reservation is a must save for heavyweight Hollywood types. Excellent service, red banquettes, a classic atmosphere and delicious food – that’s a recipe for success and why Dan Tana’s remains a consistent favorite.
Il Sole, 8741 Sunset Boulevard (at N. Sherbourne Drive), ☎ +1-310-657-1182. M-F: 12:00pm-3:00pm, 6:00pm-11:00pm; Sat: 6:00pm-11:00pm; Sun: 5:30pm-10pm. Located in the always-bustling Sunset Plaza on the Sunset Strip, Il Sole is an unfussy and cozy Italian eatery that attracts an abundance of celebs and the like (happy to avoid a big crowd), as well as anyone who desires an unpretentious, neighborhood restaurant for good pasta and a glass of wine. Menu highlights include linguine with shrimp in spicy tomato sauce, spinach-ricotta ravioli and wild Mediterranean Sea bass. Reservations highly recommended.
The Ivy, 113 N. Robertson Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90048, ☎ +1-310-274-8303. Fantastic food, but known even more for it's endlessly famous clientele. Many a power deal has been made over a bowl of corn soup.
Katana, 8439 W. Sunset Boulevard (at La Cienega Boulevard), ☎ +1-323-650-8585, . Designer Dodd Mitchell’s sleek, Japanese-style bar/restaurant on the Sunset Strip mixes Hollywood glitz and inventive cuisine. The sushi bar is crowded. The robata bar is crowded. Women are scantily clad. Men ogle. The outside patio is crowded and the scene is distinctive Hollywood hip. No longer one of the ‘buzz-worthy’ destinations on the restaurant scene, Katana remains a solid choice for appetizing Japanese fare with an equally stylish clientele and interior design.
Lucques, 8474 Melrose Avenue, ☎ +1-323-655-6277, . Excellent, California-style cuisine in an upscale atmosphere.
Mirabelle, 8768 Sunset Boulevard (at Palm Avenue), ☎ +1-310-659-6022, . M-Sat: 11:00am-2:00am; Sun: 8:00am-2:00am; Happy Hour: 4:00pm-7:00pm daily. A culinary fixture on the Sunset Strip since 1971 Mirabelle remains a popular fine dining bistro courtesy the Germanides Family. Understated in décor (modern interiors with a supper club vibe) the cooking is the real star here. Signature dishes include classic crab bisque, Chilean Seabass, Filet Mignon and chocolate soufflé. Besides the dining room and patio there is also an oft-visited bar/lounge.
Pastis, 8114 Beverly Boulevard (at Crescent Heights Boulevard), ☎ +1-323-655-8822. Sun-Thu: 6:00pm-10:00pm; Fri-Sat: 6:00pm,-11:00pm. Bucolic neighborhood bistro presents French cuisine in a cozy atmosphere. Charming, intimate interiors are underscored by autumnal color scheme and candlelight, as the usual din of lively chitchat amongst patrons often spills out onto the sidewalk when the front patio doors are opened on warm evenings. Entrees include bouillabaisse, seared ahi tuna, mussels in garlic-and-shallots sauce and a fresh tomato tart.
Urth Caffé, 8565 Melrose Avenue, ☎ +1-310-659-0628, . Grab a healthy bite to eat at one of three locations and run the chance of spotting a celeb. Great salads, sandwiches, coffee and teas. Very popular, and additional locations can be found in Santa Monica and Beverly Hills.
Sweet Lady Jane, 8360 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, CA, 90069, ☎ +1-323-653-7145, . Mon-Sat: 8:30am-11:30pm, Sun: 9:30am-4:30pm. The best dessert place in the entire world, and on the tongue of every Angeleno. If it's your birthday party, your wish is to have the biggest 3-berry cake that your host can afford. But try them all. Coffee as well for those dining in.
Troubadour, 9081 Santa Monica Boulevard, ☎ +1-, . One of the clubs in WeHo that also functions as an event venue for local and popular music. The Rolling Stones and Elton John played here before they got big. Small and cozy. Fantastic venue
Whisky a Go Go, 8901 Sunset Boulevard, ☎ +1-310-652-4202 x15, . Another club/music venue, one of the more famous ones in Los Angeles.
The Mondrian Hotel, 8440 Sunset Boulevard, . Hotel features Jeffrey Chodorow's Asia de Cuba restaurant, the Seabar, the outdoor Skybar, the Agua Bathhouse, pool and outdoor living room, penthouse suites and meeting and banquet facilities.
Le Montrose Suite Hotel, 900 Hammond Street, . Le Montrose is the best kept secret in West Hollywood. It's tucked away in a quiet hillside residential neighborhood, just a couple of blocks below the Sunset Strip and a couple of blocks above the Santa Monica Boulevard nightlife district, and an easy walk from either. The rooftop pool is one of the top five in the country according to the Travel Channel. The rooms are unique & plush, the service is first class --you feel like you are being treated with reverence-- and you will often see music industry and some celebrities gracing the premises.
Chamberlain West Hollywood Hotel, 1000 Westmount Drive, . Chamberlain West Hollywood is a metropolitan hotel with the comfort and ambience of a residential pied-a-terre. Tailored, crisp and timeless, Chamberlain's décor evokes classic menswear restyled for the modern eye. Just 2 blocks from the excitement of the Sunset Strip and Santa Monica Boulevard, the sophisticated, West Hollywood all-suite hotel has been carefully redesigned to cater to style-conscious business and leisure travelers, and is well-suited for short or extended stays
Hollywood. West Hollywood's more famous neighbor to the east.
Beverly Hills. West Hollywood's more famous neighbor to the west.