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August 2015
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A lazy hazy L.A. day in summer

From Malibu to Marina del Rey Our

Private Tour Enjoys the Beaches of Los Angeles

The world is blue when seen from our Los Angeles tour helicopter as we cruise up the coast sometimes barely skimming the water.  The beaches are still packed with waders and wallowers enjoying the cool Pacific waters under the hazy sun.  The blue lifeguard stations buzz with activity right out of the old television series filmed around here, Baywatch.  Bikini clad roller bladers glide along the bike path that parallels the beach for almost 30 miles from the Palos Verdes Peninsula to Malibu.  The Venice Boardwalk is operating at full capacity with comedians, acrobats, magicians and all sorts of entertainers competing for the attention of gawkers with the clothing stores and souvenir shops all along the way.  We entreat our private Los Angeles tour guests when we circle back in our SUV for the road portion of a combination air + ground tour to sit for a henna tattoo (which fades away in a couple of weeks) or have their fortune divined by a professional tarot reader.  The long wooden piers of the past with their carnival and circus attractions are mostly gone but the Venice Boardwalk has some of that amusement and curiosity factor remaining.  Yes, summer on the beach in Los Angeles is worth enjoying as much as possible.

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We visit the grave of The Rev - James Sullivan

Special Private Tour Guests

Start at Gravesite

Many of our tours begin with a request or even a list of celebrity homes to visit, Hollywood Walk of Fame stars to find and locations around Los Angeles associated with movie stars and famous performers.  Often, too, our private Los Angeles tour guests will want to visit a particular cemetery or grave to connect with a favorite star now departed.  Recently we were struck by the devotion of a young man from Brownsville, Texas who was a full-hearted fan of Avenged Sevenfold drummer and founder Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan from Avenged SevenfoldJimmy Sullivan whose “band” name was The Reverend Tholomew Plague though he went by the moniker The Rev.  We drove our guests down toOur visit to the grave of The Rev in Hungtington Beach Good Shepherd Catholic Cemetery in Huntington Beach and located The Rev’s headstone.  The Orange County metal scene produced a number of high voltage groups that rocked the music scene including Bleeding Through and Eighteen Visions some of whose members were present at the funeral.  The Rev’s drum kits are on display in a couple of Hard Rock Cafés across the country.  His music lives on with the memories of his fans.

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Can you count all the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame?

Walk Among the Stars on a

Private Tour of Hollywood

We know most and can find out any of the more than 2,500 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  We like to get our private Los Angeles tour guests to the sidewalk icons of their favorite entertainers and celebrities.  That can be a lot of ground to cover along Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street.  Both sides of 18 city blocks.  However, the walk is not only interesting but fun.  Lots of fun stores to enter and explore and many interesting tales to tell about old businesses still here (Musso and Frank Grill, since 1919) and others long gone (the Brown Derby).  Spotlighted in today’s photo memory of a recent tour are Paula Abdul (Recording), David Bowie (Recording), Fred Allen (Television), Pierce Brosnan (Film), Jim Backus (Film) and Ted Danson (Television).  When there is a new star dedication ceremony we try to get our guests sightseeing with us that day to the area to be a part of the celebration.  Everyone else just has to watch the streaming or archived video of the event.  It’s much better to be here and see the stars in person.

 

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You can't miss the big red building on the corner of Sunset Boulevard. It is the Whiskey a Go Go.

Let the Music Bring Your Private Tour

to See This Landmark Nightclub

One of the best corners in all of Los Angeles is this one on Sunset Boulevard in W. Hollywood near Beverly Hills where the big red Whisky a Go-Go rock music club looms over the intersection.  Since 1964 musicians and music lovers from all over the world have been gathering here for an evening of rock ‘n roll and dancing.  Famous groups, soon to be famous groups and once famous groups perform on the stage that has been host to great music for more than 50 years.  The days of Go Go Boots are long gone (but for how long will they stay gone?) but there remains a “dress to impress” atmosphere both from the performers and the patrons at “The Whisky“.  Our private Los Angeles tour exploring the Sunset Strip makes a point of telling the story of music in Los Angeles from gangster days to yesterday and visiting the remaining clubs where our guests can themselves enjoy a night out on the town after their custom luxury tour of the city.

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A shelf of super hot sauces at Light My Fire at The Original Farmers Market in Hollywood

Our Private Tour Sizzles at the

Original Farmers Market

Their Heat Scale runs from 1-10++ and every product is heat rated and placed on a shelf.  That way our private Los Angeles tour guests deciding to take home some hot sauce can know what they are getting into.  Be forewarned those of you from milder climes and subtle cuisines – this stuff is atomic.  Even the “1” rating is too much for some.  In fact, we often treat our guests to hot papaya gum balls, a child’s confection, to chew as we leave the store and our brave guests will begin to redden and perspire and request that our next stop after leaving LIGHT MY FIRE at the Original Farmers Market in Hollywood is the soda fountain for a milkshake….an emergency chocolate malted (yes, the milk cools the flames).  Also, keep in mind that these sauces from all around the world often entreat attention with their saucy names.  We won’t go into detail on this G-rated blog but suffice it to say that our younger guests would be better off perusing the sticker and decal store next door while their parents chuckle their way through the shelves of red hot condiments.

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Our Los Angeles tour helicopter circles over Dodger Stadium

Private Helicopter Tour of Los Angeles

Features Our Ballpark

No matter where in the U.S. you are from sports lovers have strong feelings about the Los Angeles Dodgers, both good and bad, but they always want to include a look at Dodger Stadium when sightseeing in the city.  This storied baseball franchise has been in Los Angeles (originally from Brooklyn, New York) since 1958 and were soon joined in California by the San Francisco Giants (formerly the New York Giants).  The Oakland A’s (from Philadelphia to Kansas City before coming to the Pacific coast), the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (originally a minor league team) and the San Diego Padres (also a minor league team when started) rounded out the Major League Baseball teams of California.  Now one of the oldest baseball stadiums in the country you only have to see it from the air on a private Los Angeles tour to see why there is no real reason to update or renovate the great stadium.  It is still great!  Located in a beautiful park (Elysian Park above Chavez Ravine) just north of downtown L.A. our guests see how perfect the location and design of the field and stands really are.  And the team is good, too.  And Vin Scully is the best sports broadcaster in the world (in our esteemed opinion).  We have every hope that the Dodgers will not only get into the post-season but also that we can expect World Series games in October to be played in sunny Los Angeles and the sonorous voice of Vin Scully to narrate those very important games to determine the world champion.

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A look at Lucky's Steakhouse in Montecito

Our Private Tour Guests Spend a

Day in Santa Barbara

We are so fortunate to live in Los Angeles because we have Santa Barbara a short and beautiful drive up the coast and San Diego a scenic ride down the coast.  Both cities are very exciting destinations for our private Los Angeles tour guests.  This day we flew by helicopter up along the Southern California coast and upon landing in Santa Barbara boarded a luxury SUV for some exploration of this beautiful mission city with a highly regarded public university located right on the beach.  Santa Barbara, noted for its red tile roofs, includes the wealthy neighborhood of Montecito which is much like Beverly Hills. There are celebrity homes, big mansions and fancy restaurants like Lucky’s Steakhouse at 1279 Coast Village Road.  A purported favorite of Oprah Winfrey, a neighbor, this restaurant is an old-fashioned steakhouse.  Beef, chops, lobster, big leafy salads and strong cocktails with a large wine selection distinguish it from other fine dining establishments and keep the regular patrons coming back and lures our Los Angeles guests up from the big city on the coast to the little city on the coast.

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3:00 19 August 2015

Hollywood Sign and Ray-Ban Look

The Hollywood Sign reflected in our private Los Angeles tour guest's Ray-Bans

Our Private Tour Likes the Artful Photograph

of the Hollywood Sign

When picking out photos of the Hollywood Sign from the large number of images we capture on every private Los Angeles tour we are seldom surprised when our guests get excited about the more unusual shots we take.  Of course, the posed line of family members standing with the giant sign on the slope behind them is very popular, but the ones they want to share immediately are the “art” shots that we manage to get.  We make every attempt to photograph a whole range of poses at every location and even along the way between stops so that our guests have a truly memorable accounting of their sightseeing adventure with us.  Action shots from the SUV, helicopter and even a Segway, bicycle or astride a horse allow us to present our guests with a tour album that will delight them right after their custom tour and long into the future.

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Bob's Big Boy diner in Toluca Lake

Bob’s Big Boy Is A Special Private Tour Destination

Since 1949, a time of big cars and big appetites, Bob’s Big Boy in Toluca Lake (near beautiful downtown Burbank) has been a destination for happy hungry Los Angelenos and film production companies.  Today this example of Streamline Moderne architecture (designed by Wayne McAllister) stands out on Riverside Drive with its giant neon sign and the aroma of its superb French fries catching the eyes and noses of passersby.  This is the oldest of the remaining Bob’s Big Boy diners in the nation built not very far from the first Bob’s Big Boy in Glendale.  Our private Los Angeles tour couple from Houston just had to visit this burger joint made famous as much by the many movie stars and celebrities that stop in for a hamburger and shake as well as the famous scenes in countless movies and television shows filmed here over the years.  Our guides know their movie locations and tell a number of interesting tales of films and personalities associated with this landmark business.  They also talk about how the Beatles found the ritual American burger, fries and shake dinner to be surprisingly good.  Bob’s still has car hop service and is a regular destination for car and motorcycle clubs out on a weekend cruise.  You never know who, or what, you might see, but you can be sure to enjoy a fine meal with a very special ambiance.

The sign over the Beatles booth at Bob's Big Boy in Los Angeles

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3:00 17 August 2015

A Rare Quiet at L.A. Live

An unusually quiet view of L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles

An Early Morning Private Tour of Los Angeles

Enjoys L.A. Live

It was important for our private Los Angeles tour guests to be the first ones to enter the Grammy Museum and see the Taylor Swift Experience Taylor Swift lovers rejoice at the Grammy Museumexhibit so we made that happen for them.  The museum is part of a complex of hotels (the J.W. Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton), restaurants, movie theaters and a spectacular auditorium, the Microsoft Theater, where award shows have been staged for the world to see.  Right across the street is the Staples Center, home to four professional sports franchises (Lakers, Clippers, Kings and Sparks) and the Los Angeles Convention Center.  There is much happening around here all the time except for early in the morning.  Downtown Los Angeles continues its renaissance and the southern part of the city’s redevelopment is anchored by activities at L.A. Live.  Do not miss any opportunity to visit this energetic and exciting part of the city.  We are here all the time on our custom luxury tours because so many of our guests are staying at these two fabulous hotels.  We can begin our tours just by walking out of the lobby.

 

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