Archive for March, 2014

Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 31 March 2014

Blue Malibu – Enjoy!

Signpost in Malibu

Los Angeles Tour Guests Feel Welcomed in Malibu

Many of guests want their tour to concentrate on the beautiful beaches and lively communities along the shore.  Our private custom tour of Los Angeles takes them where they want to go so time spent in Malibu’s Paradise Cove is guaranteed.  As you can see, most days when we arrive are like this – clear and sunny.  The color theme is blue.  Even the sea gulls are relaxed.  If our guests give the word we can break out the Frisbee and Nerf football and take off our shoes and socks for some real beach time.  We’ll even entertain the kids while mom and dad enjoy a romantic walk along the strand by themselves for a little while.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 28 March 2014

Chinatown Light Rail Station – Los Angeles

The tram station in Chinatown – Los Angeles

Every Station Has Its Own Aesthetic in Los Angeles

In Los Angeles the above-ground light rail stations as well as the underground subway stations are all individually designed.  Each time a train stops you can know where you are before reading the station sign.  In fact, there are art tours provided by the Metropolitan Transit Authority (“MTA“) that visit different stations each month with a docent to explain the art and design of the Red Line (underground) stations.  The station shown, one of the few elevated stations for the MTA light rail system, is the Chinatown Gold Line Station.  But you knew that just by looking.  This station is just north of downtown Los Angeles so you can walk into Chinatown for lunch and shopping and then walk over the freeway to the courthouses and government buildings, the Music Center or the Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral.  The Gold Line stretches from Pasadena to East Los Angeles serving 21 stations along almost 20 miles with an extension east from Pasadena currently under construction and further eastern expansion scheduled from East L.A.  We have had private Los Angeles tours interested in exploring our local train system before and there is much to see.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 27 March 2014

The Pink Palace for a Film Location

Our Los Angeles Tour Guests See Film Being Made

Beverly Hills Hotel as a film setComing up along the Beverly Hills Hotel, locally known as the Pink Palace, we were able to stop and show our guests a film shoot in action.  We in Los Angeles are very used to seeing this but to our Los Angeles tour guests seeing a movie, tv show or commercial being made in real life is an exciting treat.  The vintage automobiles suggest a period piece and since the hotel has been there since 1912 Hollywood production companies have a number of historic periods they can shoot at this luxury hotel.  Palm trees, blue skies, pink-painted stucco all set the place for whatever date the filmmakers require.  The Beverly Hills Hotel is a popular filming locationThis is a beautiful part of Beverly Hills with its wide streets and verdant lawns and so many former and current celebrity homes to point out and photograph with our guests.  We will even suggest stopping for lunch at the hotel’s famous Polo Lounge to hobnob with the stars over a McCarthy Cobb Salad.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 26 March 2014

Happy Birthday Flight

Los Angeles tour ready for takeoff in their helicopter

Los Angeles Tour Guests Enjoys Birthday Adventure

The family requested a special birthday adventure for young Liam who was turning 9 years old and, like most boys, loved aircraft.  Well, that was perfect for us because we have luxury helicopters at our disposal and knew exactly where to take him over Los Angeles.  We especially love planning special event adventures for birthdays, graduations, weddings, anniversaries and every other celebration that our guests want to enjoy in Los Angeles.  Liam loved the low altitude flight along the coast skimming the breaking waves between Venice and Malibu.  But then we popped up to explore the canyons and mountaintops of the coastal range heading back into Brentwood.  Now Liam’s parents were excited about the fabulous homes below in Bel Air and Beverly Hills and the birdseye view of the bustling streets of Hollywood.  The Hollywood Sign is spectacular when seen at eye level with the San Fernando Valley spreading out behind it on the other side of Mt. Lee.  I think Liam would take as long to discuss his air journey and the subsequent ground tour in our van as it actually took to do the tour.  We know he had an excellent adventure.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 25 March 2014

Malibu Rocky Oaks – Wine Club

Wine Club Offering for Los Angeles Tour Guests

Join the Malibu Rocky Oaks Wine ClubMalibu Rocky Oaks Estate is more than an exquisite mountaintop estate above the Pacific Ocean and Malibu.  The estate is also a working vineyard and wine producer.  Its 10-acres of vines yield incredible, highly rated wines: Cabernet, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Malbec, Syrah, Grenache, Chardonnay, Petite Syrah, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot.  Our private Los Angeles tour guests are treated to wine with every visit to this beautiful Tuscan-style estate.

California residents can take advantage of the Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate Wine Club.  Members receive shipments consisting of three bottles each quarter of some of the very best wines in the portfolio at a substantial discount, including pre-released and library vintage wines available nowhere else!  One level of membership includes invitations to wine events held at the estate, a private tour and meeting with the owner.  Wine lovers will truly appreciate the fine bottles of assorted wines they will receive. (click the images for larger views)

Malibu Rocky OaksMalibu Rocky Oaks Estate wine

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 24 March 2014

Spring Means Plan Your Hollywood Bowl Nights

The Hollywood Bowl during Los Angeles tour

Los Angeles Tour Groups Enjoy the Hollywood Bowl Park

Seating more than 17,000 people, the Hollywood Bowl is the largest natural amphitheater in the country.  Opened in 1922 in the area then known as Daisy Dell, the Hollywood Bowl has been a mainstay of Los Angeles performance and entertainment for almost a century.  Now that spring has arrived it is time to peruse the Bowl’s calendar for the 2014 season and decide which performances to attend.  As always, the season begins in June with the arrival of the Playboy Jazz Festival which has inaugurated the season every year since 1979.  George Lopez will MC the weekend event this year and will host many of your favorite jazz stars from around the world.  The official season kicks off on the 21st of June with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra‘s opening day performance.  Expect lots of symphonic evenings, international music and the ever popular movie sing-a-longs.  John Williams will host two nights of his music in film.  Big stars under the stars with a touch of fireworks.  Bring your picnic or have your meal catered.  We love bringing our private Los Angeles tour guests by the park during the day when you can explore the grounds without crowds and visit the Hollywood Bowl Museum.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 21 March 2014

Lake Hollywood Park – Park Here for Los Angeles Tour

A lovely park below the Hollywood Sign

Los Angeles Tour Stop to Stretch Our Legs Under the Hollywood Sign

This beautiful park is often full of the beautiful people of Hollywood and their pets.  We make sure to stop here when we have a private Los Angeles tour group that includes dogs (our very popular “K-9” tour).  Also, small children are safe to run around on the grassy lawn and expend some energy.  This is a great spot for us to capture amazing photographs of the Hollywood Sign, Lake Hollywood, the chaparral-covered mountains all around and the Los Angeles basin from downtown Los Angeles to the beaches extending from the Palos Verdes Peninsula to Santa Monica.  There is even a vineyard along the side of the mountain looking in another direction.  Early in the morning we might see deer, raccoons and even coyotes up here where much of the land is undeveloped.  The winter sunset draws lovers to spots nearby who can enjoy the multi-colored sky as the lights in the city below are illuminated.

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 20 March 2014

Cosmetic Work on the Stars in Los Angeles

Repairs being made on Melissa Etheridge's Walk of Fame star

Los Angeles Tour Sees How It Is Done

How many hundreds of thousands of people walk on the Hollywood Walk of Fame stars every year, year after year?  That’s a lot of feet scuffling along the sidewalk.  And then there are construction workers, skateboarders and who knows who and what else drags along the sidewalk over the stars each day.  Part of the fees collected by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce for each star is allocated to maintaining and preserving the stars so that they always shine their best.  We happened by a little patch-up work being done on Melissa Etheridge‘s star the other day.  Melissa’s star has been in front of the Hard Rock Cafe since September 27, 2011 (star no. 2,450) along the most highly trafficked area of the Walk of Fame between the Dolby Theater and Grauman’s Chinese Theater.  We are always pleased that the stars look good for our private Los Angeles tour guests who love to be photographed kneeling by the stars of their favorite celebrities.

Melissa Etheridge gets her Walk of Fame Star (9/27/11)

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 19 March 2014

77 Sunset Strip – An Address Worth Remembering

This commemorative plaque reminds us of 77 Sunset Strip

Older Los Angeles Tour Guests Can Still Hum the Tune

For six good years, 1958-1964, 77 Sunset Strip was the coolest detective agency in town.  The town?  Hollywood.  This successful Warner Bros. television show made Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., Roger Smith and Edd “Kookie” Byrnes household names as America settled in to watch them Friday nights on ABC.  Located on the south side of Sunset Boulevard right next to Dean Martin’s Dino’s Lounge, the opening credits made this spot on the Strip famous.  Time, however, works to erase all.  The building was forever changed in the 70s when Dino’s joint was gone.  The portal stood as a symbolic reminder and a commemorative sidewalk plaque marked the location of the famous television detective agency.  More recently the entire building was demolished to make way for current development of the ever changing and energetic Sunset Strip.  Our private Los Angeles tour guests who remember back that far appreciate our highlighting this and other locations associated with old television shows.

77 Sunset Strip todayThe 77 Sunset Strip valet parking area

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Luxury Tours of Los Angeles - 3:00 18 March 2014

Who Lives on Catalina? Portrait of a Painter

Los Angeles Tour Guests Meet Catalina Specialist

Artist Porschia Denning at work on Aurora Hotel mermaid muralWhen we are out with our private Los Angeles tour guests we often interact with the people we meet along the way.  Our guides encourage contact with the locals for our guests so inclined.  A private tour does not mean we keep our guests insulated from people and activities around them as we tour.  We recently met a lovely and talented woman while visiting Catalina Island.  Her name is Porschia Denning.  She is an artist enjoying life and work on an island so close (22 miles) and yet so far away from Los Angeles, Hollywood and Beverly Hills.  A classically trained fine artist and the talent behind many of the murals decorating the desert isle’s buildings she also assists from time to time the Santa Catalina Island Company as a tour guide, a perfect hobby for such a gracious and knowledgeable Catalina denizen.  Closeup of Aurora Hotel mermaid muralIn addition, Porschia teaches painting and entertains as a musician and singer.  We show her here working on a mural outside the Aurora Hotel on Catalina (and a closeup of the completed artwork).  If you are visiting the island, and we strongly suggest that anyone coming to Los Angeles make it a point to explore this wonderful place, be sure to look for or ask for Porschia to really experience the charm of Catalina.

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