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Carly Steel: My Secret L.A.

25.02.12

Name: Carly Steel Occupation: TV Host / Actress Where in L.A. are you based: West Hollywood near the Grove - the specific neighbourhood is actually called 'Miracle Mile' which is quite funny!

Carly Steel

WHAT DO YOU DO ON YOUR DAYS OFF: Prep for upcoming shoots, attend film screenings for films, go to meetings regarding potential projects, scour stores and showrooms for ensembles to wear for filming, and of course 'shoot maintenance'. Highlights with the fabulous Tracey Cunnigham at Byron & Tracey salon (there is often more of a social scene at the salon than at a Hollywood event), Natura Bisse facials at the Beverly Wilshire, lash extensions with Daniel Dinh at LongMi lashes in Beverly Hills, spray tan with the fabulous St Tropez technicians and the gym - I love Tracey Anderson Method and Physique 57.

FAVOURITE PLACES TO DINE OUT IN L.A.: Chateau Marmont garden for atmosphere, The Little Door, Giorgio Baldi in Santa Monica (incredible langoustine!), Le Petit Four at Sunset Plaza (love the lobster bisque and Rose), Madeo and Nobu or Geoffreys in Malibu.

FAVORITE PLACE TO HAVE A DRINK: Chateau Marmont, Soho House, Polo Lounge, Sunset Tower, Beverly Wilshire (I’m a traditionalist), Stark bar at Lacma is wonderful — especially during the summer when they have jazz performances.

Polo Lounge

BEST BRUNCH SPOT: Four Seasons if you are in a decadent mood, Mel’s Diner on Sunset Blvd if you are feeling kitsch for that all-American ‘Grease’ style diner experience. If you’d prefer more of a ‘South of France drinking on a cliff overlooking the water’ brunch experience then Geoffreys in Malibu.

Mel's Diner

BEST CAFÉ: Little Next Door for Rose and macarons, Fred Segal Café, or, if you fancy something more healthy, M Café on Melrose for the kale in peanut sauce — sounds unappealing but is to die for.

Little Door

CURRENT HOT SPOT: Soho House.

FIRST STOP FOR ANY VISITOR IN THE CITY: Chateau Marmont for that ‘old Hollywood’ experience.

Chateau Marmont

FAVOURITE BOOKSHOP: Barnes and Noble at the Grove — it may not sound terribly chic but there’s a terrace at the top where you can sit and have tea and peruse potential purchases in a civilized manner. There are always good book signing events going on there too.

Barnes & Noble

WHAT IS YOUR PREFERRED L.A. NEIGHBORHOOD: Beverly Hills for the wide boulevards, perfectly placed palm trees and slightly European feel. It is signature L.A.

Beverly Hills

MOST INSPIRING PLACE IN L.A.: LACMA — especially the Broad wing and Resnick Pavillion, both designed by Renzo Piano. LACMA director Michael Govan is a visionary who always keeps it fresh and interesting.

Lacma

NAME A PARK THAT YOU COULD SPEND YOUR WHOLE DAY IN: Griffith Park — hike in the morning then lunch at the Observatory overlooking the entire city.

Griffith Park

FAVORITE BEACH: Malibu Colony (because it’s private — I’m not a fan of public beaches).

Malibu Colony

WHERE ARE YOUR FAVORITE LOCAL PLACES TO SHOP: I love boutiques — Maxfield on Melrose for incredible concept pieces, Cusp in Century City for party dresses and of course Reiss on Robertson! Being from the UK I’m so happy the British stores are now making their mark here. British high street fashion is just so much more fun and stylish! I also love Sunset Plaza as a shopping area — it has a very European feel up there and has everything from H&M to BCBG.

Reiss

WHAT’S A KEY FASHION TREND YOU SEE ON THE STREETS OF L.A. RIGHT NOW: L.A. has more of a style than a trend. At the moment the favourite seems to still be a vintage dress paired with a shrunken leather jacket and Chanel or Hermes birkin paired with chic flats during the day and sky high platforms or booties by night.

IF YOU COULD THINK OF ONE SONG AS THE SOUNDTRACK TO YOUR LIFESTYLE IN L.A. WHAT WOULD IT BE: Oh gosh, that’s a difficult one! The song that immediately springs to mind is Phantom Planet’s ‘California’ which was also the theme tune to The OC TV show — as soon as I saw that show and heard that song I knew I wanted to move to L.A.

BEST PLACE TO TAKE PHOTOGRAPHS: Getty museum, Mulholland Drive, the Hollywood sign hike, Griffith Park Observatory, Geoffreys in Malibu (the view almost looks like the South of France), and the Bat Cave at Bronson canyon (where they filmed the original Batman series). There is also a really cool (but TOUGH) hike in Malibu that takes you up to a waterfall.

SECRET GEM: If I told you then it wouldn’t be a secret… Ok, Ok — a table on the little balcony at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica for lobster roll sliders and rose and then renting bikes from the hotel and cycling on the beach paths. There are only 4 tables on this little balcony just off the main room of the hotel, overlooking the ocean and beach and it’s a hidden treasure as most people go to the restaurant to eat so if it’s too busy to get a table there next time I go I will attribute it to having revealed this secret gem and be very cross with myself!