Many stars and “non-stars” have managed to have their names placed on these 5-pointed terrazzo and brass embedded stars on the sidewalks of Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street in Hollywood, California. These stars are supposed to represent personal achievements of people, groups, and even fictional characters related to the entertainment industry. The site referred to as Hollywood Walk of Fame is quite popular among tourists with estimated annual visitors of 10 million.
The Walk has about 2,484 occupied stars as of November 2012. On closer inspection of the stars, an emblem would represent in which category the artists belongs to. There are five categories namely Motion Pictures, Broadcast Television, Audio Recording, Broadcast Radio, and Theatre/Live Performance which was the latest category added in 1984. Special stars are also found in the Walk consisting of entities, organizations, and special honorees that have made significant contributions.
Not all known celebrities have their stars on the Walk. The process of having a star on the Walk starts with a nomination, so unless someone or an entity nominates a personality, there will be no stars forthcoming. The nomination also has to be accepted by the nominee including the commitment to be present during the unveiling of the star.
There are however some concerns in relation to whether some stars are in fact deserving to be included, but then that is how show business is. Every opportunity can be used to promote a star and the Hollywood Walk of Fame has apparently not been spared from it.
It is possible for a personality to have more than one star. The Walk is supposed to be an Entertainment Hall of Fame. So far it looks more like a tourist attraction
Do you like doing your grocery shopping on a regular basis? Do you feel a certain sort of despair each time you go to the supermarket and you find vegetables and other produce that are not up to your standards? Well, if you are ever in Hollywood and you want to do your grocery shopping, you might want to go to the Hollywood Farmers Market instead of Costco.
This market is a true blue outdoor street market which offers a wide variety of goods. To date, it has about 90 farmers, 30 artisans, and 30 food vendors. Read the description of the market from their own web site:
Besides offering a great variety of fresh California-grown fruits and vegetables, Hollywood Farmers’ Market offers other wares such as honey, fish, free-range poultry and eggs, meats, cheeses, olives, mushrooms, jams, jellies, fruit juices, sauces, dried fruit and nuts, espresso, ethnic foods prepared on premises, hot pancakes, bread, biscuits, clothes, jewelry, gifts and more.
Now isn’t that just enough to make you want to visit the market? More than the food and produce, however, you can also enjoy other activities such as live music from street musicians. There are other forms of entertainment, family-oriented activities, and more. As such, you can make your visit to the market more than a routine chore. Indeed, it can be a family event that can keep everyone busy and happy.
The Hollywood Farmers’ Market is held every Sunday from 8 am to 1 pm. You will surely find it easily on Ivar Avenue and Selma Avenue.
Year in and year out, people from all over the United States and the world come in droves to Hollywood. They all want to see a glimpse of the real Tinsel Town that they normally only see on TV and the wide screen. Hollywood already has tried and tested places that attract visitors like nothing else.
What we see on TV and the movies may not be reflective of the “real” Hollywood and the “real” Los Angeles, however. And this is exactly what Robert Cabrales wants to share to visitors. Together with the Communities for a Better Environment, he is organizing tours specially designed for eco tourists. This group is actually an advocacy organization that aims to give something back to communities.
So what does an eco tour of Los Angeles include? The answer is quite stark: a guided tour among the most “notorious environmental black spots” of the city. Dubbed Toxic Tours, these unique vacations are aimed to reveal the “dirty little secrets” of the city.
“The purpose is mainly to let people know that there is something going on here, which is the dirty little secrets that pretty much most people don’t know about,” Cabrales says. “When we talk about tourism and people coming over to visit Los Angeles they’re not going to see the nasty parts.”
Launched in 2007, the tour departs several times a month, ferrying anyone from environmentally conscious tourists to schoolchildren, activists and even government officials.
Cabrales said the tour aims to shine a light on the “environmental injustices” of Los Angeles, where residents in poorer neighborhoods live in close proximity to heavy industry.
I admire the initiative and concept of the tours. However, I don’t know if I would want to pay to see these places. I mean, I might as well take note of the places and then go there myself. Then again, that wouldn’t mean much for the cause of trying to change things, would it?
How about you, would you pay to go on a Toxic Tour?
Anyone who has visited one of Madame Tussauds’ museums would know just how amazingly lifelike the exhibits are. And for those who just can’t get enough of their Hollywood stars, Madame Tussauds has something especially for them – the newest museum in its already vast line up.
This time, the museum is dedicated to the stars – the human kind, not the twinkly kind you see up in the night sky. The newest addition to Madame Tussauds’ museum is located right next to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, near the Kodak Theatre. If you follow the Walk of Fame, you will go by the new museum, which opened on the 1st of this month.
There are 115 celebrities immortalized in wax, and guess what? This is no stuffy museum where visitors have to stay behind the red ropes! Those who go inside Madame Tussauds can literally rub shoulders with the wax figures.
To add to the whole experience, the stars do not come as stand alone figures. Some of them actually have props, which they are most known for. Tom Hanks, for example, sits on a bench as Forrest Gump did. You can even put on some the available habits around Whoopi Goldberg’s figure to join her in Sister Act. Needless to say, the possibilities for fun are endless in this museum.
Tickets are sold online and at the door. Online, you can buy Priority Access or Flexi Tickets, both for a 10 percent discount. What are you waiting for? It’s the perfect trip to end the summer.
Millions and millions of tourists have set foot on Hollywood and have roamed the streets to discover what this amazing city has to offer. Being one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, it is no wonder that Hollywood is home to all sorts of establishments catering to all sorts of tastes and preferences. There is one thing that will always be sought after: that authentic Hollywood feel; and if you are looking for the real deal, then you should pay Musso & Frank Grill a visit.
This is not your run-of-the-mill restaurant which tries to emulate the Hollywood in everybody’s dream. It IS part of Hollywood’s rich and colorful history. Founded in the early 1900s, this establishment was the regular haunt of many personalities – from actors to literary figures. It changed ownership in 1926, and has continued to cater to locals and visitors alike. Recently, Musso & Frank has undergone some radical changes yet again. Jordan M. Jones, a descendant of the owners, took over the reins and implemented improvements while at the same time sticking to old traditions.
It used to be that the grill was best known for its martinis. Today, they have expanded their menu to include excellent wines and other drinks. They have also started playing music late at night, which was something “unknown” in the past. Once you put your foot inside the door, however, you will not be able to deny that Musso & Frank has something that all the other establishments in Hollywood may not have. Whatever you want to call it, you’ll definitely get that feeling at this Hollywood fixture.
The Grauman Chinese Theatre is one of the most popular attractions in Hollywood. The great thing about this theatre is that its popularity is not only due to its “star record” but also because of its architecture. In fact the theatre is has been a historic-cultural landmark since 1968. Thanks to this status the theatre has been kept well preserved undergoing several facelifts and much needed earthquake retrofits to ensure that future generations will still have a Grauman’s Chinese Theatre to visit and enjoy when going to Hollywood.
The Grauman’s Chinese Theatre was first opened in May 18, 1927 with Cecil B. DeMille’s “The King of Kings” premiering that night. From the opening the theatre has already been popular and been making history as attested to by the thousands of fans, that turned out to see both the celebrities and the theatre, and then went ahead and rioted.
As mentioned earlier the theatre is also very special due to the architecture and the interior design. Quite obviously the theatre is of Chinese architecture, but what makes it really special is its legendary forecourt better known as the “Forecourt of the Stars”. The intricate artistry, from the fountains to the statues, displayed in the forecourt is actually the work of real Chinese artisans. Lots of the other artifacts that dot the theatre, such as the giant Heaven Dogs guarding the entrance of the theatre, are genuine Chinese artifacts imported from China. Of course, to the fans the emphasis goes to the stars part of the “Forecourt of the STARS” since it is there where you’ll find the hand and footprints of more than 200 celebrities. The very first hand and footprints belong to Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks in April 30, 1927 with more and more stars adding to the A-List each year.
The theatre, though a tourist attraction, is also still very much a real theatre serving as the venue for premieres of the best shows in Hollywood.
Knots Berry Farm is a well known brand all over the world. Situated not far from Hollywood, Knotts Berry Farm is the perfect destination for tourists, especially for those with families. There are various agencies operating in and around Hollywood which offer tours to the Farm.
One example is prominent Hollywood Tours. Here is something from their web site:
The Knotts Berry Farm Excursion from Hollywood (Day and Evening) includes admission and unlimited use of all rides and attractions, with hotel pick-up before 9:00 am and return from the park at 9:30 pm.
Pick-up from Hollywood, San Fernando Valley, the Valley, Mid-Wilshire, Pasadena, Glendale, and Burbank area hotels.
Enjoy 165 wild rides, live shows and attractions including an action-packed Old West Ghost Town, six-acre Camp Snoopy for kids, and all-new Jaguar!, the Streaking Big Cat of Roller Coasters!
Of course, I am sure that you want to know how much a tour would set you back. For adults, they charge $106.95. If you book from their web site, you get a discount and pay only $101.95. Prices for children are cheaper at $77.95.
If you are planning on taking the Knotts Berry Farm tour, you should be ready to spend about 14 hours. Basically, you have to set aside a whole day for the tour, with perhaps some time to relax in the evening upon your return.
Who loves Thai food? I sure do! I do not know if you guys have ever tried Thai food but let me tell you, it is one of the best you can have. Though Thailand is a bit too far away from Hollywood just to go there for a meal, you can actually have a taste of the real thing right in La Brea Avenue!
The restaurant is called Pink Pepper (now isn’t that name just cute? Who has ever seen a pink pepper?) and has actually been in operation for almost 20 years now. It was in 1989 when Pink Pepper was opened by Tony Boon and it was located near the west end of the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Naturally, the decoration of the restaurant included golden Buddha images. The interior was infused with rose and pink – probably the origin of the name. Unsurprisingly, the restaurant became a hit. Its popularity declined a bit after several years but today, it has once again risen in popularity and is THE place to be if you want Thai food in Hollywood.
What can you expect from Pink Pepper? How about some green curry fried rice, Thai herb-crusted salmon, and green papaya salad? Of course, they have more on the menu than that. To find out more about them, visit the Pink Pepper web site.
Do horses and Hollywood make a happy couple? Off the top of my head, I would probably say not really but I am sure that the people at Sunset Ranch Stables – and the countless tourists that have gone there – would strongly disagree. Sunset Ranch Stables is the only horse ranch in the greater Los Angeles area and has long established its name as a tourist attraction. Located just under the world famous Hollywood sign, Sunset Ranch Stables offer horse rides day and night as well as majestic scenery.
The ranch has been in its current location since 1954 and more than the horse rides, it is also famous for the Sunset Dinner. The original owner of the ranch is Jute Smith but it is now Stephen Smith, Jr., his grandson who is running the place.
They have various offerings with regard to the rides. Perhaps the most sought after package is the Sunset Dinner Ride, which lasts 90 minutes long. This ride starts out at the main area, goes through Griffith Park, then to Burbank, and then reaches the highlight – dinner at the Viva Fresh Mexican Restaurant. I think that the package price does not include the dinner, which can cost anywhere from $6 to $12 per person.
If you are interested in joining a ride, you have to make reservations unless it is a Friday. More so, you have to be at least 16 years old to participate. Public rides cost $60 per person while private rides will, naturally, cost more.
It may not be the newest hotel in the area, nor is it the grandest, but the Chateau Marmont is the hotel steeped in authentic Hollywood history. Located at 8221 Sunset Boulevard, the hotel was built in 1927 by Fred Horowitz. It was modeled after the famed Château d’Amboise in the Loire Valley in France. Originally, though, the project was not meant as a hotel. In fact, it was opened in 1929 as an apartment building. Due to the high rent and the Depression, there weren’t many takes. As such, it was converted into a hotel in 1931.
In 1990, Chateau Marmont was bought and has since then been run by hotelier Andre Balazs. So what is so special about this hotel? Let’s just say that countless Hollywood (and non-Hollywood) celebrities have spent many a naughty time in this place. This hotel is perhaps the most discrete and most private that you can find in all of Hollywood. And, in a place where privacy is hard to come by, Chateau Marmont is a haven for many. Indeed, Harry Cohn (founder of Columbia Pictures) is quoted to have said that “If you must get in trouble, do it at the Chateau Marmont.”
This license for the naughty and the privacy does not come cheaply, though. The hotel has 63 rooms, cottages, and bungalows. The cheapest room – standard – will cost you a hefty $300++ per night. For the utmost privacy, the bungalows are what the stars choose. I can’t even begin to imagine how much these cost!
The next time you find yourself with cash – lots of it – to burn and you want a genuine Hollywood experience, check yourself in at the Chateau Marmont.