To keep our inventory of insider city tips fresh and shiny, we regularly ask our style-spotting spies to report back from their trips with the latest travel news and views. Here, magician-slash-comedian-slash-hotel-reviewer Chris Cox shares his learnings from La-La Land and reveals how to live like a big-shot (Edinburgh Festival) star in Los Angeles…
LA, the home of Hollywood, of movie stars and year-round sunshine. A recent jaunt there gave me the chance to spend a January morning lying by a pool, an afternoon seeing Beverly Hills stars head towards the Golden Globes, and an evening eating like an A-lister. I was there to film a pilot for a new TV show, and used that as an excuse to give you beautiful people the scoop on how to feel like a megastar when you visit that starriest of States, California.
The first thing you need to do is to arrive like a star. It’s a 10-hour flight from the UK, so choose the most comfortable/sexiest airline you can. From London Heathrow, I reckon that’s Air New Zealand. They fly direct every day; you can order food and drink whenever you want from your seat via your TV screen (which also gives you power and an iPod connection so you can watch your own stuff); their in-flight concierge will give you tips on what to do when you land; and there are even windows in the bathrooms. Surely only superstars have a pee looking down over the Grand Canyon?
Top tip If your lack of movie-star budget nixes Business Premier and its mega-comfy lie-flat beds, book you and your Mrs Smith into Premium Economy’s award-winning Spaceseats. Opt for the central aisle if you want to snuggle up together watching films or dine across a shared table as you cross the Atlantic.
I know I arrived like a star because I spotted two of them on the plane with me; like them, once you arrive, you’ll want to check into a showbiz Hollywood hotel and go for the first of many amazing meals. Wherever you eat in LA, you’ll be surrounded by actors; they’ll be the ones serving you.
Chateau Marmont has a restaurant that’s every bit as glamorous as its starry hotel clientele; Spotted Pig star chef Carolynn Spence turns out imaginative Med-infused Californian haute cuisine. You can also people-watch while you eat at the buzzy poolside restaurant during the day.