The most famous zip code in the entire world, Beverly Hills is much more than Rodeo Drive –although it is one of the most fun, amazing parts of it. Business meetings and conferences are often held in the city, yet its movie-like surroundings are what lures many visitors each year.
Beverly Hills is a city, belonging to LA County, that is located about forty minutes away from Los Angeles, less than an hour from Malibu and roughly fifteen minutes from Hollywood. The city was initially a Spanish ranch that cultivated lima beans; in 1914 a group of investors who failed to find oil in the town decided to develop it.
If you are visiting Beverly Hills, there are certain things you do not want to miss. Here’s just a taste:
1. Beverly Hills Sign & Lily Pond
Our digital era claims that if there’s not a picture of your trip on social media, it might as well never happen. Well, this is your perfect spot for an ideal snap. Located between North Beverly Drive and North Canon Drive this 40-foot sign is the most recognizable landmark in the city.
2. Rodeo Drive
If 90210 is the most famous zip code in the world, Rodeo Drive is probably the most famous shopping avenue –settle down, Newyorkers we love Fifth Avenue just as much- so your next stop must be this one. If you’re feeling like a celebrity and have a bunch of cash to spare, or even just to window shop, the sight of stores such as Prada, Channel, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton are worth the trip.
3. The Grill on the Alley
Have you ever wondered where do celebrities have an all-American lunch? Well, the Hollywood Reporter claims this spot to be a preferred one of the stars. You must stop at this iconic Beverly Hills eatery for a delicious sandwich, burger, soup or salad; not only the food is superb, but there’s a chance to bump into your favorite star and maybe, borrow his ketchup.
4. Greystone Mansion & Gardens
Movie-lovers will recognize this place as part of the all-time favorites: The Bodyguard, Spiderman, and the Social Network. An impressive fountain and pool are surrounded by impeccable gardens and a courtyard; this quintessential part of Beverly Hills was built by the Doheny family.
5. The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills
After all the sightseeing you certainly will be hungry again; well prepare your taste buds for a treat to remember at the Cheese Store. The “Mecca for cheese aficionados” as the place is popularly called, this store has a wide selection of cheese; more than 500 different types to be more precise! The always-friendly staff will be happy to help you choose.
Set on the 2nd floor of the Montage Beverly Hills hotel, this is your perfect spot for a drink. The Ten Pound bar has a vast selection of whisky –particularly for those keen of an excellent single malt. They proudly served over water imported from Scottish lands –as it was meant to be. The Ten Pound Bar also offers wine, every possible cocktail and liquor wish you can enjoy with a magnificence view of the Beverly Canon Gardens.
7. Paley Center Media
What the Library was to Alexandria, the Paley Center Media is to Hollywood (although located in Beverly Hills and New York). A real treasure of costumes, props and TV memorabilia, along with video footage of 140,000 episodes of old TV can be found here. Do you miss the classics? The good old black and white soaps? The first sitcoms? Spend endless hours delighting in this TV palace and check the Paley of your list.
8. The Beverly Hills Trolley.
For visitors and locals, the trolley is always fun to ride. Hop on for a tour including Beverly Hills shopping hotspots, architectural landmarks and untold tales of its famous residents.
9. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Big Oscars’ fan? Do you sit at the edge of your seat every February hopping Leonardo finally receives an Academy Award? –Okay, he finally got it!- You should pay a visit to this place! The Grand Lobby on Wilshire Blvd. has rotating exhibits that are open to the public and are free! They also host movie screenings and other public events.
10. Beverly Hills Farmers Market
Not everything about Beverly Hills is regarding high-class shopping or celebrities. Open every Sunday from 9am to 1pm the Beverly Hills Farmers Market hosts more than 50 farm stalls and offer endless fun for the entire family, including children activities. They have cooking classes and excellent food vendors where you be able to taste 90210 in a whole different way.
Even if you are unable to cover the above list, Beverly Hills is a city one must visit at least once. An odd mixture of bling-bling and old Hollywood beauty makes this town a place with many peculiarities. Here’s some Beverly trivia you may not know:
- It is home to the most expensive store in the world. Remember we talked about Rodeo Drive? Well no store in New York, Paris or London compares to the House of Bijan, which is worth $12 million and requires a reservation to… shop! Customers average $10,000 per visit, which is no wonder why homeless, and beggars stay outside this spot. They probably do not do so bad! President Obama, Michael Jordan, and Jay Leno are just a few of the celebrities that have been spotted here.
- The city has no hospital, no billboards, no power wires, and no cemetery. We agree in making the city a beautiful place free of advertisements and wires, but no hospital? Did they take it too far?
- The city owns the sweetest ATM which delivers cupcakes! This unique machine serves customers with delicious cupcakes 24/7 and is located outside Sprinkles Bakery. It only takes a few seconds after choosing your preferred cupcake to receive a yummy treat.
- Believe it or not, Beverly Hills was named after Beverly, Massachusetts, in memory of its developers. Guess which Beverly city turned out to be the famous one?
- 90210 is the wealthiest per-capita code in the nation. We talked about being famous, but there’s a reason for it. The average home –we’re not even talking to a humongous house- in Beverly Hills is $1,200,000. The cost of being a resident at Beverly Hills is around 160% higher than any other place in the USA.
- Beverly Hills inspired two TV shows named 90210, the second being a modern version of the first one. Funny thing is, none of them were actually shot at Beverly Hills. The beach scenes were at Venice Beach, and Torrence High School was the setting for the school footing. 90501 does not sound as impressive as 90210, right?
Beverly Hills, despite its well-deserved fame, offers a lot of attractions that do not involve spending high amounts of cash. Of course, if you want to mingle with celebrities and top shots, the visit is worth the pay. For the rest, Beverly Hills offers plenty of attractions, fun places and lots of sightseeing. If you wish to avoid the high cost of staying there through the night, its convenient location makes it possible for a day trip. Fame, fortune, glamour, and high couture make Beverly Hills an excellent holiday destination.