Shine hit LA a couple of weeks ago and we pretty much ate, shopped and walked our way through. Yep, I said walked. We really wanted to do the impossible in this city—to avoid the car as much as humanly possible and immerse ourselves in the neighborhood. So we set up camp in Venice and walked and walked…and walked.

For coffee most mornings we’d hit Intelligensia for crazy good lattés but if the line was too long as it often was, we shuffle over to Tom’s Flagship Store—believe it—they had the cutest café and true to most shops along Abbot Kinney there was a ‘surprise space in the back’ to chill and hang with shoes and coffee. Gjelina and GTA knew us by face near the end of the week—it was nearly impossible to stay away from the pizza and the frites and the okra salad. Those who’ve been stung by Gjelina’s know, once you’ve had a taste, you’re a gonner. You must at least have one or two sunset happy hours at Venice Ale House (that sunset porn above was our reward). The staff there are so nice and the DJ—I don’t know who he was—but he was killing it.

We also got real cozy with Kreation. Fresh juices and elixirs for any issue; energy, libido, vitality, immunity, detox. We chose the energy shot a lot—the coffee and cayenne combo was at first weird then addicting. Moon Juice also proved to be another great little juice spot—and how could we resist a place called Moon Juice?

Because we like to repeat ourselves and we love fresh lime margaritas, Oscar’s Cerveteca was visited more than once. Thank God though because the second visit gave us the LA Street Dog. Yes.

Thankfully, with all this eating going on, exercise actually happened! Since we’ve been regulars at the Baltimore location, we hit the Venice Blvd. Pop Physique. It was beautiful and we felt at home. We also tried Dailey Method in a gorgeous studio on Abbot Kinney—which is a similar but different kind of barre class and it kicked our collective asses—but in a seriously awesome way.

Some shopping needed to be done and our favorite shops on Abbot Kinney were The Golden State for locally made amazingness, Skylark for inexpensive and trendy fun things and Steven Alan for expensive and trendy fun things… Dudes, don’t miss The Stronghold and Edna King for approachable but cool menswear.  So much good stuff to be looked at, eaten & shopped in one neighborhood.

There’s something really great about immersion in a new (to you) place that’s so refreshing. Video from the trip coming soon!