Cyn and I are total California girls — We weren’t born and raised here, but after living in Los Angeles for so long, it’s hard to imagine calling anywhere else home. Like many Angelinos, I aspire to spend as much time as I possibly can at the beach — It would be a crime to live here and not take advantage of all the awesome beach cities. One of my favorite coastal spots to spend a day in is Venice Beach! Known for being pretty gritty, and now very gentrified, Venice has become this even more eclectic and amazing mix of high and low everything. From high end designers and specialty cocktails, to food trucks and street artists, you can pretty much get it all in Venice. Whether you live in SoCal, or are just visiting the Los Angeles area, Cyn and I assembled our ideal day, filled with our favorite local hot spots for you to check out next time you’re there!
Breakfast: The Butcher’s Daughter. This place is amazing — They have a fabulous and healthy menu (try the Avocado Toast and Wellness Lattes), and the décor is to die for. They also have a NYC location, and a Butcher’s Daughter food truck that is parked on Abbot Kinney.
Activity: Rent bikes
I know, renting bikes is like the most obvious activity, but hear me out. Rent from one of the many places along the boardwalk, and instead of following the bike path north or south, head into Venice and bike along the canals. It’s less crowded and a better workout pedaling up those hills!
Coffee Break: Intelligentsia Café
This café is always buzzing with people and is the perfect spot to grab a coffee and people watch! I love meeting friends here, or posting up with my laptop and catching up on emails.
Lunch: Wabi Venice
Wabi Venice offers incredible Japanese food with California influences. The Arugula Salad and Wild Caught Tuna are two of my favorite dishes on the menu. They also have a killer cocktail menu (if you’re feeling so inclined) with creative drinks like the GRAPEFRUIT BASIL YANA, which they describe as ‘Sweet ‘n’ Sour Basil’.
Shopping: Abbot Kinney and Lincoln Blvd
These two strips of retail are about three blocks from one another, so once you’re done with one, take a 5 minute walk to the other. Some of my favorite spots to give my wallet a workout are: Flynn Skye, Rag n Bone, Heist, Flowerboy Project and General Store. Check out Racked LA for a great shopping guide to Venice.
(image credit: High Lounge)
Happy Hour: High Lounge at Hotel Erwin
High Lounge is the perfect place to enjoy happy hour in Venice. With stunning rooftop views overlooking the Pacific Ocean and a great drink menu, you really can’t beat it. It’s impossible to be in a bad mood at this place! Try their “My Little Mule” for a refreshing strawberry twist on the classic Moscow Mule.
Dinner: Scopa Italian Roots
Scopa is one of my favorite Italian restaurants in LA. Their menu is a perfect mix of old-school Italian dishes like Prosciutto & Burrata and Rigatoni, and healthy California inspired offerings like their Raw Brussel Sprouts. The atmosphere is modern, cozy and rustic, making it the perfect dinner spot in Venice!
Nightcap: Venice Beach Wines
This little wine bar is tiny, but they have an adorable patio and a killer wine list. They truly capture that unique Venice Beach vibe.
(Image credit: Jeni’s Ice Creams)
Dessert: Jeni’s Ice Creams
Directly across the street from Venice Beach Wines is this adorable ice cream shop, making it the perfect final stop on your Venice tour. The ice cream here is outrageously good with flavors like Goat Cheese with Red Cherries, Middle West Whiskey & Pecans and Wildberry Lavender. You can also find Jeni’s locations in Los Feliz, Larchmont and Calabasas.
If you hit any of our favorite Venice Beach spots, be sure and tag #TheSweetLife so we can see!
The Sweet Life By Brittany + Cynthia Daniel