When legendary songwriter Randy Newman noted of shiny Tinseltown – “Everybody’s very happy ‘cause the sun is shining all the time” – he should also have mentioned that the Barbie doll-perfect appearance favoured by the locals might also have something to do with their perennially jubilant moods.
The big busts, small dogs and even smaller waists you’ll witness during a strut down Rodeo Drive – chock-full of designer stores like Armani, Dior and Valentino – is enough to show you that, in LaLa Land, size matters.
But any feelings of aesthetic inadequacy will soon be replaced by Jonas Brothers’ concert-levels of hysteria, as the reality that you’re within partying distance of the hottest A-listers on the planet sets in.
Set your celeb radar to high alert, and head to West Hollywood, where the young, hot and sexy eat, shop and try to avoid the paps. Bump into Posh while you’re picking up oh-so cute and sexy undies in Trashy Lingerie; rub shoulders with Lindsay while you’re getting a Julrique facial at Larchmont Beauty Centre, or exchange nail tips with Kim Kardashian as you plump for a sooo-LA bright and bold mani at Rite Aid in North Larchmont. And with a stop at so-hot-it’s molten celeb boutique Kitson on Robertson, you’ll have Rachel Zoe’s signature LA street style nailed.
The Chateau Marmont is the place to lunch, sweetie (surpassing even The Ivy!). So don your largest showbiz shades and pose on the star-studded terrace alongside regulars Nicole Richie and Joel, Shia LaBeouf and Kate Hudson. But pack your plastic, because the prices are as high end as the A-list clientele.
Come nightfall, Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Strip are A-list stomping grounds. The club du jour is My House, the setting of much boy-drama for LC, Audrina and co in The Hills, or head to Nicky and Paris’s fave hang-out, Hyde. With a capacity of just 100 clubbers, the doormen are strict, but it’s wall-to-wall celebs inside… if you can get past the velvet rope.
While You're There...
Coachella Valley Music Festival
Expect to see festival regulars Kate Moss, Sienna Miller and Cameron Diaz moshing to this year’s headliners, including Amy Winehouse and The Killers, in April.
Swim with the ART
Behind the fluff, LA has a cultural scene to rival London or New York. You can swim over a David Hockney mural in the pool of the Roosevelt Hotel, or pick up vintage photos in Santa Monica art epicentre, Rose Gallery.
Girls on tour
For a whistle-stop movie tour, take an open air tram via the Walk Of Fame, the handprints at Mann’s Chinese Theatre and the Hollywood sign – stopping off at famous film and TV landmarks like Wisteria Lane!