Master the Art of PTO: Out-of-Office in Los Angeles

Daniel Goldstein with friends
Curated By

Daniel Goldstein

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  • Luxury Travel

  • Boutique Travel

  • Food & Wine

  • Los Angeles

  • California

  • USA

  • Solo Travel

  • Wellness Travel

  • Arts & Culture

  • Bougie on budget

  • Green Spaces

  • Coastal

a red car drives down a road lined with palm trees at sunset with the Hollywood sign in the distance
Curator’s statement

In the age of remote work, which blurs the line between business hours and off hours, PTO has become sacrosanct - a time to recalibrate the work/life balance. This is why mastering the art of out-of-office has become more important than ever. Nestled between the desert, the mountains, and the sea, with over 100 distinct neighborhoods, Los Angeles is the perfect antidote for burnout.

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Where to stay

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Pendry West Hollywood

Sleek property off Sunset Boulevard with upscale rooms offering city views.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Sunset Tower Hotel

Luxe art deco property on Sunset Strip in Los Angeles with upscale rooms and suites.

Fora Perks
  • $100 food / beverage credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

The West Hollywood EDITION

Gorgeous tiled rooms, a hotspot lobby and restaurant, and the best rooftop pool scene in WeHo — a slam dunk of a city retreat.

Fora Perks
  • $100 food / beverage credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

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Daniel Goldstein with friends

Unlock perks by contacting Daniel to book your trip.

Day 1: Hop off the plane at LAX

skyline of big city at sunset with palm trees and city lights

When you hop off the plane at LAX (with your dream and your cardigan), I digress… Assuming that you are flying into LAX, Rolzo from LAX to your hotel of choice. If you are unfamiliar with Rolzo, Rolzo is to Uber/Lyft what Uber/Lyft were to taxis a decade ago. I recommend Rolzo to/from LAX in particular because Rolzo offers curbside pickup/drop-off. (LAX recently banned taxis and Uber/Lyft from curbside and ordered them to use a lot inconveniently located east of the terminals.) Additionally, while I am not necessarily encouraging this, you can legally drink in a Rozlo. Maybe start your “Party in the U.S.A.” a little early… That is if you have not already started on the flight. Please note that Fora is a part of Rolzo’s Preferred Partner program, so I can arrange your airport transfers.

As you may have noticed, all of the properties listed above are located in West Hollywood, AKA WeHo. WeHo is the geographical heart of Los Angeles, providing the perfect launchpad to explore whatever the California dream means to you.

I will leverage Fora’s partnerships to ensure a seamless arrival (i.e. early check-in, late check-out, upgrade, and other VIP perks).

Post check-in, keep your first day low-key by lounging poolside. The pool at Chateau Marmont is one of the best in WeHo. Located on Sunset Boulevard “the castle on the hill” is ironically the antithesis of Sunset Blvd.’s, "All right, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up!” With incredibly high hedges, discreet entry, and a protective staff who treat guests like family; the hotel is and has always been the ideal hideout for celebrities, and maybe you next?

Day 2: Los Feliz

views of the hills of Los Angeles on a grassy plaza of a museum dotted with visitors

Los Feliz along with neighboring Silver Lake and Echo Park have become to Los Angeles what Brooklyn has become to New York. Case in point, these three locales are dotted with cafés, vegan restaurants, microbreweries, thrift stores, record shops, tattoo parlors, (and rent inflation).

Speaking of cafés, start your day with your drink of choice at Maru. I love the Masala Chai Latte. As an FYI, there is usually a line (literally out the door), so plan accordingly. On the bright side, you may spot a celebrity while waiting… This is La La Land after all. Not to be all TMZ, but Justin and Hailey Bieber have been spotted here.

After playing café society, hopefully with Mr. and Mrs. Bieber, check out the indie book store, Skylight Books. Skylight is the kind of place that will have you wishing Amazon never existed.

Now, you may be thinking… Why are we spending the day in Los Feliz as opposed to Silver Lake or Echo Park? Although I love Silver Lake and Echo Park (shoutout to Mohawk General Store in Silver Lake), Los Feliz is home to one of the most recognizable Angeleno institutions, Griffith Observatory. Located just above the glimmering lights of the city, in the “urban wilderness” that is Griffith Park, the Observatory is your gateway to the cosmos! Not to mention, the Observatory is a star in its own right, serving as a favorite shooting location for filmmakers, from Nicholas Ray's Rebel Without a Cause to James Cameron’s The Terminator to the more iconic (IMHO) McG’s Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle.

I prefer to hike up to the Observatory from downtown Los Feliz via the Ferndell to the West Observatory Loop Trail, but you can get there via car if you are feeling weak in your knees. (You may or may not have just seen the Biebers after all.)

Before exploring the exhibits, live shows, and telescopes, stop at Wolfgang Puck Catering’s, Café at the End of the Universe located on the Observatory’s lower level for a leisurely lunch. If you did not already see enough of some of the best views in LA while on your hike, grab a seat on the Sunset Terrace and enjoy more views of the DLTA skyline and Hollywood Sign.

Following lunch, some of the most popular offerings at the Observatory are “The Once and Future of Griffith Observatory,” “Wilder Hall of the Eye,” and the Samuel Oschin Planetarium which is now showing, “Signs of Life.” General admission is free, however, “Signs of Life” requires tickets that can be purchased at the door.

For dinner, head to my favorite restaurant, Mazal. Founded by Los Angeles native Tal Zaiet, Mazal is a family affair supported by his sister Neev, and parents Davis and Hanni. Tal and Davis hand-built the entire restaurant – inside and out – from scratch, and the menu is a collection of Hanni’s original Israeli recipes with hints of Hanni’s Moroccan ancestry. In true Los Angeles fashion, the booze is organic and the bites are vegan/vegetarian. As a proud carnivore, vegan/vegetarian sounded intimidating, but when in Los Angeles do as the Angelenos do.

Day 3: The West Side

hanging sign over a street at sunset that reads "Venice"

After getting your steps in yesterday at Griffith, take it slow this AM by throwing on your hotel robe/slippers and treating yourself to (free) breakfast in bed (many of Fora’s partnerships with over 3,000 hotel properties allow us to provide you with free breakfast). My go-to room service order is a yogurt parfait with granola and berries and a green juice.

Later today, step into the Ancient World at Getty Villa. Getty Villa, not to be confused with its sister location Getty Center, lies along the coast and displays ancient Greek and Roman art in a recreated Roman country home. Getty Villa represents life at otium. Otium, a Latin abstract term, has a variety of meanings, including leisure time in which a person can enjoy eating, playing, relaxing, contemplation, and academic endeavors. This one-of-a-kind destination offers not only 4,000 years of antiquities, from the Stone Age to the final days of the Roman Empire, but also colonnaded walkways, tranquil gardens, and views of the Pacific Ocean. While general admission is free, a timed-entry reservation is required.

Step out of the Ancient World and into the contemporary by way of Palisades Village. This bespoke walkable village is home to uniquely curated boutiques, entertainment, and fresh food experiences, including my latest obsession, Sweet Laurel. This cake shop is unapologetically pink, think LoveShackFancy, and offers treats that are grain-free, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and dairy-free – yet still delicious.

Post refined sugar-free fix (when in Los Angeles - amirite), keep the unintentionally “Italian” theme going by checking out Venice. Venice is quintessential Southern California - a la Bay Watch with an alternative twist. This iconic neighborhood is known for its canals, beach, and a two-and-a-half-mile boardwalk that features performers, fortune-tellers, and vendors. One of the coolest sunsets is off the boardwalk at the Venice Skatepark with the Pacific Ocean and Santa Monica Mountains as the backdrop.

For supper, you can either stay by the boardwalk or take a short stroll inland to Abbot Kinney Boulevard.

If you are staying by the boardwalk, Belles Beach House is your place. An ode to the retro Tiki Bar and legendary artist Larry Bell, Belles Beach House exudes the laid-back, island vibes of the 1970s serving hand-crafted cocktails and Hawaiian cuisine. The venue boasts an impressive outdoor covered patio bar, indoor restaurant, as well as an additional alfresco dining area.

If you are taking the short stroll inland to Abbot Kinney, peruse the gamut of International flagship stores inhabiting eclectic century-old bungalows before stopping at Gjelina. Named for founder Fran Camaj’s mother, Gjelina is a staple in the Venice community (the crowd is always fun to eavesdrop on). The menu is guided by the restaurant’s long-standing relationships with farmers, local ranchers, and fishermen. Open with a vegetable, then round out your order with a pizza or two (or three).

Regardless of where you eat, after hours, Abbot Kinney’s nightlife draws the hip, edgy, and celeb-sophisticated from all over LA and beyond. Start at The Brig and see where the night takes you.

Day 4: West Hollywood hotspots

view from behind the Hollywood sign of the Hollywood hills on a hazy day

If the night did not take you down a rabbit hole, stretch your legs at Runyon Canyon for another cinematic view of the Hollywood Sign. In the infamous Hollywood Hills, Runyon serves as an oasis from the city.

After sweating it out at Runyon, you deserve to use your “$100 USD equivalent Resort or Hotel credit” (you are welcome) at the spa. Spa Pendry at Pendry West Hollywood and The Spa at The West Hollywood EDITION both offer menus that weave together physical, emotional, social, spiritual, and intellectual wellness. I am biased towards The Spa at The West Hollywood EDITION as the Le Labo scent specially formulated for EDITION is addictive!

Before turning off that out-of-office auto-reply, explore WeHo. Full of restaurants, bars, and clubs that are Deuxmoi staples, a walk down Melrose Avenue is a must. Make it a point to veer off Melrose Avenue, onto the surprisingly quiet, Melrose Place which is home to the foundations of the cool girl’s/guy’s closet, including Isabel Marant, The Row, and Violet Grey.

The perfect cap for a trip to LA is Erewhon Market. This luxury supermarket chain is notable for its celebrity collaborations. Order (your friend) Hailey Bieber's “Strawberry Glaze” Smoothie… The BEST $17.50 you will ever spend. You have to keep that California glow somehow!

Rolzo from your hotel of choice to LAX and let’s start planning your next PTO.

Need to Know

Daniel Goldstein with friends

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Daniel Goldstein

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Los Angeles.