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SUNSET STRIP

Sunset Strip has been a haven of hedonism since Prohibition days. Wedged between Hollywood and Beverly Hills, this 1.7 miles (2.7 km) of the Sunset Boulevard is crammed with hot nightclubs, hip rock venues, and fashionable boutiques. During Hollywood’s Glamour Age (1930–50), the stars trysted at the Chateau Marmont, partied at Trocadero, and talked shop at Schwab’s Pharmacy. Today’s hot spots rub shoulders with some historical landmarks.

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Map of Sunset Strip

NEED TO KNOW

prac_info Along Sunset Blvd between Crescent Heights Blvd & Doheny Dr

prac_info Site of Schwab’s Pharmacy: 8024 Sunset Blvd

prac_info Sunset Strip Tattoo: 7524 W Sunset Blvd

prac_info Sunset Plaza: 8600 & 8700 Sunset Blvd

prac_info Andaz West Hollywood: 8401 Sunset Blvd

prac_info Rainbow Bar & Grill: 9015 Sunset Blvd

Google Map

  • For killer views and classic American cuisine, head to the new Ivory on Sunset inside the Mondrian Hotel.
  • Entry to the trendiest venues is easiest around 9pm and on weeknights.
  • Avoid the traffic on the Strip on Friday and Saturday nights.

1. Sunset Plaza

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This two-block stretch is lined with European-style restaurants and designer shops teeming with fashionable crowds. Its appeal with celebrities makes it prime territory for star-spotting.

2. Andaz West Hollywood

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Formerly known as the “Riot Hyatt,” this hotel is part of rock history as party central for British bands in the 1960s and 1970s. Led Zeppelin cruised down the halls on motorcycles.

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Swimming pool at Andaz West Hollywood

3. Giant Billboards

Google Map

A testimony to the Strip’s unabashed commercialism, these mega-sized billboards promote movies, records, products, and even individual stars.

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Giant billboards at Sunset Strip

4. Site of Schwab’s Pharmacy

Google Map

In the 1930s and 1940s, Schwab’s Pharmacy was a hip hangout frequented by Charlie Chaplin and James Dean. It was torn down in 1988.

5. Whisky a Go-Go

Google Map

A Strip fixture since 1963, the Whisky gave the world go-go dancing and The Doors, its house band in 1966. Other stars such as Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin also played here.

6. Viper Room

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Actor River Phoenix died outside this (see The Viper Room) club, once owned by Johnny Depp in 1993. Few remember its earlier incarnation as the Melody Room, a favorite with Bugsy Siegel and his mobster pals.

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The eccentric Viper Room

7. Chateau Marmont

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This 1927 hotel, has hosted celebrities such as Humphrey Bogart and Mick Jagger. Howard Hughes ogled at girls by the pool (see Chateau Marmont), and an overdosed John Belushi made his dramatic exit in 1982.

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The imposing Chateau Marmont

8. Sunset Strip Tattoo

Google Map

Julia Roberts got a Japanese symbol and Nicolas Cage a stingray at this tattoo studio whose clientele also includes Ben Affleck.

9. Rainbow Bar & Grill

Google Map

This rock’n’roll bar fills with long-haired rockers and their hangers-on every night. When it was still the Villa Nova restaurant, Marilyn Monroe met Joe DiMaggio on a blind date.

10. Sunset Tower Hotel

Google Map

This Art Deco gem, formerly known as the Argyle, opened in 1931 and has been the home of many a star. Its bar remians a hot address today.

SUNSET BOULEVARD

Sunset Strip takes up only a small portion of the 25-mile (40-km) Sunset Boulevard. Following the path of an old Indian Trail, this major cross-town artery is a microcosm of the cultural, ethnic, and social cauldron that is LA. Starting at El Pueblo in Downtown, it travels west through different neighborhoods, before spilling into the Pacific.

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