Los Angeles

Los Angeles has it all. Here's our need-to-know guide

Why go? LA isn’t all fluff and frou frou – it has a cultural scene to match London and New York. The pound is incredibly strong so the shopping is unparalleled and a bargain!

Stay at? A top pick is Farmer’s Daughter, a kooky converted motel with a kitsch agricultural vibe. On the other end of the scale, the Hollywood Roosevelt is a grand institution, of legend status ever since it hosted the first Oscar ceremony in 1929.

Dine at? Breakfast at solar-powered Urth Caffe, where the cinnamon rolls are to die for. A popular choice for lunch is the Farmer’s Market in Fairfax or Courtney Cox’s favourite deli, Joan’s on Third.

Shop at? Rodeo drive in Beverly Hills has all the classics (Dolce and Gucci) but West Hollywood is young, hot and bold – the place where Paris, Nicole and Lindsay shop, eat and dodge paparazzi.

Lounge at? Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Strip transform into an A-list epicentre. LA’s club du jour is Parc, a so-hot-it’s-molten triple A-list joint. For a more relaxed boozer, try The Otheroom, Luke and Owen Wilson’s local.

Explore? Escape to the eco-chic of Santa Barbara, on the edge of California’s wine country (and the setting for Sideways). Coast down the Pacific Coast Highway – a classic drive immortalised in countless films.

Book Now: Air New Zealand flies LA from London, from £634 return including taxes. Useful websites include www.seemyla.com, www.la.com and www.santabarbara.com.

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