While there always is something going on in Los Angeles, the city has seen plenty of action this summer (even with the actors’ and writers’ strikes), and will continue to in the fall, with a slew of new restaurants, art shows and store openings. Here, some of the highlights.
Beverly Hills is buzzing again thanks to L.A. native, master pasta maker and chef Evan Funke with his latest Italian outpost, Funke. It’s the city’s toughest reservation, but those looking for a piece of the action without much of a wait can head to the rooftop, available for walk-ins. You won’t find the full menu, but it offers snacks like burrata and amberjack sashimi to pair with classic cocktails. (9388 South Santa Monica Boulevard, Beverly Hills, 90210; 424-279-9796)
If the agents and housewives are at Funke, the cool kids and New York transplants are down the street at La Dolce Vita, also serving Italian on “Little Santa Monica.” A favorite of Frank Sinatra’s when it opened in 1966, the restaurant was closed down before Marc Rose and Med Abrous of Genghis Cohen brought it back this year. Here, the martinis are strong and the menu of red sauce Italian favorites won’t disappoint amid a dimly lit dining room full of nooks, adorned with red leather booths and a leopard-print carpet. (9785 South Santa Monica Boulevard, Beverly Hills, 90210; 310-278-1845)
Not far away, Dante at The Maybourne Beverly Hills has more New York in L.A. — with an Australian twist. The Greenwich Village bar, run by Sydney natives Linden Pride and wife Nathalie Hudson, made its West Coast debut at the hotel in July, serving Italian-Mediterranean cuisine in a bright, open space with a stunning view of the hills. Of note is the martini hour from 3 to 5 p.m. with gin, vodka and even tequila options, priced at $10 each. (225 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, 90210; 310-860-7989)
Drake’s Hollywood, a steakhouse near Cecconi’s, is another recent opening getting attention; it’s attracting the crowd that frequents Craig’s and Wally’s looking for a similar vibe in the neighborhood. (8747 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, 90069; 213-334-6789)
By the beach, West L.A.’s Coucou (218 Main Street, Venice, California, 90291; firstname.lastname@example.org) is a French-Californian bistro serving up Aperol spritzes, mussels and caviar in Venice; The Georgian Room (1415 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, California, 90401; 619-395-9945) marks the return of the circa 1930s speakeasy bar and restaurant to the the basement of the renovated The Georgian Hotel, and Reunion (73 Market Street, Venice, 90291; 323-760-9048), inside NeueHouse Venice has a relaxing outdoor space and coastal dishes “inspired by the sun and sea.” On the East side, attention has been on seafood bar Queen St. (4701 York Boulevard, Los Angeles, 90042; email@example.com) in Eagle Rock, coming from the team behind the hotspot Found Oyster.
On Sept. 17, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art will unveil “Woven Histories: Textiles and Modern Abstraction,” a show open until Jan. 21 that will examine the relationship between abstract art and woven textiles. It will showcase 150 works by international artists, outlining the history of how and why the two have intersected over the past century.
On view now at the museum is “Light, Space, Surface: Selections From LACMA’s Collection,” featuring works of various Southern California artists from the ’60s and ’70s, asking, “how we come to understand form, volume, presence, and absence through light, seen directly through other materials, reflected, or refracted.” Open until Oct. 1, the exhibition features John McCracken, Robert Irwin, Larry Bell and Judy Chicago, among others.
The Academy Museum unveils “John Waters: Pope of Trash” on Sept. 17. The exhibition is the first of its kind, according to the museum, presenting a retrospective screening series that launches with 1968’s “Eat Your Makeup” at 3 p.m. PT, with live commentary from Waters, and 1994’s “Serial Mom” at 7:30 p.m., on 35mm with Waters in attendance.
Meanwhile at The Broad, the focus is on Keith Haring, the first museum exhibition in L.A. of the artist’s body of work, running until Oct. 8. And down South at the Orange County Museum of Art, the spotlight is on Alice Neel, with a show exploring 40 works by the American figurative painter depicting her home, family, children and animals until Oct. 22.
Givenchy finally landed in L.A. — on Rodeo Drive, no less. The French luxury brand, led by creative director Matthew M. Williams, is in a temporary space before opening a new shop on the same street next year for its ready-to-wear and accessories collections for men and women. “Opening on Rodeo Drive marks an important milestone for Givenchy as we continue to scale our business both in the U.S. and internationally,” says Givenchy’s chief executive officer Renaud de Lesquen. (413 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, 90210; 213-277-2991)
Meanwhile, Amiri expanded its footprint on the block. The L.A. brand by Mike Amiri (who has dressed 21 Savage, Regé-Jean Page, Nicholas Hoult, Usher and others) renovated its Beverly Hills flagship, now at 4,300 square feet. (461 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, 90210; 310-878-2996)
Ulla Johnson, too, has opened her much-awaited store on Beverly Boulevard in West Hollywood’s design district, in a 3,000-square-foot space designed by Kelly Wearstler. (8823 Beverly Boulevard, West Hollywood, 90048; 646-741-0735)
Not far away, on West Third Street, Mina Alyeshmerni is bringing up-and-coming fashion brands Puppets & Puppets and Julia Heuer IRL to a Joans on Third-adjacent corner with her boutique Maimoun. (8400 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles, 90048; firstname.lastname@example.org)
In beauty, celebrity facialist Joanna Vargas (1107 North Kings Road, West Hollywood, 90069; 310-424-5141) — clients include Rachel Brosnahan, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ariana DeBose, Sofia Coppola and Greta Gerwig — has relocated. She closed the doors of her spa inside the Sunset Tower Hotel after five years and opened in West Hollywood in a roughly 5,000-square-foot space on North Kings Road. And Dior epitomizes summer in L.A., with a takeover of the pool and cabanas at the Beverly Hills Hotel (9641 Sunset Boulevard, Beverly Hills, 90210; 310-276 2251), offering facials and its Dioriviera collection at a pop-up spa and store open until Sept. 4.