Where should I go in LA if I like art, bookstores, and nightlife?
June 17, 2010 1:44 PM   Subscribe

Where should I go in LA if I like art, bookstores, and nightlife?

I'm going to go down to LA for the weekend just for kicks. I like to visit museums and browse in bookstores. I love comics and pop culture.

In the evening, I'd like to go out to bars and socialize. I prefer quieter bars with a classy vibe rather than dives or nightclubs. Some place where they have a jazz trio might be cool. (I mean like real jazz, not Kenny G nonsense.)

Given all that, what are some places in LA I should put on my list?
posted by eeby to Travel & Transportation around Los Angeles, CA (10 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
You might like the La Luz De Jesus gallery in Hollywood - I went there to check out a Shag exhibit, expecting it to be your typical, somewhat sterile sort of gallery, and was pleasantly surprised to find they also have a pretty big store full of art/pop culture books & doodads. At list, they did in 2002; I assume it's still more or less the same.
posted by usonian at 1:52 PM on June 17, 2010

Check out the Grand Star in chinatown for jazz. It's a nice out of the way kind of place that doesn't get too busy.
posted by cazoo at 1:54 PM on June 17, 2010

My standard LA bookstore recommendation is Skylight Books, which is a nice place to hang out, next to some friendly restaurants and cafes etc. It's basically around the corner from La Luz De Jesus.
posted by dreamyshade at 2:18 PM on June 17, 2010

Old Town Pasadena is fun in the evenings. Lots of good restaurants and several with live music.
posted by doctord at 2:52 PM on June 17, 2010

I like Open books in Long Beach, which frequently hosts live music events and art installations.
posted by annathea at 3:18 PM on June 17, 2010

Meltdown and Golden Apple for comics. Careful, it's easy to overspend.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 3:23 PM on June 17, 2010

If you enjoy whimsy and oddities, the Museum of Jurassic Technology in Culver City is pretty fun. I think the current exhibit at the small MOCA location in West Hollywood is pretty neat. There are also two MOCA locations downtown, so check out the exhibits at both. If you're going to be further east, the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena is pretty cool.

For bars, I mainly look for delicious drinks made with fresh ingredients where I can sit down and have a conversation and not be overwhelmed by crowds or noise. Going by that, my current favorites are Copa D'Oro in Santa Monica and Seven Grand downtown.
posted by unsub at 7:31 PM on June 17, 2010

I'll second usonian and dreamyshade. Both La Luz de Jesus and Skylight are in the Los Feliz neighborhood, which has some rocking bars as well. The Dresden, for instance, is a couple blocks down from Skylight Books and has a jazz trio most nights ("Marty and Elayne," who you briefly saw in the movie Swingers).
posted by the_bone at 7:54 AM on June 20, 2010

Thanks for the suggestions, everyone. I had a great time.
posted by eeby at 10:22 AM on June 21, 2010

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