Los Angeles is known as the City of Angels, and it really is heaven for shopping. Thanks to L.A. being a sprawling city, the various neighborhoods offer different things for different people. Residents generally split the city in two—by East side (the Hollywood side) and Westside (the beach side)—but many enclaves between are peppered with shops you won't want to miss.
The sun-and-sand beach culture and Hollywood stars provide big influences on the shopping scene. Stylists are always on the lookout for the newest trends and looks for the pretty young things they dress, and emerging designers take inspiration from what's being worn on the street.
Paparazzi are right there to capture the looks of the stylish starlets the second they're worn, whether they're parading on a red carpet or seen emerging from a hot spot. Together the stylemakers set the cutting-edge pace—what you see here on the racks will be big back home but maybe not for another six months.
"Sunny and 70" is the weather forecast for a good part of the year, and the climate means that most shopping centers are open-air, to allow you to park you car and walk from shop to shop. This foot traffic also means that good eateries open near good shops, and you can always find somewhere delicious to dine and covertly star-watch.
Those new to Los Angeles usually start at Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, not far from Hollywood. This tourist hot spot is a destination for window-shopping along the cluster of blocks and can provide a few hours of entertainment—or, if you're looking for a designer logo bag or red-carpet wear, get ready to do some serious spending.
Then you can hop in your car and really get your shop on in the city's numerous areas: finding down-and-dirty bargains downtown, hitting funky West Hollywood, kicking back with the laid-back beach vibe of Santa Monica and Venice, or going edgy in Silver Lake, Echo Park, or Los Feliz. Let the games begin.