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My LA to Z: Jackie Collins
The New York Times bestselling author tells us where she goes for star sightings and more practical needs (like writing pads)
For more than 40 years the world has turned to Jackie Collins—whose novels have sold more than 400 million copies—for Hollywood sex and glam. Now Collins lives in Beverly Hills and just released Poor Little Bitch Girl ($27, St. Martin’s).
Sunset Tower Hotel
You feel like you’re in Las Vegas, but in a nice, classy lounge. Vanity Fair held their Oscars party there, which was great. It’s really very comfortable, the food is great, the waiters are really fun, and it’s a star hangout. I saw Robert De Niro two nights in a row. George Clooney was there after the [Golden Globe] awards.
Shutters on the Beach
When I was writing Married Lovers (2008), I thought, “This will be great, I’ll lock myself away and write.” They have a great restaurant [One Pico]. I found myself gazing out at the beach and water, and it was lovely.
L.A. is filled with incredible restaurants. When people say there are no good restaurants in L.A., they’re crazy. Mr. Chow is like my friendly neighborhood place, so I can be there in two minutes. It’s sort of “star-y,” you know. You see people like Paris Hilton and a lot of rappers, but the food is fantastic, and it’s a really nice place.
When I first moved here from England in 1956, I used to spend a lot of time at Muscle Beach. I was a teenager, and I would go in the sea in my jeans because that would get them the right color. I would go lift weights with the guys. I love the Venice boardwalk because you can get rip-offs of $250 sunglasses for 10 bucks, so you can get as many pairs as you want. It’s really a must-see for people who are coming to L.A. for the first time.
I go there and I just fill a trolley. At Christmas it was so much fun because they had these toy soldiers for kids. Sometimes you come out with a bill that is just astronomical. They have everything: CDs, cameras, legal pads, printing paper. I write on my Target legal pads.
I like to go in the Mac store and look at all the new computers. I write in longhand, but I do a lot of research on my laptop.
We shot one of my TV shows there, Lucky Chances. Nicollette Sheridan was getting married on the beach. It’s a good place to walk around and just hang.
I’m a photo junky. I just got the new Sony SLR, and the Canon, and another great camera. I usually get a couple of cameras a year. I take a lot of photos, and I’m working on a photo book of photos from over the years. I’ve just shot people at parties, so it will be a kind of book that people can have fun with and see major stars in a different kind of way.
I have electric locks on my house, and I locked myself out one day. I knew they wouldn’t work for an hour until the locksmith arrived, so I went to Book Soup. That hour just flew. They have a fabulous pornography collection. You can just go in and browse and find things you never thought you wanted.
It’s a jewelry emporium, and there are all these counters with fantastic jewelry. You can get something for everyone there. I like black diamonds and silver, but I like very unusual, funky jewelry. You can get anything. They’re marvelous.
The one on Canon Drive is like our local drug store, and everybody in Beverly Hills uses it—Linda Evans and Sidney Poitier. When people ask me, “Where should we go look for stars?” I say, “You never know!”
Images courtesy (in order): (1) sunsettowerhotel.com, (2) shuttersonthebeach.com, (3) mrchow.com, (4) Flickr/wolfsavard, (5) Flickr/j.reed, (6) apple.com, (7) Flickr/IK's World Trip, (8) samys.com, (9) Glenn Goldman, (10) sybarites.org, (11) riteaid.com