There’s this place I love in Mexico, and they have this thing called a Temazcal, which is an ancient Mayan sweat lodge. I found it to be so healing. When I got back here, I realized there are these infrared saunas—it’s basically a sweat, but it’s super healing and really great. You go in, you have your own little cedar sauna, a shower, and they have all organic products. A lot of people use it for weight loss, but I love it because I consider it a meditation. It allows your body to open up, you can work on great breathing, and it’s really good for your muscles. You feel lighter—that’s the best way I can describe it.
So many of the things on my list are restaurants, which is really telling of my priorities. The Hungry Cat is so good. They have these Alaskan King Crab legs that they do with this crazy mustard sauce and this incredible, thick toasted bread. They also have a salad called Market Lettuces, but it’s so much more than that. It has incredible dressing, egg, avocado—it’s amazing. That meal is something I could eat every night. I salivate for it.
As far as I’m concerned, it’s the best sushi. I always have such a delicious dinner there. I love that the chef is giving you the freshest fish he got that day. I’m pretty hesitant to eat sushi in Nashville, so Sushi Park is one of the first things I get when I get back to L.A.
Urth Café has become a bit of a touristy place, but I feel like the food there is so clean. It’s always packed, but the people who work there are so kind and they care about what they’re doing. I think the salads there are some of the best in town. My obsession, which I drink every day when I’m in L.A. without fail—to the point where it’s a problem—is the wazuka matcha green tea latte with almond milk. The wazuka is supposed to be filled with antioxidants.
Obviously there are a million theaters, but when I’m out of L.A., the movie theater I miss is the ArcLight. It makes watching a movie a great, wonderful experience. I haven’t seen anything like that in Nashville. The screen is so big, and you feel like you’re in a proper movie theater. I feel like they do the movie justice.
This is my old school addition. I have a group of girlfriends, and we always take each other to lunch on our birthdays. Our favorite place to go is The Ivy on Robertson. Of course, it can end up being crazy touristy, but it’s so fun. We have such a good time. But it can also be very dangerous to walk down Robertson and do a little shopping afterwards. They have my favorite birthday cake: I call it the pink cake. I think it’s red velvet, but I am telling you, The Ivy pink cake is so delicious.
If I want to be crazy and decadent, my favorite shopping spot is Lost & Found. It’s a grouping of stores right next to each other on Yucca in Hollywood. It started off as just one store, and the buyer there has incredible taste—there are gifts and women’s clothes, a home store and a kids’ store, and she brings in really cool folk art from Africa. I always go there for gifts, but I’m always wanting stuff for myself! It’s a one-stop shop no matter what you’re looking for. It’s really worth a trip.
This one is very important, because truth be told, I get a lot of people asking me about my hair. I go to Salon Benjamin on Melrose, and I love working with Kaytee Joyce. I adore her and think she’s amazing. But beyond that, Salon Benjamin is such a beautiful salon. They have a great vibe, and everyone who works there is so nice. They also have this really wonderful gift-slash-beauty section.
I’m telling you, when you’re not in L.A., you miss Intelligentsia. Although I have to say, there are places in Nashville that carry it, and when I discovered that, it just did my heart so much good. It felt like home. But there’s nothing like going to the one on Sunset.
The Hollywood Bowl is so unique to L.A., and again, my perspective on all of this stuff is that these are the things I really miss when I’m not here. I always have an amazing experience there no matter what show I go see. It’s the most fun to do with friends and to do a picnic before hand. I think it captures some of the special qualities of L.A. so well because it’s outdoors and under the stars. One thing that’s really hilarious? My girlfriends and I love to go to The Sound of Music sing-a-long.
Photographs courtesy (in order): (3) yelp.com/Brett K. All other photographs courtesy facebook.com.