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Top 14 Local Favorite Haunts in Hollywood
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Top 14 Local Favorite Haunts in Hollywood

Picture of Anahit Poturyan
Updated: 24 April 2017
Past the glamour of celebrities and the grime of the actual streets, Hollywood is an eccentric, and often misunderstood area of Los Angeles bordered by the neighborhoods of West Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Koreatown and Los Feliz. Read the top 14 local favorites of Hollywood and its vibrant communities of Little Armenia and Thai Town.
Delancey Restaurant
Delancey Restaurant | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Delancey Italian Restaurant

On the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Gordon Street, Delancey offers tastes of Italy. Stop by during the evening for a more romantic dinner with candle lit tables or stop by in the afternoon to hit up the bar for a midday drink. Their ‘city’s Best Spaghetti and Meatballs’ lives up to its name, simple and savory to the last bite, this dish, and everything else on the menu, is the next best thing to sitting in a restaurant in Italy. Their cocktail menu and daily dinner specials also never disappoint.

Falafel Arax
Falafel Arax | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Falafel Arax

Since 1982, this tiny eatery has catered authentic middle eastern cuisine to the people of Hollywood. Falafel Arax takes pride in its recognition of delicious cooking from LA Weekly and the LA Magazine by posting the framed articles beneath the oversized menu on the wall. Residents from all around Los Angeles stop by Arax to order falafel (deep-fried balls of mashed fava and garbanzo beans), shawourma and soujouk (Armenian sausage) sandwiches, kebab plates and more. Make sure to order their well-known and perfectly seasoned falafel, which comes with a perfectly complimenting tahini sauce.

Barnsdall Art Park and Hollyhock House

Philanthropist Aline Barnsdall donated this stretch of land with the buildings intact in 1927 to the city on the condition they use it as a public art park. More than eight decades later, the site still fulfills that role, with public programming and exhibitions held in a variety of different gallery spaces. Popular draws are the self-guided tours of Hollyhock House (designed by famed American architect Frank Lloyd Wright) and the Night Wine Tastings held every Friday during the summertime.

Harvard and Stone
Harvard and Stone | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Harvard and Stone

In walking distance between Jumbos and RCA, you’ll find the low-key Harvard and Stone. Each night, a wooden door opens up – an entrance to the bar while a bouncer stands outside. In the daytime, you will most likely pass by this bar without even noticing it. This bar features impressive burlesque dancers dancing along the walls and on the bar table and live music on select nights along with a great alcohol selection.

Hennessey & Ingalls

This bookstore, devoted to only art and architecture is an art nerds haven in Hollywood and a dying breed of bookstore nationwide. Read their current bestsellers to become more acquainted with the artsy side of Los Angeles, books such as Los Angeles – Portrait of a City and Griffith Observatory highlight the architectural beauty of the city.

Jumbo's Clown Room
Jumbo’s Clown Room | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Jumbo’s Clown Room

You’ll appreciate the strength, flexibility, and beauty of the female body after a visit to Jumbos. This intimate bikini bar features talented and creative dancers. Arrive early to this local hotspot because a long line always forms every Friday and Saturday night. No trip to Hollywood is complete without a visit to Jumbos.

Larry Edmunds Cinema and Theatre Bookshop

Hollywood is graced with yet another great bookstore. The oldest bookstore in Hollywood, Larry Edmunds books features film books including classical and contemporary Hollywood and general cinema.

Red Corner Asia (RCA)
Red Corner Asia | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Red Corner Asia (RCA)

This authentic and inexpensive Thai restaurant is conveniently located in the middle of a strip mall in the heart of Thai Town. You can’t go wrong with the Pad See Ew, Bangkok Calamari, Yum Crispy Catfish Salad, and green tea ice cream inside this green-themed late night open restaurant.

Scoops Ice Cream

Located in East Hollywood near the Los Angeles Community College, Scoops is the place to go for ice cream in Hollywood. This cash-only spot features a variety of unique flavors, so don’t stop by expecting only chocolate or vanilla. The flavors are constantly changing so you never know what you might encounter. Past flavors include: dulce de leche with lava salt, brown bread, salty white chocolate honey, black sesame, and tons more.

Papillon Bakery
Papillon Bakery | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Papillon Bakery

From a block away you can smell the magic of ponchik – deep fried dough with sweet filling – baking at Papillon Bakery in Little Armenia. Their most popular pastry, the Nutella ponchik, is baked daily so you are guaranteed to always receive a warm batch. Also try their tasty perashki (baked turnover with meat or potato), and chibureki (thin turnover with ground meat) and the many Armenian pastries they offer.

Interior of Papillon Bakery
Inside Papillon Bakery | Photo © Anahit Poturyan

Hotel Café

Adele, Meiko, and Sara Bareilles have performed inside this intimate former coffee-shop turned music venue before making their big break. This spot is a local favorite for discovering new music or supporting musician friends, while affordable prices make this a prime location to attend a random show on a casual night out.

Hemingway’s Lounge

Readable books and typewriters fill up the interior of this lounge. Groove all night to live bands or DJ’s while sipping on original alcoholic concoctions. The decor, music, and drinks attest to the a unique vibe of Hollywood.

Museum of Death
Museum of Death Photo by Anahit Poturyan

Museum of Death

Possibly one of the oddest museums in Los Angeles, this unique space is devoted to educating patrons about death. The museum has a collection of artwork from serial murderers, a collection of devices and instruments for execution and autopsy, crime scene photos, and more.

Musso and Frank Grill

No article about Hollywood could forgo mentioning the classical era of Hollywood. While it may not be so hard to imagine what old-Hollywood looked like with so many movies and Google search available to us, why not stop by a restaurant and see the real thing? Musso and Frank’s Grill in Hollywood has been open since 1919. ‘The history will bring you in, the food and service will keep you coming back’ – as the current owners like to put it.

Local Tip: From Hollywood, take the subway (Metro) to burgeoning downtown Los Angeles with the red line or survey the growing dynamic culinary scene in Koreatown with the purple line to discover the rest of Los Angeles.