Rodeo drive is one of the most famous shopping areas in the world, and THE place where I would never buy anything.
Why? Because everything gave me the sensation that EXPENSIVE is a mandatory qualification to all shops and articles. If it is important to you to pay the double or more for any expensive object don't look any farther. Not for me.
WESC simply has cool t-shirts and streetwear. They cater to a younger skater crowd, but I've found their stuff to be super comfortable and trendy.
Since they only have one store in the USA right now (in Los Angeles) you're bound to find something unique.
What to buy: t-shirts and streetwear
The New York Times has called Rodeo "The world's most prestigious" shopping street. To the late Andy Warhol Rodeo was "like a giant butter scotch sundae". Others called it "the ultimate cure for boredom".
The historic timeline of Rodeo Drive starts in the early 1900's when the Rodeo Land and Water Company begins to develop a large tract of land in Beverly Hills. A real boost of attracting celebrities to Rodeo Drive happened when the Brown Derby Restaurant opened its doors in 1938. Right now you'll find a lot of exclusive shops like Tommy Hilfinger, Hugo Boss, Chanel, Cartier, Gucci, etc.
What to pay: Way above average!
Things here are sooooo expensive. I wanted to get a suit for my husband which was being given to me at 1,200 USD. I got the same for only 400 USD at an outlet. But of course if you're into finding and buying expensive things, this is the place to be.
What to buy: anything from clothes to jewelry to shoes, etc.
Rodeo Drive was not really what I expected it to be.
One of my sisters had been there as part of a tour of LA and she told me that the shops were moreso a collection of beautifully renovated old townhouses that you could only enter if you were expected. Maybe it was like that years ago, but now it's just glitzy, fab, and open to all.
In many of the shops they do indeed give you the once over - see my LV story on my opening page, for example. In most shops I found the staff really friendly and helpful. By and large you will discover that there are more staff than shoppers, but that's Rodeo!
When we set off for our shopping trip, we asked the concierge in our hotel about the availability of taxis from Rodeo to the hotel. He replied "Don't worry. If you shop on Rodeo they send you back to the hotel in a car." he was right - thanks Versace for the drive:-)
Apart altogether from the shopping, Rodeo drive is a place to go just to LOOK at the beautiful shops - one jewelry shop has armed guards in Buckingham-Palace type uniforms outside. Via Rodeo, at the top of Rodeo Drive, must be one of the most beautiful shopping streets I have ever seen. You should also take a look at The Rodeo Collection - Rodeo drive's idea of a Mall - so very beautiful with bougainvillea everywhere.
Versace is a delightful place to shop......if you get the right shop assistant.
After my adventure in LV, as told on my introduction page, I still had a yearning for a new bag and I was attracted into Versace by the display of bags just inside the door. I wandered in and picked up one or two, and immediately was met by an assistant who first appeared helpful but quickly got fed up when he realised I wasn't going to be an easy sell.
I think he felt we'd leave, but we wandered further into the shop because it really is gorgeous and the stock is very desirable. Another assistant approached me, a Russian guy who was as nice as he was handsome. Ask for him if you go there. His second name is Baryshnikov and if I think of his first name I'll tell you later.
He quickly ascertained the sort of merchandise I was interested in, encouraged us to sit down, had cold drinks in cut crystal glasses brought to us, and then the items I wanted to see. It was so pleasant that I ended up buying far more than I intended to. The guy at the front of the shop would want to take a leaf from Mr Baryshnikov's book.
What to buy: Versace have quite a number of items on sale at half price. The items are of excellent quality and make terrific designer value for money.
Outside the sale items I would highly recommend the Versace sunglasses - especially if you are from a country like Ireland where these items are sold at perhaps twice the price that the designer shops sell them at on Rodoe. I bought a glorious pair of the latest extra large frames in black with a white trim. Might not sound nice in description, but they really are divine in reality.
What to pay: Look for sale items - ask, because the prices are not displayed.
The Ralph Lauren shop on Rodeo Drive is simply gorgeous. Outside it looks like a swish hotel or an elegant apartment block, with hooded canopies to shelter from the sun.
When you walk through the streetfront door you find yourself in a stone courtyard, but not a grotty courtyard. It's cool and welcoming with lots of green plants and fountains. This leads to the interior of the shop itself, which is a sheer delight.
The shop is set out in different rooms displaying fashions in various themes. Ralph Lauren furniture is used as props and it is indeed divine.
When I was there they had a really terrific sale on childrens clothes and many of them were at less than half price. The quality is excellent and at these prices they are true bargains.
The shop assistants are smiling and helpful.
This shop also has a far larger stock of ladies and mens clothing than you are likely to find in any chain store, even the really good ones.
What to buy: Clothing, furniture, occasional items - I found it especially good for great sale value children's clothes.
What trip to LA is complete without a trip to Rodeo Drive? I went to Rodeo Drive simply to walk around, window shop, and get a feel for a part of LA that I truly still don't understand. All the stores are on Rodeo (BCBG, Charles David, D&G, etc) and it is fun to window shop and wish I had enough money to buy something! Okay, it was a bit depressing... I love to shop! :) My brother insisted on going into the Tiffany's store to look at all the pretty jewelry... way overpriced, but beautiful just the same. It was a fun way to waste a couple of hours!
What to buy: Designer clothing if you have the money!
What to pay: A LOT
They did make this place cool looking. But it is very high end. Mostly jewelry.
While there is parking under the building, you can go over to the next street Beverly and there is public parking where the first two hours is free. There are numerous places to eat all around.
The stretch of shops and boutiques on Rodeo Drive is only three blocks long. It begins at Wilshire Boulevard on the south, and runs north to Santa Monica Boulevard, where the commercial section of the street gives way to an affluent residential neighborhood. But those three short blocks constitute the most famous shopping district in America, and probably the most expensive three blocks of shops in the world.
It is here that the rich & famous do their shopping, and where tourists window-shop while trying to spot movie stars on the fabled street.
What to buy: The most celebrated clothing designers in the world have boutiques here: Armani, Gucci, Christian Dior, Coco Chanel, Ralph Lauren, Valentino... The jewelry stores boast names like Cartier and Tiffany. Other nearby stores include I. Magnin, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Yves Saint Laurent, & Pierre Deux.
In fact, Rodeo Drive is home to the single most expensive store in the world: Bijan (at 420 Rodeo Drive).
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