Monday, 1 October 2012

Stargazing in Hollywood

Grauman's Chinese Theater opened in 1927
One of the last things we did in Los Angeles was head to Hollywood and check out the star scene... except we didn't meet any real celebrities.

We took a Starline Tour, but missed the one checking out movie stars' homes, like where Jennifer Aniston, Tom Cruise and Nicolas Cage live.

Bijan, where the wealthy like to shop on Rodeo Drive
Instead we hopped on a bus that started at the Chinese Theater and then passed by such places as the Guitar Center where rock musicians like Slash get their guitars, and the Laugh Factory where comedians like Jim Carrey did standup before becoming big.

We also went down Rodeo Drive where we passed by Bijan, the most expensive boutique on the strip. Parallel to Rodeo Drive is another less expensive shopping area, and it included Lululemon Athletica which was fun to see the Vancouver company having a presence in Hollywood.

More shopping was to be had at Farmers Market and The Grove, but we were more interested in seeing the sights, like the CBS studios where shows like The Price is Right are filmed.

And then we passed by The Four Seasons hotel, where many celebrities have film junkets in the suites on the top floors complete with balconies and Capitol Records building which is a circular building like vinyl records stacked up high.

Stars like to have press junkets at the Four Seasons hotel
The tour went by so quickly and so much information packed in that it was hard to remember all the details. After almost two hours we were back at the Chinese Theater again where posing with movie characters for pictures meant paying for them with tips. There was Darth Vader, a storm trooper, Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Carribean, and an extremely tall woman who was painted into Neytiri, the main Na'vi characters in the smash hit Avatar.

But one of the best free photo ops was with the wax figure of Marilyn Monroe casting her hands in the walk of fame.

We saw tons of stars on the sidewalk, from film to music and TV. And of course the Chinese were all over Jackie Chan's star.

And across the street were some souvenir shops where you could buy mini Oscar statuettes to put on your mantlepiece.

A popular star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
Ah Hollywood. Making your dreams come true.

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