Yesterday we frittered the morning away by sleeping in, packing and feeding of the teens. Then in place of Pasadena, we went up to the Griffith Park Observatory to see the sights, with LA in the foreground, snow capped mountains to the left and the Hollywood sign close enough to pluck off the fill to the right. The Griffith is a happy piece of art deco architecture which, when combined with the bright, cloudless sun--is almost grecian in it's purity. I loved the sculpture to the scientists in the front and have taken many shots of them.
Then from the Griffith, we went to the LA zoo which R and I visited oh...twenty years of so ago. Big changes. The zoo which was very modest in the beginning has grown into a real zoo, with lots of philanthopy (noted at every exhibit or every new installation). We saw hippos, koala bears, tigers and lions, kangaroos and emus. I took a ton of reference shots hopefully to help the creation of animals piece move a bit more.
Then down to an expedia find, The Standard Hotel, the newest hippest place in Downtown. It is seventies retro with an exclamation mark down to a seventies Wurlitzer in the lobby, a barbershop/gift shop, white topped pooltables, foosball in the outside courtyard along with an all white leatherette restaurant and a red bar nestled under the escalators. The rooms are spare, but the seventies doesnt stop with a wholloping dose of humor iwth the minibar offerings (Mr. Bubble, Candles, internationally signed condoms,and candybars with nostagia). The rooms have grey and gold supergraphics with the beds on a raised platform, again all grey and white. They have an itunes speaker/clock radio. The bathroom exterior wall is glass, looking straight into the bedroom with a series of white curtains you can draw for privacy. But the absolute best was the roof scene. On the roof is a roof bar with topiary in planters (of prancing horses), a sublime lap pool that was a bit wider, fireplaces blazing with tons of places to sit including three red onion shaped mini rooms with round water bed mattresses inside. The secondary color was hot orange along with a ton of Joe Columbo style plastic chairs etc. Yes it was quite a thing to sit on the roof with the city sparkling and towering over you in the beautiful night air. I was entirely surrounded and enclosed by all of the lights and buildings--it was a magnificent thing combined with the absolute chic but hilarity that this seventies thing generated for those of us who do not look back on the seventies as a moment of great design or romance. Bar food included good humor treats, peanut butter and banana sandwiches with a chocolate dip, chips and salsa, sliders. You get the idea. The teens went wild. And yes, in both the downstairs lobby and the roof they had djs spinning electrnic disks (from their Macs). The roof even had the Tom Jones Christmas Special running by the bar and projected across the way on the building next door. New Years eve promises a video DJ as well. R found that they had well over two thousand people last year. The hipsters uniting.
And, did I mention, they have free internet.
So, today its downtown fun. Hopefully to see this new LA "lifestyle" thing called "LA Live". We will see. Our plans deconstruct and then reconstruct....