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1. Posted by Hot Opal (Budding Member 16 posts) 9y

My wife & I are looking to visit Los Angeles.
Our interests are:
(1) Photography
(2) Shopping
(3) Good Food
Can anyone give some advice on reasonably priced, good quality accommodation in a location that will suit our interests.
Advice on photographic subjects & shopping would also be appreciated.

2. Posted by Ham Radio (Respected Member 284 posts) 9y

Shopping tip:

Downtown Los Angeles Jewelry District.

Recommend St. Vincent Jewelry Center, northeast corner 7th and Hill Street.

Great prices and most of the merchants will haggle. Everything from loose gemstones to settings.

Mrs Hot Opal will love you for it.

3. Posted by Hot Opal (Budding Member 16 posts) 9y

Thanks for the reply Ham.
However we are stopping at Hong Kong on the way over.
She only has 10 fingers & they will probably be covered in jewelery by the time we reach LA.
Maybe you can recommend somewhere to stay.
I have been looking at Long Beach as a possibility what are your thoughts?

4. Posted by bearohony (Inactive 11 posts) 9y

NO!!!!! You do not want to stay in Long Beach or Compton. Those are very dangerous, unsafe areas of California. Orange County is good. Newport beach, Costa Mesa, Venice Beach. Hope this helps some...

5. Posted by Dom (Budding Member 5 posts) 9y

Santa Monica area is nice also

6. Posted by pranavc (Respected Member 316 posts) 9y


Manhattan Beach is a great place for photos at dusk.

I second the opinion of staying in Santa Monica.


7. Posted by Hot Opal (Budding Member 16 posts) 9y

Thanks guys,
We were looking at Marina Del Rey and that appears to be near Venice Beach & Santa Monica.
Is that area OK?
Or are there other recommondations?

8. Posted by Dom (Budding Member 5 posts) 9y

OP, MDR (Marina del Ray) is basically one suburb (not that the Americans refer to them as suburbs) south of Venice Beach. Santa Monica is a few miles north of Venice, which in turn is just north of MDR. My understanding is that these areas are fairly safe, although we were advised that there were some sketchy neighborhoods east of Lincoln Blvd (which runs Nth-Sth about a mile or two in from the coast).

Will you be renting a car or relying on public transport?

9. Posted by Hot Opal (Budding Member 16 posts) 9y

Thanks Dom,
Maybe a bit of both (Car Rental & Public Transport).
Is it safe to use public transport or should we just stick to taxis?

10. Posted by Dom (Budding Member 5 posts) 9y

Neville, I think the public transport is safe enough (perhaps not so much at night - can't be too sure here as we never used it). It is probably more a matter of not necessarily being all that convenient. LA is not known for its public transport system! That said, in the inner areas there is now a Metro which is gradually being expanded - for example you can use this to visit Universal Studios, I'm pretty sure. There are other above-ground light rail lines as well, I think.

As far as the 'Beach Cities' go (Santa Monica, Venice etc ) it is buses or cabs. Check out to see what the options might be from one part of LA to another.

It's a bit our of date now, but you might find some useful info at from our US trip in 2004. Check it out if you like.