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Merrie’s guidebook

Merrie

Merrie’s guidebook

General location in Los Angeles
Woodland Hills is a relaxed suburb that's super central from Ventura, Santa Barbara and Ojai to the west, Malibu beaches to the south, Castaic Lake Recreation center to the north, and Hollywood and "the city" ie DTLA, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Venice Beaches & LAX to the east and south-east. All the shopping you could ever want or need is within 10 minutes drive. Exotic food scene at your finger tips. Plenty of kid-friendly venues - farms, indoor playgrounds, trampoline park close by. Close to nature in the Santa Monica mountains. From the city night life to nature hikes, whatever your heart desires, it's an easy drive from here.
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Woodland Hills
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Woodland Hills is a relaxed suburb that's super central from Ventura, Santa Barbara and Ojai to the west, Malibu beaches to the south, Castaic Lake Recreation center to the north, and Hollywood and "the city" ie DTLA, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Venice Beaches & LAX to the east and south-east. All the shopping you could ever want or need is within 10 minutes drive. Exotic food scene at your finger tips. Plenty of kid-friendly venues - farms, indoor playgrounds, trampoline park close by. Close to nature in the Santa Monica mountains. From the city night life to nature hikes, whatever your heart desires, it's an easy drive from here.
Calabasas has an adorable old town where Saturday morning Farmer's Market happens~not to miss if you're in town and love all things fresh, delicious and beautifully creative. This suburb city has been made (in)famous by the Kardashian klan who've made Calabasas their home.
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Calabasas
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Calabasas has an adorable old town where Saturday morning Farmer's Market happens~not to miss if you're in town and love all things fresh, delicious and beautifully creative. This suburb city has been made (in)famous by the Kardashian klan who've made Calabasas their home.
Shopping, Strolling, Eating, The Art of Doing Nothing
Here are a few of our go-to spots for doing a whole lotta nothing other than enjoying what the locale has to offer...food, fun, drinks etc. We're still exploring ourselves, so as we find gems around town, we'll be sure to share them with you here!
The Commons is great for meet-ups, lazy brunches, (not) feeding the pond turtles with the kiddos, and some light shopping or an afternoon of magazines and books browsing at the Barnes and Noble bookstore. The local city library is also here, as well as grocery access via Ralph's and Bristol Farm's. https://www.shopcommons.com/
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The Commons at Calabasas
4799 Commons Way
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The Commons is great for meet-ups, lazy brunches, (not) feeding the pond turtles with the kiddos, and some light shopping or an afternoon of magazines and books browsing at the Barnes and Noble bookstore. The local city library is also here, as well as grocery access via Ralph's and Bristol Farm's. https://www.shopcommons.com/
For shopping, you can't beat this place. Great food court, high-end luxury retailers, Tesla, Apple, the list goes on. Need a workout? Yoga, gym, pilates...you need it, want it, you'll find it here. Take the trolley with the fam! It's a thing! https://www.westfield.com/topanga Also check out all the discount shopping in the same neighborhood within 5 mins by car~ such as Nordstrom Rack, Sack's Off 5th, etc. If it's shopping you're after, you will not be disappointed.
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Westfield Topanga & The Village
6600 Topanga Canyon Boulevard
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For shopping, you can't beat this place. Great food court, high-end luxury retailers, Tesla, Apple, the list goes on. Need a workout? Yoga, gym, pilates...you need it, want it, you'll find it here. Take the trolley with the fam! It's a thing! https://www.westfield.com/topanga Also check out all the discount shopping in the same neighborhood within 5 mins by car~ such as Nordstrom Rack, Sack's Off 5th, etc. If it's shopping you're after, you will not be disappointed.
Here ya go! https://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlet/camarillo
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Camarillo Premium Outlets
740 Ventura Boulevard
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Here ya go! https://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlet/camarillo
Favorite Beaches
takes a small hike down to the sand, but the rocks, small caves and less of a crowd make this a special local favorite. Many a bikini model or family portrait shoots do take place here, so that does give you an idea of the beauty this spot offers.
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El Matador State Beach
32350 Pacific Coast Highway
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takes a small hike down to the sand, but the rocks, small caves and less of a crowd make this a special local favorite. Many a bikini model or family portrait shoots do take place here, so that does give you an idea of the beauty this spot offers.
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Malibu Beach
17201 Pacific Coast Hwy
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Right next to El Matador Beach is the even quieter rocky beach with a short hike down. (If you want the crowds and to people watch, go to Santa Monica Pier beach) North by a literal hop skip and jump, to La Piedra is also another favorite, La Pescadero Beach...again, even quieter, another short hike, less rocks, just some petrified tree branches in interesting formations! Great place to connect with nature as you feel the breeze of standing on the edge of the Earth on your face and body :D
La Piedra State Beach
Right next to El Matador Beach is the even quieter rocky beach with a short hike down. (If you want the crowds and to people watch, go to Santa Monica Pier beach) North by a literal hop skip and jump, to La Piedra is also another favorite, La Pescadero Beach...again, even quieter, another short hike, less rocks, just some petrified tree branches in interesting formations! Great place to connect with nature as you feel the breeze of standing on the edge of the Earth on your face and body :D
Spa and Wellness
A hidden gem of Malibu with beautiful grounds offering event venues and bungalows, my favorite use of this space thus far is for the wonderful on site spa. The Malibu Glow facial is the thing to get - this is their signature one and again, I've had a few (a lot) facials in my life, and this one actually leaves a residual, lasting difference for my skin. It does literally glow for days afterwards. If you book a service, you can stay on the grounds and hang out at either the main pool or the quieter, more meditative spa pool . Just the surrounding beauty of the site is enough to give you a cleansing boost to your overall well-being. Love it here!
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Calamigos Ranch
327 Latigo Canyon Rd
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A hidden gem of Malibu with beautiful grounds offering event venues and bungalows, my favorite use of this space thus far is for the wonderful on site spa. The Malibu Glow facial is the thing to get - this is their signature one and again, I've had a few (a lot) facials in my life, and this one actually leaves a residual, lasting difference for my skin. It does literally glow for days afterwards. If you book a service, you can stay on the grounds and hang out at either the main pool or the quieter, more meditative spa pool . Just the surrounding beauty of the site is enough to give you a cleansing boost to your overall well-being. Love it here!
Neighborhoods
Charming small town next to Solvang (our westside version of Denmark), Buellton, and Santa Ynez...our Los Angeles / Ventura region Napa Valley, so to speak. Lots of rolling vineyards and even more wineries...what more is there to say?
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Los Olivos
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Charming small town next to Solvang (our westside version of Denmark), Buellton, and Santa Ynez...our Los Angeles / Ventura region Napa Valley, so to speak. Lots of rolling vineyards and even more wineries...what more is there to say?
Rustic, upscale hippie vibe with interesting residences and some great eats and shops. It's a "honey pull over I want to check that place out" kinda drive...you'll be taking this canyon road down from here to the beach, so maybe plan to take the long way - that is, stop, look, and go...there's a few great brunch spots too along the way...take your time, it's a cute little town.
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Topanga
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Rustic, upscale hippie vibe with interesting residences and some great eats and shops. It's a "honey pull over I want to check that place out" kinda drive...you'll be taking this canyon road down from here to the beach, so maybe plan to take the long way - that is, stop, look, and go...there's a few great brunch spots too along the way...take your time, it's a cute little town.
Outdoorsy
http://www.malibucreekstatepark.org/ Views change a bit with our mild seasons~ water, waterfalls, butterflies, mountain, hiking, exploring and getting lost (but not actually lost, please) in our local wilderness...people drive hours to come here, you're 15-20 minutes away! Enjoy!
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Malibu Creek State Park
1925 Las Virgenes Road
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http://www.malibucreekstatepark.org/ Views change a bit with our mild seasons~ water, waterfalls, butterflies, mountain, hiking, exploring and getting lost (but not actually lost, please) in our local wilderness...people drive hours to come here, you're 15-20 minutes away! Enjoy!
It's about an hour drive from here in Woodland Hills due east, but it's an easy drive to an easy hike. If you have kids, they can definitely handle this one to see a gorgeous waterfall falling into a shallow pool and all along following the rocky stream that flows from it...fun solo to family or group hike for all. Easy parking and it's favorite because it's so accessible! I mean - there's a waterfall at the end!
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Eaton Canyon Falls Trail
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It's about an hour drive from here in Woodland Hills due east, but it's an easy drive to an easy hike. If you have kids, they can definitely handle this one to see a gorgeous waterfall falling into a shallow pool and all along following the rocky stream that flows from it...fun solo to family or group hike for all. Easy parking and it's favorite because it's so accessible! I mean - there's a waterfall at the end!
Food scene
I've eaten a LOT of sushi in my life - expensive, fancy, cheap, quick and everything in between. THIS place, has become our go-to since we discovered it. We have only enjoyed Ryo's (head chef) Omakase courses... the quality, the flavor, the choices of fish and/or seafood, the incredible dance of textures in your mouth, careful consideration of the progression of the meal makes this maybe my last sushi bar ever...crazy to say! Every time we're there, the place is packed with locals who know each other and the restaurant is full from open to close, with a wait list. We try to get there early at opening to sit for a couple hours and enjoy it leisurely. (The thai massage place and italian ice next door are great next stop after your high inducing meal too, so keep that in mind) The energy at this place is special and you only want to go here if you understand how to let go and enjoy the best of the chef's selections for your eating pleasure. Otherwise, pick up an onion ring at any other sushi place. They don't have 5 full stars on yelp for nothing.
So Sushi Also
19948 Ventura Blvd
I've eaten a LOT of sushi in my life - expensive, fancy, cheap, quick and everything in between. THIS place, has become our go-to since we discovered it. We have only enjoyed Ryo's (head chef) Omakase courses... the quality, the flavor, the choices of fish and/or seafood, the incredible dance of textures in your mouth, careful consideration of the progression of the meal makes this maybe my last sushi bar ever...crazy to say! Every time we're there, the place is packed with locals who know each other and the restaurant is full from open to close, with a wait list. We try to get there early at opening to sit for a couple hours and enjoy it leisurely. (The thai massage place and italian ice next door are great next stop after your high inducing meal too, so keep that in mind) The energy at this place is special and you only want to go here if you understand how to let go and enjoy the best of the chef's selections for your eating pleasure. Otherwise, pick up an onion ring at any other sushi place. They don't have 5 full stars on yelp for nothing.
If it's Tom Cruise's favorite place to buy cakes for all his "people" every holiday season, why not ours too? For something sweet and a friendly atmosphere and chat with the lovely Karen Doan, stop by here on your way out and grab a little or a lot of that mind bending eye rolling sugary goodness...just a little will do...or a whole dang cake! Why not!! ok or just a croissant and coffe...but it's where we get all our birthday cakes made...can't say enough good things about this local gem of a place.
Doan's Bakery
22526 Ventura Boulevard
If it's Tom Cruise's favorite place to buy cakes for all his "people" every holiday season, why not ours too? For something sweet and a friendly atmosphere and chat with the lovely Karen Doan, stop by here on your way out and grab a little or a lot of that mind bending eye rolling sugary goodness...just a little will do...or a whole dang cake! Why not!! ok or just a croissant and coffe...but it's where we get all our birthday cakes made...can't say enough good things about this local gem of a place.