For decades past the downtown area had evolved to high rise office buildings for corporate America. Recently city planners have tried to bring new residents in the area. Luxury lofts and entertainment centers have begun to sprout in different directions.
What are the can’t afford to miss places in Downtown Los Angeles? Let us start our journey with the Museum of Contemporary Art. It has a permanent European and American collection with notable artists such as Robert Frank, Mark Rothko and Franz Kline. If it’s more musical art forms you enjoy, The Music Center is one of the leading performance venues. The Los Angeles Music Chorale, the Los Angeles opera and the Los Angeles Philharmonic perform here regularly and it would pay to check listings in advance so you can schedule a time when one of them is performing.
Since this is Los Angeles there should be something about fashion here right? True as that is here in down town it’s more about merchants and wholesalers. A very popular fashion activity though is the Mega market sale in the California Market Center every last Friday of the month. Here up and coming designers sell unique pieces, prototypes and excess stocks. Another fashion place you may want to visit is the Fashion Institute for Design and Merchandizing. It has a rotating exhibit of Oscar gowns to other accessories. Jewelry, books, and fashion pieces are available in their museum shop.
Broadway should not escape your list, as the architecture in the area is reminiscent of times past. Broadway started in the early 19th century with designer shops and upscale theatres. Although most of the area now caters to the Mexican and Central American community there are tours given by the Los Angeles Conservancy that will walk you through the architectural districts and landmarks.
The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels is possibly one of the newest places in our list as it was officially opened in 2002. And although it is relatively recent it has already become a part of the life of downtown L.A. There is a plaza in front with a children’s play garden. The heavy bronze entry doors are carved with images of the Virgin Mary and multicultural images. There is a tour that will guide you all the way to the maze like mausoleum. There were many designers that helped in its creation so it is also a tour of modern art.
Of course one of the iconic places in Los Angeles would be Chinatown. Although not as big as the famed Chinatown of San Francisco it still embodies the ethnicity that established it. Located near Union Station Asian denizens as well as tourists mingle at spice shops, restaurants and trinket shops. The best time to visit Chinatown is of course during Chinese New Year when all the bells whistles and dragons are present.
If you are a sports fan you have to amble over to the Staples center as it is the home of the L.A. Lakers, Clippers, the Sparks and the Ice hockey team the Los Angeles Kings.
For an authentic feel of what the locals experience the Grand Central Market literally gives you a taste of Los Angeles. This is the city’s largest food market. There are cooked white-corn tamales, dried figs, and Chicken coconut soup to name a few. Also fresh meat, vegetables and spices are in abundance. So head over to S. Broadway and get you slice of downtown Los Angeles.