The Modern-Day “Pretty Woman” Guide To Los Angeles

Pretty Woman Photo Credit: Beverly Hills Conference & Visitors Bureau.This March marks a Hollywood milestone: It’s the 30th anniversary of “Pretty Woman,” an iconic 1990 romantic comedy that transformed Julia Roberts into America’s sweetheart. Who didn’t fall in love with the fantasy of hooker with a heart of gold Vivian Ward as a 20th century Eliza Doolittle, being pampered, educated, saved and loved by Richard Gere’s bored businessman, Edward Lewis? We certainly did—enough so that we’re following in Vivian’s footsteps and taking a tour of Los Angeles that pays homage to the late Garry Marshall‘s great love story. Care to join us?

Beverly Wilshire
Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel

Photo Credit: Beverly Hills Conference & Visitors Bureau

In the film: Edward stays in the penthouse of the iconic Regent Beverly Wilshire (even though he’s afraid of heights). The hotel is so over-the-top opulent that its staff is the very height (so to speak) of discretion when Vivian rocks up in her thigh-high stilettos and miniskirt, clearly not the sort of clientele they’re used to seeing.

Now: Now a Four Seasons property, the Beverly Wilshire offers guests a chance to live like a “Pretty Woman” with a package that only Edward and his friends could afford. For $300,000 guests will receive a meet and greet with Chef Wolfgang Puck, who helms the in-house, Michelin star restaurant, CUT by Wolfgang Puck; a shopping experience with top celebrity stylists at LALALUXE with a $50,000 credit to spend on clothing, shoes and accessories; a champagne and caviar lunch on a private rooftop overlooking Rodeo Drive while a live pianist performs as models wearing iconic looks with a 2020 twist from the feature provide a personal fashion show (all of which are captured by a photographer); a “glam” session with the celebrity stylists at the hotel’s Lea Journo Salon before taking a same-day trip to San Francisco via NetJets to attend the real San Francisco Opera while sipping on THEBlvd’s signature “Feeling Pretty” cocktail at 40,000 feet, which is inspired by the movie. On the final evening, relish in an outdoor, rooftop cinema experience on the Hotel’s Rodeo Terrace, for the ultimate date night, where you’ll watch—what else—”Pretty Woman” in an intimate setting overlooking Rodeo Drive, while sipping on champagne. A butler is always nearby to assist.

You can also try: Heck, nothing else is going to even come remotely close to this, so we won’t even try.

Pretty Woman
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM)

Photo Credit: Lee Hari/Shutterstock.com

In the film: Edward flies Vivian to San Francisco via private jet for a night at the San Francisco Opera. They see, quite fittingly, “La Traviata,” about a prostitute who falls in love with a wealthy man. Where have we heard that one before?

Today: Gere and Roerts didn’t need to go as far as their characters for this particular scene, which was shot right here in L.A. at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

You can also try: Take in some opera in the City of Angels, helmed by maestro Gustavo Dudamel, who also serves as the Music & Artistic Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion downtown.

 

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In the film: Clad in her infamous polka dot dress and also wearing the Julia Roberts signature smile, Vivian laughs and stomps divots at a polo match, held at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center.

Today: That center still exists for equine enthusiasts. It’s located adjacent to the Los Angeles Zoo and Griffith Park.

You can also try: The Will Rogers Polo Club is where champagne house Veuve Clicquot hosts its annual Polo Classic each year in L.A. In 2019, Julia Roberts herself attended, wearing (what else?) polka dots. Enough said.

 

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In the film: Vivian encounters some serious snobbery at Boulmiche boutique in Beverly Hills when she rocks up wearing her “working girl” outfit of a denim miniskirt and crop top.

Today: Boulmiche still exists! But the staff is way, way nicer and it’s in a new location on Santa Monica Blvd.

You can also try: Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Prada… You name it: If it’s expensive, Beverly Hills has it.

 

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In the film: Vivian eventually winds up finding an appropriate cocktail dress from women who are determined not to judge her (publicly, at least), at Giorgio Beverly Hills, the first luxury boutique to be founded on the storied Rodeo Drive.

Today: Like Boulmiche, Giorgio Beverly Hills still exists as well today, though in a new location and with a new name: After the brand’s sale to Avon in 1987, the boutique was renamed Fred Hayman Beverly Hills. Louis Vuitton now calls its former digs home.

You can also try: Louis Vuitton, because why not? The clothing is incredible, and you’ll literally be walking in Vivian’s footsteps.

 

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From the film: Vivian wrestles with salad forks and snails at the Art Deco Rex II Ristorante, located at the Oviatt Building, a historical downtown L.A. landmark that once housed one of the most prestigious and expensive haberdasheries in Los Angeles, Alexander & Oviatt.

Today: That same restaurant exists as Cicada, an Italian restaurant.

You can also try: Ludo Lefebvre‘s Highland Park eatery Petit Trois for the best escargot in Los Angeles.

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