Rodeo Drive has made its way into pop culture the world over. So much so that you may already think that you know everything there is to know about this iconic strip. In many cases, people have misconceptions about what Rodeo Drive is and end up disappointed that they wasted their time. Whether you are living in Beverly Hills or looking for things to do in Beverly Hills, CA, Rodeo Drive is a site of intrigue.
This handy guide will help you to separate the truth from the myth of this cultural icon and demystify the preconceptions that you may have.
First and foremost, when you are referring to Rodeo Drive, it is crucial to learn how to pronounce it correctly. If you want to sound like a local and not a hapless tourist, it is pronounced ROH-DAY-oh. Now that that’s settled let’s move on to what to expect from this famous street.
What Can You Expect?
You have probably heard lots of different stories about what Rodeo Drive is, however, so many tourists are surprised at how different it is than they imagined. This guide will make sure that does not happen to you.
Many visitors are expecting to see crowds of celebs and paparazzi crowding the streets as they shop. In reality, you probably won’t see any Hollywood celebrities in their “natural habitat.” You are more likely to see hordes of tourists crowding the streets than you see a star.
Other tourists believe that Rodeo Drive is chock full of fancy boutiques and trendy designers. Instead, they find the usual big-name brands. Some visitors are shocked at the fact that they are not able to find bargains or discounts that are different from the retail stores they have back home. However, as most of you might know, Rodeo Drive has a reputation for being expensive, not a place for bargains.
How to “Do Rodeo”
The majority of the activities along Rodeo Drive are window shopping and, of course, the inevitable people-watching. Both of these activities require little to no spending. Even though the shops are quite pricey, there is a good chance that you will not look out of place. There are plenty of tourists around with a variety of fashion choices, ready to soak up the sights, just the same as you.
Alongside Rodea, there exists Via Rodeo, which is also called “Two Rodeo Drive.” Via Rodeo is modeled after a European themed shopping plaza, and it resembles a movie set. It is nestled at the corner of Rodeo Drive and Wilshire Boulevard. Most visitors consider this the best place on the Drive to take a selfie or snap a photo.
The remainder of the street will bring you to some single-story designer shops. These shops are known to feature expensive and fashionable brands such as Coco Chanel, Armani, Gucci, Tiffany Jewelers, Cartier, and Harry Winston. Some very exclusive couturiers require an appointment to get inside.
One of the most luxurious things to do in Beverly Hills is shopping. Down the Drive, there is the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel at Rodeo Drive. This is the famous and iconic hotel where Julia Roberts and Richard Gere found romance in the 1991 feature film, Pretty Woman. The hotel features a luxurious lobby bar that is known to serve vintage wine by the glass. If you are from across the pond, they also host an elegant afternoon tea.
This guide wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the mark that famed architect Franklin Lloyd Wright left on Rodeo Drive. He designed the Anderton Court Shops, located at 333 N. Rodeo Drive. The building has since been remodeled from the original design, but it still features the original tower and classic spiral ramp that was designed by Frank. In Addition to his architecture, famous contemporary architect Richard Meier created the Paley center just down the street on 465 North Beverly Drive.
If you are inspired by the awe of Beverly Hills and wish to see more of it, you can hop on the Beverly Hills Trolley, which picks up at Rodeo Drive and Payton. This trolley service no longer functions as a tour guide; however, it is free to use during the day and offers a very scenic ride if you are tired of walking and shopping all day.
Before you visit, be forewarned. The Myth of Rodeo Drive is more significant than the actual street. The real shopping area is quite small and can be disappointing to some visitors. So before you go, be sure to look at a map and decide what you want to do and see there.
If you are interested in Beverly Hills’ cost of living or the best place to live in Beverly Hills, no one knows Rodeo Drive better than Sasha Rahban Realty. Contact them at 310.963.9680 or sasha(at)saravitaproperties(dotted)com.