Sure Hollywood is the hub of everything entertainment and glamour, but you will also find some of the most tasty and elegant dining experiences in the Southern California urban sprawl known as the City of Angels. Celebrities who make millions per picture are not worried about forking over lots of dough for the best eats, evident by their visits to some of the best and priciest spots to dine in the Southland. There are a handful of restaurants in Hollywood, Beverly Hills and surrounding areas that are known to draw famous faces on a daily basis. Most such restaurants pride themselves on protecting the privacy of the stars; some even seat them in special sections.
Perhaps the best spot to catch a glimpse of someone you’ve seen on the big screen is Spago’s Beverly Hills. The restaurant was originally known as Bistro Garden and was a favorite of former first lady Nancy Reagan. But in 1997, famed international chef and television personality Wolfgang Puck bought the spot andave it a name synonymous with his restaurant in Hollywood. Puck’s Spago’s Beverly Hills is located at North. Canon Drive. Stars known to frequent the restaurant include Tom Hanks, President Bill Clinton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Billy Crystal, Elton John, Lou Diamond Phillips, Sandra Bullock, Robin Williams and Sharon Stone.
The former president was actually at the restaurant just months after his grand opening in November 1997. His presence was part of a Rock the Vote effort and was attended by a long list of other celebrities, such as Kevin Spacey, Graham Nash and Michael Bolton. About a year later in 1998, Sir Elton John moved his star-studded post Oscar party to the restaurant, where celebrities in attendance paid $ 1,000 per plate for a charity dinner that benefitted AIDS research. Big names on hand that night were Alec Baldwin, Kim Basinger, Jon Bon Jovi and Faye Dunaway. During normal business hours, the cost of dining at Spago’s Beverly Hills starts at about $ 70 for two.
The Ivy on Robertson Boulevard has long been one of Los Angeles’ top celebrity hangout spots. Not only has the restaurant drawn the largest names for decades, but it also periodically serves as a Hollywood set; Some of the biggest movie directors have shot scenes on the restaurant’s large patio. Just two examples are ‘The Bodyguard’ starring Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston and ‘Get Shorty,’ which featured Danny DeVito and John Travolta.
The Ivy is not exactly known for tasty eats, but more for the Hollywood glamor it joins. The spot is a favorite hangout for stars and paparazzi looking to get photos of the latest blockbuster stars. In September 2003, stars Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez appeared at the Ivy not long after announcing the postponement of their wedding. Insiders believed the two went there to sideline gossip that they’d spilled up. Other stars seen there around the same time include Steve Martin, Jack Nicholson, Demi Moore, even Michael Jackson, and more celebrities.