108 West 2nd Street (Main Street)
Los Angeles, Calif. 90012
After years of enduring the ugly side of life, downtown L.A. has once again become quite the scene for singles, and this Higgins Building hotspot is evidence of exactly that. Transformed from a turn-of-the-20th-Century boiler room into one of the cities biggest and most talked about hotspots — underground. The Edison with its high ceiling sprawl is where the pretty and the powerful mix with equal pleasure, quaffing everything from custom-made cocktails to an absolutely astounding array of absinthe (mind the custom in how you take it, newbies). Just be sure to dress well, as the bouncers can be a little brusque about attire. Also, phone ahead if you’re traveling with a group and would like to reserve a table, and do keep in mind the $25 minimum for food and bevs. By all means, once inside, roam if you want to; this place has plenty of room for that.
1429 Ivar Ave.
Los Angeles, Calif. 90028
What lies behind the green door? Not Marilyn Chambers, all you X-raters, so keep them dirty thoughts to yourselves. This high class and palatial parlor feels a little more like a decadent Parisian den circa 1910, the sort of scene where the ladies are tightly-laced and the gentlemen are content to play it cool while they think of ways to get things … undone. Gussy up right and get there by 11 pm, and that’s when the vibe picks up, as the DJ’s get their groove on. But a warning to all those out for a fair-weather frolic: the guest list remains the rule. So if you want in, reserve some seats for dinner. But even then, it’s no guarantee.
7746 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, Calif. 90046
An unmarked hideaway parked beneath a pale lamplight in West Hollywood, this sneaky speakeasy is one hard place to find, but once you get in, you’ll never want to leave. With chandeliers and dark panels, its woody and worldly and is the kind of private palace where you’d half-expect to see Bogie and Bacall flirting at the expansive bar. The good-natured tenders will set you up with everything from a cold beer to fine sipping whiskey. Once considered incredibly hard to get into for reasons obvious only to snobs and celebs, it is by no means inaccessible anymore. However, if you want the place to yourself, it is available for private parties.
Saints & Sinners
10899 Venice Blvd (Culver City)
West Los Angeles, Calif. 90034
Well, so much for saying we didn’t live in the 70’s anymore. Decked out in everything from seashells and velvet to marble cupids and a “cone of silence” fireplace, this totally cool retro lounge in Culver City is a place where vamps and vixens come to flirty life under the funky vinyl. Dig the popcorn ceiling, the stiff drinks and a great jukebox that plays everything from Gaga to Gorillaz. An added bonus for those with a penchant for a puff: the outdoor smoking patio will accommodate. Weekends are when things really get wild, but the best time to get there is before 11 pm, otherwise you will be wasting time in the waiting line.
Plan B Club
11637 West Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, Calif. 90064
There comes a time in every person’s life when you get a craving for something … sweet. Something dark, something daring, something decadent, it doesn’t matter, really. Because when it comes cravings like this, the kind that make you want to step outside your comfort zone, and perhaps pursue something you shouldn’t — let alone someone out of your league — nothing’s gonna stop you, and especially not if you want it. So, gentlemen and yes, ladies too, if you’re unattached or feeling unmoored, this West Pico playpen is just the kind of exotic oasis the doctor didn’t order. Not going to reveal any deets either. Just click on the website, and you’ll see why this is a perfect place to let it all hang out.