Exploring LA

August 6th, 2015

I had the opportunity to live in California this past summer and two days before I left, I got to go on an incredible adventure all over one of the most famous cities in the United States: Los Angeles, CA!

My friend Krista and I started by driving ourselves to the Grammy Museum, which was a really cool way to begin! It only cost $12 for admission, which I thought was extremely reasonable. I expected to spend a lot more on it so that was a great treat!

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We went inside and they started us up on the top floor. There were interactive exhibits where you could put on headphones, choose a genre, and learn more about the background/other genres or artists it was related to. There were exhibits where there were Grammy nominations and awards listed on the wall, as well as a loop of performances and awards that you could watch. I got to see a little bit of Michael Jackson, Celine Dion, Shania Twain… everyone!

The real reason we were there, however, was because the Grammy Museum has an entire Taylor Swift experience up from now until October! Krista is a big Swiftie so this was our must-do in LA!

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I thought the display was put together so well. It was an entire floor dedicated to Taylor that not only encompassed her music career, but also focused on the story of her growing up. They had videos from her childhood and very early in her career. They even had some of her songs handwritten on display for us to see. The exhibit told a story and it was interactive and informative, while also being very fun!

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Our next stop after the Grammy Museum was the Warner Bros. Studio! My parents took a tour here in December and I wasn’t able to join, and ever since then I knew it was something I needed to do! We looked into and the tour was $67, which was a pretty big price to pay. However, I knew it was something that I really wanted to do and was willing to make the investment.

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Let me tell you, I am so glad that I did! This tour was incredible and worth every penny! Our guide’s name was Paul and he was very informative and knowledgeable. He had a way of giving us a lot of information and presenting it in a way that was enjoyable to listen to. We went on the 3:45 pm tour and there was only another family of four, so there were six of us total and it was very personal!

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My favorite show of all time is Friends, so this tour was incredibly exciting for me. There were so many places we passed by where certain moments were filmed such as:

Where Ross played Rugby:

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Where Phoebe embarrassed Rachel by running like a lunatic in the park:

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And where Ross dressed up to take Rachel to prom when her date bailed, only to see him show up at the bottom of the staircase:

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It was a very emotional experience for me. I have watched the show several times through and to see where it was actually filmed was astonishing to me. Especially growing up in a very small east coast town, seeing where movies and films were produced was a big deal. There’s so much that goes into it!

It’s funny how much we learned about the Hollywood tips and tricks to make things look real even when they’re just sets! It’s basically a lot of very clever and well-planned deception. For example, they reuse and dress up the sets for multiple different things and the materials that a lot of the sets are made out of are plastic or fiberglass to be more cost-effective.

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If I was a Pretty Little Liars fan, this tour would have been incredible for me. I feel like every façade we passed was somehow incorporated into the series. Definitely a must do in LA for any hardcore PLL fans out there!

Aside from that, we got to stop in quite a few exhibits with a lot of Batman props and costumes and even an area with the bat mobiles.

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There was also a room with Harry Potter props and displays as well! There was a little bit of something for everybody on this tour and that’s what I really liked about it.

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There were some things that I was very interested in seeing and other things I thought were cool but weren’t my particular interests. What I thought was great, too, was that our tour guide, Paul, really catered to what we showed interest in and that really made our experience more personal and enjoyable.

We got to pass by the soundstage where Full House and Friends were both filmed. The fact that my two favorite shows of all time were filmed in the exact same building is incredible to me. There must be something about #24 because that is one magical building right there. Friends was the most popular show of all time for Warner Bros. so they actually have a plaque on the building in honor of it!

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A special treat we got to experience was going into the filming area of the Ellen show! Ellen doesn’t film during the summer so it was completely empty. It was such a surreal experience. So much happens in that building and I cannot believe that I was actually in there. It is on my life bucket list to get back there during a live filming. I just need to see it in person and feel the energy in that studio. I can only imagine how incredible it is!

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They brought us to our end stop where we got to partake in interactive exhibits. Michelle’s honeybee costume from Full House was on display, which was very exciting to see.

The best part, though, was being able to sit in Central Perk on the actual Friends couch! That was a dream come true! I cannot believe that’s an opportunity that they offer and especially for someone who cherishes that show so much, it was amazing.

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I bought myself a Friends shirt and a Central Perk coaster in the gift shop because I could not resist a little bit of Friends merch. They even had a coffee shop called Central Perk and they had specially made cupcakes as well. It was just too cute and I’m so glad that Friends is still celebrated so much to this day.

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Our last big stop in LA for the day was Ghiradelli/The Disney Soda Fountain. We originally went because we just wanted to get ice cream, however as we were crossing the street we saw that they were doing a Throwback Thursday movie tonight! They were playing The Incredibles, which is a movie I haven’t watched in about 10 years.

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The movie only cost $10 and it included popcorn and a small drink, which was super exciting. That’s was such a great deal! We also got ice cream before heading inside, and I got the Inside Out sundae which was vanilla ice cream, strawberry, pineapple, and Crunch Berry cereal on top! It was super cute and delicious!

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As far as the movie, it was great. It was like watching a whole new Disney movie for me because it had been so long, and it was genuinely hilarious!

I had such a great time in LA and I am so grateful we had the chance to visit before leaving California for the summer! Stay tuned for more upcoming east coast adventures!

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3 thoughts on “Exploring LA

  1. My wife and kids and I did the tour and I think Paul was the name of our guide! It was like a dream come true for us. At that time Chuck was being filmed there and I couldnt believe they let us on the set! Also one of my favorite shows, Big Bang Theory, is also filmed there and we were able to go on its set too. They happened to be filming the episode where they bounce a laser off the moon. It was such a great time. At one point we went to a museum on the lot and they had the car from the movie Gran Torino. I told Paul that I know the guy that restored that car and sold it to the production company for the movie. I share your excitement! Thanks for posting about it.

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