Nestled in sunny SoCal, WeHo isn’t likely to have any snowy nights, and you might have to crank the air conditioner to make sipping hot cocoa by the fire feel cozy. But even if winter weather isn’t in the air, the holiday season is—and so, of course, is the season of holiday shopping.
Businesses have been gearing up not only for today’s infamously hectic Black Friday, some even opened their doors on Thanksgiving for those eager to kick off their gift-buying as their relatives slept off turkey and pumpkin pie. Meanwhile, independent stores promote patronizing locally owned businesses by touting the day after Black Friday as Small Business Saturday. It all adds up to a long commercially oriented weekend.
Of course, economic analysts will watch holiday shopping, always seen as an important economic indicator, with a keen eye.
Genevieve Morrill, president of the West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, said that the economy seems to be recovering and that more people are spending—but cautiously. She’s hopeful that the season will be a strong one for holiday shopping, but she said she can’t really predict if that will be the case.
Local business owner Larry Block said that the holiday season is actually a slow time of year for his store, Block Party. Situated on the Santa Monica strip, Block Party does a steadier business in the summer months, when longer hours of daylight—helped along, Block believes, by specials at area bars—attract more shoppers to the area. Still, there are shoppers seeking “grab bag” or gag gifts for office holiday parties, and the store offers seasonal items such as ornaments and holiday cards.
WEHOville asked Morrill, Block and others from West Hollywood’s business community what area businesses they’d recommend for shoppers looking to shop local.
So why fight traffic to the Grove or the Galleria? Whether you’re looking for a secret Santa gift or intimate items for someone you know more, er, personally, you can probably find it in WeHo. (And odds are you’ll run into one of your favorite celebrities also shopping WeHo).
WEHOville’s Eclectic Guide to Shopping Local for the Holidays
• Alexandra Von Furstenberg, 9001 Melrose Ave. at Almont
High-end furniture and home accessories
• Andrew Christian, 8943 Santa Monica Blvd. at Robertson
Men’s underwear, swimwear and other apparel with a gay twist
• Argyle Salon & Spa, Sunset Tower Hotel, 8358 Sunset Blvd. near Kings
Nail care, facials and massage
• Ava Sophia, French Market, 7985 Santa Monica Blvd. at N. Laurel
Earrings, bracelets and other jewelry
• Block Party, 8853 Santa Monica Blvd. near Larrabee
Underwear, swimwear and LGBT pride items
• Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd. at Horn
Specializing in art, film, photography books
• Candle Delirium, 7980 Santa Monica Blvd. at N. Laurel
Luxury scented candles
• Chi Chi LaRue’s, 8932 Santa Monica Blvd. at San Vicente
Adult DVDs, apparel and novelties
• Classic Artforms, 9009 Beverly Blvd. at Almont
Custom frames and art
• Crystalarium, 8500 Melrose Ave. (#105) at La Cienega
Gems and minerals, including jewelry
• Hammer & Nails, 8257 Melrose Ave. near N. Harper
Manicures and pedicures for men
• Inner Gardens, 8925 Melrose Ave. near Almont
Plants and garden ornaments
• John & Pete’s Fine Wine & Spirits, 621 N. La Cienega Blvd. near Melrose
Beer, wine and liquor
• Kin Los Angeles, 8555 Sunset Blvd. near Londonderry
Designer clothing and accessories
• Kinara Spa, 656 North Robertson Blvd. near Santa Monica
Massage, manicures and skin treatments
• Koontz Hardware, 8914 Santa Monica Blvd. near N. San Vicente
Cookware, small appliances and other housewares
• LASC, 8592 Santa Monica Blvd. near Westbourne
Men’s fashion with a gay focus
• Mayfair House, 8844 Beverly Blvd. at Swall
Apparel, jewelry, linens and home accessories
• Meridian Day Spa, 808 Hilldale Ave. at Santa Monica
Massage and skin care
• The Pleasure Chest, 7733 Santa Monica Blvd. at Genesee
Adult toys, videos and books
• Skin Laundry, 8789 Beverly Blvd. at Robertson
Laser and light facials
• Voda Spa, 7700 Santa Monica Blvd. at Stanley
Massage, nail care and facials
• Wat Po Thai Spa, 848 N La Cienega Blvd. #201 at Willoughby
Massage, nail care and reflexology
• Wild Lotus, 8539 Sunset Blvd. (#18) at La Cienega
Women’s apparel and jewelry
Local Shopping Resources
WeShopWeHo.com. West Hollywood’s most comprehensive directory of local restaurants, nightlife, and businesses including health and fitness, travel, real estate and local service providers.
West Hollywood Design District Holiday Guide. The Design District lists local holiday sales and retail events.
Visit West Hollywood. The promoter of business and pleasure travel to West Hollywood offers a comprehensive listing of local shops, including those catering to children, men and women and retailers of gifts and various accessories.
What’s your favorite local shopping destination? Feel free to post its name, address, website url (if you have it), and the type of merchandise it offers as a comment to this story.