Monday, April 19, 2010

Getting It On At The Getty Center

One of the best horror film revelations is that scene in “The Shining” when Wendy, wife of bat shit crazy Overlook Inn keeper Jack, finally reads his “novel” to learn “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” typed hundreds of times.

All work and no play does lead to bad things, so my lady and I just embarked on an 11-day holiday, thanks in part to a charity raffle hosted by Give Kids The World during (client) IAAPA Attractions Expo 2009 last November (we won two round-trip business-class airline tickets to Hawaii).

Yes, we are indeed living the dream!

Our adventure commenced Friday with cross-country flights to LAX, and Saturday’s adventures included:

  • Breakfast at Santa Monica's famed Ocean Park Omelette Parlor, est. 1967 (home of the Schwarzenegger hame and cheese delight, or the avocado/sprout/bacon-infused delight on special -- YUM!
  • Beach bumming and manicure work in Malibu, overlooking a prime surfing point (more than 50 wetsuit-clad surfers in the water)
  • A visit to the beach side Adamson House, a beautiful estate where we received an impromptu history of Malibu lesson (who knew one family owned all of Malibu during the early 1900s?
  • Scenic driving along Sunset Boulevard, where eucalyptus’ sweet aromas fill the breeze, and we spotted some (illegal) public art featuring the Monopoly man and one artist’s commentary on the global financial crisis (this public poster – shown in the photos with this blog post – was at the entrance to a Bel Air neighborhood, a surprise as we drove by it
  • Driving and walking tour of Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, including a visit to one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s few existing retail shop designs
  • Fresh gelato tasting and a visit to The Paley Center For Media (where we watched one of about 150,000 TV programs archived for posterity, and where a fantastic collection of Hirshfeld comics is on temporary display)
  • More driving on Sunset, this time west-bound, much like the fantastic race scene from “Against All Odds” (terrible movie, great race)
  • Dinner and drinks at The Getty Center, LA’s answer to the Parthenon in Athens. In addition to gourmet artichoke lasagna and a fabulous selection of sea scallops atop a green pea risotto (mouth watering while typing), we enjoyed conversation with two Germans at a neighboring table and two locals from Malibu at another – we all toasted the dusty red sunset over the Santa Monica Mountains
  • A peek at The Getty’s permanent collection including Van Gogh’s indigo “Irises” and Roy Lichtenstein’s outdoor “Three Brush Strokes” sculpture. Also enjoyed the special exhibition of Leonardo da Vinci doodles, er, sketches and bronzes, and one moving painting of a lion at the feet of Saint Jerome. There is also an intriguing exhibit in The Getty library showcasing Arabic and other books illustrated by hand over the centuries to showcase the mind, body and geography – beautiful.
On Sunday we trekked back to Hollywood for a tour at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House, an estate of the same era and scope as the home at Malibu. I highly recommend a visit to Hollyhock, from which you may also see the Griffith Observatory, Hollywoodland sign and Wright’s other LA masterpiece, Ennis House.
As I write this post, we are seated on a Maui-bound flight, chasing the April sun across the horizon. Touchdown at Kahului Airport (OGG) will be a welcome moment as R&R continues.

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