5 Things to Do With Your Dad on Father’s Day

Dad's been working hard all year for his family. He has been giving you great advice, letting you keep your stuff in his garage, helping you fix your broken everything. This year, give him what he really wants: quality time spent with his family. Check out the events below for some fun ways to spend your Father’s Day!


Pasadena Chalk Festival 

This annual event happens each year on Father’s Day weekend, but if you haven’t been, it is well worth your time. Head on down with your dad to Paseo Colorado on Saturday and Sunday for live music and entertainment, beautiful chalk art, and an area for kids to create artwork for their dads. Find more info at http://www.pasadenachalkfestival.com/.  


Rodeo Drive Concours d’Elegance

Is your dad a car enthusiast? If so, he would probably love the chance to spend time reveling in the beauties at the annual Rodeo Drive car show. This Beverly Hills Father’s Day tradition is sure to delight your dad this weekend with its mix of classic cars and new releases. Check it out from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on Sunday in the heart of Beverly Hills. 


The Larchmont Sanctuary Spa

If your dad is overworked and overstressed, he might want a bit of time to relax. Send him to the Larchmont Sanctuary Spa for a special Father’s Day spa package that pairs massage and relaxation with a cold beer. Take him out to dinner after at the unique République in Hancock Park to make this Father’s Day one to remember. 


Brunch at The Langham

For the food connoisseur dad in your life, consider taking him to the exquisite Langham hotel in Pasadena. The Langham has special Father’s Day dining events including a Whiskey & Cigar Brunch, a Dim Sum Brunch, or a Daddy & Me Chocolate Afternoon Tea. One of these three experiences is sure to delight his palate. Click here for website and details.


The Dodgers vs. the Brewers

Take dad out to the ballgame this Father’s Day and watch the Dodgers (hopefully) trounce the Milwaukee Brewers in the last of a 4 game series. The game starts at 1:10 in the afternoon, so you will have plenty of time to enjoy popcorn, hotdogs, and quality time with your dad. 

Taking Dad to one of these events will really let him know how much you appreciate him and love to spend time with him. Happy Father’s Day!

L.A. River is now almost a real river!

When most people hear the phrase "L.A. River" they also expect to here the words "dead body". It has a horrible reputation for being a cement pit better suited for teen drag races (Go Grease Lightning) than for a white water kayak destination. That's because you haven't been to the Glendale Narrows recently.

This stretch of the LA River is natural-bottomed and a great place to see wildlife, go fishing and go kayaking. You can bring your own kayak or rent one from one of the tour guides along the banks. The recreation areas of the L.A. River open this Memorial Day and are open from sunrise to sunset seven days a week. If you are lucky you may see a deer, egret, beaver or an unlucky kayaker flipped upside down in her kayak (me).

The L.A. river is expanding the number of recreation zones and adding constant improvements to make the river more of a destination for people and wildlife. You can visit this website for more information on L.A. River rec locations. Check it out at least once each summer to see how the river transforms from concrete into natural beauty.

There is a great group of LA River enthusiasts who organize fun events, schedule kayak trips, and improve the river. You can find out more by visiting their website here - Friends of the LA River.

I challenge you this summer to go see the natural places in your own city. Checkout these kayak tours where you can rent a kayak or take a guided kayak tour.



My Picks for Memorial Day in Los Angeles 2016

Memorial Day is the unofficial start to summer here in L.A. and there is no shortage of festivals, parades, and fairs for you to attend. So, throw on some flip-flops and grab the biggest most colorful pair of sunglasses you can find and head to one of these great parties!


Jazz Reggae Festival

Are you in the mood for a little music this Memorial Day? Head on over to UCLA for the 30th annual Jazz Reggae Festival. This festival is fun for the whole family and includes tasty food, inspiring art, and of course, live music. Different booths will be set up with crafts, Henna tattoos, and live art demonstrations. Some of the featured artists this year will include X Is The Weapon, Stoopdown Photography, and Andrew Dupas- I am not hip enough to know who any of these bands are but I’m sure it will be fun! Bring a blanket, your shades, and your dancing shoes for a fun-filled afternoon. Tickets are $20 for the public, and kids 5 years and under get in for free. Doors open at 11:00am and events take place from 12:00pm-6:00pm. Check out www.jazzreggaefest.com for more information.


The Geeky Craft Faire

Do you anxiously await Sunday nights so you can watch the latest installment of Game of Thrones? Do you have kids that can quote you lines from Harry Potter or have ringtones set to theme music from Lord of the Rings? If so, you should consider spending part of your Memorial Day weekend at the Geeky Craft Faire at Whimsic Alley, located just 2 miles outside of historic Larchmont Village. Whimsic Alley is a locally owned business that specializes in all things fandom. In just the past 3 months alone they have hosted an Outlander Dinner, a Feast of Thrones, and a Time Travel Craft Fair. This weekend’s Geeky Craft Faire supports local artists and crafters who create everything from jewelry and clothing to kitchen supplies and stationary. The Geeky Craft Faire will take place May 28th and 29th from 10:00am-6:00pm and May 30th from 11:00am-6:00pm at 5464 Wilshire Boulevard. Check out Whimsic Alley on Facebook for a sneak peak at the vendors! 

Clifton’s Canteen

If you and that special someone in your life are looking for a fun evening out that also pays tribute to the men and women who give meaning to Memorial Day, look no further than Clifton’s Canteen. Creating Arts Studios has paired with Clifton’s to produce an extravagant throwback USO party on Sunday night, the 29th. The evening will feature dancing and drinks, and you are encouraged to dress up in your best 1940's gear to join in on the fun. The party will last from 7:00pm-10:00pm at Clifton’s Downtown. Tickets are $10. Visit https://www.cacstudios.com/uso/ for more info!


I woke bright and early. Went outside to get the paper and noticed something black on my lawn adjacent to the curb. Upon further investigation I noticed it was in 2 parts: a portion of a tail and a part of a leg. Both which belonged to a poor kitty cat. At that moment in the midst of my shock, my neighbor across the street greeted me and said “yes, I am sorry to tell you I awoke early this morning and saw a coyote attacking a cat on your front lawn.” After doing a full cat inventory of our block. We determined that it was a poor little feral kitty cat that lived in a neighbor's backyard. The lesson here is: coyotes don’t always attack later in the day, they are up having breakfast with the rest of us.

It is easy to forget that we are in a desert here in L.A. Every once in a while nature will find it’s way back into our busy city. There has been an increasing number of reports in the community of coyotes in the Hancock Park and Windsor Square area.

Here are the reports:

A coyote walked up to a front porch on the 700 block of S. Mansfield grabbed a small sleeping dog with it’s jaws and started to carry it off.  Another neighbor saw the incident and started screaming, which caused the coyote to drop the dog and run.  The dog suffered puncture wounds but is expected to make a full recovery.

There have been several recent reports of three or four coyotes roaming the area together packs, seen by various neighbors at 2nd and Norton, 9th and Hudson, and 12th and Citrus.   

Jason Greenman a Lorraine Blvd. resident reported: “We were faced with a coyote on our front lawn last night at 6:45 when we arrived home. He was definitely very healthy (well fed) and not at all skittish. I chased him all the way down the block.”

Mary Pickhardt reports that a coyote “seems to be very comfortable on the 100 and 200 S. blocks of Irving Blvd. There are several properties with dense foliage and he/she is often seen bouncing in and out of the shrubs.”

Julie Stromberg, a board member of the Windsor Village Association who lives two blocks south of Wilshire Boulevard tells how her dog, Elvis, was attacked by a coyote eight months ago and subsequently died. 

Amy Cohen, of Brookside, reported that three coyotes had been seen early in the morning at the corner of Longwood Ave. and Olympic Blvd.

Now the question is: What is the community supposed to do about it?

Los Angeles Department of Animal Services Officer Hoang Dinh, here quoted by the Windsor Square Association.

“I have been and will continue to patrol your area, especially 9th and Lucerne. This is the time of year where all the wild babies born in spring are now juveniles and learning the terrain. It may seem like more, but it is temporary (67% mortality rate for coyotes naturally) unless there is enough food to sustain them.  The most important thing to realize is this is also a very impressionable state, which we “Humans” should take advantage and haze without harming them.  If the juveniles want to learn, teach them that your residential area is no place for them.  Do not provide any source of food, such as access to garbage, uneaten fruits, pet food left outside and unfortunately even small pets left unattended, clutter and dense brush (the latter 2 harbors rodents).  Make sure if you all have holiday guests, to advise them to do the same. This is also a very good time to walk your pets with other people. Have at least one person carry a good size stick, to even throw towards the coyotes. Let’s give them little reason to hang around and remind them to stay naturally afraid of us.”

That being said, do not use poison on the coyotes. It is illegal and can end up killing other animals who find the poison. If you have a coyote problem call California Wildlife Services state office at 916-979-2675. I provide this information to my readers in hopes that you keep yourselves and our community safe.

These reports were gathered from pieces published by the Larchmont Buzz and the Larchmont Chronicle.

3 Premiere Architectural Works of Art For Sale

2500 Briarcrest - Trousdale - Beverly Hills

At first glance it looks like a spaceship that took design cues from mid-century modern architects of the 1960's. The striking design is balanced with functionality. The home sits atop the highest ridge above Trousdale Estates in Beverly Hills. The view is accentuated and interpreted by the design. Notice the faux wall balcony with the midsection cut-out. This subtle detail frames the view in a cinematic wide shot. Exposed steel beams add strong dynamic texture to the space. Zoltan Pali, F.A.I.A. bring as much light into the design as possible. Glass walls create dynamic backdrops of mountain ranges and ocean vistas. 

4 Beds  6 Bath 4,700 Sq. Ft. $7,500,000

3763 Fredonia - Hollywood Hills

Harwell Hamilton Harris, Architect's created this home with design that feels natural and liveable. The wood exterior and clean lines make for a modern zen inspired artist retreat. Animator and concept artist Mary Blair worked for Walt Disney Co. and on Disneyland's "It's a Small World" attraction. The multistory residence and Studio has been restored and brought back to its original design.  Glass walls and doors look out onto terrace gardens and take in city views from the Hollywood Hills. Following a meticulous multi-year restoration the property reflects it's original design and use of space. The home is a one of a kind and currently waits for it's next inspired resident.

2 Beds 1 Full Bath 1,254 sq. ft. $1,545,000

The Thorgusen Residence - 9029 Hollywood Hills Road 

Thorgusen flexed his creativity with this design. The home was created in tandem with Garrett Eckbo the landscape artist. To me, this home looks like it was designed specifically for Tim Burton I can't help but think of the movie Beetlejuice when I look at it. This mid-century work of art has been meticulously restored with some reinterpretation. Sitting on a secluded lot, the home's walls of glass and unique folded-plate, roof-line are hidden from street view. The home feels vast inside with 14 foot high ceilings in the living room and in the bedroom. Large family room opens to an indoor/outdoor koi pond. The landscape design must be mentioned as there are so many great elements from the wrap around pond to the stepped plant beds and the wall planters make this home a living one of a kind beauty. Beetlejuice Beetlejuice ;)

2 Bed 2 Full Baths 2,326 sq ft home 14,938 sq ft lot $2,500,000

An Understated Masterpiece in Brentwood

Brentwood is known for it's posh and mature architectural personality. A home has just come on the market that personifies this feeling from one of the premiere residential architects in Los Angeles, Gerard Colcord. Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart purchased the residence for $1 million in 1983 and sold it for $8.2 million in 2012. Quite a profit right?

A private and gated driveway winds up to a red brick facade and creates a classic first impression. My favorite features of the home are the dark hardwood floors, the 4 fireplaces, with the trademark Colcord beam, making each room a cozy and inviting experience. The living room fireplace is two sided, the opposite side faces outside to a patio lounge. The kitchen is chic with white marble countertops and large matching backsplash along the walls. Large vaulted ceilings and lots of light make for grand living with a connection to the views and foliage outside the estate.

The pool is large & has a pool house with a bathroom and kitchen, an outside cooking area and below the pool house is a gym. At the top of the driveway is a 2-story guest house with a bedroom & bath on each level. 

This Country Colonial residence originally designed in 1951 by master architect Gerard Colcord is now available for $12.75 million.

Contact me for more details (323) 842-1980

5 Fun Spots for Your Next Date Night

1) Republique, Hancock Park 

If you are wondering what to do for your date night, wonder no more and take your date to an unforgettable Sunday brunch at one of the best and most rated trendy restaurants in Hancock Park. Republique is not only known for their food presentation but also for their very well made food. They also have a full bar incase you wanted to spice things up on your date with a mimosa or two. Make sure to make a reservation.


2) Genwa Korean BBQ, Hancock Park

If your thinking lunch or dinner and perhaps something different, you can’t go wrong with Genwa Korean BBQ. This place is known for their quality food, their pre-set course variety, and their on point service. Wine & beer are served, so bring your appetite and get ready to eat, laugh, and eat some more. Oh, and don’t worry, unlike traditional Korean BBQ you will only have to do the cooking yourself if you want to, they will do it for you if you ask them.  


3) Lucques, West Hollywood 

It is time to impress, and a dinner for 2 at Lucques might just do the job. Dress up and be as classy as you like at this place, it is your night after all. This is an attractive restaurant with top-notch cuisine and extremely attentive staff. The steak for 2 and a bottle of wine can be just enough to leave you and your date happy and healthy all at the same time.  


4) Paint & Sip Studio, Mid. Wilshire

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Perhaps you want to stay away from the usual dinner dates, and explore something new. At Paint & Sip Studio, you certainly can. BYOB and tap into your creative side while enjoying a glass of wine with your date. This is a fun, light and exciting way to spend with your date if you want something colorful, different and casual. 

5) L&E Oyster Bar, Silver Lake 

There are many great restaurants and bars in Silver Lake, however if you are looking for a hip and casual place and you love oysters (I hear they are an aphrodisiac), then this is the place to go. The restaurant has an upstairs for happy hour purposes and downstairs for seated dinner (you have a choice of inside or outside). At this place you can’t go wrong with an icy tray filled with a fresh array of oysters in the daily dozen. Some even call it “Silverlake’s Oster Gem”. Valeting is highly recommended.

Get out there and make some romance!

4 Fresh Places To Experience In Los Angeles

It's the beginning of the new year and while you have been kicking back drinking champagne and eggnog new and creative places for you to eat and shop have popped up around town. All of the following are brand new ventures with creative people driving them. They are excited to share their talents for a new and wonderful experience to kick-off 2016.


This is your next fine dinner spot. Created by Chef Timothy Hollinsgworth the restaurant has a rustic feel inspired by the 100 year-old olive trees living next door at the Broad Museum. They feature an open kitchen that merges the indoor and the outdoor space creating a sense of community with the other diners as well as the chefs. The menu is versatile, wood fired and local. Vegetables are grown on the roof of the restaurant, it doesn't get more local than that. Great taste seeps into every nook and cranny of this place. http://otiumla.com/

Cake Monkey Bakery

You know how cake is delicious but there is always way too much cake to eat by yourself? Cake Monkey solves this age old dilemma with the 3” cake. Bite size cake = great idea. This place is brand new. They just opened their first brick and mortar location on December 27th 2015. They have lots of great stuff like breakfast pastries, pies and cakewich’s. Does Brown Butter Pecan Pie sound good? Stop in and give them a friendly welcome to the neighborhood. They are on Beverly Blvd. across from the CBS Studio. http://cakemonkey.com/menu

H.D. Buttercup

Do you love interior design? Looking for something new for the home? Check out H.D. Buttercup. They are new to Downtown Los Angeles and only in California. They have a swanky upscale style with a slight 70’s retro vibe. I really like their lighting and chandeliers. They have a sale right now for 20-70% off the entire store. On 7th Street in the Fashion District. http://hdbuttercup.com/

Corey Helford Gallery

CLOUD DEER by Ron English

CLOUD DEER by Ron English

The famed gallery has moved from it’s Culver City locale to it’s new Downtown digs. The gallery is much bigger than it’s predecessor and it fits in perfectly with the burgeoning art scene in downtown. The opening exhibit is NeoNature: We Are the New They by Ron English. A vibrant, whimsical start for the new gallery. The great artists of our time walk through this gallery and hang from these walls. http://www.coreyhelfordgallery.com/

Aaroe Concierge

Part of my job as a real estate professional is to help my clients prepare their property for sale, or perhaps an emergency fix or a last minute inspection. For these reasons we rely heavily on the plumbers, contractors, HVAC specialists, roof repairmen and many more who consistently provide dependable, quality work. Therefore, in conjunction with my commitment to helping you in all phases of home ownership I would like to introduce the Aaroe Concierge app. 

This is an app which offers you a master list of vetted and reputable home service specialists that our agents have personal experience with. In the app you can find, interior designers, locksmiths, cleaning services, gardeners, movers, and even things like website design and real estate attorneys. The app is simple to use. Just download it, scroll to the category you are looking for, find a provider and call directly from the app! You can also view their website, send them an email or send the contact to one of your friends. With one click you can save the contact to your phone contacts if you like. For some services there is also a link to their reviews on Yelp. Go ahead, try it out and let me know what you think. Your feedback is appreciated!





The Greatest Gift of All

Can’t quite think of the right gift for that very special loved one? Is there someone that you appreciate so much that no thing could possibly represent it? Well, then consider buying them a house!

Brad Pitt once said 'While acting is my career, architecture is my passion.’ In 2006 Brad and Angelina went on a date to visit Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpiece Falling Water in Pennsylvania and Brad fell hard for it. He said it changed his life. So eventually Angelina bought Brad his own waterfall and land enough for him to build his own version of Falling Water in California.

Then for Brad’s 50th birthday she bought him a heart shaped island 50 miles off the coast of New York. The island has two Frank Lloyd Wright homes on it.

There is a cottage built in 1950, nine years before Wright’s death. The main house was built in 2008 from one of Wright’s most spectacular plans.


Taylor Swift is known for being generous to her staff and fans alike. But she is most generous to her family. Four months after buying a$1.4million new home for her parents Taylor Swift gifted them another $2.5million new mansion in Nashville. All at the age of 21.

The vast estate spans nearly six acres of beautifully landscaped hillside. 

Have you ever seen the look on someone’s face when they are gifted a house?!

It looks like this.

This Rihanna’s Mom when she found out that her daughter had bought her a mansion in Barbados where they are from. Rihanna told her Mom that Oprah wanted to do a segment on Rihanna and her family and where they grew up. Little did she know that she would be getting the keys to her new home. 

Whatever you get for your loved ones this Christmas, aim to make them the happiest that you possibly can. After all, that is what the holiday is for right? And if you want to get that special someone a new house then call me. I know just the right one and I will put a giant bow on it for you.

Top 5 Christmas Destinations in Los Angeles

1) Ice Skating at Pershing Square

Ice skating is a great place to bring the family or go on a fun date. It's also quite novel to go ice skating in Los Angeles. Its just such a luxury to be able to go ice skating in a light sweater and still be comfortably warm. Pershing Square is in the center of Downtown which is a great place to see Christmas decorations and go gift shopping.

2) Pitchoun Bakery

This French bakery is to die for and it's right across the street from Pershing Square. They always do specialty desserts for the holidays, some traditionally French and some just fun concoctions like these Holiday Eclairs. Everything is delicious. If you get lunch get the Southwest Baguette with duck prosciutto. Also, buy a baguette and take it home. They are the best in town and you can even freeze the baguette, then take it out in a couple of days put in on the counter and once it thaws it still tastes delicious. They keep saying they are not but I am pretty convinced they are witches.

3) Wild for Lights: Los Angeles Zoo

At night time the zoo turns into a winter jungle wonderland. You can pet real reindeer! There are laser light shows, dancing snowflakes and Santa himself (but only on the weekends...he's very busy). I think this is extra cool because you get to see all of the nocturnal animals out and about that are usually asleep during the day.

4) The Tallest Christmas Tree in Town

There is something about seeing a giant Christmas tree that makes the holiday for me. I think it has something to do with authenticity and a feeling of community. Like we are the little Who's down in Whoville who came together to make Christmas happen. Anyway, the tree is at The Grove in Hollywood and it's 100 feet tall. There is all kinds of great Holiday themed happening there like the water show set to Christmas music, tree lighting ceremony and visiting Santa in his Christmas gingerbread house.

5) Las Posadas on Olvera Street


There is no place more historically Los Angeles than Olvera Street so if you want authentic Los Angeles Christmas then here is the place and it's always dripping with culture...and great food. Las Posadas is a fun street event where kids march into stores (Posadas) dressed as shepherds, angels and other Christmasy biblical characters and ask to be admitted via song then they are denied entry by the owner via song in a back and forth until they are finally allowed in and given champurrado (a hot beverage) and pan dulce (sweet bread). It's very fun to watch or you can join them. They sing and dance and hit piñatas. All are very welcome here.






Top 5 Christmas Events in Los Angeles

Marina Del Rey Boat Parade

Fisherman's Village , Los Angeles Saturday December 12 2015

If you love the peace of the ocean and the bright lights of Christmas then this delightful boat parade is the perfect event for a romantic evening or a family get together. Bring a thermos of hot cocoa and a blanket.

Hollywood Christmas Parade

Various locations in Los Angeles Sunday November 29 2015

Christmas Parade Hollywood Style with bands, floats, horses and B list celebrities. Good fun to meet friends at or bring the kids. All proceeds go to Toys for Tots.

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

Downtown Thursday December 24 2015

This is one of LA's biggest holiday shows with more than 20 choirs, dance troupes and bands of all types all parts of the city. A celebration of LA's multicultural holidays with acts like an all-female mariachi ensemble to a Korean dance troupe. It also happens to be 3 hours of free entertainment.


The Nutcracker - The Los Angeles Ballet

Multiple venues Saturday December 5 2015 - Sunday December 27 2015

Los Angeles is known for the hip and now but it is also known for it's peak level of performing arts. Enjoy this Holiday classic with one of the best productions in the country. It will warm your heart and leave you energized.



Egyptian and Aero Theatres Hollywood & Santa Monica Wed, Dec 16, 2015 - Sat, Dec 26, 2015

Go see a holiday classic in the big theaters. The Egyptian will be showing a wide selection during the final weeks of December. I suggest Elf, a very funny film that is still family friendly and will get you in the right mood.


Get out there and make some memories!





Home for the Holidays

My favorite things about the Holidays is having family and friends over to my place, having delicious meals, drinking wine by the fireplace or hanging out in the backyard California Christmas style.Here are my top picks for holiday entertainment spaces. 

All of these homes are currently for sale in Los Angeles.


A formal dining room is a classic way to celebrate in an intimate and elegant setting. The chandelier is an elegant touch that provides an ambient light that makes the food taste better and the guests more attractive


Another great location for Holiday dining. Is the great outdoors. We are blessed in California to have temperate weather around. So let's take advantage of it. This large grassy area is perfect for a game of croquet, or even a full on soccer match! We are not be able to make snow men but we can make wonderful memories.

No matter what winter Holiday you celebrate a nice fireplace will make everything more comfortable. Some of my best memories are curled up in front of the fire with a warm hot chocolate conversing with loved ones.


A great kitchen makes preparing a great meal fun. Get the kids involved, have grandma mix the sauce. With this gorgeous large kitchen you can have half the party in here helping you prepare the meal. I always love it when part of the party is all of us making dinner together.


What I always want to do once I have had too much to eat is…absolutely nothing. Wouldn’t it be nice to retire with the fam to this comfortable movie room and watch a Christmas classic?! 

All of these homes are currently available to tour. Give me a call me for more details and to arrange a visit. No matter what area you live in; I will find the right home for you. Happy Holidays!

Welcome to Frogtown

Damon Robinson www.nomadlosangeles.com

Frogtown may sound like a village in a muppet movie but is actually a refreshing neighborhood just east of Silverlake. The best way to describe Frogtown is a rare place in Los Angeles where a sense of community still exists and peace and quiet can be found.

frogtown welcome.jpg

The town got it’s name because it sits along the Los Angeles river. Back when the river actually had a grassy bank and fish; it also had frogs, lots of frogs. a 3.2 million dollar revitalization effort is years into the work of transforming the river back to it’s once vibrant state. Now the Glendale Narrows is a great spot to go fishing, kayaking and bird watching, you may even see a deer, egret or a beaver.

Frogtown’s official name is Elysian Valley. You won’t find fancy coffee shops, bars or grocery stores. What you will find is ice-cream vendors selling nachos, yard sales and a healthy neighborhood watch. The residents like it this way.

Frogtown is a great buy if you are in the market for a home. Not only because of the reasons above but because of the value and projected value. As the L.A. River becomes more and more walk able and beautiful the property value will rise. New businesses are attracted to the area and the environment is ripe for Real Estate appreciation. 

If you are starting your home search I recommend touring the neighborhood. Get a bite to eat at the Frog Spot a cafe on the riverfront, go visit the Nomad Art Compound for a one of a kind experience, I can’t really describe it properly but you can go swimming, see live music, buy books, even rent a bedroom, then go kayaking or walk along the river.



If you do decide to move to Frogtown, get to know the neighbors. A lot of them have been living there since the ‘60s or grew up there with their parents and really care about the neighborhood. It is an insular community and it is important to respect the culture that makes the area unique and add to it in your own way.

If you are interested in opportunities to purchase property in Frogtown, contact me directly. Now that the secrets out about this unique spot there are becoming more opprotunities to live the Frogtown life.


7 ways to prepare for that big wet baby: El Niño

The National Weather Service has stated that there is a greater-than-90 percent chance that El Niño will arrive in full force during the 2015-16 winter. Side note: The California graduation rate average is 80%. So, there is a greater chance that El Niño will come our way than your kid is likely to graduate high school. By average of course, I am sure your kid is a genius.

The biggest threat is a mudslide and this is a very real threat for Los Angeles which has many areas with varied elevation. The National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center is warning that this year’s El Niño could be as costly and devastating as the one that drenched California in 1997-98. Back then, devastating storms caused $550 million dollars in damages.

Here are some things you can do to prepare your home


1) Do a property check

Clear out drains, rain gutters and downspouts of debris; better yet, hire the neighbor kid to clear them out for you. Clearing this out will save the rest of your home from rot and damage. 

2) Check your roof

If you want to do it right, hire a roof inspector to make sure your home can weather the storm. If you want to inspect yourself, look for loose tiles or shingles. Are the valleys where the roof angles meet clear of leaves and debris?

3) Use the rain to your advantage

You can take advantage of El Niño by collecting rain in barrels or a sump feeder system. That’s when a buried 55-gallon drum collects water from drainage systems and distributes the water through connected perforated flexible drain or EZ Flow pipes. You can then regulate the water that is on your property very effectively and use the rain instead of wasting it down the drain. Now you are drought tolerant and flood tolerant. 2 big gold stars for you.

4) Get flood insurance

If you already have it, check your policy to make sure you have enough coverage

5) Save your valuables

Make copies of all your important documents and make sure the originals are stored safely somewhere outside of your home (like a safe deposit box)

6) Document your possessions 

Take photos of your possessions (furniture, collectibles, electronics) and store the pictures along with your important documents outside of your home. This way you have definite proof for recovery insurance.

7) Prepare emergency provisions

Buy 20 cartons of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and as many In-N-Out double doubles that will fit in your freezer. No, I am just kidding. Since electric power may be affected, store up plenty of flashlight batteries and if you are on a well or booster pump, store several gallons of bottled water. Also store some "long life" non- refrigerated provisions. This is for the worst case scenario of course but that is what being prepared is all about.

Once you are prepared you can relax and enjoy the weather! 

If you have any other tips please leave a message below.

I also like this picture of a frog but I didn't know where to put it so here it is at the end.

Jill's Halloween in L.A. - 2015 Edition

Halloween is fast approaching so make the most of it and get out there and have some fun! Here are my list of places to visit in L.A. this year.


Tapia Brothers Corn Maze

Still need to pick out a pumpkin? Great, go see Tapia Brothers. Already got your pumpkin? Great, go see them anyways because the corn maze here is amazing.

Bring your A game because you are going to get lost in over an acre of maze. To guide you; you will receive a map and a sheet full of trivia questions. Search the maze for the answers and once you solve the maze you can enter your answers in a drawing for a chance to win $100. While you are there check out the farmers’ market, roasted corn stand, kids play area, bounce houses, wagon hay ride, tractor-pulled train and pony rides. 

Address: 5251 Hayvenhurst Avenue, Van Nuys (Yes, I know it's a bit North, but if you want a quality corn maze you are going to need to venture out a bit.)


Creep - Haunted House

If you are the type who loves a haunted house then I suggest Creep in downtown LA. It is in an abandoned warehouse in the Arts District. The horror house is based on a quote by the writer Walter Jon Williams. “I’m not afraid of werewolves or vampires or haunted hotels. I’m afraid of what real human beings do to other real human beings.” Oooh! That’s chilling! This is an immersive and interactive haunted house so be ready for anything, be expected to walk, run, crawl and hide in dark rooms

Address: 718 E. JACKSON ST. LOS ANGELES, CA 90012



Halloween Movie Night

What’s better than watching Beetlejuice on Halloween? I will tell you, watching Beetlejuice on Halloween with a bunch of other fun people on a roof top on Hollywood Blvd! 

This is no ordinary outdoor movie this is the Rooftop Film Club. It is snazzy, comfortable and you can buy snacks and alcohol. You will sit on top of the Montálban Theatre on Vine with a beautiful city view. You don't need to bring anything. Rooftop Film Club sets up rows of lawn chairs on the roof and blankets are available for a cozy experience. You will also get a set of headphones so you so you can still hear the movie very well. They basically thought of everything. You live in LA and it’s 2015 it’s time to check out an evolved movie going experience. Beetlejuice! (3 times the charm).


Wanna get waaaayyy out there?

Here is airbnb’s list of haunted digs that you can rent for the Halloween season. I think it’s fun just to see the crazy places you can go. These are spread all over the world so please tell me if you actually go to one. 200 adventure points will be awarded to you.



Have fun and stay safe!

Frank Gehry vs. The L.A. River

Los Angeles has always been an architect’s dream. An open and ever expanding canvas and investors with the money to build on it. Just drive through the windy broken streets of Laurel Canyon and you will see the mismatched fantasies of innumerable architects who played expensive jazz through the desert hills. But there are a few stars that shine brighter and longer than the rest. These architects are given the power to shape the city. Frank Gehry is one of those few that has earned the right to put his stamp on Los Angeles.

You probably know one of his most famous buildings the Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles. What you may not know is that he is famous for some of the most artistic building designs in the world. Check out the Hotel Marqués de Riscal in Elciego Spain and the Louis Vitton Foundation building in Paris. He just finished designing the new Facebook Headquarters in Palo Alto California and now he turns his focus back to his resident city Los Angeles.

His name is attached to multiple projects in Los Angeles that are currently in various stages of development. But what is most interesting to me at this very moment is an ambitious project to revamp the LA River. You may not have even known that LA has a river or if you do then you know that it is an unsightly cement pit with a small trickle of a river running down its center. 

Gehry’s vision is to see the river repurposed into a water reclamation center that recycles the water into a useable resource for the city.  This is beyond what was asked of him by a nonprofit the Los Angeles River Revitalization Corporation (LA River Corp) created by the city to improve the river corridor and make it an "attractive outdoor destination. While Gehry may not be an adept hydrology engineer, but with his fame in the architect world and two firms that he is the head of he will be able to assemble the best of the best to get the job done.

While there are many architects who are more experienced in this kind of work, Gehry brings a personal touch to the project. He understand the history of the place and what it means to Californians because he is a long time resident.


In the late 1930s, the Army Corps of Engineers covered the bed and banks of the river in concrete, essentially transforming it into a canal. Its primary function is to direct stormwater to the Pacific Ocean to help prevent flooding in LA. Over the years the river has degraded into a source of "industrial and residential discharge.”

But Gehry isn’t going to start from scratch. "I don't see tearing out the concrete," Gehry said. "It's an architectural feature, and I can see ways of incorporating it into what we're doing.” This type of thinking is why he was chosen. He is a Californian at heart. He got his start designing his own home in Santa Monica. He understands that in LA even our broken down and unsightly landmarks are still OUR landmarks. 

The river has been embraced by the city for what it is a: Dystopian landscape desirable to teens and rebels with motorcycles and fast cars. Here is a list of famous films that featured the LA River. The Grease climactic car race, the Ryan Gosling Drive film also a car ride through the river andT-1000 chases John Connor on his motorcycle down the empty cement river in Terminator 2. There are many more and almost all are a car chase scene.

Hopefully when the revitalization effort is complete the river will be a destination where families can go together for park recreation and new types of films can be shot there like a Jennifer Aniston rom-com but still with a chase scene just now it is through a wooded forest by a stream instead.

Los Angeles River Revitalization Master Plan 2007

Interest rates: We see the wave before it crashes

It is my job to keep my clients informed of market conditions. I feel strongly about all of the topics that I write on, however, this one is particularly important as it has vast ramifications for the American homebuyers future and the changes will take place this year.

On September 17th we will all find out if there will be a mad scramble to buy up all the Real Estate or the housing market will still have time before the other shoe finally drops. This is the day the Federal Reserve will announce its decision on the future of US interest rates. This will mark the anniversary (a not so merry one) of when the Lehman Brothers meltdown happened 7 years ago. This was the event that sparked the great recession and drove the interest rates down. 


The Fed has not raised rates at all since 2006. The rates have been kept low mainly in order to incentivize home buyers to purchase to bring back the housing market and improve the economy as a whole. Now the economy has seen significant growth and the Fed sees that it is time to bring the interest rates back up to where they should be.


So how much of an increase in the interest rates are we talking about?


Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen is the woman with her finger on the button. “If we wait longer, it certainly could mean that when we begin to raise rates we might have to do so more rapidly,” Ms. Yellen said in response to a lawmaker’s question. “An advantage to beginning a little bit earlier is that we might have a more gradual path of rate increases.” A gradual path, she added, was a prudent approach. Fannie Mae’s (one of the largest lenders in the nation) predicts rates will rise by 30 basis points—or 0.3%—by the end of this year. This means that mortgage rates this year could settle at 4% for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. So she is not going to push the interest rates up to 6% anytime soon.

To put this into perspective; let’s say you borrow $500,000 over a 30 year period from the bank to finance your home purchase. Right now you might get an interest rate of around 3.7% this means at the end of your repayment you would pay $328,509 in interest. At the end of the year if interest rates go up as projected to 4% at the end of repayment you would pay $359,347. Thats an extra $30,838 that the buyer will have to pay if they wait until 2016 to purchase.


Buy a house? or buy a house and get a Mercedes-Benz CLA to go with it for the exact same price.

Ms. Yellen indicated she was not interested in waiting until 2016 to raise the rate. Market Analysts are showing that the overall market is growing at an annual pace between 2.5% and 3% in the second and third quarters. Meantime, the job market continues to improve, driving the U.S. unemployment rate down to 5.3% in June.

I do not want to seem like the boy who cried wolf so I really researched this. It is my duty to inform my clients of the market and what it means for them. I hope you found this useful and will use it to make the best decisions for you and your family.


Here are some links to more information on these recent happenings and the forecasts of whats to come.






Rose Tarlow: Raising the bar for California Interior Design

Los Angeles is a melting pot of many eclectic styles from around the world. It takes a masterful eye to bring those styles together to make something elegant and iconic. Rose Tarlow is a Los Angeles native son, strike that, daughter who got her professional start on the mean streets of Melrose and now makes the Architectural Digest 100 list and designs for stars like Oprah, David Geffen and Barbara Walters.

er shop on Melrose started in 1976, became known as the place to go for one of a kind antiques hand picked from her many trips around the world. Tarlow favors pieces with age and texture. Her rooms have a few impactful pieces with a neutral and spare style.

er design philosophy grew out of her experience, “striving to find one piece in each shipment that would give character to the whole collection —one piece with such singular style that it could inspire a room. When she began designing her own furniture a few years later, she sought to create a collection where every piece was that special piece.”



Check out her Melrose House Collection for inspiration.


5 great spots in Hancock Park

If Los Angeles is a big family then Hancock Park is Hollywood’s cool older cousin. So here are 5 of the spots that make Hancock Park great.

Larchmont Village Wine, Spirits & Cheese

This place should really just be called “Sandwich” because that is what is great here. Your first time? Go for the homemade tuna salad or the imported Italian Prosciutto and get there early for lunch because this place is no secret and it gets busy.



Beverly Cinema

When you live in LA you either are a movie buff or you will soon become one. This is where you go to get your education. Let’s call it a movie theatre for a refined palette. All movies are second run 35 mm or 16 mm and handpicked for there epic awesomeness. You can see double features, pulp classics and there are even kid friendly matinees. All the films shown here are from the private collection of one Hollywood’s most famous Director’s. Who? I will give you a hint, he likes Kung-fu, Spaghetti Westerns and his name rhymes with "Mint and Pear Burrito."



Mozza Osteria

Ok so you just finished watching a film with your date and now you want to really surprise them with some fancy fine dining. Take them to Mozza. Hopefully you only made it seem spur of the moment and actually made reservations or else you will be taking your food 2-go from their less romantic but equally awesome next door quick kitchen. Mozza is high end Italian.  In the center of the restaurant is a marble slab where chefs serve up small tapas style plates of mozzarella, ricotta and burrata mixed with all kinds of delicacies from honey and walnuts to caviar. But save room for the Duck Al Mattone with pear mustard so your tastebuds can dance the Tarantella on your tongue. The restaurant was created by celebrity chefs Mario Batali, Joe Bastianich and Nancy Silverton so you know you are in good hands.



Liberation Yoga

What makes this Yoga studio better than all of the others? The community. People actually remember your name here. The owners Christine and Gary are sweethearts and put a lot of effort into their teachers, the space and the students. There are all types of classes here from beginner to advanced, family, toddler, pre-natal, they even have a class for Parkinson’s patients.



Nick Metropolis Furniture

Hollywood is cheesy and one of a kind. Shouldn’t your house be the same way? Of course I love my Roche Bobois inspired living room but sometimes you need a conversation piece. Casually install the red phone booth from Dr. Who in your office, how about a real carousel horse in your daughters room, or a giant dinosaur in the backyard? If you have never thought of it, never needed it and maybe it was in a movie then you can find it at Nick Metropolis’.


There you have it. Now get out there and explore!