Life in LA

Things to Do

Los Angeles is a large diverse city with a myriad of cultural and recreational opportunities.  In a single day, you can enjoy coffee and a trip down the ski slopes of Big Bear and dinner by the beach in Malibu! 

Outdoor Activities and Sporting Events: 


The Pacific Coast beaches, from Malibu to Huntington Beach (Surf City USA), boast world-class surfing and beach volleyball as well as sailing, paddle boarding and sunbathing.  

Biking and hiking trails are abundant in Los Angeles, particularly in Griffith Park (also home to the Hollywood Bowl and the famous Griffith Observatory), as well as in the nearby Santa Monica and San Gabriel Mountains.  The San Gabriel Mountains are also home to ski resorts and rock climbing. 

Sports enthusiasts can enjoy watching live games in every major sport as Los Angeles is home to the Dodgers, Lakers, Clippers, Galaxy and Rams franchises.  College sports also abound with plenty of opportunities to support our USC Trojans!

Cultural Activities and Museums:

Angelenos have access to fantastic and diverse cultural opportunities, many of which are low cost or free!

Los Angeles is home to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the largest museum in the western United States.  The free Broad Museum recently opened with an extensive collection of more than 2,000 contemporary pieces including Yayoi Kusama’s “Infinity Mirrored Room.”  The Getty in West LA and the Getty Villa in Malibu also offer free admission, impressive permanent collections and beautiful views of the city and coast.  The Arts District near the hospital has eclectic restaurants, bars, galleries and shops.  Theater lovers can enjoy shows at the Pantages Theatre and many smaller venues that feature touring Broadway productions.  Los Angeles is also a live music destination with open air shows at the famous Hollywood Bowl in warmer months as well as the LA Philharmonic performing downtown at the Walt Disney Concert Hall.  The Staples Center and Nokia Theater feature larger concert acts and performances.

Restaurants and Food:

LA is a world-class city for food with every possible ethnic cuisine and food trucks galore!  From cheap food on the go to multi-course special occasions, there are endless possibilities.  LA’s Restaurant Week offers discount prices at high end restaurants and can’t be missed.  There are also farmer’s markets in many neighborhoods with local fresh produce, meats, cheeses and homemade goods.

Places to Live

Our residents live in a variety of locales, some of the most common areas include:

Los Feliz/Silverlake/Echo Park: Located 15 minutes north of the hospital, these “hipster” or bohemian neighborhoods are walkable with many restraint and small shops.  Price range is variable and most apartments are housed in smaller buildings.  Griffith Park and the Silverlake reservoir are nearby for hiking, running or walking a pet.

Pasadena/South Pasadena: Located 20 minutes northeast of the hospital.  These cities feature quieter tree-lined streets and great schools for those with families.  The Old Town area features walkable restaurants and shops.  Prices are moderate to expensive, although deals can be found. 

Monterey Hills/Highland Park: Located 10-15 minutes east of the hospital, a very popular spot for medical students.  Prices are lower than adjacent Pasadena and the commute is shorter but less restaurants and shops are within walkable distance.  There are several gated condo communities atop a hill with features including pools, spas and laundry facilities generally in each unit. Highland Park is at the bottom of the hill and features more eclectic and cheaper apartments in an up and coming community.

Alhambra: Located 15-20 minutes southeast of the hospital.  In the heart of the San Gabriel Valley and home to fantastic Asian cuisine including Dim Sum!  Less expensive than nearby Pasadena with a small town feel. 

Downtown/Arts District/Little Tokyo: Downtown is undergoing a great residential building boom with many new high rise buildings featuring every amenity, but expect to pay higher prices. These areas are metro accessible for those who desire an urban city experience.  Restaurants, bars and cultural experiences are abundant.  

Westside: Santa Monica/Venice/Westwood/Beach Cities: Further from the hospital but some residents find that living near the beach is worth the drive (30 minutes without traffic but an hour or more with traffic).  Rents rise closer to the coast. These cities feature a laid-back beach lifestyle, plenty of restaurants and water focused outdoor activities including surfing, biking along the beach and even sailing in Marina Del Rey.