Day 2: Touring downtown LA

Cafe 50

This morning we met our son Tom at his place of work. After checking out the place and meeting some of his fellow artisans, we went to Cafe 50 for lunch. This is a quaint retro eatery that has walls covered in 50s memorabilia. The menu was typical of 50’s dinner, but the back page listed about 40 different milkshakes. Dennis and Tom both had a strawberry shake for dessert. The waiter placed their cherry-topped beverage on the table and then returned with what was left in the blender. With such an ample serving, the almost waddled out the door.

We took our first LA metro ride to downtown LA. Tom really knows the city and took us to some interesting spots Here are some of the things we saw.


City Hall, built in 1928, is often seen in movies.

Atrium at the LA Public Library

The LA public library serves the largest population of any publicly funded library system in the United States. The Tom Bradley Wing contains a number of art projects commissioned by the Department of Cultural Affairs. In the atrium, three massive chandeliers created by Therman Statom hang from the ceiling Eighteen feet in diameter and brightly colored they are fun to look down on from the third floor.

The building is a major architectural landmark in downtown LA.  It was originally built 1926. In 1993, the Tom Bradley addition was added. Though there are free docent tours of the building and its art, we did it on our own.

We also visited the many parks in the area, the Bradbury Building and Union Station. We saw the country’s shortest, Angels Flight— that runs up and down the hill between Hill and Olive streets. It does not run often, but many of you may recognize it from the movie, LA LA Land.

After traipsing around in downtown LA, we stopped at the Grand Central Market for a quenching brew. This emporium has hosted food vendors & florists, plus game nights, movies & other events, since 1917. We stopped at the Golden Road and had a Back Home Stout. The beer was dark with a strong taste of hops and molasses. It also had an APV of 11.25%. Wow!


La Placita Church is one of the original Catholic churches in downtown LA

Enjoying a refreshing beer at the Central Market

Frank Gehry-designed the Disney Concert Hall (on left) with striking steel architecture & pristine acoustics.Note the mountains in the background.

Victor Clothing Company mural depicts Anthony Quinn in the 1964 movie “Zorba the Greek.” It was painted on the side of the Victor Clothing Building in 1985 by Eloy Torrez and was recently restored.

So true, of Dennis towards me.


About The Author

Jane V. Blanchard

I am an award-winning author of the "Woman On Her Way" book series, writing about my travel adventures. For more information on the books, please visit I started the "Woman On Her Way" travel blog in 2013 to share my experiences as I explored 13 countries with my husband, traveling by ship, foot, bike, bus, train, and plane. Dennis and I continue to make memories and hope you will enjoy following along.

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