Upon our triumphant in-person return to Los Angeles in December 2021 to celebrate our annual GT Tested Reader Survey awards, the FXExpress Publications, Inc. team also revisited one of our favorite city hot spots: Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills for dinner at the on-site Riviera 31 bar lounge.
The list of accolades for Riviera 31 is long, including being a favorite of celebrities and other L.A. elite: Best Hotel Bar in West Hollywood by WEHOville; among the 10 hottest spots in Los Angeles to go out, by USA TODAY; and more. Visitors find themselves surrounded by sensual Baroque décor, cozy ruby red and blue velvet sofas, a gold Rococo ceiling and a hint of Roaring Twenties Hollywood glamour amid the luxurious French flair of the Sofitel. We started our evening with refreshing cocktails and delicious tray- passed items including Wagyu sliders with aged white Cheddar and caramelized onion spread, lump crab cakes, arancini with truffle and Grana Padano, and a chicken salad tartlet lush with dried cranberries and green apple.
For our three-course dinner, we moved to a private dining room off the Esterel breakfast restaurant’s main space. Our sumptuous dinner menu reflected the true love letter to Los Angeles and its diversity of people, cultures, tastes and influences that Chef David Macias puts into every one of his curated dishes. The menu and food offerings at the property reflect his own life and culinary path, which took him from Los Angeles’ South Bay to multiple luxury hotels in the city.
We enjoyed experiencing his ode to the tastes of Los Angeles in our handcrafted menu which began with a starter of roasted autumn squash caprese featuring burrata cheese, roasted pepitas, basil and golden balsamic. I opted for the roasted cauliflower entrée boasting fromage blanc, toasted pine nuts and Bloomsdale spinach, while my colleagues selected from other options including a braised lamb shank with roasted poblano pepper grits, aged Cheddar, sweet onion and a citrus gremolata; or crisp black cod accompanied by caramelized turnip, candied bacon, roasted fennel and sauce verte. For a sweet finish to an excellent night, we enjoyed a spiced, poached pear finished with dulce de leche, French toast and chocolate crumble.
Consider Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, Riviera 31 or any of the hotel’s other venues, for any of your event needs.
Riviera 31 also hosts an exceptional live entertainment program. Following our meal, we found our reserved table for Jazz Night, offered every Monday night and dubbed “the place to be and to be seen, where the unexpected can happen.” Cello maestro Ryan Cross and his band bring the best of jazz and blues. Surprise performances from special guests frequently materialize; in the past, Stevie Wonder, Craig Robinson and Dan Reynolds (frontman of Imagine Dragons) joined in to sing and enjoy the best jazz night in Los Angeles. On Wednesdays, it’s time to dance! Angelo Pagan and his band deliver Cuban and Puerto Rican rhythms to Salsa Night, hosted by Gabriela Lopez. Attendees may find themselves dancing or singing next to the likes of Marc Anthony or celebrity dancers like Maksim Chmerkovskiy.
Visit Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills and Riviera 31 this spring for seasonal specialties including carnitas bao, pork saltimbocca, fried oysters, white mushroom pizza and bread pudding, alongside cocktails like the Elder Fitzgerald composed of Maker’s Mark, St. Germain, passionfruit syrup and lemon juice; and the Peach Julip, featuring Bulleit Whiskey, Liquid Alchemist Peach Syrup, muddled mint and sugar.
First opened in 1742 by George William Wilton, a seller of oysters, shrimp and cockles near Haymarket in London, Wiltons continued drawing diners with its delicious food for more than two centuries. This summer, Wiltons celebrates its 280th birthday and its place as one of London’s most beloved fine-dining establishments with a unique dining experience.
Start planning that long-awaited trip to the island of Ireland. With all travel restrictions now lifted, there has never been a better time to visit.
Resting on the edge of Reykjavik’s Old Harbour next to the soaring, sparkling glass edifice of Harpa concert hall and conference center, the brand-new Reykjavik EDITION brings a new level of swish lodging to Iceland’s capital city. Steps from Laugavegur — the city’s main shopping street — and an easy walk to a wide selection of museums, restaurants and cafés, the newly opened hotel delivers high on luxury and service in a location ideal for becoming fully engaged in the energy of this spirited capital city.
Recently, more than 345 million people globally watched OMNIYAT light up the sky for the launch of AVA at Palm Jumeirah, Dorchester Collection, Dubai thanks to more than 500 drones. Now, OMNIYAT will once again illuminate the sky with one light to signify the groundbreaking of AVA at Palm Jumeirah Dorchester Collection, Dubai.
ISN’T IT TIME? It's time to treat yourself to the vacation you deserve, and Celebrity Cruises® offers the perfect escapes. With an award-winning fleet of ships that sail to more than 300 destinations around the world, Celebrity will take you almost anywhere you want to go in style. Enjoy stunning staterooms and suites, culinary experiences imagined by Michelin-starred chefs and intuitive service. Celebrity makes sure your vacation is effortless from the start, which is why drinks, WiFi and tips are Always IncludedSM on every sailing.
In time for summer, the recently opened Palacio Provincial hotel in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, launched a new exploration-driven offer. The Sip & Savory Summer offer includes a mixology tour for two adults, a sweet or savory welcome amenity and a hotel-branded gift.
Considering an autumnal adventure or Thanksgiving trip this year? Well, with walkable cities, cozy pubs and lots of seasonal festivals, the island of Ireland is calling. And if you need more reasons to Press the Green Button and go, take a look and see what awaits you on the Emerald Isle …
Monticello, New York, population 6,400, is an old Catskill town in Sullivan County that thrived from the 1950s–70s, with hundreds of country resorts. Although the town lies just a two-hour drive from Manhattan's cultural attractions, Monticello always seemed light years away in terms of cultural ambiance.