Sunset at Santa Monica Pier

7 Aug

After being bummed that we couldn’t make it to his sister’s wine tasting birthday celebration in Temecula, I begged Karl to take me somewhere, anywhere because I’d been stressed out at work the whole week and needed a release.  Besides, it was such a beautiful day to waste being cooped up at home.  He suggested Santa Monica Pier, one of the many iconic parts of Los Angeles that I haven’t really had a chance to explore yet.  Coincidentally, a good friend of mine had given me gift cards to Bloomingdale’s at the newly opened Santa Monica Place.  What girl can resist that?  It’s funny because every time I think of Bloomingdale’s I always remember the movie “Splash” with Tom Hanks in which the mermaid goes shopping there.  And, ever since I saw “Ironman” I’ve wondered what this place was like.  I thought it would be somewhat similar to the Atlantic City Boardwalk but I was wrong.  The Santa Monica Pier is definitely more tamed.  Don’t ask.  Haha.

First on our mini itinerary was food!  We were starving from all that traffic on the way there.  Then we strolled down to the pier and took in the sights and sounds.  The cool ocean breeze was very relaxing.  Sitting on a bench and watching the sunset with Karl I thought, I can see the Philippines all the way from over here because the skies were so clear.  Finally we ended up at the mall, which was only two blocks away, to check it out.

We enjoyed an early dinner at Il Fornaio Restaurant & Bakery.  Karl’s been here before with colleagues from his previous workplace and wanted me to try it.

Bruschetta al Pomodoro-grilled Il Fornaio ciabatta bread rubbed with garlic, marinated chopped tomatoes, basil and kalamata olives.  Any plate with olives is a winner in my eyes.  Hehehe.  


Pennoni alla Vodka-large pasta tubes with bacon, vodka-cream-tomato sauce and parmesan cheese.  The amount was just right for my tiny tummy.


Good thing I brought my sweater because it was starting to get chilly.


The sunset lighting was beautiful. This rollercoaster was the slowest one we’d ever seen.
When needed, I enjoy adjusting tones and colors on my pictures but amazingly enough many of them in this set didn’t need it at all. 


Karl reading about the history of Santa Monica Pier.  It was a trip seeing how much it had changed and improved over the years.  

There’s talent everywhere on the pier from musicians to sculptors, painters and superhero impersonators.


It must be nice to spend Saturdays fishing and gazing out into the Pacific Ocean.





Talent equals livelihood.

Thought this angle made the edge of the pier look like a ship’s bow.

The pier was more crowded than the beach.

Serenity now…haha.

Tadpole in the sky.

The iconic sign.

Too bad it was closed already.

The new mall, Santa Monica Place, reflects the lifestyle here.  One thing I noticed is that they chose their vendors carefully.  Even their food court has the feel of a fine dining restaurant.  It’s a seamless blend of an outdoor and indoor mall in one.

Her dress is made out of newspapers.

One of the most gorgeous and upscale malls I’ve ever been to in my life.



Coolest interiors ever!  Sewing machines lined up against the glass walls of this clothing store.

Ahhh…Betsy Johnson.  
 
I’ve finally been inside one! Discovered it online. I love their modern designs. It’s like a higher end IKEA.  Stylish yet functional.

Dwell.

Holy cow. $200 jeans. I like how they labeled the styles clearly–boot cut, skinny, etc.

It’s one of those days when I feel incredibly grateful to be in California.  One never runs out of things to do or see.:)  Someday I’d like to take my little cousins here at the pier since it’s such an interesting place for kids.  I talked to one of them earlier and told him I’d seen his favorite character, Spiderman, at the beach and he asked, “For real?” I said, “Yeah.” He giggled like crazy.  

Now I’m ready to face another week of chaos.  

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