Los Angeles City Guide

by Jose Marc Castro on August 19, 2008

USflagIMAGE200Los Angeles is one of those cities with a place amongst the top urban centers of the world. Los Angeles is one of the world’s centers for business, international trade, entertainment, culture, media, fashion, science, technology and education. Blessed in equal measure by stunning natural attractions as well as sprawling ultra-modern cityscapes, Los Angeles in many ways epitomizes the “American Dream”. Home to the world famous capital of the film industry–Hollywood–Los Angeles is absolutely steeped in culture, from the many fine art museums to the classic and modern art galleries, to the theaters and concert halls, it seems that there is very little that the city does not offer.

In light of the current worldwide crisis, the golden dream has been long gone, as stated in a post at the America Expat Forum last July 14, 2009:

California is on the verge of bankruptcy….. slightly wrong ! California IS in Bankruptcy.

Residential Places in Los Angeles

Unfortunately, residential property in Los Angeles is somewhat scarce, and when you do find them they tend to be expensive. What can you expect after all from a city where you can find almost everything that you could possibly want or need, often within a few miles of each other? In any case, there are residential properties available, you just have to keep your eyes open and act fast when they are listed.

The city of Los Angeles was divided into areas namely Downtown Los Angeles, Northeast, Eastside, Harbor Area, Hollywood, Wilshire, West Side, San Fernando and Crescenta Valley. If you would like to live near the beach, some of the areas worth considering are Santa Monica and The South Bay, particularly the Torrance, Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach areas. The West Los Angeles area is a good choice if you want to be in close walking distance to many shops and cultural centers, although the property prices on the Eastside will be considerably cheaper. Other well-known neighborhoods include Watts, Koreatown, Westwood, Bel Air, Hollywood Hills, Hancock Park, Pacific Palisades, Century City and Brentwood.

Hospitals and Universities of Los Angeles

As you can expect from such a large urban center, there are many excellent health care establishments in Los Angeles. Among the top hospitals in the city are the Good Samaritan Hospital at Wilshire Boulevard, the California Hospital Med Center at South Grand Avenue, East LA Doctors Hospital at Whittier Boulevard, the Los Angeles Community Hospital at East Olympic Boulevard, the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles at West Sunset Boulevard, and the Los Angeles Doctors Hospital at South Western Avenue.

Educational Institutions

There are three public universities located within the Los Angeles city limits and several more private colleges. The public universities are the California State University Los Angeles or CSULA, California State University Northridge or CSUN, and University of California Los Angeles or UCLA.

Some of the private colleges in the city are the American Film Institute Conservatory, The American Musical and Dramatic Academy – Los Angeles campus, the American Jewish University, the Antioch University – Los Angeles campus, Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising – Los Angeles campus or FIDM, the Art Center College of Design, Los Angeles Film School, the Otis College of Art and Design, the Southern California Institute of Architecture, the University of Southern California or USC and Woodbury University.

Commercial Places in Los Angeles

For food lovers of all persuasions, Los Angeles has every type of food establishment that you could possibly imagine–and a lot more that simply defies imagination. The city has an absolute wealth of different types of cuisine, which is reflective of the vast array of people from around the world who have made their home here. Chinese food is of course one of the most popular culinary choices anywhere you go, and it is particularly well represented in the city by Yang Chow. The slippery shrimp and spicy green beans are some of the most popular items on the extensive menu.

Pink’s Famous Chili Dogs is a bit of an institution in the city, and it is easy to see why! A huge variety of Hot Dogs, Burgers and Burritos make this place a favorite of celebrities as well as the average citizen. Be prepared to stand in line for a while; Pink’s is that popular. However, the food–when it eventually gets there–will surely be worth the wait!

Service Establishments of Los Angeles

Being one of the major urban centers of the world, Los Angeles has a wide range of service providers for virtually every type of service that you can think of. For electricity and water supply needs, you can contact the Department of Water & Power or any one of the number of smaller resellers in the city. The Department of Water & Power can be found at 1394 Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025 and you can call them at (213) 367-4211. You can also check out their website at http://www.ladwp.com for more information. Some other companies that you can call for electricity connection services are USA Electrical Services at North Hollywood, All-Power Electric CO at Virginia Avenue, and Arco Electric CO at Washington Boulevard, Culver City. For water connection services, aside from the aforementioned Department of Water & Power, you can also contact the California Water Service Company at Sheila Street, Commerce, the De Luxer Water Co., the Metropolitan Water District at North Alameda Street, and the Southwest Water CO at South Grand Avenue.

Embassies in Los Angeles

For consular assistance while you are in Los Angeles, you can either contact the office of the British Consulate-General right in the city or you can direct your inquiries to the British Embassy in Washington D.C. The British Consulate-General’s office can be reached at 11766 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1200, and you can call them at (310) 481 0031 and at (310) 481 2900 for Visa related inquiries. You can also fax them at (310) 481 2960 and (310) 481 2961 for Visa related concerns. You can also email them at the following addresses: [email protected] for commercial interests, [email protected] for consular assistance, [email protected] for investment opportunities, and [email protected] for PP&PA. Office hours are from Monday to Friday, 0830 to 1700 local time. The British Embassy can be reached at 3100 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC 20008. Their telephone numbers are (1) (202) 588 6500 for the embassy, (1) (202) 588 7800 for consular assistance, and (1) (202) 588 7830 for the British Council. You can also fax them at (1) (202) 588 7870 for chancery, (1) (202) 588 7866 for management related concerns, (1) (202) 588 7901 for UKTI, and (1) (202) 588 7850 for consular assistance. Office hours are from Monday to Friday, 0900 to 1730 local time.

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