Holidays; they're not just about cocktails and sun lounges. Or at least, they don't have to be. RUSSH spoke with Vie Active founder and Venice, L.A., local, Noa Ries, to find out her most-loved health haunts the City of Angels.
It’s an obvious choice but as it’s not available in Australia and it really is a unique, cult-like experience of synchronized dancing on a bike with weights to amazing music. Additionally, the super motivating, existential talk from the instructors makes it a pretty incredible mind-body experience.
Body By Simone
Even though I am completely uncoordinated, I am absolutely obsessed with this dance/cardio class. I’ve never found a workout before that has me dripping with sweat and smiling from ear to ear from the moment I start to the very end. I try to do double classes on the weekends whenever possible… it’s that good!
Box N Burn
This is a total spit and sawdust, gritty gym vibe. It’s definitely not your typical glamorous L.A. scene but I love that everyone in the class is there simply to get the job done. It’s an awesome workout. I also love that there’s no time for your mind to wander - you are concentrating on the instructors combinations of hook, jab, right, left - perfect to quiet my hummingbird brain.
One of the things I love so much about L.A., and that I was also totally surprised by, is how many outdoor activities are available. There are so many amazing hikes trails. A few of my favourites are; Will Rogers Park - super close to Santa Monica, Munsch nature trail in Topanga Canyon - like a scene from the sound of music with rolling hills and wild flowers, Runyon Canyon - though it’s quite busy and a bit of a scene, and Griffith Park - for the obligatory Hollywood sign view.
I live and work in Venice and so I can ride my bike pretty much everywhere I need to go. You can ride your bike for hours along the coast line on super safe bike-only paths, so on the weekends we often take our kids on the back of our bikes up to Pacific Palisades or Manhattan Beach.
You can’t beat Gjelina on Abbot Kinney. The roasted cauliflower is on another level. If you’re just after takeout, GTA (Gjelina Take Away) is just next door and a great spot for a nut milk cortado and chia pudding. They’ve also recently opened Gjusta, which is a bakery/café around the corner - Sunset and Hampton. The fermented veggie bowl and choc-avo mousse are my favourites.
There is no shortage of juice and smoothie options around L.A. Some of the most popular and easy to find are Pressed Juice and Juice Served Here. My favourite is Café Beaming. Their “Beam Me Up” is the best smoothie I have ever had.
There are so many options for chic vegan food in L.A. Café Gratitude in Venice is what I would call “Hamptons chic vegan” - white, Hamptons-style, airy interiors. MAKE Plant food & Wine is fine dining-style, raw food and very chic. Gracias Madre is vegan Mexican. True Food Kitchen I went to their Newport Beach location last year and was so excited when they opened up a Santa Monica outpost earlier this year. The edamame dumplings are amazing and they have an awesome selection of “healthish” cocktails!