Road Trip Update: City of Angels (BH, Mulholland, Hollywood Studios)

I'm currently on a 6,000 kilometre road trip from Vancouver, BC down the Pacific Coast, into California, sideways to Nevada, and then up again through Utah, Idaho, and Washington State. I'm joined by my dad as copilot, and we'll be gone for two weeks. The car we've chosen for the adventure is my Speed Yellow 2000 Porsche 911 GT3 Aerokit Cup.

Jelly about 997's cooling ducts. 
Beverly Hills, Peterson Museum, Rodeo Drive: Happy to be leaving the Santa Monica area, having walked for miles on end through a sea of tourists and freaky people, we arrived at our overnight stay, a last-minute Holiday Inn booking near the LA's Financial District. Sun-kissed and beyond exhaustion, we bravely skipped out on the (non-existent) room service and drove to some open air mall for yet another Italian dinner. I think I had the Chicken Parm. Come to think of it I definitely had the Chicken Parm. Since it was the chicken was the size of a pizza and I still don't want to get even near another Chicken Parm dish for the coming months. Definitely had the Chicken Parm. But there was Blue Moon. Lots of sweet, sweet Blue Moon. Now there's something you don't get tired of. 

The next morning we decided to visit the Peterson Museum. Our first museum of the trip, and to be honest, we were not that excited about it since we didn't quite know what to expect. After all, it was sunny out, so why would we dive into a museum for the better part of a precious day in the City of Angels? But any doubts were quickly washed away when we pulled into the parking lot. About 10 BMW i3's, loads of Porsches including a Mark 2 997 GT3 RS, and various vintage goodness was sprinkled throughout the parking lot. It had me thinking back to my visits to the Zuffenhausen Porsche Museum, and specifically its underground parking where you'll find 959 rally cars and Le Mans racers parked casually amongst rental Volkswagen Polo 1.4 diesels. It was like stumbling upon a hush-hush underground meet up of Cars & Coffee regulars who had finally brought out the good stuff now that the kids in their BRZ's and that dentist in his red 991 Convertible with matching red Sport Techno wheels aren't there. 


Barchetta. Ferrari Enzo's gift to Henry Ford. Priceless
A Hot Rod Legend, Peterson Museum.
Satisfied with our decision to visit the Peterson Museum (parking lot), we then entered the actual Peterson Museum. The lady behind the desk was dressed like a Nascar driver. Odd. But we'll roll with it. She asked us "would you like tickets to the museum, or tickets to the underground vault?" Um… "How much is the vault?" we both asked with a ridiculous smile on our faces. Turns out it wasn't too expensive,… so down we went, with our female tour guide, who looked visibly ready for the Daytona 500. Still odd. The security guard then opened the door that lead to this underground parking lot. We walked in, and all we could see was literally every interesting car every built. I kid you not. This was automotive nirvana. Parked near to the most expensive Ferrari in the world (a one-off Barchetta gifted by Enzo Ferrari to Henry Ford, who then immediately told his designers to replicate it, eventually resulting in the first Ford Thunderbird) was Saddam Hussein's 1978 Mercedes-Benz 600 Landaulet. A beast of a car, that was driven out of the country by an enterprising Iraqi who then sold it to a Jordanian collector. I have quite an affinity for big Benzes, and the fact that you could still see the hood scuff marks of where Saddam's bodyguards used to sit during parade runs just made it that more very special. Parked in the second compartment of the vault was the world's most expensive Rolls-Royce. A one-off 1934 body designed by Belgian coach builders Jonckheere on a 1925 Phantom I. This particular Rolls had trouble being recognized by the factory as a "real Rolls" as the front grille had been racked back for aerodynamic purposes, and a "real Rolls" will and must always feature and upright grille. Those crazy uptight British at Goodwood… LOOK AT THE THING!!! IT'S BEAUTIFUL!!! Anyways. The rest of the visit was awesome. Upstairs they featured a collection of what some of the most influential people in the automotive industry have labelled as "most beautiful cars in the world." From a dark blue Ferrari 250 GT Lusso to a black on red 300SL Gullwing, to an Aston Martin DB4 Zagato and an original GT40, we actually couldn't believe our eyes. We'd never think to see these cars in a lifetime, let alone in one place, under one roof, somewhere in Los Angeles. Fantastic.
London West Hollywood Hotel in Beverly Hills. Not a bad place to unwind.

Mulholland Drive, Coldwater Canyon, Warner Brothers Studios: Having not really wasted an entire day at the Peterson Museum, we decided to head over to our hotel in Beverly Hills. We would be staying here for a few nights, so we decided to take it easy by just ordering some drinks by the rooftop pool before sampling Gordon Ramsay's Beef Wellington. "Not a bad day," I said, after dinner. My dad agreed.

The next day we vowed to do something even more touristy than the Peterson Museum. We were going to Hollywood to see the studios. I was especially excited as this (not quite, but nevertheless) involved driving through Rodeo Drive, the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, and, most importantly, via Mulholland Drive to Burbank, home of Warner Brothers Studios. Mulholland was pretty awesome. I say "pretty awesome" because my mind instantly switched to that of a teenager who's watched too much Matt Farah ripping through the canyons in big muscle American product. Left, right, left, right, up, down she goes. What a wonderful stretch of road. It was early so we had both no traffic, and lots of time to stop at all the view points. At one point, overlooking the open-air amphitheatre called "Hollywood Bowl," a celebrity-tours bus stopped that unloaded about fifty tourists all interested in taking a picture of me in my flashy Porsche. I smiled. And now in China there a bunch of friends and family members getting told that their Uncle saw the LA Clipper's Blake Griffin. Or more realistically, that they saw Chris Humphries. Apparently I look like the guy as one time a cashier lady pointed to an "In Touch" trashy Hollywood magazine that featured Chris and Kim (this is years ago) and went "you? him? huh? huh?" I off course, the unassuming, modest gentlemen that I am, leaned a bit closer, stared her right in the eyes, and quietly nodded "yeah." 
Chris Humphries. Spotted. 


Universal Studios, up next. 
We arrived at Warner Brothers to be greeted by a long queue of cars waiting to enter the a little overflow parking lot. Of course the 911 began overheating almost instantly. Nothing new. What else you got, Yellowbird? Give us your best shot!!! We're not new to this!!!! Actually we kept our cool. We wouldn't have if we would of known there and then how much of a disappointment Warner Brothers would turn out to be. From Harry Potter museum to the film set of Pretty Little Liars, holy smokes were we ever disinterested. So once the tour ended, highlighted only by getting to see the set where the filmed part of the final Seinfeld episode (the bit where Kramer films the portly man getting carjacked and they all go "that's a shame" before being thrown in jail), we b-lined it for the parking lot and immediately drove to Universal Studios. Universal was a blast. Worth every penny (and it costs lots of pennies, like more than 20,000 pennies). More on that, and then its onwards to Las Vegas. 43.5 degrees Celsius and traffic jams in the middle of the desert. Tune back in for a real nightmare! Thanks for reading!!!