Expert Tips


Quirky Gifts and Pop-Up Shops: The Best Christmas Shopping in L.A.

When it comes to shopping, Los Angeles is one of the best places on the planet to indulge. And when Christmas comes around, despite the sunny skies and warm temperatures, everyone gets into the spirit of celebrating the season of giving. Take Rodeo Drive, for example, the city's most iconic shopping street. Not only do they decorate (tastefully, of course) the drive and the posh shops located there, they also bring Santa and snow in for a celebration that transforms that Beverly Hills shopping hotspot into a winter wonderland! The Grove gets into the holiday spirit in a big way, too; that hugely popular mall in the Fairfax District has Santa and his elves ready to meet the kids, boasts a gigantic, gorgeously decorated Christmas tree and even has selected pop-up shops in addition to the usual stores, there only for the holiday gift-buying season. Out at the Malibu Country Mart, they even bring in live reindeer to wow the kids – Santa is there, too, as you can tell from the happy giggles as children share their Christmas wish lists. And it really doesn't matter that the temperature is warm and the skies are sunny, the Christmas spirit is alive and well in the City of Angels; once you've checked off all the presents you need to buy, you can even go ice skating outdoors at rinks in Santa Monica, Burbank, downtown L.A. and beyond.

Santa Monica Museum of Art Gracie Christmas Shop
Photo courtesy of Santa Monica Museum of Art/Elizabeth Pezza


Gracie, the Santa Monica Museum's annual pop-up Christmas shop, is only open from November 15 to December 23. So don't procrastinate, or you'll miss out on the one-of-a-kind items here at SMMoA, all chosen by the museum's retail curator. And...  Read More

Larchmont Village
Devall Design & Home
Photo courtesy of Jenny Peters


Devall Design & Home is a fascinating shop in Larchmont, filled with clever, quirky home goods that any hipster (or design lover) would love to receive as a holiday gift. Design maven Susan Devall searches out items in Europe and beyond,...  Read More

The Grove
Photo courtesy of The Grove


While The Grove is always one of L.A.'s most popular shopping malls, at Christmas time the place really rocks! Santa and his elves are there to greet the kids from November 17 to December 24, in an elaborate gingerbread cottage. Even your pet...  Read More

Malibu Country Mart
Photo courtesy of Malibu Country Mart


With over 40 retail shops, plenty of eateries and even a playground filled with fun, the Malibu Country Mart is a year-round shopping destination on Pacific Coast Highway. But at Christmas time the mart pulls out all the stops, with shops...  Read More

Jeanie Madsen Gallery
Photo courtesy of Jenny Peters


A unique art gallery and design boutique right in the heart of Santa Monica, the Jeanie Madsen Gallery is chockablock with items that are sure to strike your fancy. Artists' offerings include works in all media, with a focus on Urban, Street and...  Read More

Rodeo Drive
Photo courtesy of Rodeo Drive


No matter what your loved ones fancy for Christmas, you're sure to find it on Rodeo Drive. Bring plenty of cash, however, for when you enter Tiffany's, Van Cleef & Arpels, Bulgari or Cartier to buy jewels, you will need deep pockets. There...  Read More

Larchmont Village
Larchmont Sanctuary Spa
Photo courtesy of Le Petit Retreat


When it comes to giving the gift of bliss, there's nothing like sending your favorite person (or couple) off to Larchmont Sanctuary Spa, gift certificate in hand. There's much to love about this serene place in the heart of Larchmont Village,...  Read More

CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles
Photo courtesy of CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles


CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles is your one-stop shop for beautifully crafted, handmade gifts. With over 100 artists and crafters offering up their wares every weekend, this gigantic 25,000-square-foot warehouse near the docks in San Pedro is...  Read More

Traveler's Bookcase
Photo courtesy of Traveler's Bookcase


There's plenty of interesting travel books to be found here at the Traveler's Bookcase, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Sure, there are perfect tomes for gifting (check out "The Times Comprehensive Atlas of the World," $200, or National...  Read More

Traditions: Year-Round Holiday Store
Photo courtesy of Traditions: Year-Round Holiday Store


Traditions: Year-Round Holiday Store is SoCal's biggest and best Christmas specialty store. This family-owned shop has been stocking up on holiday must-haves since 1964. You'll find Christmas trees, Santas, snowmen, both new and vintage...  Read More


Meet Jenny Peters

Jenny Peters – aka Jet Set Jen – is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist, editor and party columnist specializing in travel, entertainment, film, food, wine, fashion and the other good...  More About Jenny