Behind the scenes with Team SB in Abbot Kinney
Opening our first boutique in California is a day we’ve all been waiting for at Sweaty Betty. In the build up to today’s Abbot Kinney store launch, our team on the ground have been on a mission to uncover the best local studios, health food cafes and hang outs. Here are a few behind-the-scenes insights from our West Coast adventures.
Breakfast like a Californian
“It’s an exciting time for Sweaty Betty,” says Sweaty Betty founder Tamara. “Opening in LA has been a longstanding dream of ours, and by launching our Abbot Kinney boutique we join some of the world’s coolest brands on the most fashion-forward street in Venice Beach” (don’t miss Tamara’s recent LA highlights here).
Team SB loves being neighbours with fellow quirky brands Salt and Heist, Free City and Rag & Bone. Also bringing colour to the quaint alleyways off Abbot Kinney Boulevard are local artists with their graphic murals and street art. Of course, every shopping trip must start with a coffee stop, and Team SB loves to get its caffeine kick from Blue Bottle Coffee, conveniently located just opposite the new Sweaty Betty boutique.
Abbot Kinney is at its best in the mornings, when the coffee shops are buzzing with chatter and locals gather for downtime after their workouts and exercise classes. There’s Another Kind of Sunshine is a great place to pick up superfood acai bowls, and Intelligentsia is another local coffee gem which has a line weaving out the door and into the path of oncoming skateboarders. A fellow Core Power Yoga regular recommended their small batch, slow brewed coffee and ever since the smell of the coffee beans wafting from its takeaway counter has never failed to entice us.
Shopping, sights and surf
Now home to an amalgam of surfers seeking a laidback lifestyle, budding entrepreneurs, hipsters and tourists, the steady comings and goings around this beachside district are often reminiscent of the amusement park that Venice Beach once was. Staying indoors is not an option in this West Coast community.
Every turn we take leads to a new discovery, with pockets of luscious gardens and open patios attracting people-watchers and skateboarders alike. The only landscape more prevalent than the greenery is the sand, where a midday surf is a refreshing way to revive the spirit and experience a rush of adrenaline. Those less inclined to jump in the water can enjoy long walks down the wide boardwalk, perhaps stopping for a lavender cleanse juice from the always popular Kreation café.
Food to dine for
The Tasting Kitchen and Gjelina are two of Team SB’s favourite restaurants in Los Angeles, with world renowned chefs and extensive wine lists. For something lower key, we love to grab a post-surf bite at Rose Café just off Abbot Kinney Boulevard. Here we sample Southern Californian cuisine infused with tastes from around the world, looking out for familiar faces in the busy lunchtime crowd.
Sweat and spa
Team SB always enjoys a good sweat, and one of our favourite new places to get in a workout will of course be the Sweaty Betty boutique itself. With an open plan space that doubles as a shop and a fitness studio, there will be free classes on every week (available to book online), all within the surrounds of the latest Sweaty Betty arrivals to inspire your workout wardrobe.
When we’re venturing out to other studios, we make a beeline for Love Yoga Venice on Lincoln Boulevard. Here the knowledgeable instructors fuse traditional practice with contemporary asanas and vinyasas to challenge the body and still the mind. We also make a regular sweat date at Pilates Platinum, which works the bum and core while making you feel so energised. When we want a little spa time with our workout, nowhere does it better than Equinox on Marina Del Rey gives the full package – Team SB loves to the pool after a high-energy spin class.
Action-packed days on the boardwalk transform into relaxing evening strolls and social gatherings. Eclectic street performers add to the excitement of the night ahead, but this healthy hybrid town continues to prioritise healthy choices. Salt Air is Team SB’s favourite seafood restaurant, sourcing fresh fish straight from the Pacific Ocean. A close second, Scopa Italian Roots is our go-to for artisan cocktails, homemade pasta and a lively bar scene. In Venice Beach, rest and recovery is just as important as work and play. So we fit right in as we toast to another day of active living and hit the pillow nice and early. Tomorrow we may treat ourselves with a restorative massage at Venice Beach zen den Spa Sofia. Yep, we could get used to LA living.
Find out more about our LA boutique and visit us in-store at 1112 Abbot Kinney Boulevard. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for opening day insights and LA event news!