The Broke Girl's Guide to a "Pretty Woman" Day Out

Welcome to Hollywood. What’s your dream?…This is Hollywood, land of dreams.

We here at Broke Girl’s Guide first heard those “inspiring” words in (gulp) 1990– long before we came to Los Angeles, long before we became jaded by the REAL Hollywood, long before we realized a certain Julia Roberts super-star-in-the-making vehicle wasn’t just a far fetched and rather disturbing fairy tale but actually a metaphor for our eventual arrival in LA and subsequent struggle to get to the (metaphorical) penthouse by (metaphorically!!!) whoring out our souls for professional gain. Still, Pretty Woman will always have a special place in our hearts. Watching it now, it’s with a certain fond nostalgia at being able to look at LaLa Land with extra strength Vivian Ward rose-colored glasses. So we thought what better way to commemorate our favorite hooker-with-a-heart-of-gold Cinderella story than with a Pretty Woman Day Out. Don’t worry– this will in no way involve strutting up and down Sunset in fishnets or knee-high latex boots (you can do that on your own time).

Start your morning the way any proper lady-of-the-night who just got her first big payday should: rocking out to Prince in your oversized (or undersized, more likely) bathtub. We’re actually not partial to bubbles, so we opt for the Spitfire Girl’s Cote Bastide Amber Bath Salts when it comes to some in-home pampering, but you’re more than welcome to reach for something a little more retro. Of course, if your abode is tub-less, then a mani/pedi may be in order from one of our favorite spots such as  Lanny Nails in WeHo or Contempo Nails in Beverly Hills.

Next, flag down a handsome looking “John” in a Lotus…er, maybe hop in your own Prius, and make your way to the Palisades for a very Edward Lewis tycoon-type power brunch at Maison Giraud (the pastries are pretty fantastic!). Don’t linger there too long reading your Wall Street Journal, though. You don’t want to miss a chance to put on your most ridiculously large sunhat and head over to the Will Rogers Polo Club, where matches of The Sport of Kings are played Saturdays (2 p.m. to 5 p.m.) and Sundays (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.) all summer long.  While we’ve never actually dated a polo player, we somehow think a brawny, handsome gent who knows how to handle a giant mallet while riding horseback might just be our type.

Since your clothes may be a bit dirty & rumpled from divot stomping, now would be the perfect time for some shopping.  You COULD go all-out Rodeo for a Vivian-esque Beverly Hills shopping spree, but without Edward’s AMEX funding this free-for-all, that would probably be a big mistake. Huge!  Instead of doubling your current debt at a few snooty boutiques, create your own dressing room “montage” at one one of LA’s more affordable fashion shops, such as eCookie or Elli in Century City, or really get some bang for your buck at one of LA’s best vintage stores.

Now that you’ve got the threads, you’re ready to make an entrance at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, where Vivian & Edward’s no-kissing-on-the-lips tryst famously takes place. Granted, you won’t be able to afford the penthouse suite, or any room for that matter (if you simply MUST stay somewhere from the movie, there’s always the Hotel Las Palmas, though it might take more than a Prince to rescue you from this little flophouse). But you CAN hit up the beautiful Pool Bar & Cafe for a little nosh. If you play your cards right, you might find your very own Edward Lewis out there, in which case you most definitely will want to talk him in to having Tiffany’s loan you one of these little ditties for the night.

As evening draws near, you might have fantasies of being swept away to San Francisco on a Private Jet and attending a tear jerking performance of La Traviata. While this is not totally outside the realm of possibilities for a Broke Girl such as yourself (no, seriously, you can do this!), you may prefer to keep things more grounded. You can still have an adventurous evening out, though. Might we suggest taking on Vivian’s culinary foil, those slippery little suckers known as escargot. They do a wonderful little rendition at La Poubelle (and an incredible coq au vin, if snails aren’t exactly your thing).

At this point in the night of living out a Hollywood classic, there’s a distinct possibility you’ve managed to be rescued by a prince of your ownbe it a wealthy venture capitalist, a fetching polo player or the hot waiter at dinner (we’re not picky…WE’RE NOT!). Perhaps the two of you are looking for somewhere to close out the night…and possibly even attempt this little feat of musical dexterity). If that’s the case, you may want to try the grand piano, or just listen to someone actually play it, at the bar at the Hotel Bel-Air. It’s one of those places in LA that truly makes you feel like you really have made it to the penthouse. But just like in Pretty Woman, at this particular establishment, you’ll want to make sure HE is paying.

written by A. Joos 

If dating guys who have to pay women to hang out with them isn’t your thing, we’ve also given you tips on hooking up with the likes of Ryan Gosling, Michael Fassbender, and Jason Segel.  You’re welcome.