Driving towards the sunset on Sunset Blvd is one of the most beautiful city luxuries we take for granted being an Angeleno. As you head towards the orange glow on the horizon you try your best not to run over a jaywalker while you crane your neck to see the latest movie blockbuster billboard or one of those dangerously sexy 138 Water ads. Those boards, while a marketers dream, really shouldn’t be on a street where people are driving machinery, even I rubberneck to catch a look at those billboards. As you creep, yes you creep on Sunset Blvd. which is why I don’t understand the idiocy of driving your Ferrari on the boulevard, flooring it only to hit a red light or dead stop traffic in less than a block. But then again this is LA.
Just as you roll up past San Vicente you’ll see on your right a roaring 20’s style marquee with the word “Pearl’s” lit by white bulbs framed by devilish red bulbs. Here lies a hidden gem, Pearls On Sunset. I noticed it about a month ago while driving down Sunset on a Sunday. The upstairs rooftop with its open balcony was filled with happy laughing people. It looked like a still ripped out of one of Great Gatsby’s parties. We drove by and I looked back up at that balcony with the free spirit people of Hollywood and said, “We are going there!”
And so we did. A short time after I got an email advertising “Pearl’s” Movie Night. And they were playing one of my favorites, “Swingers”. If the rooftop bar wasn’t enough to go, that movie alone was my deal sealer. How can a bar have a movie night? That sounds so strange, but alas, if you’re going to sell me a martini and put two of my favorite movie characters up on a big screen, well I’m not going to cry about it. As we arrived at “Pearl’s”, you first walk through a long corridor on the 1st floor towards the back. You pass velvet curtains, which I can only imagine what lies behind those mysterious drapes, I later discovered they are making it into a cocktail lounge. We head upstairs and we are greeted by a cheerful host (shocking really, since LA sometimes has the snobbiest hosts). She takes us to our table which is the exact spot where I saw the Happy Shiny People. It’s a table right up against the rod iron balcony overlooking The Boulevard and with the 90 degree summer breeze teasing my hair, I couldn’t ask for a better night. Geez, doesn’t really take much to please me does it. We order two filthy Grey Goose Martinis from an adorable and CHEERFUL waitress along with an appetizer of beef carpaccio and meatballs. Our drinks arrive in a cute martini/champagne style glass. The kind that would have been at your parents wedding. Oh but don’t let the petite glass fool you, these were potent. (Thanks bartender). Our food comes and the carpaccio is delightfully sprinkled with truffle and parmesan. The meatballs came in a mini cast iron pan with crispy fried kale. Yes and Yes. Its hard to eat and drink with a grin like I had. I was just so surprised and happy with the vibe of the place. It felt like I found a spot that hadn’t been tainted by the trolls of LA. It’s like Pearl enlisted the “No Asshole” rule that I wish more places enforced. Before the movie starts the host comes around with mini popcorns and toppings. And let me tell you, that popcorn was bomb! Or maybe it was the mixture of my salty martini with the popcorn, either way more bars should sell popcorn. We then got a visit from the manager who checked in with us and made sure we were happy. He too was genuinely happy. Man, what is Pearl paying these people or putting in the water? As he left to give his love to the other patrons of the bar, and yes he went to every table and said hello, the movie started. They have a huge projector screen on the east side of the rooftop and about 3 or 4 other TV’s on the west side so no matter where you sit you can see the screen. Then they turn up the volume, just loud enough where you can hear everything but you can still lean into your date and maybe tell them a story about the last time you went to the Dresden.
One of the biggest selling points to my heart is atmosphere. Put good company, great service, and food aside. Ambience always gets me and rooftops for sure always always capture my heart. Pearl’s rooftop is adorned by strings of light bulbs, faux ivy vines, a frosted skylight that I’m assuming during the day brings in that beautiful brunch light that all of us Selfie lovers love so much. But to have a movie on a rooftop seems weird right? Nope. It was the perfect time of night, just dim, but enough for the projector to push through and deliver a great image. The multi-leveled rooftop was spacious yet intimate. I didn’t explore the space too much but I did peek and see some areas that looked like you could rent it out for a private party (Note to self: Throw party), and the actual bar on the rooftop was super quaint and cute.
It was quite fitting that “Swingers” was playing because the way that “Pearls” was making me feel, I felt just like Trent and Mike when they were walking into “The Derby”. I felt like I owned the place. Not many places give me a first impression quite like this, and I’m happy to say I give my full hearted endorsement of “Pearls”. I highly recommend going there for Movie Night. And I hear that Sunday Brunches are nothing to shy away from either.
Cheers to you Pearl!
Visit Pearl’s here