Despite having notorious traffic, it's really not that hard to get around Hollywood. All you need is the power of flight. That's where Copter Pilot's signature sightseeing tours come in. The Robinson R-44's large windows look out on pretty much all of the city's major sights, allowing passengers to view the Sunset Strip, Universal Studios, and the Hollywood Sign from an air-conditioned spot in the sky. The team at Copter Pilot knows a thing or too about working in Hollywood too?when they're not offering tours of Tinsel Town, the crew often help out with film and television productions, operating everything from handheld aerial cameras to gyro-stabilized Cineflex Cameras.
Wrightway owner and professional polo player Erik Wright purveys a lively club equipped with knowledgeable instructors and more than 25 healthy steeds. Students breeze in to Wrightway for a one-hour polo seminar outfitted in trousers, a helmet, and boots or heeled shoes, after which instructors complete equine-sport ensembles with a complementary horse, mallet, ball, and British accent. Lessons correlate to the pupil's skill level, so beginners can pick up the basics of the sport and intermediate contenders can hone chukker-dominating strategies. Opt for a one-on-one tutorial for personal attention or gather equestrian-curious confidantes and schedule a private group bout at the Bel Air Polo Club, which offers sessions seven days a week, or nine days a week in horse time.
Fitness guru and founder of Burbank Athletic Club Greg Bedrossian knows what it means to beat the odds. Born with a hole in his heart, he was advised throughout his life to avoid strenuous exercise. But instead of giving up, Greg dug into deep personal reserves of will and became a personal trainer, eventually opening Burbank Athletic Club.
Today, his CPR- and AED-certified trainers have picked up on his knack for bypassing perceived physical limitations. Through their fitness classes and training programs, the staff strives to help their students embody the same grit and determination in shaping their own bodies. The high-intensity classes—including cardio kickboxing and a boxing-Pilates fusion known as Piloxing—ramp up the difficulty as time goes on. Vinyasa, flow, and other forms of yoga are available as well, led by experienced yogis. These are contrasted by low-impact, high-intensity spinning classes, which work the body but also the mind, as clients must recognize that no matter how hard they pedal, in the end they go nowhere. Classes are often supplemented with individual workouts in a vast gym filled with weight machines, free weights, and cardio machines.
At Racer's Edge Indoor Karting, staff members flap green and checkered flags to signal the beginning and end of go-karting competition. Drivers first attend a safety briefing and don protective helmets and neck guards, then hop behind the wheel of an electric Sodi go-kart that produces minimal noise and even more minimal milk. Holding up to eight of the eco-friendly speedsters at a time, the 2.5-mile indoor race has nine turns and trackside tables where friends and family members can cheer racers to the finish line. Afterward, participants can check two projection screens for their lap times or visit the facility's deli and refuel on quarter-pound beef hot dogs and freshly baked cookies. Racer's Edge stages group outings for birthday parties with activities such as slot car racing, corporate events, and herds of deer that are tired of never getting the right of way.
The Bar Method workout, which has been featured in Self magazine and Seventeen, started with German ballet dancer Lotte Berk. After injuring her back, Berk took her physical-therapy regimen and fused it together with her old ballet workouts. Burr Leonard took this system and modified it in 1991, in an effort to minimize the impact it had on delicate joints. The workout became known as The Bar Method, named for the horizontal barre that ballerinas use to steady themselves during dance routines and astronauts use to practice pole dancing in space. Bar Method workouts combine Berk's original dance conditioning and physical-therapy moves with fast-paced interval training and muscle-building isometrics, and aim to tone physiques without adding bulk.
The picturesque 18-hole course at DeBell Golf Club spreads over the basin and hillsides of Wildwood Canyon, a craggy depression carved into the foothills of the Verdugo Mountains. The hardscrabble physical surroundings challenge golfers on every swing, whether they're shaping shots around tree-lined doglegs or walking barefoot uphill both ways to get to their ball.
Rising above the green strips of fairway kikuyu grass is the course clubhouse, which offers views of the weathered beauty of Wildwood Canyon Park beyond the course while also serving up breakfast, lunch, and dinner at The Canyon Grille.