Bluff Park Historic District
Bluff Park extends from Ocean Blvd on the south, to 2nd Street on the North, and is bordered by Loma Avenue on the west and Junipero on the east.
Dress: Pull out your arty stuff--if you don't have a fabulous scarf or jacket, go with the 'beat-poet, I'm wearing black as a statement' look.
- Expense: Due to a generous contribution from the L.A. County Arts Commission, Fridays at the museum are gratis, if you go any other day, general admission is $7.00. Plan on spending roughly $80-120 for the museum, dinner and coffee and dessert for two.
Entertainment: Long Beach Museum of Art is housed in the Elizabeth Milbank Andersen home and carriage house built in 1912 and overlooking the Long Beach Harbor. The house went through a series occupants before becoming a museum in 1950. It's open every day but Monday from 11:00-5:00. For your "one-night" experience, you'll want to start the evening early with a walk about the museum and then the neighborhood.
The current exhibit, Sweet Subversives, a collection of drawings/mixed-media from 31 California artists, runs through Valentine's Day--coincidence? Irony? Perhaps both.
The art walk doesn't end when you leave the museum. Bluff Park is a gorgeous neighborhood full of historic homes. Consider walking along the shore before heading to the restaurant. There's a bike/walking path down on the sand, or you could stick to the sidewalk. Either walk along Ocean Blvd to Orizaba and go north, or take Kennebec north to 1st Street, which is a wide boulevard flanked by multi-story, historic homes, many of which are over a century old. It's a lovely walk with something to see on both sides of the street. Continue to Orizaba where you'll make a left and walk approximately a block and a half to Broadway, where, at the off-kilter intersection or Orizaba and Broadway, you'll find one of Long Beach's highest-rated Italian restaurants
For more info: Long Beach Museum of Art 2300 Ocean Blvd. (562) 439-2119
Dinner: La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana is an Italian restaurant with a reputation for excellent food. It's a neighborhood food. It's a neighborhood favorite; not fancy, just really good. They offer a quality wine list, authentic Italian appetizers and entrées, and wood-burning pizza oven where you can watch your own cheese melt.
For more info: La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana 2945 East Broadway (562) 438-1235
Coffee and Dessert: After you've finished dinner you can make a short walk down Broadway to Hot Java, a community coffeehouse. Staff and customers are friendly, the furniture's comfy, the coffee (especially the caramel macchiato) is fabulous--they even have free wireless Internet and a working fireplace, the perfect thing on a rainy day. They also host an ever-changing wall of art; this month's exhibit is called Step Out to the Quiet Inside, by artist Carol A. Hass. Carol's photography depicts nature at its most beautiful. Stop by this month. Fifty percent of net proceeds from the sale of her photography will go to benefit the Long Beach AIDS foundation.
For more info: Hot Java 2101 E. Broadway (562) 433-0688.