Meet a Member - Lena Carannante

Meet Lena originally from New Jersey who moved to LA 10 years ago. 

Was there a particular reason you chose LA 
I clearly remember the first time I visited LA in the 90s when I was about 15 or 16 years old. My mom wanted me to see the West Coast and took me to a lot of touristy spots like Malibu, Melrose for shopping, and even Westwood Village to see UCLA. My first pic of LA is at the famous Gladstone's deck-seat that everyone takes a picture at. I told my mother at that moment, "I am moving to LA one day".
A decade later I finally moved here. I guess you could call that The Law of Attraction.

What do you miss most from home?
I really miss the pizza. I know that sounds silly, but there is no pizza in the entire world like East Coast pizza. I've learned what I like here through lots of trial and error! Mulberry pizza is one of my faves. Also, when I'm in the mood to be a bit healthier I love D'Amores

What was your first impression of LA and has it changed since? If so why ?
My first impression of LA was that it was really "fancy" with lots of expensive cars and rich people. Once I lived here I realized that there are so many different areas, cultures, and neighborhoods to enjoy here other than the ones you see on television. I love knowing my way around now and being able to experience different parts of LA like downtown. I even love driving to Pasadena sometimes too. 

Do you have any hidden gems in LA that you want to share with us?
I have hidden gems all over. From the craft items I buy in garment district/Santee Alley, to the amazing spiritual places I buy my crystals at or do group mediations like Mystic Journey in Venice or Spellbound Sky in Silverlake. 

Santee Alley
I've even driven to Korea Town for a re-charging energy clearing at the Johrei Fellowship center or a fun detox at Shapehouse sweatlodge in Santa Monica. LA Shopping is one of my favorite past times too. 
I'm really in to vintage right now the strip of vintage stores on LaBrea keeps me busy for hours. The vintage vendors at Melrose Trading Post, downtown, or Rose Bowl flea market are like none I've ever seen anywhere else. Also, I can't forget my favorite restaurant Bottega Louie downtown. It has the most beautiful pastry section, that is like something you could see in Paris. All the food is amazing there. I'm always up for a new adventure and love that LA always has something different to offer me. I am also a LACMA member and visit at least 8 times a year:) 
Brits in LA art and music events always are a blast too. 
I've seen a photography and poetry show in the last week through them.

How does LA compare to your hometown of Hamilton, NJ?
The biggest difference is that LA is home to some of the best culture in the world whereas before I would've had to travel to NYC to see anything similar. I love living in a city that has the newest art exhibits, a variety of amazing restaurants, and is  a stopping point for all of the music that I love. It's amazing knowing that everything I enjoy and want to see is at my fingertips. I feel so lucky to live here and absolutely love it. I think that Los Angelenos as a whole are a lot healthier than the East Coasters, where I grew up. I'm very health conscience now and into organic and local foods. I love that I have so many options here when it comes to what I eat. Also, I love the fact that it never snows and that I don't have to wear winter jackets.

A lot of people have misconceptions about LA - did you ?
Funny enough, any misconception I ever had about LA is what I've now become.  I'm proud to be a green juice drinking, meditating, hippie dippie, animal loving, laid back girl!

What would you suggest to others who are thinking about making the move here?
Save your money! :)

If your your life was a TV show what would be the theme tune and why?
I can't think of a song but anything that Anthony Bourdain was on would be the theme show that I aspire to be. I live my life to have adventures, be outspoken, and learn from others. And I'm a really big foodie too:) 

Lastly , how can we find out more about you ?
I love Instagramming all of the new spots I visit. You can request me at LenaCXoXo

Lena is also the latest contributor to The Anglo Files and will be reviewing art exhibitions for us - click here to have a read of her visit to Mr Musichead 


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