Counter Culture

Guide to Downtown Los Angeles


It's hard touching down in a brand new city and knowing how to get the best experience out of a handful of days. Where to shop, which restaurants to eat at, what galleries to visit, where to experience the culture. Following our trip to Los Angeles, we've put together a DTLA guide to the things/places/people we saw that are really worth the trip. Check it out over on our site, and explore the full interactive map of our spots of choice.


Going Underground Records

356 1/2 E 2nd St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Situated in Little Tokyo, Going Underground carry a diverse and eclectic selection f new and used vinyl and cassette tapes. There's a multitude of record shop in Los Angeles, and Little Tokyo is becoming a hub for buying vinyl, but what seperated Going Underground from the rest of was excellent shop merch, how well curated the selection was, and the friendly atmosphere.

Space City Vintage

1/2, 339, 1st St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Just around the corner from Going Underground, Space City Vintage clothing store. Huge range across mens and womenswear, a tonne of accessories, loads of graphic and band t-shirts, second hand vinyl records, all at quite affordable prices. Extra points for the most beat up vintage Black Flag t-shirt we've seen.

The Broad

221 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Contemporary art gallery with works from the likes of Raymond Pettibon, Cindy Sherman, Ed Ruscha, Jean-Michel Basquiat, George Condo, Andreas Gursky, Keith Haring, and so many more. General admission is free, making over 2000 works very accessible.

Brain Dead Studios

611 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

in our opinion, Brain Dead are one of the best brand with some of the best graphics on the market. A disruptive label taking hues from post-punk, graphic design, skateboarding, and their Fairfax store is about as good as it gets. Excellently curated, friendly staff, an in-store cinema with regular screenings, and a coffee shop and courtyard out the back. 


8801 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069

There's an abundance of Supreme stores around the world, but one of the more enjoyable experiences of visiting multiple stores is how different each one is in each city. Based in the former home of Tower Records’ West Coast flagship, the sunset Blvd store features art installations by Mark Gonzales, Nate Lowman, and Neckface, and archive skateboards in collaboration with artists including Larry Clark, Nan Goldin, Mike Kelley and Gilbert & George. There's also a bowl and a ledge.

Vans OTW at Soho Warehouse

1000 S Santa Fe Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90021

Although this isn't a permanent fixture, the event at Soho Warehouse that Vans OTW hosted for the release of the S.R. STUDIO LA. CA by Sterling Ruby collaboration product released earlier this year. Open air carpark party / temporary skate spot / art installation / live gig all rolled into one. Live performances by Paris Texas and Salem, an interactive installation of shoes, and a skate-able art installation made in partnership with PLAYLAB INC., skated by the pro Vans team all night. Read more about it here.

Ornimental Conifer's Studio

Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

Ornamental Conifer is the moniker of British artist, Nicolai Sclater. His work is an exploration into the concept of branding in a post-consumer society. He works out of his Venice Blvd studio space which isn't typically open to the public, but we linked up with Nico to have a look around at his work. Check out our Creative Living with Nico to see more.

Grand Central Market

317 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013

A total must-visit. Grand central market is a large indoor food market with a huge range of cuisine from all over the world. Some vendors you can't easily find elsewhere, and some at very reasonable prices. Good energy, busy and upbeat atmosphere, and generally just a great concept for food.

Button Mash

1391 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026

One of those places you could spend hours and hours at without getting bored. Button mush is an arcade and restaurant with a good selection of smash burgers, fish, salads and sides, and an even better selection of retro arcade games. Every game you remember from being a kid, games you've never seen before, games you can play with friends. A must-visit. 

World 8-2

Little Tokyo Mall, 319 E 2nd St #120, Los Angeles, CA 90012

A shop that throws you right back to your childhood. World 8-2 in an independent gaming shop that sell current and old school games and consoles, figurines, apparel and collectibles. The shop itself has an old fashioned feel about it, the same sort of feel as an old video rental shop you'd visit as a kid. Worth a visit for the nostalgic trip alone.