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Where to Hang in L.A.

Robbie Rogers, David Lauridsen

Photo by David Lauridsen

Robbie Rogers photographed at Eveleigh.

As the first openly gay athlete in professional soccer, Robbie Rogers is as brave as he is talented. The 26-year-old grew up in a conservative, close-knit Christian family in Southern California and rose to prominence in a sport famous for its macho edge. But since coming out in a blog posting in February 2013, the former U.S. Olympian who signed last May with the LA Galaxy has a new goal: enjoying life to the fullest on his own terms. Here’s how he makes the most of Los Angeles.

“The Eveleigh is my new favorite spot to hang with friends and get great, farm-fresh food. They’ll tell you exactly where the steak or fish was raised and serve the most interesting local breads, cheeses and cured meats. You can sit inside or out, it’s never too crowded and the atmosphere is super chill.”

“I’m originally from Palos Verdes and know all the hidden surfing spots. It hurts me to give this one away, but the best is called Haggerty’s or Hagg’s for short. It’s a rocky point on the northwest side of P.V., and it’s what we call a ‘perfect left’ because of the way it breaks. It’s easy to paddle out to, especially in winter, but that’s all I’m gonna tell you about it.”

“The toughest outdoor workout is also the most unusual. On 33rd Street and Bell Avenue in Manhattan Beach, there’s a giant sand dune I’ve been running up and down since I started training competitively at age 13. It’s ridiculous! Run it once and your legs are basically Jell-O.” [Use of the sand dune is by reservation, which must be made in advance at citymb.info.]

“The famous Sunset Tower Hotel, recently renovated, is old-school Hollywood at its finest. You stare out at the skyline, a guy’s playing piano and the host, Dimitri, takes great care of you. I took my mom there for her birthday.”

“Ping-Pong is my sport second only to soccer. I’m the undefeated champion at the table at the Levi’s Haus, an exclusive new party spot on Sunset Strip. I swear, nobody’s beaten me.”

“One of my favorite places to shop in LA is Opening Ceremony, located in West Hollywood. You can find very interesting brands and fashion that you might not be able to find in other stores.”

“It doesn’t have a sign so you’ll need to sniff it out, but The Roger Room is amazing for cocktails. It’s dark, sexy and fun. I love to sit in one of the old glass-paneled booths, sip my Moscow mule and say, ‘Ah, life’s good.’”

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