05
Jul
11

LA Trip: Graumann’s Chinese Theatre

Tourist trap crowds, people dressed up in costumes, and Hollywood history. Graumann’s Chinese Theatre has it all.

During our recent to Los Angeles this past weekend, my co-blogger Chi_Ho had never been to the Chinese Theatre and since we had a free night–we decided to go.

Graumann’s Chinese Theatre has to be one of the most iconic theaters in the country. You see it all the time when movies have big red carpet premieres or maybe sometimes when a movie star has their handprints immortalized out in front, or even when a celebrity gets a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. While very recognizable for it’s ornate entrance and Chinese themed decorations, Graumann’s Chinese theatre is just as intricately decorated inside as it is outside. It reminds me of Consolidated’s old Waikiki 3 theater, just a bit more nicely decorated.

Now, just venturing down to the Chinese Theatre is an adventure in and of itself. Right next to it is the Kodak Theater where the Academy Awards are held. On top of that, the Chinese Theatre and Kodak Theater are part of the bigger complex called the Hollywood & Highland Center so the destination itself is a tourist trap of sorts. The day that we went, tons of tourists were down there taking photos and shopping. It’s so well established of a tourist trap that locals come down and dress up in costumes and pose for pictures with tourists (on this particular day a photo with Darth Vader & a stormtrooper were going for $10). It’s definitely a sight to see.

Arrows indicating the Stormtrooper and Tinkerbell.

The Sith Lord himself was out signing autographs and posing for photos.

Batman and Catwoman were out as well.

Also in front of Graumann’s is the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Stars inscribed with the names of renowned entertainment professionals from motion pictures, television, recording, and radio industries are all represented up and down Hollywood Blvd. One of the most recognizable stars in front the Chinese Theatre is that of Michael Jackson.

Stars along the Hollywood Walk of Fame that front the Chinese Theatre.

Also fronting the Chinese Theatre are the equally famous handprints and footprints of various actors:

Graumann’s Chinese Theater is just one of the seven screens at the Hollywood & Highland Center so you can actually see regular films at the theater. Since the theater is used for a lot of special premieres and screenings, you may not be able to see a movie depending on their schedule. However, on this particular night though, we were lucky enough to watch the current movie that they were showing: X-Men: First Class.

One interesting discovery that we made at the theater concession stand were Kinder Happy Hippo’s:

I guess the best way to describe them would have to be that they’re Hippo shaped water shells filled with vanilla and chocolate cream. Here’s a better description from Wikipedia though:

The candy itself consists of a wafer biscuit, shaped like a hippopotamus. Inside are two flavors of icings. In the original, one is milk flavored and the other is hazelnut flavored. In the cocoa flavor, the hazelnut has been replaced by chocolate paste. The bottom of the wafer is dipped in a frosting/meringue mixture and is crumbly.

I have to say that they look really cool and tasted pretty damn good as well.

Not a bad experience if you see a movie AND take in the sights outside as well.

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