Ponce De’Leioun’s Guide To LA

Ever had plans to visit Los Angeles, California, but didn’t know quite where to go and what exactly you should see? You know that you technically can’t go wrong with wherever you visit, but it would be nice if an L.A. native could show you the hotspots you have to visit. Thanks to longtime Swisher Sweets Artist Project member Ponce De’Leioun, your L.A. traveling worries are no longer a thing.

Prior to our 2018 L.A. Pack Night, we linked up with Ponce as he took us all around Los Angeles to some of his favorite spots in the city. Those areas included Rodeo Drive, Lake Hollywood Park, Ultrium his go-to studio, Venice Beach, and of course a must-eat food spot right in Hollywood.

For those who don’t know, Ponce grew up on the East Coast in West Virginia, but has since lived in Los Angeles for the last handful of years giving him a unique perspective. When asked about his favorite aspects of living in L.A., it was simple for him — “the resources and lifestyle”. The entertainment world’s here, the energy and the weather is good and there’s always something to do, he explains.

Ponce’s favorite city in L.A. is Beverly Hills, and one of his favorite things in life is high fashion. Makes sense, right? “Beverly Hills is the part of Cali that is super clean and there’s good energy. That’s the place I want to be,” Ponce says. “Most people are dressed in high fashion out here like myself, and I typically shop at Rodeo or the Beverly Center. You know, I spend a lot of time at the Gucci store on Rodeo.”

Rodeo Drive

So, where did we go for our first stop on Ponce’s guide through L.A.? You guessed it. Rodeo Drive, where we explored different stores on the strip and the overall scene. It was at that point we finally understood why Ponce loves fashion and this area the way he does. Truly a unique, inspiring experience that takes shopping to the next level.

Venice Beach

After stepping out of Beverly Hills and the high-fashion world, Ponce and the crew traveled to Venice Beach where we spent some time on the always-interesting Venice Beach Boardwalk. Met by beachgoers, artists, performers, and all types of touristy attractions, we had quite an adventure at one of L.A.’s most popular hotspots. Getting in a quick photoshoot on the beach, Ponce explains this is one of many places he goes for inspiration with his music. “Venice Beach is somewhere we go to a lot, smoke and vibe out,” he says. “We love the beaches out here.

Lake Hollywood Park

Following Venice Beach, we made our way to the Lake Hollywood Park where sightseeing and hiking was a must. After driving through the scenic hills, you end up parking in an area where you get an up-close-and-personal look at the iconic Hollywood Sign, and from there can hike to the top. Of course, the energetic Ponce took a moment to let his free spirit flow as he captured this classic photo below. Make sure you do this next time you come to L.A. – trust us.

Pink Taco

By this time, Ponce and the crew were all hungry, so we had to hit one of Ponce’s favorite restaurants in Hollywood – Pink Taco. The atmosphere on Sunset Blvd. (where Pink Taco is located) was one to remember, making our outdoor lunch experience even more enjoyable. They were even filming an actual movie across the street, which was a foreign experience for us, but typical for the L.A. local. Oh yeah, not to mention how delicious the food at Pink Taco was too! Ponce recommends the chicken tacos.

Ultrium Studios

After we ate, it was time to get some work in at the studio, rounding out Ponce’s full day. He took us out to North Hollywood where he laid down some bars and played us some of his new and recent music. Los Angeles is treating Ponce well and after spending an entire day with him, we can clearly understand why.

See the full interview and some more pictures from Ponce’s Guide to Los Angeles below!

  1. What is the best part about living in L.A.?

Ponce: The resources and lifestyle. Music, entertainment, everything.

  1. Where are some of your favorite places to get a good bite?

Ponce: Bossanova, Pink Taco, and Porto’s in Burbank. You gotta get the chicken tacos and strawberry lemonade at Pink Taco

  1. Do you have a preferred studio in LA?

Ponce: Ultrium Studios in North Hollywood. It looks like a spaceship and the lights are crazy in the all-white room.

  1. For artists like yourself, where do you recommend going to network?

Ponce: You can go anywhere. There’s a lot of entertainment events. Everything out here is a networking event and you can meet people anywhere.

  1. What are some places in LA you go to for inspiration when writing a song?

Ponce: Up in the Hollywood hills. Take an Uber or drive up, smoke and vibe out. We go out to Venice

beach a lot.

  1. How does someone from LA typically dress and where do you like to shop the most?

Ponce: Always got to dress to impress. Most people are dressed high fashion. I typically shop at Rodeo or Beverly Center. I spend a lot of time at the Gucci store on Rodeo.

  1. Where do you go for fun?

Ponce: The beach. It’s the same as like going up in the mountains. You get a clearer view and mindset.

  1. How would you compare L.A. hip-hop to the other major markets (NY, ATL, Chicago, etc.)?

Ponce: L.A. hip-hop is like that real sh*t. It’s A-class hip-hop, people and entertainment. If you’re in L.A. and you’re [pursuing an entertainment career], it’s to be on the top. There’s just levels to it, and I feel like in L.A. you’re doing it to be on top.

  1. For those who are visiting L.A., what are some hotspots tourists must check out?

Ponce: People like to check out Runyon Canyon or any of the hiking spots really. People love Venice beach and Santa Monica too. The Hollywood sign and the hills is a must.

  1. Describe a typical “day in the life” in L.A. for you. What activities are you going to do, what food are you going to eat, etc.

Ponce: I usually wake up, grab me a Swisher, get my morning smoke in. Then grab some breakfast at Porto’s and hit a studio session. I’m usually filming or in the studio or networking. Always just working or kicking it with my boys.

  1. What’s your favorite town in Los Angeles and why?

Ponce: Beverly Hills for the simple reason that’s where I want to be. What I want to make, where I want to be and where I see myself. I’ve lived in Hollywood and its mad dirty. Beverly Hills is the part of Cali that is super clean and there’s good energy and looks clean. Yeah, that’s the place I want to be.

  1. If you’re walking down Hollywood Blvd in the middle of the day, what are 3-5 things you’ll more than likely see?

Ponce: You gonna see some crazy sh*t. Bums on the side of the road, crazy people talking to themselves, people with sh*t all over themselves, that’s nasty to be honest. You gonna see street performers and beggars. Nothing like Hollywood Blvd.