We had the good fortune of connecting with Kristin West and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kristin, how do you think about risk?
My whole entertainment career is about risk and risk management. Prior to the pandemic, 1 million people per year came to Los Angeles to pursue a Hollywood dream. I’m still here. I audition for roles that 1000 actress get submitted for, 100 get seen for and I am grateful to have booked many fun roles in TV and movies. Risk is definitely part of the Los Angeles lifestyle. Another way I take risks is in the choices I make as I act. I try to make bold, daring choices. I seek to break molds. Asking “what if” and “what do I have to lose” is part of my daily process.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
As a plus size woman, I’ve learned to make peace with my body, on screen and off. I’d love to be the plus size Meryl Streep. I have learned so much living and working in Hollywood, but here are the most important: You’re worst critic is you and your best ally is you. No one is going to give you permission to succeed before you give yourself permission to succeed. If you don’t think you are beautiful or talented, no one else will. You have to believe it. No one’s opinion of you is more important than your opinion of yourself. Everyone has opinions. You don’t have to treat them all equally. I had an acting teacher tell me that I had no talent. I have won a few acting awards. I decided that her opinion wasn’t going to impact me. I kept going.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Downtown & Koreatown For the morning, I’d start off at The Broad and muse at the amazing contemporary art. I’d grab some lunch in Koreatown. Then I’d spend the rest of the day at Spa Palace, which is my favorite Korean Spa. It has a swimming pool and a bar! Get scrubbed. Eat dinner at the cafeteria on site. Cafe Gratitude downtown is great too. Beverly Hills Of course, you have to do the obligatory Rodeo Drive window shopping. I’d also include a little peak at the Witch’s House in Beverly Hills. Afternoon, it’s time for a snack. For general glamorous people watching, the Peninsula Hotel is the place to be. I love the tea service there. If you want to have a glam tea party and splurge, I recommend tea in the Living Room. It’s divine. Il Piccolino would be a nice dinner spot. Santa Monica & Other Beaches Day I’d hit the Getty Museum early in the day and grab a quick snack at their cafeteria and then bounce over to the Getty Villa. For a lazy afternoon at the beach, reserve a Beach Butler service from Perry’s Cafe. They’ll set you up with beach umbrellas, chairs, towels and water bottles and you can order some tasty eats off their menu and just relax. For nighttime, I’d go to the Santa Monica Pier. It’s gorgeous when it’s lit up. ChaCha Chicken is this taco shack on Ocean Ave., that’s open pretty late and it has great Carribean themed taco plates. Sunset Blvd. & WeHo I’d do a weekend breakfast at Cheebo in West Hollywood. It’s a good people watching spot. It’s also a short walk to the famous Guitar Center. I’d spend day in West Hollywood shopping on Santa Monica and Melrose Avenue. If you enjoyed the Korean spa experience, the adventurous might like Voda Spa on Santa Monica, which is a chic, Russian style banya. This is the coldest cold plunge I have found in Los Angeles. Bone chilling. Amazing. Swing by Mashti Malone’s for some Persian ice cream. I like the lavender flavored blends. For evening, I suggest heading to Griffith Observatory and peering through the telescopes. You get a great view of the Los Angeles skyline. Pack a picnic. For a late night eat, I’d bounce over to Greenblatt’s Deli and then see who’s playing at The Laugh Factory. For the San Fernando Valley, If it’s a weekend, you can’t go wrong with brunch at 94th Aero Squadron Restaurant. You’ll be right next to where the filmed parts of Casablanca. Start your morning off contemplative with a visit the Japanese Gardens in Van Nuys. Wat Thai of Los Angeles would be a great lunch spot if their fair is open. It would also be a great spot just to sit and meditate. Bistro Garden would be my go-to choice for an upscale dinner. Other Spots & Experiences: I love the Arboretum. That’s a great spot to visit, appreciate the flora and fauna and have lunch. The Peace Awareness Labyrinth. They host lovely meditation workshops and seminars and have a lovely labyrinth on the grounds of a mansion. Sound Baths! Los Angeles offers so many of these on sites like Eventbrite. My favorite sound healer is Natalie of Ananda Sound Healing.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My manager Matt Chassin has really help me to value and know my worth as actress and a person. He helps me see the big picture, even when things aren’t always rosy.
Judy Goss, Alexi Angelino, James Balsamo, Armin Nasseri, Adam Jay Ung, Peggy Lane O’Rourke