The Shoppes at Westlake Village

The Shoppes at Westlake is a 240,000 sq ft retail shopping center that opened at 30770 Russell Ranch Road, Westlake Village in the summer of 2014. It is anchored by a large Target store on the east side of the center with three dozen other shops and eateries, including a uniquely appointed In-N-Out Burger on west side. This an outdoor center with plenty of parking, outdoor eating spaces and a nice fountain. 

Retail stores include Guitar Center, BCBC Nail Spa, Lighthouse Salon Suites, Tilly's, The Walking Company Rx, Kirk Jewelers and others. There's also a Total Woman Gym & Spa.

Eateries include The Gallery Restaurant, Hook Burger, 101 North Eatery & Bar, Los Agaves Restaurant, Bubbers Bowls, Tifa Chocolate & Gelato, Which Wich, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company, Pick Up Stix, Novo Cafe and Q Sushi.

Learn more at shoppesatwestlakevillage.com.

Ventura Harbor Village

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Ventura Harbor Village at 1583 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura is home to 33 acres of harborside activities, shopping and restaurants.  The weather is always so cool over there it makes for a nice retreat.

There is a 36 horse carousel and arcade for the kids and plenty of outdoor activities available like kayaking, sailing, pedal boats, sport-fishing and cruises. Ventura Harbor Village hosts events and activities year-round, including music performances, kids' activities, themed events, festivals and more.

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Eateries at Ventura Harbor Village include 805 Bar & Grilled Cheese, Alexander's, Andria's Seafood Restaurant, Baja Bay Surf N' Taco, Boatyard Pub, Brophy Bros. Restaurant and Clam Bar, Coastal Cone (ice cream shop), Coffee Dock & Post, Copa Cubana, Fratellis Pizza & Brew, Harbor Cove Cafe, Le Petit Cafe, Bakery & Restaurant, Margarita Villa Mexican, Water’s Edge Restaurant & Bar, The Greek Mediterranean Steak & Seafood and The Parlor. You won't go hungry here.

The Channel Islands National Park Visitor Center is located adjacent to Ventura Harbor Village. Free admission and an awesome resource for learning more about the Channel Islands and its protected habitat.

Island Packers at the Harbor has numerous boat rides and is the only authorized concessionaire to transport folks to Channel Islands National Park. 

Ventura Boat Rentals rents out electric boats, paddle boats, kayaks, power boats and charters cruises in the Ventura Harbor.  So much fun to be had!

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Across the street from Ventura Harbor Village is beach access at Harbor Cove Beach (a safe beach protected by jetties) and Surfer's Knoll Beach. Local area beaches at THIS LINK.

More information at www.venturaharborvillage.com or call 805.642.8538 (or 877.89.HARBOR).

Arroyo Burro Beach Park in Santa Barbara

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Arroyo Burro Beach is a beach park managed by the County of Santa Barbara. It is also referred to as Hendry's Beach, as the Boathouse at Hendry's Beach is located here at 2981 Cliff Drive. Decent sized parking lot with restaurant serving up moderately priced meals and drinks indoors/outdoors, seven days a week from 7:30am to 9:30pm. Arroyo Burro Beach is a sandy beach, good for surfing, boogie boarding and fishing, with an adjoining park with grassy areas with picnic tables. Restrooms available. From the 101 take Las Positas Road south to Cliff Drive. Turn right and travel 1/2 mile to the park entrance. More information at www.countyofsb.org/parks/day-use/arroyo-burro-beach.sbc.

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Arroyo Burro also has a great doggie park! Dogs are required to be on leash through the parking lot but there's an area where dogs can run around in the ocean. Self service dog wash stations provided by County Park. Details at www.countyofsb.org/parks/dog.sbc.

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Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks

Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks

Janss Marketplace at 275 North Moorpark Road in Thousand Oaks (corner of Moorpark Road and Hillcrest) is an open air mall that has a large outdoor eating area, interactive water fountain, monthly Kids Fun Zone and outdoor kids play area.

Retailers and other businesses at Janss Marketplace include Gold's Gym, Ulta Beauty, Old Navy, Burlington Coat Factory, Nordstrom Rack and others.

Eateries include Buca di Beppo, Panera Bread, Karma Indian Cuisine, Crazy King Kong Sushi, Lucky's Dog House, Subway, Sunset Terrace Restaurant, Greco's New York Pizzeria, Cold Stone Creamery, Sharky's, The Dudes' Brewing Company, Matcha Tea and Boba and Janchi Korean BBQ.

And for entertainment, there’s Regal Cinemas, Dojoboom Extreme Sports, Dave & Buster’s and the Conejo Valley Art Museum.

Visit www.janssmarketplace.net/coupons for special offers/coupons at Janss merchants.

For more information visit www.janssmarketplace.net or call 805.495.4662.

In 2009 the Janss Marketplace added a NEOS Wall, a fun interactive game right outside the Golds Gym.  This game is free. 

Some former occupants of Janss Marketplace: Toys R Us (summer 2018) Wachovia Banking Center (closed April 2011), Akio’s Sushi (Oct 2012; now Crazy King Kong Sushi), Sizzler/Fuddruckers/Hooters (currently vacant), TGI Fridays (2012)/DISH (Nov 2013) (now Janchi), Aaron Brothers (2018), Tuesday Morning (June 2012), Radio Shack, Marshalls, Mervyn’s, Mann 9 Theatres/Regency Theatres (now Regal Cinemas), Burger King/Salad Gourmet (2016)/Poke Tiki (Apr 2019).

Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard

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Channel Islands Harbor is located in Oxnard; take the 101 Freeway to Ventura. Exit Victoria Avenue. Turn south onto Victoria Avenue. Continue on Victoria for approximately 5 miles until you reach Channel Islands Harbor.

Channel Islands Harbor offers a variety of activities for the entire family. Throughout the year various events are held including the Celebration of the Whales, visits by Tall Ships, Concerts by the Sea, Fireworks by the Sea on July 4th, the Ventura County Boat Show, Ventura Vintage Rods Harbor Run Classic Car Show, and the annual Parade of Lights.

Harbor restaurants include The Waterside Restaurant and Wine Bar, H.C. Seafood & Co., Fisherman's House, The Lookout Bar & Grill, Moqueca Brazilian Cuisine, Mrs. Olson’s Coffee Hut, Honey Cup Coffee Bar Toppers Pizza Place, The Masala Twist, Ventura BBQ Co. and Sea Fresh Channel Island. You may shop at clothing, gift and accessories stores or cruise the Harbor on the Channel Islands Harbor Water Taxi.

Visitors may rent boats at Hopper Boat Rentals, or Channel Islands Kayak Center, visit the Channel Islands Maritime Museum or just enjoy a beautiful day at one of the local beaches. Weekends offer live musical entertainment. Fresh fruits and vegetables plus arts and crafts may be found at the Harbor's Farmers' Market held at the Marine Emporium Landing from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. every Sunday, rain or shine! Or just ride bikes!

For more information, visit www.channelislandsharbor.org or call 805.985.4852.

We stop by the harbor as often as possible for various events and to walk around, as well as to walk a few blocks over to the beach!  Quite a nice opportunity to beat the Conejo Valley heat...and only 15 to 20 minutes away!

Ventura Pier

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The Ventura Pier was originally constructed in 1872 and is a favorite spot for local fishermen. The Pier is 1,600 feet long and underwent a $2.2 million renovation in 2000 that added an 80 foot octagon shaped extension, benches and more. The Pier can be accessed off of East Harbor Boulevard, close to the Crowne Plaza hotel off of California Street. Beach House Fish restaurant is located on the pier.

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On the west side of the pier is a playground area with some unique play equipment. My kids always enjoy it here because of the great combination of the beach, pier, playground, quick access to bike rentals and food.

The former Eric Ericsson's (now Beach House Fish) next to the playground on the pier.

The former Eric Ericsson's (now Beach House Fish) next to the playground on the pier.

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Ventura County Wine Trail

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Ventura County Wine Trail offers 14 family-owned, award winning wineries right here in Ventura County and adjacent areas! Unique wine tasting tours, five star restaurants, luxury hotels, wine events and attractions, make an amazing wine country destination getaway.

Visit www.venturacountywinetrail.com.

Here are the 14 wineries (updated April 2019) that are part of this trail.

Alma Sol Winery in Thousand Oaks www.almasolwinery.com

Back Patio Cellars in Camarillo www.backpatiocellars.com

Boccali Vineyards and Winery in Ojai www.boccalivineyards.com

Camarillo Custom Crush Winery www.camarillocustomcrush.com

Clos des Amis in Ventura www.closdesamis.com

Herzog Wine Cellars in Oxnard www.herzogwinecellars.com

Labyrinth Winery and Tasting Room in Ventura www.LabyrinthWinery.com

Magnavino Cellars in Oxnard www.magnavino.com

Malibu Sundowner in Westlake Village www.malibusundownerwines.com

Millesime Cellars in Camarillo www.millesimecellars.com

Panaro Brothers Winery in Ventura www.panarobrotherswinery.com

Rancho Ventano Cellars in Oxnard www.ranchoventavo.com

Strey Cellars in Oxnard www.StreyCellars.com

Sunland Vintage Winery and Tasting Room in Thousand Oaks www.SunlandVintageWinery.com

Camarillo Premium Outlets

Camarillo Premium Outlets

The Camarillo Premium Outlets at 740 East Ventura Boulevard offers 160 outlet stores, including (as of April 2019) 77 fashion/clothing, 21 footware, 9 kid-related, 4 leather/luggage, 20 accessory/jewelry, 3 housewares/home furnishing, 10 gift/specialty and 16 eateries.

Open 10am-9pm Monday to Saturday and 10am-8pm on Sunday.  More information at www.premiumoutlets.com/outlets/outlet.asp?id=20 or call 805.445.8520.

On Tuesdays, show your photo ID if you are 50 or older for 50 Plus Shopper Perks...an additional 10% off your purchases at participating stores.

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Get there by taking the 101 to either Carmen (make a left over the freeway and then right on Ventura Blvd.) or Los Posas (left over the freeway and then left on Ventura Blvd.).  If you're on a diet, you might take Los Posas as the Carmen route takes you past a large, alluring In-N-Out Burger.

As you can see on the map below, there are three main sections. The original outlets are on the left side, including the Main Court and across Camarillo Center Drive is the Fashion Court. In 2009 the outlets expanded to the west between the Edwards Movie Theater and Las Posas Road to include The Promenade section.

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The Main Court contains suites 100-744, Fashion Court suites 800-1118 and The Promenade suites 1200-1514. The CP Outlets website has a listing by store type as well as a map.

The outlets are pretty massive. You can park anywhere and walk the entire way, though I prefer to park in the Main Court and cover the Main Court and walk across Camarillo Center Drive to get to the Fashion Court.

You can also walk to The Promenade, where you’ll find the most eateries, including Johnny Rockets, Los Arroyos, Panera Bread and Pink’s Hot Dogs…not to mention, in the parking lot (and not listed in the mall’s directory) , PizzaRev, Smashburger, Chipotle, Pick Up Stix and Yogurtland. Also, there’s a Cracker Barrel restaurant planned further west in The Promenade parking lot by Thanksgiving of 2019.

A small kids’ playground area has been added in 2019 to The Promenade section near Wetzel’s Pretzels/Lids/Sunglass Hut.

Not a great pic but gives you a feel for the kids’ playground area at The Promenade (new in 2019)

Not a great pic but gives you a feel for the kids’ playground area at The Promenade (new in 2019)

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Join the VIP Club to receive special discount offers and coupons at www.premiumoutlets.com/vip/

The two videos below provide a quick drive-through around the Main/Fashion Courts and the newer The Promenade.

The Promenade at Westlake

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Located at the southeast corner of Westlake Boulevard and Thousand Oaks Boulevard, The Promenade at Westlake is an architecturally appealing outdoor mall that has an assortment of things to do, including two large fountains, a koi pond and the Cinepolis movie theater.

One of two fountains at The Promenade at Westlake.

One of two fountains at The Promenade at Westlake.

Eateries include The Grill on the Alley, Marmalade Cafe, Farfalla Trattoria, Champagne French Bistro, Kreation Organic, Fresh Brothers, Lemonade, Paul Martin's American Grill and Soom Soom Fresh Mediterranean (opened in September 2018) and Shake Shack (opened in October 2018).

Other stores include Cost Plus World Market, See's Candies, Sprinkles Cupcakes and Ice Cream and a variety of clothing and specialty stores, including Restoration Hardware, Brandy Glanville, Intermix, Lululemon Athletica, Sephora, Sharon Segal / Nina Segal the closet, Chico's and more.

Lots of outdoor seating around the fountain area outside of Barnes and Noble.  There is usually live music on Friday/Saturday nights during the summer months.

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The Promenade at Westlake is the sister mall of the similarly appointed The Commons at Calabasas

The Promenade is located at 100 Promenade Way, Westlake Village (southeast corner of Westlake and Thousand Oaks Boulevards).  Visit www.ShopPromenade.com or call 805.497.9861 for more information.

Previously at The Promenade:

The Collection at RiverPark in Oxnard

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The Collection at RiverPark is an outdoor shopping center located on the northeast side of the 101 freeway in Oxnard, between the Oxnard and Vineyard exits.

The 650,000 sq ft center includes a combination of entertainment, retail, restaurants, various services, open space with fountains, parks and playgrounds and quality art. Parking is available on the streets as well as several parking lots.

As of February 2019, the following businesses operate at The Collection:

Retail: Here’s a small fraction of stores at The Collection - ANGL, Chico’s, Forever 21, Gap, H&M, IT’Sugar, Jos. A. Bank, Lane Bryant, MAC Cosmetics, Pet Food Express, REI, Sleep Number, Soma Intimates, Target,, The Container Store, ULTA Beauty, Urban Outfitters, Victoria’s Secret, Whole Foods Market and many more.

Entertainment: Levity Live Comedy Club & Dinner Theater*, Century RiverPark 16, Color Me Mine, The Painted Cabernet.

* Discounted Levity Live shows at Goldstar.com

Other: Bank of America, 24 Hour Fitness SuperSport, California Welcome Center, Massage Envy Spa, Ventura County Credit Union and more.

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Restaurants include After’s Ice Cream, Ben and Jerry’s, Bottle & Pint (at The Annex), Copper Blues Rock Pub & Kitchen, EMC Seafood, Five Guys Burgers & Fries, Gen Korean BBQ, General Chow, Kabuki Japanese Restaurant, Larsen’s Grill, Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar. Los Agaves, Love Pho, Luna Grill, Maria’s Italian Kitchen, Menchie's Frozen Yogurt, Panera Bread, PokeCeviche, Ragamuffin Coffee Roasters, Red Robin, Seoul Sausage, Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana, Starbucks, Taqueria El Tapatio, The Blend Superfood Bar, Whole Foods Bar Rincon and Yard House.

Also at The Collection: The Annex, a 16,000 sq ft collection of microshops, boutiques and eateries (included above). Across the street from Levity Live/Copper Blues.

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There is unique public art placed throughout the center, including metal sculptures, ceramic tile murals, fountains and more. Shea Properties has spent around $1 million on art, bringing in seven artists for 18 individual art installations. Artists include Frank Bauer with his ceramic tile murals and benches and tile sidewalk medallions, and Michael Amescua with his cut metal sculptures.

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Visit www.thecollectionrp.com or visit their Facebook page to learn more. To get there from the 101 North, exit on Oxnard Boulevard and turn right. Turn right again on Town Center Drive.

Playground at The Collection

Playground at The Collection

Places that have come and gone from The Collection: Toby Keith's Bar & Grill closed in Spring 2015. Sabra Fish Grill opened in 2015 and closed in late 2017. Famous Dave’s BBQ. Gandolfo’s New York Deli.

Simi Valley Town Center

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The Simi Valley Town Center is a 600,000 sq ft open-air shopping, dining and entertainment center in the heart of Simi Valley, off the 118 freeway between First Street and Erringer Road at 1555 Simi Town Center Way.  This mall opened in fall 2005. 

Eateries at the Town Center include Corner Bakery Cafe, California Pizza Kitchen, Coconut Crab, Larsen's Grill, Red Robin and Buffalo Wild Wings. Macy's anchors the west end of the mall (the east end, also previously a Macy’s is vacant as of December 2018). There’s also Jamba Juice, Go Fish Sushi, Starbucks, Sweetie’s Sweet Shop, Chocolate Savvy, Dip It! Chocolates and Simi Valley Home Brew.

The 41,211 sq ft Studio Movie Grill opened at the Town Center on October 22, 2015, with nine screens and over 950 seats. It is a beautiful theater offering stadium seating and fixed lounge seats with individual dining tables and service.

This is also a nice mall for the kids, as there is plenty of room to run around and explore in the open air setting.  There is a kids' play area, oak trees, mosaic dragon, outdoor fireplace, koi pond and gardens to explore.  There are also train rides available for $2 per child at Center Court.

Lot of shops geared towards the kids, including Black Belt USA Tak Kwon Do, Gotta Dance, Inspire Dance Studio, As You Wish Pottery Painting Place, Kid Gloves Boxing, Rockin’ Kids Play Center and the new Skateboarding Hall of Fame Museum and Skate U across from the Vans store opening December 15, 2018.

Other shops include the Five Below discount store that opened on October 12, 2018, Marshalls, Tilly’s, Lewis Galleries, Gymboree, Victoria’s Secret, Brighton Collectibles and more.

There’s also the Museum of Military History Posters and Memorabilia. Quite an impressive array of military posters and artifacts on hand.

Small outdoor kids' play area (geared towards little ones)

Small outdoor kids' play area (geared towards little ones)

Visit www.shopsimivalleytowncenter.com for more information.

Previously at the Simi Valley Town Center:

A lot of businesses have come and gone from the Simi Valley Town Center in years past. Here are some of them.

Apple Store (9/15/17), Urban Home, Limon Latin Grill, Souplantation (9/25/16), Anthopologie, Brookstone, Chico’s, Coldwater Creek, Eddie Bauer, Forever 21, Gamestop, Haagen-Dazs, Gymboree Play & Music, Hot Dog on a Stick, Hot Topic, J. Stephens, Jos. A Bank, Lane Bryant, Lucky Brand Jeans, Nine West, The Body Shop, Things RememberedUrban Outfitters, White House Black Market, Z Gallerie, Zales and Zumies, among others.

Whizin Market Square in Agoura Hills

Located at 28914 Roadside Drive in Agoura Hills, Whizin Market Square is an eclectic mix of shops, eateries, services and entertainment. As of January 2015, restaurants and entertainment at the Square include The Canyon Club, Wood Ranch BBQ, Tifa Chocolate, Plata Taqueria, Carrara Pastrie, Numero Uno and Blue Table. You will find a variety of very unique, non-franchise type stores in here, including antiques, The Flying Owl Paper Boutique, beauty stores and more. Visit the Whizins Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WhizinMarketSquare and website at www.whizinmarketsquare.com for more information.

Ventura Harbor Comedy Club

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Located in the Ventura Harbor Village, 1599 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura, Ventura Harbor Comedy Club offers nightly comedy shows, comedy workshops, "funny fundraisers," and other events. 

The club is owned by two distinguished headliner comedians, Andres Fernandez and Randy Lubas.

Check out the lineup at www.venturaharborcomedyclub.com or call 805.644.1500. Must be 21 and over.  Dinner and drinks are served here along with laughs!

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