101 Escape Rooms is located at 31139 Via Colinas #210, Westlake Village, across the street from the Four Seasons Westlake Village. Open 7 days a week. Offering interactive fun trying to escape from a room, using puzzles and clues. Current rooms (as of June 2019) include Starship Libra, Old Sparky and Altamira. Learn more at www.101escaperooms.com.
The North Ranch Open Space is represented by several massive sections of nearly 2,600 acres located in the east side of Thousand Oaks. There is a section east of Erbes Road to Westlake Boulevard down to Hillcrest Drive on the west side (this area is referred to as the Hillcrest Open Space Preserve) as well as a section further east bounded by Westlake Boulevard on the west, Lindero Canyon Road on the east and Thousand Oaks Boulevard on south.
These hills are beautiful and quite prominent from throughout the Conejo Valley. Hiking, running and cycling these hills can be a challenge as they are quite steep in most sections.
A main trailhead into the North Ranch Open Space is on Bowfield Street, just east of the North Ranch Playfields. The trail is called the Saddle Pass Trail, winding up and down the hills south towards Thousand Oaks Boulevard.
There are various other neighborhood trail entry points throughout the vast area. One of these is located at Canyon Oaks Park, 6200 Hedgewall Drive, Westlake Village. There's a walkway and a small bridge that leads to a quite intense looking path up the hill. And indeed, it is a very steep path. Definitely not for everyone. This is a path into the Bowfield/Saddle Pass Trail, which is maintained by the Conejo Open Space Conservation Agency.
There are roughly 3 or 4 miles of trails up here, mostly the Saddle Pass north/south trail but other connector trails to nearby neighborhoods, such as the townhome complex on Via Colinas above Thousand Oaks Blvd and the new Westlake Village Community Park and YMCA.
These hills get quite dry and hot during the summer months but in the spring green up nicely. You may even get the opportunity to enjoy some wildflowers.
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.
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.
Previously at The Promenade:
Vintage Grocers abruptly closed their doors on March 15, 2019.
Bristol Farms announced in advance their last day of operation would be March 15, 2016.
Public School 805 closed on June 17, 2018 (space now occupied by Shake Shack).
Macaroni Grill closed in September 2013.
Loteria Grill closed in Feb/Mar 2017.
The Melt closed in December 2015 after a short, 7 month stint.
La Salsa closed in spring 2011.
Note: Park was closed as a result of the Woolsey Fire of November 2018, but was reopened January 11, 2019. There was some extensive damage in section of the park.
Owned and maintained by the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, 600-acre Triunfo Creek Park in Westlake Village/Agoura provides deep oak woodland, native grasslands and blankets of wildflowers in the springtime. The main feature of the park, the Pentachaeta Trail, is named after the Pentachaeta lyonii, a federally-listed endangered flower found in the park. The yellow, daisy-like flower is found only in Southern California, and blooms between April and June.
An informational kiosk at the trailhead interprets the Pentachaeta lyonii, as well as other unusual wildflowers found on the site such as the Chocolate Lily, and the White Globe Lily. The site also provides access to hiking trails on the Westlake Vista parcel, also owned and managed by the Conservancy.
The Westlake Vista Trail takes you to a fence that encloses the Las Virgenes Reservoir, where you may be treated to sounds of birds and other wildlife. Find the trail that parallels the fence up the mountain and you will be treated to gorgeous views of the area down to Westlake Lake and beyond and the Santa Monica Mountains to the south.
Directions: The main trailhead with kiosk is on Triunfo Canyon Road east of the southern terminus of Lindero Canyon Road. There are a small number of off-pavement parking spots there. The other end of the trail is at the west end of Triunfo Canyon Road about 1.5 miles west of Kanan Road.
Directions: From the 101 Freeway in Westlake Village exit Lindero Canyon Road. Take Lindero south to Triunfo Canyon Road. Turn left. The trailhead is located opposite Oak Forest Mobile Home.
Visit mrca.ca.gov/parks/park-listing/triunfo-creek-park for more information.
The Hillcrest Open Space Preserve is an area bound on the south by Hillcrest Drive, on the east by Westlake Boulevard and on the west by La Granada Drive. I don't know the exact boundary on the north side. Years ago I ran the trails from time to time back there but it had been some time, so I took the kids over to the White Sage Trail trailhead off of Hillcrest Drive, just west of Blue Mesa Street, about half a mile west of Westlake Boulevard.
There is zippo parking to be found on that stretch of Hillcrest Drive and the nearest crosswalks from the other side of Hillcrest Drive, where you can find parking on residential streets, is at Westlake Boulevard (1/2 mile east) and Duesenberg Drive (1/3 mile west). I've parked on Blue Mesa Street and run across Hillcrest but would not recommend that as the cars speed along on that busy boulevard.
In any case, this is a fun little excursion, particularly if you enjoy a steep hill to climb and beautiful panoramic views of the area.
Another access point to the Hillcrest Open Space is the southeast endpoint of La Granada Drive (at Crown View Ct), east of Erbes Road in Thousand Oaks. This 4 1/2 mile, hilly loop is a great way to view the local scenery, from the Conejo Grade to the Civic Arts Plaza and most everything else. More on the Hillcrest Open Space Loop trail on the COSF website.
Here's a handy list of 19 movie theaters with over 150 screens throughout Ventura County and adjacent areas. Click the links for theater websites and/or showtimes.
Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, Agoura Hills
Cinépolis Luxury Cinemas at the Promenade at Westlake (100 Promenade Way, Westlake Village) (8 screens). Order food and drink from your seat and enjoy. cinepolisusa.com/locations/cinepolis-luxury-cinemas-westlake-village
AMC Dine-In Thousand Oaks 14, 166 West Hillcrest Drive at The Oaks Mall. Tickets at www.amctheatres.com/movie-theatres/los-angeles/amc-dine-in-thousand-oaks-14. $5 Tuesdays all day for AMC Stubs members.
Regal Janss Marketplace 9 is located at Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks, 255 North Moorpark Road. Previously it was a Regency Theater (closed 12/31/15) and prior to that it was a Mann Theater. www.regmovies.com/theaters/regal-janss-marketplace-9/C00300689804
Century Downtown 10, 555 East Main Street, Ventura (800.326.3264) www.cinemark.com/southern-california/century-10-downtown
Edwards Camarillo Palace 12 and IMAX, 680 Ventura Boulevard, Camarillo (805.383.8879) (Located adjacent to The Promenade section of Camarillo Premium Outlets. www.regmovies.com/theaters/edwards-camarillo-palace-stadium-12-imax/C00287009669
Regal Civic Center Plaza 16 & IMAX, 2751 Tapo Canyon Road, Simi Valley (805.526.0232). www.regmovies.com/theaters/regal-simi-valley-civic-center-stadium-16-imax/C00745385306
Studio Movie Grill at the Simi Valley Town Center opened on October 22, 2015, with 9 screens and over 950 seats. www.studiomoviegrill.com/quicktickets/california/simi-valley/2019/1/11
Other Local Theaters
Edwards Grand Palace Stadium 6, 4767 Commons Way, Calabasas (818.223.0223). www.regmovies.com/theaters/edwards-calabasas-stadium-6/C00791471576
Regal Malibu Twin at 3822 Cross Creek Road, Malibu (310.456.6990) (closed in September 2017)
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, Greens Up, 101 North Eatery & Bar, Los Agaves Restaurant, Bubbers Bowls, Tifa Chocolate & Gelato, Which Wich, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company, Pick Up Stix and Q Sushi. Coming soon is Novo Cafe.
Learn more at shoppesatwestlakevillage.com.
Treasured Memories Scrapbook Store opened in June 1997 and has grown and evolved with the scrapbook industry to provide customers with the best memory preservation solutions on the market. They offer supplies, classes, parties, events and more.
Open Thursday through Sunday.
Pedego 101 Electric Bikes, located in the Westlake Village Industrial Park at 31332 Via Colinas #107, Westlake Village, offers rentals, sales and service of electric bicycles.
Pedego also offers guided tours once a month and a weekly group ride for anyone with an e-bike to join. I know folks who thoroughly enjoy their Pedego bikes and ride them quite regularly!
Learn more at www.pedegoelectricbikes.com/dealers/westlake-village or call 805.379.9245.
For a nice, fairly moderate hike in Westlake Village, take Triunfo Canyon Road south to Highgate Road and head up to the southeast endpoint of Highgate, past Hillsbury Road, to the end of the road, where you'll see a trailhead sign.
It doesn't actually say "Lake Eleanor Open Space Hike" but this is indeed the way to get to this trail maintained by the Conejo Open Space Foundation (COSF). Walk past the fence on the pavement, and in about 60 steps, the trailhead is on the right. There's no sign. In fact, I've never seen any signs indicating which way to go on this trail. But once you reach this path, for the most part the trail is pretty obvious. COSF has some helpful images and a trail map at www.cosf.org/website/html/lake-eleanor-open-space-hike.html.
There are some brief, slightly challenging hilly sections on this hike, along with some rocky sections, but for the most part, this trail is perfectly fine for all ages. I generally wouldn't recommend strollers on this trail though because of these sections, but if you have a solid off-road stroller, it is possible.
On the left you'll see the beautiful Las Virgenes Reservoir for most of the 1 1/2 mile hike.
Towards the endpoint (Denver Springs Drive), on the right you can look down towards Westlake Boulevard/Decker Canyon and see the eight acre Lake Eleanor. Pretty cool to see from above as it is not accessible to the public.
Lake Eleanor along with the Lake Eleanor Dam (also called Banning Dam) and surrounding 529 acres of open space has been named City of Thousand Oaks Historical Landmark #9.
I love this little hike. It is quiet and peaceful and the views are just wonderful up here. And you are just minutes from civilization.
CReATE STUDIO at 31840 Village Center Road in Westlake Village is a welcoming, walk-in, help yourself art studio geared toward creative exploration using a varied array of recycled, artistic and crafty materials. All ages can create treasured masterpieces using many interesting and everyday household materials to build, tape, glue, paint and invent! No two creations are alike. Stop in and enjoy the fun! To learn more about CReATE, visit www.createstudiofun.com or call 818.575.9566
The studio is currently open Tuesday through Friday 11am-6pm and Saturday/Sunday from noon to 4pm.
Fees as of May 2018 are: $10 ages 10 and under, $12 kids age 11 to adult. Studio fee includes up to 2 hours of studio time, including all materials used. Credit cards are accepted.
CReATE offers open studio time, Birthday Party Packages, Monthly Parents Night Out Nights, Machine Sewing Classes, Girls Confidence Classes, Messy Toddler Art Classes and special rates for school groups, scouts and homeschoolers.
The Los Padres Trail is a short, 1 mile, neat little trail accessed on Los Padres Drive, near the corner of Fox Hills Drive in Thousand Oaks. Take Moorpark Road south of the 101 freeway and turn left on Los Padres Drive. The trailhead is clearly marked on the right hand side as the trail is maintained by the Conejo Open Space Foundation.
Short but sweet, the trail is pretty darn cool...enclosed by trees, several bridges, mostly single track and a bit of a climb (750 feet) as you make your way up to the Los Robles Trail junction. That's about a mile, so you can turn around there for a 2 mile round trip hike.
Or...you can turn right (west) and head your way up the wide, fire road sized section of the Los Robles Trail east. This is a bit of a climb, but pretty moderate and gradual. Crest the hill and you'll see a gate. Before the gate, on the left, is a picnic bench.
After you pass the sign below, there's a picnic bench on the left. You've climbed a couple miles. Time for a break before heading back down. Or turn left (east) and in 3 miles you're at Triunfo Park in the Los Padres Open Space via the Triunfo Canyon Trail. Or turn right (west) and you're off into the Los Robles Open Space. If you climb through the gate straight ahead, you're looking towards Hidden Valley.
Learn more on the COSF website at www.cosf.org/website/html/los-padres-los-robles.html.
The White Horse Canyon Trail trailhead is located off of Potrero Road, just east of the little bridge next to Vista Oaks Way. From Thousand Oaks/101 take Westlake Boulevard to Potrero Road, turn right, and the bridge is less than half a mile away. Park either in allowed spots on the opposite side of Potrero Road or in an adjacent neighborhood.
You walk into this gulley to get to the nondescript trailhead. In fact, I don't see signage that actually says White Horse Canyon Trail. But there is the following entry point that does make it clear:
The trail is really more like a fire road, wide, somewhat rocky, but not particularly difficult. The climb gets you up to some peaks that provide views of all the surrounding areas.
Wide trail. Be aware that private residences are adjacent to the first portion of the trail.You can take the White Horse Canyon Trail to the Los Robles Trail and do a 6 mile loop back the start, or you can reach the first peak at about 1,300 ft, take in the views, and turn back, for about a 2 mile hike.
There's a nice little map showing a counter-clockwise loop from White Horse to Los Robles going east, looping back to White Horse. Visit www.cosf.org/website/html/white-horse-los-robles.html.
Folks often ask me if trails are stroller friendly or not. This one in my estimation is not particularly stroller friendly because the surface is often uneven, with many loose rocks and soft dirt at times. It is do-able but not one of the better trails for that purpose...in my opinion.