Simi Valley Town Center


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 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.

Ventura Flea Market - Ventura County Fairgrounds


The Ventura Flea Market is held near the ocean in Ventura and is a great place to shop. The event features antiques, used and new merchandise sold by over 500 vendors, more than 5,000 buyers visit the Market each time it is held. 

The Ventura Flea Market is held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. A special Early Bird admission is available from 6am to 9am at $10.00 per person. Regular admission starts at 9 a.m. at $5.00 per person. Children under 12 are admitted free when accompanied by an adult.  (Prices current as of February 2018.) Pets are not allowed. Event is held rain or shine! Parking is $5.

Upcoming Dates as of 11/17/18:

  • November 18, 2018

Visit or call 323.560.SHOW (7469) for more information.


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 and website at for more information.

The Promenade at Westlake


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). Shake Shack will be opening at the former Public School 805 soon.

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, Vintage Grocers 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.


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 or call 805.497.9861 for more information.

Ventura Harbor Village


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.


Eateries at Ventura Harbor Village include 805 Bar & Grilled Cheese, Alexander's, Andria's Seafood Restaurant, 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, Rhumb Line, 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!

VHarbor Kayaking.jpg

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 or call 805.642.8538 (or 877.89.HARBOR).

The Oaks Mall in Thousand Oaks

The Oaks in Thousand Oaks is located between the 101 Freeway and Lynn Road at 350 West Hillcrest Avenue, running east to Wilbur Road. Originally constructed in 1978, the 1.3 million square foot shopping mall was renovated in 1993 and again in 2008. In total, there are over 170 stores and services at The Oaks.

Well known brands at The Oaks include Nordstrom, Macy’s, JCPenney, The Apple Store, Anthropologie, Pottery Barn, Williams Sonoma and J.Crew.

Restaurants include The Cheesecake Factory, STACKED Food Well Built, The Lazy Dog Café, Red Robin, Olive Garden, Urban Plates, Chipotle and PizzaRev as well as numerous options in the food court area.

The 2008 remodel brought a multi-level parking structure with over 1,300 parking spaces and digital signs that tell you how many spaces are available. There's a beautiful outdoor shops area on the east side of the mall that leads to AMC Thousand Oaks 14 and adjacent restaurants.

For more information, visit or call 805.495.2032.

Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara

 Dolphins greet you at the entrance to Stearns Wharf.

Dolphins greet you at the entrance to Stearns Wharf.


Stearns Wharf is located at the juncture of W. Cabrillo Road and State Street in Santa Barbara. Originally constructed in 1872 by lumberman John P. Stearns as the longest deep-water pier between Los Angeles and San Francisco, it is now one of the most visible and visited tourist destinations in Santa Barbara. In 1980-81, the City of Santa Barbara restored the wharf, constructed new buildings on it and assumed operation of the facility.

Our family particularly enjoys visiting the Museum of Santa Barbara Sea Center located on the wharf, followed by a stop at the candy store or the ice cream shop. Of course, The Harbor Restaurant and Longboards Grill are crowd favorites. There's also wine tasting, Moby Dick Restaurant, fish and chips, souvenir shops and other places that are fun to stop by.

 View from the end of Stearns Wharf back toward the mainland.

View from the end of Stearns Wharf back toward the mainland.

 View from Stearns Wharf

View from Stearns Wharf

You can get onto the wharf in a number of ways. There is limited parking on the wharf. Cost (as of August 2018) is $2.50/hour, but the first 90 minutes are FREE. Or you can park along Cabrillo Road or in a local beach parking lot and walk onto the wharf. Or do what we enjoy...park at the Santa Barbara Harbor and ride bikes onto the wharf. The wood planks are a bit bumpy but you'll survive!

Learn more about Stearns Wharf at

Beautiful views of the harbor area as you'll see below from the pier. If you walk onto the wharf, you may encounter some locals that "live off the land" with sand sculptures and other monuments on the sand for your viewing pleasure (and perhaps some spare change). They are part of the carnival atmosphere. And of course on Sundays you'll be treated to the Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts Show that has been running since 1965.

The Commons at Calabasas


The Commons at Calabasas is an open-air, Mediterranean style shopping center located at 4799 Commons Way. It is an attractive center with nice landscaping and fountains. There are about 35 businesses, including a Ralph's supermarket, the Edwards Grand Palace Stadium movie theater, Barnes and Noble, lululemon athletics, LOFT, Siany, White House Black Market, Williams-Sonoma, Rite Aid, Chico's, Kate Spade and other stores.

Dining options at The Commons includes Marmalade Cafe, Corner Bakery, King's Fish House, Fresh Brothers, Starbucks, Sugarfish by Sushi Nogawa, Toscanova, Menchie's Frozen Yogurt, Pick Up Stix, Greenleaf Gourmet Chopshop, Le Pain Quotidien and SunLife Organics. And soon, Greenleaf Gourmet Chopshop.

The Commons also hosts a weekly Kids Club and numerous other events and entertainment. There's also a nice pond/fountain area on the west end of the center, featuring koi and turtles.

Visit or call 818.637.8922 for more information.

Ventura County Fairgrounds Swap Meet and Farmers Market on Wednesdays


There is a weekly Swap Meet and Farmers Market at Ventura County Fairgrounds, 10 W. Harbor Boulevard, every Wednesday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free parking. Admission is $1 (as of August 2017). For more information visit

The Collection at RiverPark in Oxnard


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 June 2017, the following businesses operate at The Collection:

Retail: Active Ride Shop, ANGL, Charming Charlie, Chico's, The Container Store, Finish Line, Francesca's, Gap, H&M, IT'Sugar, Jos. A. Bank, Lane Bryant, LOFT, LOHO Love & Hope, M. Fredric, Pet Food Express, REI, Sleep Number, Soma Intimates, Target, ULTA Beauty, Verizon Wireless, Victoria's Secret, White House Black Market, Whole Foods Market and Windsor. 

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

* Discounted Levity Live shows at

Other: Bank of America, 24 Hour Fitness Super Sport, California Welcome Center, Elacora Homes, European Wax Center, Kriza Aveda Salon, Massage Envy Spa, Pol!sh Nail Bar, Rouge A Katherine Lazier Salon and Target Optical.


Restaurants include Famous Dave's BBQ, Red Robin, Five Guys Burgers & Fries, Gandolfo's NY Deli, Gen Korean BBQ House, Kabuki Japanese Restaurant, Menchie's Frozen Yogurt, Panera Bread, Starbucks, Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana, Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar, Larsen's Grill, Maria's Italian Kitchen, Ben and Jerry's, Sabra Fish Grill, Copper Blues Rock Pub & Kitchen and Yard House.

Coming Soon: General Chow and Los Agaves

Also coming soon to The Collection: The Annex, a 16,000 sq ft collection of microshops, boutiques and eateries.

Toby Keith's Bar & Grill closed in Spring 2015


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.


Visit 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

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 Jeannine's Gourmet Food Hall, Gallery Seafood, Hook Burger, Greens Up, Los Agaves Restaurant, Bowl of Heaven, Tifa Chocolate & Gelato, Which Wich, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company, Pick Up Stix and Q Sushi.

Learn more at

No longer at The Shoppes: Olio e Limone Ristorante, Olio Pizzeria in Feb 2017.

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, Regal Theaters, Toys R Us, Sears, Old Navy, Burlington Coat Factory and others.

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

For more information visit 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. 

The Lakes at Thousand Oaks


The Lakes at Thousand Oaks is a 7 1/2 acre, 48,000 square foot development next to the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza where you can relax and enjoy park-like landscaping, two lakes, fountains, waterfalls and a children's play area, while grabbing a bite and do some shopping. The Lakes opened in 2005.

Restaurants include P.F. Changs, California Pizza Kitchen, Sabor Cocina Mexicana and Umami Burger as well as Sunlife Organics. Rounding out the offerings are a Lassen's Health Foods, Brighton Collectibles, BCBC Nails Spa, Kalologie Skincare and Tommy Bahama.

 The Lakes at Thousand Oaks is really a beautiful, peaceful place, daytime and nighttime.

The Lakes at Thousand Oaks is really a beautiful, peaceful place, daytime and nighttime.

There is a kids club that meets every Wednesday morning from Spring through Fall. The Lakes hosts a very popular outdoor ice skating rink.  Younger ones enjoy it here because there is a lot of room to run around, run across the bridge, around the lake, etc.

 We like the koi at The Lakes. They're cool to watch. But we don't feed them as cute as they are as they are obviously well fed!

We like the koi at The Lakes. They're cool to watch. But we don't feed them as cute as they are as they are obviously well fed!

The Lakes is located at 2200 E. Thousand Oaks Boulevard.  Visit or call 805.497.9861 for more information.

The Lakes Memory Lane: Former tenants at The Lakes include Claim Jumper (closed 2/23/14; now Lassen's), Nate 'n Al Deli (closed 1/4/12 in space now occupied by Umami Burger), Sushi Ko (2005 to August 2009 in Umami Burger space), Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (closed 7/18/11), Blizz Frozen Yogurt (closed early Spring 2011), Ben & Jerry's and 9021Pho (July 2016).