"Access Hollywood" special correspondent Maria Menounos not only lights up your small screen, she also knows a thing or two about shining socially. The actress and author (her new book "The EveryGirl's Guide to Life" hits the shelves Tuesday) shares her favorite places to kick back, get glam or munch on skillet-warmed cookies when she's off the clock.
Any rituals at home before you hit the town?
I used to crank the tunes, but recently I've gotten into the whole podcast thing. I download podcasts from Afterbuzz TV. A super TV fan offers breakdowns from my favorite shows, takes calls from fellow fans and interviews the cast and crew from about 30 different series.
Your perfect place for starter drinks or appetizers?
Soho House Los Angeles [9200 W. Sunset Blvd.].
Your current favorite clubs/nightlife venues and why?
Sam Nazarian and SBE will never let you down. I love the Colony [1743 N. Cahuenga Blvd.]. It's very hip and I love the couch-comfy vibe.
Favorite dive bar?
The Dime [442 N Fairfax Ave.]. Great, intimate little spot. I always have fun times there.
Perfect L.A. spot for a first date?
Gladstone's [17300 Pacific Coast Highway] in Malibu is perfect. Can't get more romantic than eating on the beach.
Best place for late night dining?
Caffé Primo [8590 Sunset Blvd.]. It has a great energy at night but casual enough to bring your laptop. There's tons of great celeb and people watching. The homemade gelato is fantastic.
Best sports bar?
The ESPN Zone [1011 S. Figueroa]. Great sports and food. My fave dessert is the freshly baked, hot-on-the-skillet chocolate chip cookie with ice cream. Yum!