See Stars: End-of-Summer 'Stalkerazzi' Trips

Summer's about to end, and that vacation checklist is nearly filled out with trips to Six Flags, your relatives' weddings and that romantic weekend in Sheboygan, Wis.

So all that’s left is catching up on seeing your favorite stars in late-season reruns and summer blockbusters.

Or, you could sneak away for one last spree to see those stars on their home turf.

Strap on your starlet sunglasses and prepare to face the might of a thousand suns: This is's guide to seeing the celebrities as they dine out, carouse in bars and shop for breakfast.

Los Angeles

Almost too obvious to mention, the capital of the celebrity world is La-La Land. The vast majority of Hollywood’s big players play here because, well, Hollywood is here. You’ll need a car to get around, naturally, preferably a convertible, but once you wrestle yourself a parking spot, prepare to enter Stalkerazzi Heaven at these can’t-lose locations.

By far, a celeb worshipper's best bet is the Whiskey Bar at the Sunset Marquis (search).

"This is my favorite hotel ever," said Ms. X, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based television producer who asked that her name not be used because she works with celebrities.

"It’s actually star-studded, but [there's a] very homey vibe there. They pride themselves on not being too flashy, and people have their privacy there."

You’re almost guaranteed to rub elbows with A-listers including Leonardo DiCaprio, Drew Barrymore and Ben Stiller and musicians like Mick Jagger, Slash and Metallica (a nearby recording studio allows rockers to play their music directly into the bar).

It’s so celebrity-heavy that it was the scene, in 1994, of a fight between Gary Oldman and Don Johnson. The guy who stepped in to break it up? James Caan.

"In one room, within the span of 20 minutes, I saw Brad Pitt chatting up owner Rande Gerber (Cindy Crawford’s husband) while I was trying to get to the bar and accidentally stepping on Vince Vaughn’s foot, while asking my friend Jeremiah, ‘Hey, is that John Corbett over there?’" Ms. X said. "Then I sat at a couch in the lobby and got introduced to the former drummer of Guns N’ Roses (Matt Sorum) and looked up and saw Billy Bob Thornton coming in. Yeah, L.A. is weird."

There's more, of course. "In L.A., the Viper Room (search) is still the place," gossip columnist Roger Friedman said.

It’s most remembered because River Phoenix (search) died outside on the pavement on Halloween night in 1993, but this Johnny Depp-owned joint was once a jazz bar-cum-gambling den under star-struck mobster Bugsy Siegel.

It’s a steady place to spot the perennially hip — Iggy Pop comes by to play a set once in a while.

Then there's the Sky Bar at the Mondrian Hotel (search). In many ways it typifies the worst of the L.A. celeb scene, with its impassible bouncers, stratospherically overpriced drinks and a be-seen-or-die attitude, but it can’t be ignored.

It’s got a great view of downtown L.A. — and people like Tara Reid, Rachel Weisz, Benicio Del Toro, Mel Gibson, Adrien Brody, Quincy Jones and Gabriel Byrne.

If you’re a metal head, the first place to go is the Rainbow Room (search), headquarters for old-school rock lovers and one-time second home to Led Zeppelin and Guns N’ Roses.

But L.A.’s so star-rich that even teetotalers can get their share of star sightings. Don’t be surprised if you see your favorite musicians buying CDs or DVDs at the Virgin Megastore on Sunset Boulevard. And you’re almost guaranteed a sighting at LAX.

"I swear, celebs just put up cots here," Ms. X said of the Los Angeles airport.

The one true standby, though, is the downtown Farmers Market (search), still considered the top star-spotting venue in all of Los Angeles.

James Dean ate his last meal here, sure, but you’ll also see Will Ferrell, Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Jodie Foster, Jennifer Aniston, Tyra Banks and Clint Eastwood sniffing out breakfast noshes here.

New York City

The vibe’s definitely different in Gotham, where the rule of thumb is to pretend that that isn’t Uma Thurman, Robert De Niro or Julianne Moore you’re sharing elbow space with.

The West Side’s often the best side in the Big Apple, like at the nightclub/lounge Quo (search), which ushers in guests including Kimora Lee Simmons, Tara Reid, The Game and Boy George with 16-foot water tubes.

Not far away, at Marquee (search), expect to see a cloud of soon-to-be-supermodels, Kathy and Rick Hilton, Debbie Harry, Kelly Osbourne, Mark Wahlberg, Diddy, Lindsay Lohan, Chad Michael Murray and, of course, Leo DiCaprio and Gisele Bundchen.

And you might as well make a Chelsea trifecta at Amy Sacco’s Bungalow 8 (search), at which a celeb visit is so de rigueur that it’s become a cliché — Lohan and one or another of the Olsen twins don’t seem to mind, though.

At R.U.B. BBQ (search), Kansas City-style barbecue’s the lord in the kitchen, and New York-style hipsterdom is the rule in the dining room, with such customers as Leo and Gisele, Parker Posey and Martha Stewart.

Both highbrow and, well, less-highbrow tastes can be satisfied at Grotta Azurra, in Little Italy, where Salman Rushdie, Denis Leary, Blythe Danner, Gwyneth Paltrow, the cast of "The Sopranos" and Ali Larter might be enjoying Italian edibles.

Other celebrity eateries include: Jean-Luc (search), where Joan Allen, Jonathan Demme, Howard Stern, Kevin Bacon and Wu Tang Clan chow down; A.O.C Bedford (search), with Kate Hudson and Daryl Hannah attending; and Ari (search), host to Usher and Wayne Brady, according to luxury-lifestyle publicist Norah Lawlor, of Lawlor Media Group.

Music lovers will want to stop in at the East Village’s Niagara Bar (search), which attracts musicians popping in for a tipple after a show and rockers mingle with mere mortals without any attitude.

And don’t hesitate to wander away from Manhattan, like to the art house P.S. 1 in Queens.

"If you could have seen how the kids followed Bono around like lemmings when he stopped by the Scissor Sisters show last summer, you would have laughed," Ms. X said.

The Hamptons

Of course, celebrity spotting in N.Y.C. during the summer is really celebrity spotting in N.Y.C. East: the Hamptons.

JL East (search) in East Hampton mixes casual bistro cuisine with a St. Tropez flair for Alec Baldwin, Betsey Johnson, Billy Joel, FOX News’ Geraldo Rivera and Bill McCuddy, Candice Bergen, Hilary Swank and hubby Chad Lowe, Kim Cattrall and Kurt Vonnegut.

During the day, you might find the Hiltons — Kathy, Paris and Nicky — Ashanti, Heidi Klum and Rachel Hunter shopping for togs at Biba (search), Lawlor said.


In Miami, the Whitelaw Hotel & Lounge (search) in South Beach, with its signature all-white look and old-Miami feel, is enough to keep Will and Jada Pinkett Smith coming back again and again, as well as the members of Velvet Revolver, Will.I.Am from the Black Eyed Peas and NFL stars Orande Gadsden, Randall Jermaine and Boyd Grafmyre

Celeb hunters in Sin City make a point of going to the Hard Rock Hotel (search), where stars who can’t hack Las Vegas’ heat make a go of beating the house indoors.

"There is always some celeb roaming around hitting the tables," Ms. X said. "The best time to see rock stars is when the Billboard Awards are going on, because they’re losing their money like all the other folks — especially at this hotel/casino."

And you can be sure the Great White North — aka Hollywood North — has its star-attracting hotspots, too.

The Opus Hotel (search), in Vancouver, is a boutique hotel that’s offered a roof to Al Pacino, Avril Lavigne, the Beastie Boys, Beck, Ben Affleck, Brittany Murphy, Christina Aguilera, David Bowie, Estella Warren, Harrison Ford, Jennifer Lopez, Jennifer Garner, John Cusak and Johnny Knoxville.

And while the south of France is known for its celebrity haunts in St. Tropez, Cannes and elsewhere, our gossip columnist wound up in a star-free zone in Bandol.

"It’s very quiet. Too quiet. There’s no stalkerazzi. You can barely get an orange."