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Underrated / Overrated

May 08, 2008

THE SANTA MONICA PIER FERRIS WHEEL

Sometimes you don't appreciate things until they're gone. Take, for example, this coastal entertainment mainstay (200 Santa Monica Pier), which has given more than 3 million oceanview rides since 1996, the last of which was on Monday. A state-of-the-art replacement is coming May 22, but sentimentalists will always yearn for the old over the new.

THE WELL

It's becoming increasingly difficult to find a low-key bar in Hollywood that simply serves drinks without the drama. When we want to meet friends for a cold one in the 'wood, we head to the Well (6255 W. Sunset Blvd.). Reasonably priced drinks, cool design, no door attitude and just hidden enough that tourists can't find the place. In other words, the perfect bar.

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THE GROVE

This shopping mecca (189 The Grove Drive), which used to have a fairly liberal parking policy, now requires that you show a receipt to get your parking validated. Nice way to bleed every last cent out of weary shoppers.

IKEA

Countless homes have been livened up by this Swedish import company's budget furniture, but assembling the items can be harder than solving a Rubik's cube and the customer service can be some of the worst in the retail world.

KOBE BRYANT

Sure, he's incredibly talented, but where were the Kobe-led Lakers headed before Pau Gasol came to town? New Orleans' Chris Paul has done more with less, so, Kobe, hand over the MVP award.

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