News, Culture & Society

Take a trip down memory lane as Meghan returns to her old LA stomping grounds

She’s the LA girl who rose from humble beginnings to become a member of the British royal family – but now Meghan Markle is back on her home turf with sights set on ascending the throne of Hollywood.  

After two rocky years of ups and downs in England, Meghan and Prince Harry broke  with the monarchy for a fresh start in North America, with their son Archie in tow.  

The royal couple set off in a bid to become financially independent, with Meghan now vying for a breakout role that will make critics take her seriously as an actress. 

Following a short stint in Canada, they are back in Meghan’s home town of Los Angeles, where she navigated through her teens, forged herself into a successful TV actress and discovered her love for philanthropy.  

There’s no better place for the new parents, as they can count on support from Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland, as well as their celebrity friends and a top team of Tinsel Town agents, business managers, lawyers and publicists.

Here DailyMail.com maps out the key locations in Meghan’s Los Angeles past, present and future. 

She’s the LA girl who rose from humble beginnings to become a member of the British royal family – but now Meghan Markle is back on her home turf with fresh sights set on ascending the throne of Hollywood. Here DailyMail.com maps out the key locations in Meghan’s Los Angeles past, present and future

MOM DORIA’S NEIGHBORHOOD

Despite her daughter’s meteoric rise to superstardom, yoga instructor Doria continues to live in a modest Mediterranean-style bungalow in South LA which she inherited from her father. 

Her neighborhood’s name – Windsor Hills – inadvertently hints at the 63-year-old former social worker’s royal connections. Nicknamed the ‘Black Beverly Hills’, the area is respectable and has spectacular views of Downtown LA’s looming skyscrapers. 

But it is still a far cry from the palace life Harry has grown up in and the glitz and glam Meghan has become used to. 

Despite her daughter's meteoric rise to superstardom, yoga instructor Doria continues to live in a modest Mediterranean-style bungalow in South LA which she inherited from her father

Despite her daughter’s meteoric rise to superstardom, yoga instructor Doria continues to live in a modest Mediterranean-style bungalow in South LA which she inherited from her father

Now they themselves have moved from their Vancouver Island bolthole in Canada to California, it remains to be seen whether they can tempt Doria to leave behind the home she has lived in for 25 years (pictured)

Now they themselves have moved from their Vancouver Island bolthole in Canada to California, it remains to be seen whether they can tempt Doria to leave behind the home she has lived in for 25 years (pictured) 

The Sussexes were not able to convince ‘hippie dippie’ Doria to move to the UK to be closer to them, even after her grandson Archie was born and became seventh in line to the throne. 

Now they themselves have moved from their Vancouver Island bolthole in Canada to California, it remains to be seen whether they can tempt Doria to leave behind the home she has lived in for 25 years to share their abode.

What is beyond doubt is that their bond with Doria – who has been dubbed her daughter’s ‘only trusted advisor’- is set to grow even stronger as they settle into LA life.

MEGHAN’S HOLLYWOOD TEAM 

Even after she joined the Royal Family almost two years ago, Meghan still retained the services of an elite Beverly Hills-based team to deal with her business affairs. 

Now that she is back in Hollywood and in need of income after renouncing as a senior royal, Meghan is believed to be looking for work that relies on her acting skills again. 

She already landed a gig voicing an elephant documentary for Disney, which was released this week – with her fee donated to charity.

 It came after Harry was seen pitching to the studio’s boss on his wife’s behalf at the premiere of The Lion King in London last year. 

Nick Collins (left) of the Gersh Agency – which represented legends such Humphrey Bogart and David Niven during Hollywood's Golden Era and has handled the careers of Tobey Maguire and Jamie Foxx in more recent times - is charged with taking care of film, TV or charity offers

Silver-haired entertainment business manager Andrew Meyer, who runs Freemark Financial, is said to be working behind the scenes to develop Meghan's business plans

Nick Collins (left) of the Gersh Agency – which represented legends such Humphrey Bogart and David Niven during Hollywood’s Golden Era and has handled the careers of Tobey Maguire and Jamie Foxx in more recent times – is charged with taking care of film, TV or charity offers. Silver-haired entertainment business manager Andrew Meyer (right), who runs Freemark Financial, is said to be working behind the scenes to develop Meghan’s business plans 

Now that she is back in Hollywood and in need of income after renouncing as a senior royal, Meghan is believed to be looking for work that relies on her acting skills again

Now that she is back in Hollywood and in need of income after renouncing as a senior royal, Meghan is believed to be looking for work that relies on her acting skills again

The Duke’s helping hand aside, Meghan will be depending on a trio of men who work out of swanky offices on Wilshire Blvd – her agent, business agent and lawyer. 

Nick Collins of the Gersh Agency – which represented legends such Humphrey Bogart and David Niven during Hollywood’s Golden Era and has handled the careers of Tobey Maguire and Jamie Foxx in more recent times – is charged with taking care of film, TV or charity offers.

Silver-haired entertainment business manager Andrew Meyer, who runs Freemark Financial, is said to be working behind the scenes to develop Meghan’s business plans. Meanwhile lawyer Rick Genow, a Harvard graduate considered one of the top attorneys in Hollywood, is also on board. 

Once social distancing due to the coronavirus outbreak is relaxed, all three can expect to be having regular LA-style power breakfast meetings with the Duchess. 

CELEBRITY FRIENDS 

The Sussexes are not only one of the world’s most instantly recognizable celebrity couples – they are also one of the best connected. 

Guests to their wedding at Windsor Castle in May 2018 included George and Amal Clooney, Elton John and hugely influential US TV star Oprah Winfrey. 

It was recently claimed that the Clooneys may soon be moving from Britain to LA themselves – after it emerged they are giving George's Hollywood mansion an upgrade to include a play cottage

It was recently claimed that the Clooneys may soon be moving from Britain to LA themselves – after it emerged they are giving George’s Hollywood mansion an upgrade to include a play cottage

The Ocean's Eleven star and his human rights lawyer wife are the proud parents of twins Ella and Alexander, who at almost three are not much older than 10-month-old baby Archie

The Ocean’s Eleven star and his human rights lawyer wife are the proud parents of twins Ella and Alexander, who at almost three are not much older than 10-month-old baby Archie

It was recently claimed that the Clooneys may soon be moving from Britain to LA themselves – after it emerged they are giving George’s Hollywood mansion an upgrade to include a play cottage. 

The Ocean’s Eleven star and his human rights lawyer wife are the proud parents of twins Ella and Alexander, who at almost three are not much older than 10-month-old baby Archie. 

Oprah – who owns a 40-acre ranch to the north of LA in Montecito – is currently working on a mental health documentary with Harry and Meghan and has been very vocal in her support of the couple. 

Oprah is currently working on a mental health documentary with Harry and Meghan and has been very vocal in her support of the couple

And pop superstar Elton John – a friend of Harry's late mother Diana and owner of a $33 million mansion in Beverly Hills – is also likely to be hanging out with the in-demand couple

Oprah is currently working on a mental health documentary with Harry and Meghan and has been very vocal in her support of the couple. And pop superstar Elton John – a friend of Harry’s late mother Diana and owner of a $33 million mansion in Beverly Hills – is also likely to be hanging out with the in-demand couple

The billionaire TV legend who owns a 40-acre ranch to the north of LA in Montecito –

The billionaire TV legend who owns a 40-acre ranch to the north of LA in Montecito –

When it was first announced in January that the Sussexes would be stepping back from royal duties, the 65-year-old TV host said: ‘I back them 1000 per cent.’ 

And pop superstar Elton John – a friend of Harry’s late mother Diana and owner of a $33 million mansion in Beverly Hills – is also likely to be hanging out with the in-demand couple. 

Other A-listers who you can expect to be part of Harry and Meghan’s social circle are Jay-Z and Beyoncé, Indian-born actress Priyanka Chopra and tennis legend Serena Williams.

CHARITY WORK 

Forced to abandon their initial plans to use the Sussex Royal brand following Megxit, Harry and Meghan will be carrying on their charity work through a new non-profit organization, recently unveiled as Archewell. 

They have even hired a former staff member of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as their chief of staff. 

Meghan’s dedication to charity work can be traced all the way back to when she was a 13-year-old schoolgirl at Immaculate Heart High School in the Los Feliz neighborhood east of Hollywood.

With the encouragement of her mom, the Duchess helped out at the Hospitality Kitchen – known affectionately as the Hippie Kitchen – located on one of the area's worst corners

With the encouragement of her mom, the Duchess helped out at the Hospitality Kitchen – known affectionately as the Hippie Kitchen – located on one of the area’s worst corners

Part of her school curriculum included doing voluntary work helping the homeless in LA’s notorious Skid Row area, where thousands live on the street in makeshift tents. 

The area – which lies in the shadow of Downtown LA’s gleaming skyscrapers – has been described as like ‘something Charles Dickens would be writing about’. 

With the encouragement of her mom, the Duchess helped out at the Hospitality Kitchen – known affectionately as the Hippie Kitchen – located on one of the area’s worst corners. 

With around 60,000 people currently thought to be living on the streets of LA and many more likely to end up there because of the Covid-19 crisis, the Sussexes will have a humanitarian crisis to deal with right on their doorstep. 

GHOSTS OF THE PAST 

Although Meghan has many happy memories of her time growing up in LA, there are also reminders of how things have changed and the relationships she lost along the way. 

There is her childhood home, which she shared with Doria, her now estranged father Thomas Markle Sr. and half-siblings Thomas Jr. and Samantha in Woodland Hills, a suburb in the San Fernando Valley. 

There are the film and television studios where she would hang out while her father worked as a lighting director on sitcom Married… With Children.

This is her childhood home, which she shared with Doria, her now estranged father Thomas Markle Sr and half-siblings Thomas Jr and Samantha in Woodland Hills, a suburb in the San Fernando Valley

This is her childhood home, which she shared with Doria, her now estranged father Thomas Markle Sr and half-siblings Thomas Jr and Samantha in Woodland Hills, a suburb in the San Fernando Valley

The Little Red House elementary school that she attended is also in the same spot, although it has since changed its name to the Hollywood Schoolhouse

The Little Red House elementary school that she attended is also in the same spot, although it has since changed its name to the Hollywood Schoolhouse

They include Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood, the Prospect Studios in Los Feliz and the legendary Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City – located on the site the old MGM lot where classic movies such as The Wizard of Oz, Singin’ In the Rain and Ben-Hur were filmed. 

There is the Self-Realization Fellowship temple on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood where her parents got married in December 1979. Meanwhile the site of her mother’s old gift shop Distant Treasures was taken over by an aquarium store. 

The Agape International Spiritual Center Meghan would attend with Doria moved to a new location but the Paper Source shop where she worked as a calligraphy teacher after graduating remains. 

The Little Red House elementary school that she attended is also in the same spot, although it has since changed its name to the Hollywood Schoolhouse. 

And finally, there is the bungalow just above the legendary Whisky a Go Go music venue in West Hollywood (pictured) which she shared with her first husband Trevor Engelson before they divorced in 2013

And finally, there is the bungalow just above the legendary Whisky a Go Go music venue in West Hollywood (pictured) which she shared with her first husband Trevor Engelson before they divorced in 2013

There is St Francis High School in the suburb of La Cañada Flintridge where Meghan was crowned homecoming queen in 1998. 

And finally, there is the bungalow just above the legendary Whisky a Go Go music venue in West Hollywood which she shared with her first husband Trevor Engelson before they divorced in 2013. 

FOOD

Former lifestyle blogger Meghan is a proud foodie – and while restaurants are on lockdown at the moment she must be longing for some of her favorite spots to reopen soon. 

One place she and Harry are likely to frequent is Soho House’s Little Beach House in Malibu, which features an ocean-view restaurant serving ingredients from local farms.  

One place she and Harry are likely to frequent is Soho House’s Little Beach House in Malibu, which features an ocean-view restaurant serving ingredients from local farms

Soho House has been a part of Meghan’s life for years and played a big role in her romance with Harry after the pair had their first date at one of the private members club’s London locations. 

The Duchess is also reportedly a superfan of Robert De Niro’s upmarket chain of sushi restaurants Nobu, which has a place in Malibu close to the Little Beach House that is a celeb favorite. 

Meghan has also spoken before of her love for classic Beverly Hills Italian restaurant La Scala, which she used to go to every week for chopped salad with turkey. 

Meghan has also spoken before of her love for classic Beverly Hills Italian restaurant La Scala, which she used to go to every week for chopped salad with turkey

Meghan has also spoken before of her love for classic Beverly Hills Italian restaurant La Scala, which she used to go to every week for chopped salad with turkey

And although she probably won’t be doing much grocery shopping for herself these days, the Duchess is known to be a fan of the Erewhon health food store in Beverly Hills Writing on her lifestyle blog The Tig, she described picking up ‘biodynamic wines, house made kombucha and collard green wraps’ there. 

EXERCISE 

Like most Hollywood types, Meghan is known for being a keep fit fanatic who likes to hike and do Pilates. 

LA is famous for scenic walks in the hills and mountains, which tower above the city and Meghan has spoken before about her love of the Los Liones trail close to the ocean in Pacific Palisades. 

Meanwhile, Meghan's close friend Heather Dorak runs a chain of studios called Pilates Platinum  (pictured) in the city. Writing in a testimonial for its website, Meghan described it as 'the best workout in town'

Meanwhile, Meghan’s close friend Heather Dorak runs a chain of studios called Pilates Platinum  (pictured) in the city. Writing in a testimonial for its website, Meghan described it as ‘the best workout in town’

Meghan wrote of the hike, which features stunning views of Malibu and Santa Monica: ‘My mom and I do this run when I am home and it’s so feel good it’s amazing.’ 

The Duchess has also spoken of her ‘love/hate’ relationship with Runyon Canyon, one of the city’s most famous hiking trails located just above Hollywood. 

She snarkily wrote of the tourist favorite: ‘The hate part is that on weekends it can get crowded and there is endless Hollywood talk of auditions and projects that are greenlit.’ 

Meanwhile, Meghan’s close friend Heather Dorak runs a chain of studios called Pilates Platinum in the city. Writing in a testimonial for its website, Meghan described it as ‘the best workout in town’.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk