The French word Jadis translates roughly to "in times past" or "the old days" which is apt for this special, by-appointment-only antique store. While the Santa Monica shop—owned by carpenter and self-taught engineer Parke Meek until his death in 2010—seems to only sometimes be open tot the public, it's important to call ahead. Now solely owned by Meek's partner Susan Lieberman, the shop asks a $1 donation on entry, and it's well worth it. Visitors will be overwhelmed by the veritable museum inside, housing trinkets and treasures from old scientific equipment to antique globes, antlers, gizmos and gadgets, and just about anything else one can imagine. It's truly a curiosity cabinet and you will be treated to all kinds of fun facts and odd history. You might see the robot from Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" or any number of famous props and costumes. The owners rent and sell props from the store, but it's worth a visit for the jaw-dropping wow factor. Leave your phone in your pocket, as photos aren't allowed. A little way down Neilson Way there is the antithesis of Jadis: Viceroy Santa Monica, a super-glam hotel where a refreshment by the pool could be the perfect wind-down. Or perhaps a visit to the William Turner Gallery for some mind-boggling modern art.