SoCal upscale lifestyle glut

The LA Business Journal asks what I’ve been wondering myself: Is there a bubble of upscale lifetsyle magazines in LA? The article looks at recent entrants Tu Ciudad, C, Item, Golf Living, and the newly-stand-alone VLife, as well as the old guard of Distinction, Angeleno, Los Angeles Confidential, Brentwood, Venice and Santa Barbara. The answer is not quite conclusive- there may in fact be niches for most or all of these things, since they end up in tasteless McMansions owned by slightly different constituencies. Usually in the wicker basket in the guest bathroom.

On the other hand, it turns out that most of these publications lure advertisers via introductory discounts, and often lose them when the discount ends. The article also gives us a snapshot of the life of Jennifer Smith Hale, heiress to a syndicate of 25 television stations, who bought the magazine Santa Barbara at age 24 (if I understand the piece correctly) and now has launched C:

“I wanted to create a national magazine with a California concept,” said Hale, who commutes from her Malibu home to the offices of Santa Barbara magazine and C. “California is such an affluent state with so much style, so much sophistication, yet there’s no one publication that really covers that part of California.”

I’m so glad someone has stepped forward to give voice to California’s forgotten, disenfranchised idle wealthy.