My Beverly Hills LOVES our residents! Please meet Marc and Annette Saleh, residents of Beverly Hills.
What do you do?
Annette – I am a supporter of local charities, philanthropist, fundraiser, event organizer, community activist and an artist at heart.
Marc – I am self-employed. Primarily, I own a citrus farm in Ventura County where I grow Valencia oranges and am an owner-grower for Sunkist. I am also active in the community.
How long have you lived in Beverly Hills? Where were you before you became a resident of BH?
Annette – I have lived in Beverly Hills for 30 years. I was born in Manila and in 1984 I came to California to pursue graduate studies. I met Marc here and we were married almost 25 years ago at the Regent Beverly Wilshire. Our only child Anton was born and raised in this City. In 2011, we moved from our home in Trousdale to the Southwest area of Beverly Hills.
Marc – I have lived in Beverly Hills for more than five decades.
What schools did you attend?
Annette – I attended a private school for girls in Manila for 13 years. After graduating with a BFA in Fine Arts and Advertising from the University of Santo Tomas and working as a PR Director for an exclusive retail establishment, I came to California to attend grad school.
Marc – I went to Hawthorne from Kindergarten through eighth grade and graduated from Beverly Hills High School. I completed a BA in Economics & Psychology from Claremont McKenna College and an MBA from Columbia University.
What have you done to make a mark in the BH community?
Annette – For the last 20 years, Marc and I have dedicated our time and resources to giving back to the City we love. We have both been actively involved in the Beverly Hills community, serving local charitable and philanthropic causes. We have supported numerous non-profits in Beverly Hills starting with the public schools to the fireman’s and police officers associations, public library, parks, counseling center and more. We are among the Capital Campaign Founding Donors of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. We have helped run many local campaigns, both for the City Council and the Board of Education, as well as helped to promote many measures and proposals affecting our City. I have served as Hawthorne PTA president, director at the Beverly Hills Women’s Club, director for Friends of the Beverly Hills Public Library, president of the Beverly Hills Education Foundation, co-chair of three Beverly Hills Centennial Committees: the Centennial Concert, Centennial Youth Art Contest and the Centennial Postage Stamp Committee, and am currently a Programs co-chair for Friends of Beverly Gardens Park. I am a graduate of Team Beverly Hills and sit on the BH Chamber of Commerce’s My Beverly Hills committee. I am also very engaged in Mayor Lili Bosse’s “Healthy City” initiative, and I personally connect local businesses with the City and help to coordinate destinations for the Monday morning Walks with the Mayor.
Marc – I was a president of Hawthorne PTA, member of the Hawthorne School Site Council, the BHUSD Superintendent’s Blue Ribbon Committee, the BHUSD Facilities Committee and the BHUSD Intramural Sports Committee. I served on the executive board of the Beverly Hills Education Foundation, was vice president of the BHHS PTSA and was co-president of BH PTA Council. I am a graduate of Team Beverly Hills, completed the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training and was Block Captain in the Trousdale area of Beverly Hills. Most recently, I was a City Council appointee for the Santa Monica Blue Ribbon Committee.
What do you like most about living in BH?
Annette – The BH police, fire and schools are exceptional! I love the elegant hotels, fine restaurants, splendid boutiques, wonderful eateries, beautiful parks and magnificent performing arts center. Having the epicenter of luxury fashion, Rodeo Drive, right in our backyard is amazing! I greatly appreciate that the community as a whole respects and values the privacy of its residents. The streets are pretty quiet and many of the homes in BH were built with privacy in mind.
Marc – I’ve always liked the small town feel with a big city experience. I see my neighbors each day as I walk the dog in our park-like residential area. The police, fire and schools are among the best in the nation. The accessibility of the City government and staff, as well as the school district’s school board and administration is unique in my experience. Many of our citizens are trained in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, search and rescue as well as crisis management.
What are your favorite things to do in Beverly Hills?
Annette – Walk with Mayor on Monday mornings! Celebrate with friends at any of the cities’ exceptional restaurants and hotels. Relax at the local spas. Shop in our local stores.
Marc – Walk my dog or ride my bicycle around the City – Rodeo Drive, Beverly Gardens Park, Beverly Drive, Canon Drive. There’s always something going on in Beverly Hills!
What are your favorite places in Beverly Hills? Do you have a favorite restaurant/coffee shop/retail store/market/wine store in BH? If yes, what are they and why?
Annette – I have so many favorites!!! I love the cuisine at Matsuhisa, Bouchon, Maude and Il Pastaio, the wonderful neighborhood ambience at Porta Via, the impeccable service at Peninsula Hotel’s Belvedere and Roof Garden, the fresh organic coffees and teas at Urth Caffe, the Happy Hour specials at Fleming’s, the iconic Circa 55 at Beverly Hilton, the breathtaking views of the Hills at Montage’s Rooftop Grill, the location and minimal chic of Luxe Rodeo Drive, shopping at Geary’s, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Barney’s, grocery shopping at Whole Foods and Beverly Hills Market… I could go on and on. I am very excited that Ocean Prime and The Palm are both opening here very soon!
Marc – I am a loyal client of many local establishments, especially Mercedes Benz Beverly Hills. The quality of their cars and service is superb. Among my favorite restaurants are Sushi Sushi, Da Pasquale and Hakkasan.
Do you know of a Beverly Hills gem?
Annette – The Beverly Gardens Park – the gems within this gem are the Lily Pond and the Wilshire Electric Fountain. Both are a century old and are among the most significant pieces of history in Beverly Hills. The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts – once the legendary 1933 Beverly Hills Post Office, now a world class performing arts center. It has transformed a city block into a vibrant new cultural destination.
Marc – The Beverly Hills Public Library, which is ranked as one of the top 12 libraries in the state. The famed front lawn of Beverly Hills High, which has appeared in Hollywood films and countless photographs. The historic Hawthorne School, which according to records, is the oldest of the current school structures in Beverly Hills.
What do you think makes BH unique/stand out from other cities?
Annette – Beverly Hills is perhaps the most famous small city in the world. There is a unique mix of cultural identities, socioeconomic backgrounds and religious beliefs in the local community. It has some of the country’s most valuable real estate and boasts of world-class shopping, fine dining and of course star-gazing. Best of all, the Police and Fire Departments and School District are among the best in the nation.
Marc – Beverly Hills is rich in history, culture and diversity. Our sophisticated local government is very approachable, international businesses partner with the local organizations and our world renown village draws all sorts of interesting visitors, dignitaries, events and happenings.
What advice do you want to give other BH residents?
Annette – Get involved. Give generously and support the various community non-profit organizations whenever you can. Get out and vote at every election and make your voice count.
Marc – Attend a City Council, Commission or PTA Council meeting – these are easy ways to meet and chat with your elected officials as well as wonderful, dedicated members of our City’s and school district’s staff.