Girls Trip to LA

Old Dec 21st, 2006, 08:56 AM
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Girls Trip to LA

Hello,

4 twenty-something girls are planning a trip to LA for January for 5 days 4 nights. Although we don't have an itinerary we have a good idea on what we're going to do.
- Universal Studios
- Warner Brother Studio
- Santa Monica Pier
- Hollywood Tourist Attractions
- Scenic drive to San Diego
- Check out the fashion district and farmers market

And at night, we just want to party We're staying in an area called Century Plaza. Is there a lot of night life there?

The purpose of the trip is to just relax, eat and have fun without breaking the bank.

I was wondering if there are other activities that one might recommend during the day?

Are there any coupons to Warner Brothers Studios(I found coupons to Universal Studios, but coulnd't find one for Warner Brothers).

I'm sure we'll need a car to get from place to place, but parking seems to be quite expensive in LA. Any tips on trying to save $ on parking?

What's the scenic route to San Diego from LA by car and how far is the drive?

Places to eat that is relatively cheap and good. We're definatley going to go to In-N-Out and K-town for cheap eats, but other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Last, recommendations for clubs and bars.
mnm847 is offline  
Old Dec 21st, 2006, 09:45 AM
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Looks like you're flyin' blind on this so far....

There is no area called Century Plaza. There's an LA neighborhood called Century City, within which there is a hotel called the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza. Century City itself is a commercially-oriented section of LA-- a Westside satellite of Downtown.

As far as nightlife in Century City proper-- there is none. NONE.

You are Beverly Hills adjacent, thankfully, and West Hollywood is also very nearby, so there are lots of clubs not incredibly far away. For that scene, I'd check here:

www. laweekly.com

The Warner Brothers Studio tour is far superior to the normal Universal Studios tour, unless you spring for Universal's great VIP Backlot Tour, in which case it becomes a tossup. But there's NO reason to do both in the same trip. Hollywood tourist attractions can take a lifetime-- or a couple of hours. Get a van tour and knock yourself out for a morning, then hit the cool shops on Melrose Avenue in LA. More fun IMHO.

The Santa Monica Pier is worth an hour or two of your time. Then you walk around Santa Monica and take in the sights and shops and good restaurants.

The Fashion District is in Downtown LA. The famed LA Farmer's Market straddles the LA/West Hollywood border, well west of Downtown. There are also many dozens of farmer's markets put on by cities and other municipalities in the greater LA area (the most famous being the Santa Monica Farmer's Market on Wednesdays in downtown SM), just so you know.

The "scenic drive" to San Diego doesn't start until you're basically in Orange County, FYI (and not all of it is that scenic). Depending on the weather, you might have stunning ocean views-- or nothing but rain and mist and marine layer. But here's a "scenic" route:

From the Westside of LA, get to the 405 (or Interstate 405) heading south. Follow it out of LA County; just inside the Orange County line, take the Seal Beach Blvd. exit heading south (just head toward the ocean). When you hit Pacific Coast Highway ("PCH" or "Highway 1"), take a left. Follow all the way down to San Clemente, then grab the 5 (I-5) southbound. Follow all the way into San Diego.

No parking tips. A lot of the greater LA area is going to permit-only parking in residential areas. The West LA streets around Century City may still be mostly "free", but that can change at the drop of a hat. Just pony up the cost of parking at the hotel and be happy you'll have in-and-out privileges.

Koreatown is not that close to you, I'm sorry to say. It's worth a trip, I suppose, but LA is a mecca for good, cheap eats ($20 buys you a FAR better meal in LA than in NYC), and you can find reasonably-priced eateries all over. In-'n'-Out is just one possibility. LA is a great place to explore Asian cuisines, and even if the Westside isn't the epicenter of each regional specialty (quickly: Chinese in the San Gabriel Valley, Japanese in Little Tokyo or on Sawtelle between Santa Monica and Olympic, Thai in East Hollywood, Cambodian down in Long Beach, Vietnamese in Westminster/Little Saigon, Indian in Artesia, Filipino in Cerritos...), there are still some good Asian specialists to enjoy. La Guelaguetza in Palms serves some of the best Oaxacan food you'll eat outside of Mexico. And all of this is cheap. Cheap food abounds in LA in general.

But not so much in Century City, last time I checked. They cater to business people with expense accounts who didn't bother to get a car and are stuck there with nothing to do.

Any chance you can change your location? I'd stay in Beverly Hills or Santa Monica or Westwood-- well, just about anywhere other than Century City just to have some things within walking distance after 5 PM (when CC's sidewalks pretty much roll up).

Just my two cents....
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Old Dec 21st, 2006, 10:58 AM
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On your way to San Diego, you may want to stop in Laguna Beach. Check out the Montage Resort and the views from the property there. You could have appetizers at the The Loft where you will have stunning views of the ocean and the Mosaic pool there.

In n Out is great, you may also want to consider SeaWorld in San Diego. Fun shows (we saw 4) rides and pretty good food. Go for the BBQ place there. Merry Christmas! ***kim***
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Old Dec 21st, 2006, 11:50 AM
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I would skip San Diego since this is such a short trip. It is minimum 2 hour drive each way, even if traffic is OK.

How about going to Melrose Avenue (since I'm not even sure what you mean by fashion district)? Great shopping and restaurants there. Nearby enough to Hollywood Attractions and the Farmers Market.

Other daytime activities I would add to your list are: the LaBrea tar pits, Chinatown, and Olvera Street.
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Old Dec 21st, 2006, 04:46 PM
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A couple notes:
There's a big outdoor mall in Century City, if you want to just have some place to walk around and shop. If you have a car, you're not terribly out of the way staying in CC. It is in itself pretty dead, but you can drive to more happening spots within a few minutes. Be prepared to drive a lot and make sure to map directions for each location. L.A. is extremely spread out. Parking does suck and not much can be done about it.

For reasonably priced food, I'd suggest any one of the numerous Mexican restaurants around. L.A. has very good Mexican food. In addition to the Santa Monica Pier/3rd Street Promenade you might want to venture over to adjacent Venice and do some dining/shopping/barhopping there. More interesting and less touristy IMO.
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