Aviation-Themed Hotel North of Los Angeles near Universal Studios
Since its opening in 1928, Van Nuys Airport (located about 21 miles north of downtown Los Angeles) has been used by a number of celebrities, from Bob Hope and aviator Howard Hughes to modern-day rock bands and TV and movie personalities. It has also appeared on the silver screen—most notably, in the last scene of Casablanca. From the Airtel Plaza Hotel, you can still watch private jets land and take off from a runway situated just a few hundred yards from the hotel.
You can learn more about the history of Van Nuys Airport inside the hotel, which showcases Pan Am memorabilia and a 25-foot model of a 747 hanging from the ceiling in the lobby. Guest rooms are comfortably appointed with plush bedding. Some upgraded rooms overlook the runway.
Each morning, Landings Restaurant sets out a full breakfast buffet (complimentary with this getaway) that includes breakfast meats, seasonal fruits, eggs, and potatoes. The restaurant serves sandwiches and fresh seafood for lunch and dinner—request a seat on the outdoor patio to watch takeoffs and landings during your meal. On Wednesday nights, Airtel Plaza Hotel invites a number of gourmet food trucks to the parking lot so guests can sample burgers, tacos, and more while watching the sunset.
Van Nuys, Los Angeles, California: Northern LA Neighborhood Famous for Cruising Culture
Situated about 18 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles in the San Fernando Valley, the neighborhood of Van Nuys was once the center of LA’s cruising culture. In the ’60s and ’70s, Van Nuys Boulevard was regularly filled with the sounds of revving engines and Led Zeppelin as teenagers in hot rods rolled up and down the 3-mile stretch of road. It was a ritual that eventually came to represent the Southern California lifestyle. You can still experience it on the second Wednesday of each month, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Just a 1.5 miles south of the hotel, the 2,000-acre Sepulveda Basin Recreation Area encompasses hiking and biking trails, three 18-hole golf courses, and a wildlife preserve. There’s also a Japanese garden outfitted with traditional buildings, bridges, and lanterns.
To the south lies Universal Studios Hollywood, which provides a premier Hollywood experience. Check out the thrill rides, shows, studio tours, and CityWalk, a three-block entertainment zone filled with restaurants, shops, and nightclubs. About eight miles from the hotel lies Studio City, a residential neighborhood with plenty boutiques and restaurants lining the main strip.
Read the Fine Print for important info on travel dates and other restrictions.