- One-night stay for two adults in a Studio king room</p>
By Jill Klosterman, Travel Correspondent
Trendy Boutique Hotel with Thriving Nightlife on the Sunset Strip
“This is a great spot to people watch,” a woman whispers to her husband as he joins her on a white leather bench. Meanwhile, young socialites clip-clop through the lobby, adding a counterpoint of excitable chirping to the staccato rhythm of their clicking heels. Mondrian Los Angeles is a place where everybody looks like a somebody, and consequently, the Somebodies often fly under the radar. The hotel promises a glitzy experience and backs it up with frills such as feather-covered lamps, orange sheepskin chairs, and floor-to-ceiling show showers. Once a lusterless apartment building, Mondrian has been transformed into a chic hotel buzzing with the glamour and festive energy of the nearby Sunset Strip.
In Studio king rooms, every furnishing wears white. A lace coverlet swathes the king-size bed, veiling a bridal-white down duvet. On the opposite wall, a couch bears a cargo of nine plump ivory pillows. Delicate white curtains also shroud the show shower, which opens to a bathroom with double vanities spaced a full human wingspan apart. Visitors can rotate an incandescent orange mirror to reflect the flat-screen TV or draw back white curtains to reveal the closet and bassist of Whitesnake sleeping within. Around the corner from the bathroom, a glass chandelier throws light onto a wet bar and a workspace.
A broad staircase ascends to Skybar, an ivy-covered pavilion with sweeping views of the Los Angeles skyline and three shelves of top-shelf alcohol, ranging from Ketel One to Midori. In the bar and around the nearby pool, men dressed in plaid flannel and fedoras mingle among women strutting in curve-hugging bodycon dresses. Candles flicker throughout the space as top 20 tunes—interspersed with classics by the King of Pop—fill the air. At the adjacent restaurant, Asia de Cuba, diners sample chino-latino fare at tables flanked by terra-cotta pots.
West Hollywood, California: Adult Playground with Lively Nightlife, Shopping, and A-List Crowds
WeHo corrals the best of Los Angeles within walking distance of the hotel, providing easy access to the star-studded Sunset Strip and the rambunctious goings-on on Hollywood Boulevard. Along Sunset Strip, live music blares from clubs and lounges such as Whisky a Go-Go, a thriving, crimson-colored rock club where crowds line up to catch acts such as Alice Cooper. Most bars sit within walking distance of each other, and club hoppers make the rounds while sporting the trendiest outfits and most figure-flattering hot-dog suits from the upscale boutiques lining Santa Monica Boulevard, located just a few streets south.
North of the Sunset Strip, Hollywood Boulevard glitters with celebrity-centric attractions. Terrazzo and brass stars imbed the Hollywood Walk of Fame; a perennial huddle of photo-snapping tourists gathers around the star designated Michael Jackson’s. Northwest of the boulevard’s bustling crowds, a calmer scene coalesces around Runyon Canyon, a 160-acre park with paved and natural hiking trails. After passing through heavy iron gates at the canyon’s southern entrance on Fuller Avenue, travelers take dusty footpaths winding past palms and brambles before ascending to bird’s-eye outlooks with views of the city and its hills. “I love it,” says one hiker, Dina, as she gestures toward the scene around her. “It’s so invigorating. And the view—just look at it.” In the distance, the Hollywood Sign gleams in the midday sun, at last emerging from a layer of morning fog.</p>
Recommendations for Your Getaway
- Whisky a Go-Go<p> This crimson-colored club is considered the birthplace of LA’s rock ‘n’ roll scene for its contribution to the careers of acts including The Doors, Janis Joplin, and Led Zeppelin.</p>
- Runyon Canyon<p> Winding foot trails ascend to rocky peaks with panoramic vistas of downtown Los Angeles and the Hollywood Hills.</p>
- Mel’s Drive-In<p> A towering neon sign heralds arrival at this 1950s-style diner where guests can enjoy a classic American menu of breakfast fare, burgers, and malts.</p>
- Madame Tussauds Hollywood<p> Galleries showcase wax castings of Hollywood royalty dressed as their iconic characters, from Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine to Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow.</p>
- Laugh Factory<p> A skilled cast of stand-up comics and the occasional guest celebrity perform at this historic club, which helped launch the careers of Robin Williams and Dave Chappelle.</p>
- House of Blues<p> Among funky southern art and décor, visitors nosh on soul fare upstairs, and nationally and internationally acclaimed artists enchant music fans on the main floor.</p>
- Santa Monica Pier<p> Bicyclists pedal past street performers on this bustling pier, which also features a mini amusement park with a rollercoaster and a ferris wheel.</p>
- La Boheme<p> Asian-inspired cuisine graces the tables at this elegantly designed restaurant where red-hued walls and hanging chandeliers create a romantic ambiance.