Hotel at a Glance: Cadillac Hotel
When it was first built in 1914, the Cadillac Hotel was the summer residence for Charlie Chaplin. A century later, the pink-and-turquoise Art Deco hotel is still a lively destination, overlooking the Venice Beach Boardwalk just steps from the Pacific Ocean.
- Daily 4-hour bike rentals allow guests to explore the oceanfront bike path with ease.
- Head to Muscle Beach to see bodybuilders pumping iron at an outdoor gym known as "The Pit."
- Distance to Hollywood Walk of Fame: 16 miles
Venice Beach, Los Angeles: Colorful Boardwalk and Wide Beaches
In the late 1890s, tobacco magnate Abbot Kinney set out to create a resort town/theme park hybrid that was reminiscent of Venice, Italy. He chose a marshy area of Los Angeles near the beach, and hired construction crews to dig out canals so that gondolas could carry tourists to and fro. Kinney brought on architects to design hotels and stores with a distinctly Italian feel. He also added Kinney Pier, with attractions including a dance hall, auditorium, and aquarium. By the 1950s, the area had fallen into disrepair, but Venice was revitalized after an influx of hippies and artists moved in during the 1970s. Today, the Ocean Front Walk remains a prime spot for people-watching—it's a bustling blend of musicians, artists, street vendors, skateboarders, and only-in-L.A. eccentrics.
If you get tired of lounging on the sands of Venice Beach, you can hop on the 26-mile bike path to ride up the coast to sunny Santa Monica. This beachfront locale is best known for its namesake pier, which juts into the Pacific Ocean and hums with lively amusement park attractions, including a Ferris wheel, a roller coaster, and a carousel from the 1920s.