Compare Car Hire at Los Angeles Airport (LAX)
La La Land, The City of Flowers of Sunshine – Los Angeles is one of the most famous cities on the planet. Located in the Golden State of California on the West Coast of the USA, LA is home to sun, sea, sand, and a chance to revel in the lifestyles of the rich and famous.
As one of the pre-eminent global destinations for all walks of life, LA is served by LAX Airport, one of the busiest airports in the world. Situated a 40-minute drive away from Downtown Los Angeles, LAX boasts nine terminals and in 2016 served over 80 million passengers.
Historically, Los Angeles was home to the Chumash and Tongva Native Americans, before coming under Spanish rule and later being claimed as part of Mexico. After becoming part of the United States of America in the late 1800s, Los Angeles soon found itself as the cinema capital of the world, thanks to the emergence of the Hollywood studios in the early 20th Century.
Located on the west-coast of the United States overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Los Angeles is blessed with warm temperatures and cool sea breezes throughout the year, with temperatures averaging at 22 degrees Celsius in July, to averages of 13 degrees at their lowest in January. So no matter the time of year, pack your sunglasses and some breathable clothing as you stroll down the Santa Monica pier or hike through the Hollywood hills.
With a population just shy of four million people (in 2016) Los Angeles is a busy bustling metropolis, offering everything from the bombastic and spectacular, to the kooky and hidden. Everything from the MoCA LA gallery, San Gabriel Mountains, to the Historic Hollywood sign are on your doorstep, so hop in your car and get acquainted with the City of Angels!
With over 47.3 million visitors in 2016, Los Angeles has a vast array of accommodation suitable for all budgets and parties.
If your trip to Los Angeles is one of glamour and pizazz, any of the luxury hotels in Beverley Hills and bel Air will suit your needs. The Peninsula Beverley Hills is one for those after the film-star experience, boasting a roof top pool and private cabana huts and full concierge service for a temporary life of luxury, all at a premium price of course. The Beverly Wilshire Beverly Hills hotel is another high-end option, with attentive concierge staff who will do everything they can to attend and appease your every whim and fancy.
For those with a more modest budget, the Best Western Plus LA Mid-Town hotel is a great choice. Located just outside of the Korea-town district and a half hour drive from LAX airport, the Best Western Plus offers free Wi-Fi, free parking and a continental breakfast as standard, and is ideally situated for you to reach any sight or excursion by foot or car. The Hollywood Celebrity Hotel is another great option, located a stone’s throw away from the historic Hollywood Bowl and the Chinese Theatre.
If you want to stay near to the airport there are several chain hotels that will cater to your needs. However, these hotels are perfect for anyone visiting Los Angeles as opposed to the usual business clientele, due the airport’s close proximity to the city itself. The Los Angeles Airport Marriott is the pick of the bunch, offering concierge and streamlined check in for business trips, and a large pool plaza and restaurants for those wanting to kick back and relax. Located a 25-minute drive from the heart of the city, and a six-minute drive from the airport. Also consider the Hilton LA Airport hotel and the Hyatt Regency hotel.
Food and Drink
When it comes to drinking in Los Angeles, no trip is complete without visiting the Sunset Strip. The nightlife hotspot of LA since the 1930s, the Strip is home to the notorious Viper Room, the Roxy, and the legendary Whiskey a Go Go, former stomping ground of legendary acts such as the Doors, Guns n Roses and Van Halen. Expect loud tunes, lashings of Jack Daniels, and plenty of gaudy merchandise.
As for food, you can’t go to the state of California without visiting In-N-Out Burger. The cult chain has two locations in Los Angeles, serving up low cost traditional burgers and their famed ‘animal style’ French fries. Sticking with no-frills dining, definitely check out Philippe the Original for authentic LA sandwiches, and the provocatively named breakfast joint Eggslut; both easily accessible by car.
If you want a touch of the classic with your meal, then book a spot at the Ivy or the infamous Musso & Frank Grill. The Ivy is a Hollywood establishment of old, popular today with names such as Sir Patrick Stewart who enjoys the Ivy because “it’s open late and you can sit over a last glass of wine without having people piling chairs on the tables around you.” Musso & Frank’s is another Hollywood hotspot, a New York style steakhouse and bar, it has been frequented throughout the years by everyone from Charlie Chaplin to Marilyn Monroe to Brad Pitt. Stop by on Thursdays for the famous chicken pot pie.
If you really want to push the boat out then book a spot at Providence on Melrose Avenue. This high-end seafood restaurant has been wowing guests since opening in 2006, offering everything from prawns and shrimp, to duck and seabass. Providence also offer a valet service and street parking, so is perfect if you’re not drinking and fancy a leisurely drive home as your food digests.
As a city of wealth and influence, Los Angeles is home to every brand and boutique you can think of, no matter your budget.
Most famous is Rodeo Drive, where you can find every designer outlet you can think of. Gucci, Versace, Armani, Givenchy, they all have boutiques here. As part of its fashion heritage, Rodeo Drive was overhauled and given a makeover in 2003, incorporating a ‘Walk of Style’ that honours the designers, models and pioneers who have shaped modern fashion, with an ornate sculpture by famed sculptor Robert Graham serving as the walk’s centrepiece.
California is also synonymous with the skateboarding and surfing cultures that sprung up in the 1950s and have experienced significant boom periods since then. Skate fashion in particular has seen a resurgence recently, to the point where it is not uncommon to see skate brands rubbing shoulders with high fashion. Cult New York skate brand Supreme has a store in LA, one of only two in the US, and of only ten in the world. Expect massive queues and pandemonium, and if you’re lucky enough to snag some garments, expect glances of respect from LA’s cool community.
For the musos out there, LA’s record stores are nirvana. Amoeba is arguably the standout, boasting a veritable vault of LPs, Eps, CDs and more. Whether you’re tracking down that unobtainable gem or just want a sample of the classic LA sound, this is the place to be. As the Record Turns and Rockaway Vinyl are worth checking out too, the latter has been serving Los Angeles since 1979 and what they don’t know could fit on the back of a stamp.
Los Angeles is also home to Meltdown Comics and Collectibles perfect for the kids and big kids alike. Whether you’re after that rare Spiderman original print, or toys from the latest blockbuster Meltdown will have you covered. Meltdown is also a live comedy venue so will be worth visiting ‘after hours’ too. In the shadows of the Hollywood hills, you can drive to Meltdown from downtown in about half an hour.
Culture & Attractions
Hooray for Hollywood! The epicentre of Western Cinema, Hollywood is one of the entertainment tourist attractions of the world. Whether strolling along the famous Walk of Fame, or taking in a film at historic cinemas such as the Chinese Theatre, Tinseltown is packed with history as well as familiar and iconic imagery. Various operators around the city offer guided tours of everything from film studios and famous movie locations, to homes of the stars. If you want to save yourself some cash and create your own concise tour route, why not go the whole hog and rent a convertible car and live out the fantasy of being a Hollywood bigwig?
Sports fan? You’re in luck! Why not catch a game of one of the many sports teams that Los Angeles offers, from the historic Lakers and Clippers of the NBA, through to the Dodgers (MLB baseball) Galaxy (MLS soccer) Sparks (WNBA basketball) and Kings (NHL ice hockey) with tickets ranging anywhere from less than $10 to hundreds. When game time is over, catch one of the myriad of shows hosted in the massive Staples Center. Home of the afore-mentioned Lakers, Clippers, Sparks and Kings, the Staples Center is one of the premiere destinations for globally recognised touring acts. Everyone from comedian Kevin Hart to current hip-hop king Kendrick Lamar have played in front of the 19,000-strong capacity of the Staples Center, situated a 10-minute drive from the heart of downtown, it is easily accessible no matter what event you’re going for.
If you’ve got the little ones in tow, then a half hour drive out of LA into Anaheim will find you at the Disneyland resort. There they can meet all their favourites from Mickey Mouse and Pluto to contemporary favourites such as Princess Tiana and Nemo, as well as take on legendary rides like Space Mountain and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. A forthcoming Star Wars World is also scheduled for the resort and park, opening in 2019. Also check out Universal Studios Hollywood, hosting everything from Harry Potter to King Kong – a 10-minute drive from downtown LA.