I’m a big supporter of national parks and try to discover as many in the area I live or visit so I am super excited to share this list of options with you on the west coast at least for your spring and summer travel consideration!
This is in Los Angeles at the California Science Center in Exposition Blvd. only until February 4 so make a dash for it right now!
An amazing educational experience and an exhibit you will not forget easily, the Body Worlds Pulse is a traveling show and created by Gunther von Hagen who is also the inventor of plastination, the process using which many of the human bodies on display have been preserved. These are real human bodies by the way that have been donated to the cause of science and research.
Visits to Pasadena are few and far between given the expanse of Los Angeles but I made my way to this gem on a weekday and the drive wasn’t as unforgiving. In fact, the quality of the art despite the small space was a pleasant surprise. They don’t waste any time here – the folks at Pasadena Museum of California Art. The artwork begins from the parking garage! You might mistake it for graffiti but it is the work of native Kenny Scharf and the pop aesthetic he is known for is immediately recognizable. The Kosmic Krylon Garage is a permanent exhibit since he first showed here.
Located on Wilshire Blvd, if you live in Los Angeles you’ve probably driven past it at some point and not known the Marciano Art Foundation museum was housed in here because from the outside it looks like a masonic building. The museum officially has been in this space only since May 2017 and you can find more information about the building here. It was originally built as a Scottish Rite Masonic Temple in the 60s. Most of the art here is from the 1990s onward.
The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles is hosting a series of sky-high events this December, featuring the first ever WP24 by Wolfgang Puck’s Cozy Cabana offering an exclusive holiday dining experience 26 floors above Downtown Los Angeles, an Asian-inspired caviar tasting menu, and festive cocktails.
The Coziest Winter Rooftop in Downtown LA
This December, The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles launches WP24’s Cozy Cabanas for the city’s most festive rooftop dining experience with nostalgic holiday décor, films, and crafts. Perched 26 floors above ground among the stars, each private poolside cabana will be transformed into a warm winter escape with a twinkling tree, plush throws, sequin pillows, and more. A dedicated cabana butler pours a seasonal punch and delivers a spread of modern fusion bites, including Caviar Toast and Szechuan Beef Tartare. A dessert basket includes playful sweets such as Passion Fruit Basil Pavlova Kisses and Pineapple Lemongrass Pate de Fruit. Complementing the experience is a choice of classic movies to screen within the cabana. AND you can add on holiday DIY activities, including cookie decorating and a customizable hot chocolate station. For this seasonal experience on the rooftop, a cabana can be booked for $300, Tuesday through Saturday.
Celebrate Christmas Eve with Crafted Cocktails & Asian Cuisine
From 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. this Christmas Eve, Nest at WP24 is hosting an elegant evening above the glistening city lights of Downtown Los Angeles. Chef de Cuisine John Lechleidner will serve a modern dim sum menu followed by Asian-inspired dishes for the table such as wok-fried shrimp and spicy beef stir fry and an assortment of small sweet bites to finish ($68.00 per person). WP24 by Wolfgang Puck is also offering specialty cocktails this season including the Love Lust Lace and Brown Sugar.
A Champagne Toast & Caviar Taste This New Year’s Eve
On Sunday, December 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Nest at WP24 is hosting a luxurious night of champagne and caviar among the stars. The Caviar Tasting Menu ($120.00 for two guests) includes salmon, whitefish, and kaluga. Matcha green tea, coconut cream and kaffir lime add a subtle Asian flare. Taittinger Brut Champagne completes the experience while additional Champagne supplements are available upon request.
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With the intention of celebrating a time-honored holiday tradition while staying true to modern sustainability efforts, Long Beach restaurant Roe Seafood is presenting a Feast of the Seven (Sustainable) Fishes dinner series from December 17-24, 2017. Chef/Owner Arthur Gonzalez is one of the area’s foremost figures in the sustainably sourced seafood movement. He is consistently innovating with his menus at Roe Seafood, a community fixture recognized for its elevated cuisine and convivial atmosphere.
Until Friday, December 22nd, Ocean Prime in Beverly Hills has a Holiday Luxe Lunch three-course menu to celebrate the holiday season. For just $45 per person, you can enjoy:
Choice of First Course
December 22 isn't too far away so you know the clock is sticking on this great deal at Ocean Prime in Beverly Hills :)
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If you are planning on holidaying in L.A this month and next, or are from the area and plan to stay put, then Terranea Resort is a great option to indulge. The hotel just released their annual “Traditions” calendar, a festive lineup of holiday happenings taking place Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day.
Located in Rancho Palos Verdes, Terranea is a 102-acre resort with ocean views, hiking and biking trails, kayaking, and multiple dining options, multiple swimming pools and spa. Here are some of the planned activities for the rest of the year:
Thursday, November 23 | Turkey Day Trail Walk – Join the resort’s resident naturalist for a guided hike including a visit to the Point Vicente Lighthouse, which is a local attraction.
November 1-30 | Friendsgiving – Using promo code “FRIENDS,” enjoy a holiday package that includes luxury accommodations, a private cabana at a resort pool, a s’mores kit for roasting by the fire, nightcaps at the Lobby Bar, valet parking, and more.
Ongoing | Holiday Dining – Indulge in a festive feast at one of the resort’s eight restaurants - mar’sel (the resort’s signature restaurant), laidback dining at Nelson’s, a refreshed menu at bashi, buffet selections at catalina kitchen and a resort ballroom, an in-room holiday feast, or turkey takeout from sea beans (the resort’s café).
Sunday, December 3 | Tree Lighting Ceremony – Live musical entertainment and holiday crafts for all ages, donations of unwrapped gifts for Toys for Tots, and a celebratory dinner at catalina kitchen afterwards.
Sunday, December 31 | “A Night in New Orleans” New Year’s Eve Dinner at mar’sel – Savor a three- or five-course tasting menu with live jazz band, vintage Champagne offerings, and parting gifts!
Sunday, December 31 | New Year’s Eve Enchanted Forest
Gather with loved ones in the Marineland Ballroom to bid farewell to 2017 with a 3-course dinner and dessert bar.
Sunday, December 31 | New Year’s Eve Extravaganza
A countdown to 2018 in the Grand Ballroom with package beverage offerings, VIP bottle service, a dessert and coffee station, and tunes by a live DJ. You might just find me there :)
If you've been to Terranea before, let me know in the comments about your experience!
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Or at least, that’s as many reasons I know of for right now. I am sure there are plenty more. When my friends say they are off to visit Mexico, it is all the usual suspects - Mexico City, Cancun, Puerto Vallarta or San Miguel de Allende and if they live close to San Diego then it is usually Tijuana or Tecate but Guadalajara?? I have never been to Mexico so any spot in the country is enticement enough for me but hearing that very few actually head to this city got me curious. If you don’t know where that is, Guadalajara is located in western Mexico in the state of Jalisco, and is the capital city. Here’s what I learned at the recently held Travel Massive LA event with Visit Guadalajara at La Cabana in Venice.
This was a long time in the works. Thanks to multiple cancellations due to our schedules and weather conditions, what was essentially my birthday gift from the husband ended up being an experience four months later closer to his birthday! The hot air balloon rides we opted for were available in Perris, California through a company called Adventure Balloon Rides. At $129 per person, we thought it was a decent birthday celebration for both of us to enjoy that didn't interfere too much with our work schedules. Since this was an early morning sunrise ride, we needed to be on location 6am. Perris is 2 hours away from Los Angeles so we drove in the previous evening and spent the night in an AirBnB property in the area. Folks at the home were great, we found a pretty nice Mexican place to grab dinner and we slept early so we don’t miss the alarm to wake up first thing!