LA’s year-round sunshine, sandy beaches and beautiful people make it the perfect getaway… even if you happen to live here. Between the Pacific Ocean and the glamorous lights of Downtown, some of LA’s best hotels have enough going on to be a vacation in themselves. Here are five places to check in when you need to check out.
Sail back in time on a piece of maritime history at the legendary 1930 Queen Mary ocean liner, now permanently docked and transformed into a one-of-a-kind hotel experience in Long Beach. With its Art Deco details painstakingly preserved and the on-site restaurants keeping in time with a subtly British flair, the Queen Mary elegantly mixes the old with the new, maintaining the turn of the century trans-Atlantic experience and updating it with modern amenities like wifi and an onboard spa. The Queen Mary has rotating exhibits and guided tours throughout and has more than enough to warrant a full day on board. The Winston Churchill Suite is the largest suite onboard and artfully integrates Deco details and the Queen’s trademark blend of 50 types of wood (some of which are now extinct) into a spacious one-bedroom suite with full breakfast nook, two bathrooms, modern media center, classic artwork and waterfront views from operable original porthole windows. Ahoy!
If staying in an athletic club brings to mind the bunk beds of a YMCA hostel, the Los Angeles Athletic Club’s posh furnishings and significant price tag will quickly convince you otherwise. LA’s oldest and original Athletic Club was built in 1912 and its luxury hotel and spa are consistently ranked as some of the best in LA. The combination of classic sportiness and gorgeously ornate vintage elegance calls to mind the happy Wes Anderson aesthetic, something the Los Angeles Athletic Club hasn’t missed as they offer their ultimate destination package, The Urban Camping Package. This fantastical package turns a luxury suite into an indoor camp retreat, complete with a designer tented bed with remote controlled custom lighting, a living room teepee and nods to camp kitsch with leather saddles, a rocking horse and animal print throws. Campers will get personalized treats like gourmet s’mores from an electric fondue pot, in-room scary movie selections and, naturally, a steady stream of trail mix and champagne.
The Terranea makes the cut in almost every list of the best LA staycations and it’s easy to see why. The resort’s casual elegance and seemingly effortless comfort invite total relaxation on the gorgeous Palos Verdes Peninsula. Terranea’s private bungalows are separated from the main resort but still serviced by a 24-hour concierge. Beyond access to the main resort’s pool, sauna, relaxation lounges and spa cabanas, the bungalows also have full kitchens, stone bathrooms, in-room laundry facilities and private balconies large enough to accommodate its several wicker sofas and electric fireplace. With private balconies off each room in the two bedroom suites, the Terranea bungalows are perfect for romantic getaways, family trips or a staycation with a group of friends.
If the words "clean living" make you smile, you’ll love the healthy, eco-friendly retreat of the Shore Hotel in Santa Monica. It’s locally renown for its sustainable design that embraces natural light and the area’s stunning natural flora. The M.A.K.E. Wellness Suite package offers the best of the Shore’s feel-good vibes: it comes with dinner or lunch at Matthew Kenney’s famous M.A.K.E. raw diet/living foods Santa Monica Pier restaurant, a copy of Kenney’s gorgeously photographed book and in-room raw snacks and freshly pressed juices. The one-bedroom suite overlooks the Pacific Ocean from two private balconies atop a beautiful center social space with a swimming pool lit by standing fire towers.
If you took a tour of Adventureland at the Magic Kingdom and thought, "I could live here," the Signature Adventureland Suites on the 11th Floor tower of the Disneyland Hotel was made for you. The most updated and detailed of the signature suites, Adventureland’s decor tells tales of world travel, drawing inspiration from the Jungle Cruise, the Enchanted Tiki Room, Indiana Jones and Swiss Family Robinson. Antique globes, Moroccan style fabric textures and rich, heavy woods anchor the suite’s formal dining room as the focal point of the suite. Leather-bound books flank either side of the electric fireplace in the living room which, refreshingly, doesn’t feature a television set, but couches angled inward for conversation. The suite has two bedrooms with a claw foot tub in the master bedroom and a safari tent theme in the second. Be sure to call ahead-- the Signature Suites at the Disneyland Hotel fill up quickly and reservations are often required months in advance.