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LA without the Theme Parks

7 Aug 2006  Our favorite LA experiences on a recent vacation
3.5 of 5 bubbles based on 7 votes

A few suggestions for what grown-ups can do in LA besides theme parks and dance clubs.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: Los Angeles
  • Category: Recent trip
  • Traveler type: Shopping, Theater
  • Appeals to: Couples/romantics, Singles, Budget travellers , Tourists
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Hollywood Bowl Museum
    Hollywood Bowl Museum, Los Angeles, California

    This is a must-do. No matter what you see (concert/show), the real event is about bringing your wine and picnic basket and enjoying a lovely outdoor supper and show under the stars. You can do this on the cheap--bench seats often go for only a few dollars! Bring your own picnic gourmet goodies or splurge on the ones offered on-site. Splurge even bigger and reserve a box, which allows you to order your meals and be served, restaurant-style.

  • 2. CineSpace

    This is a fun venue for movie lovers. Book your reservations online for "dinner and a movie", then go early to enjoy pre-movie drinks and appetizers during Happy Hour. Right before the movie starts, you'll be shown to your reserved table--not movie seats, but an actual dinner table with banquette seating. Order from the yummy menu--wine, cocktails, appetizers, entrees, even dessert--then enjoy your meal while watching a movie. This is a true cine-phile experience.

  • 3. Marix in West Hollywood

    Fabulous Tex-Mex food and margaritas--order the Kick A Margaritas by the pitcher, but make sure you are walking back to a hotel or taking a cab! The venue is fun and lively in true West Hollywood style, and the food is so delicious. This is a great place for Happy Hour or dinner, being very inexpensive by LA standards.

  • 4. Arclight Cinemas

    This a movie theater for movie lovers. It has a Cinerama Dome, a restaurant, a bar, advance assigned seating (no more rushing to the theater--just book your seats and show up before the movie starts!), gourmet popcorn, REAL butter, wonderful, comfy seats, and best of all--no commercials before your movie starts!

  • 5. The Promenade at Howard Hughes Center

    This is a nice little outdoor shopping and dining area to go to if you are trying to kill time before heading back to the airport on your last day in town. We had a late afternoon flight, but had to be out of the hotel by noon and didn't want to go any place too far from the airport and rental car return areas. This place was the perfect way to spend two hours--there's a Nordstrom Rack and other good shopping, and many restaurants and cafes for a quick bite. It's easily found off the 405, just before the airport exits. Just keep in mind, the parking garage takes cash only!