We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

Which Los Angeles hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
York, United Kingdom
posts: 9
reviews: 7
LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

We will be staying in LA for 3 nights in August as part of our honeymoon.

Originally we planned to stay in Santa Monica but we are now thinking that this may be too far from other areas we want to visit and also the hotels are very expensive.

We would like to spend a day at the beach - Santa Monica and Venice

one day at Universal Studios and one day exploring Hollywood, Farmers Market, Beverley Hills and Rodeo Drive.

We would also like to see a comedy show or a live recording one night and eat at some nice restaurants.

Our budget is about £150 per night ($230) maximum.

We all this in mind I would really appreciate any advice on the best place to stay. Thank-you in advance

Los Angeles...
posts: 884
reviews: 66
1. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

Will you have a car?

York, United Kingdom
posts: 9
reviews: 7
2. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

yes we will have a car

Santa Monica, CA
Destination Expert
for Santa Monica
posts: 7,423
reviews: 174
3. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

Look at Westwood, West Hollywood, and Hollywood. But, if it were my honeymoon, I would up the budget and stay in Santa Monica. It is fabulous in August.

York, United Kingdom
posts: 9
reviews: 7
4. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

what makes it fabulous in August please?

Rancho Santa...
posts: 5,563
reviews: 9
5. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

The setting is beautiful with the city perched above the beach on the Palisades Park. The downtown near the beach is packed with world-class restaurants and shopping. The pier is cheesy and lovely in the best possible way. The downtown area is pedestrian friendly. So it is easy to amble about exploring without any particular plan. The weather will be sublime for the beach with hot days and clear blue skies. In the evenings, there will be pleasant cooling winds. The effect of all this is to present SoCal funk in all its glory.

Yes, you can stay further inland. But, in the summer the temperatures go up markedly. The instinct is to pine for the beach. The idea that Santa Monica is "too far" has always struck me as an odd criticism. This is L.A. Plan for the traffic accordingly (i.e. avoid rush hour) and you'll have no concerns. Indeed, the effect of returning to Santa Monica at the day's end will be satisfying. This effect isn't limited to August. For first time visitors, Santa Monica, if you can afford it, is worth it.

HTH

Destination Expert
for Los Angeles
posts: 23,618
reviews: 50
6. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

I'll respectfully disagree with Hitch. Much of what he says is true but his conclusion isn't realistic. Here's what I mean:

If you told us that you wanted a hotel in an area where you could simply RELAX, walk around the area, have a drink at a cafe, great meals, a lovely pool to lay by, I'd say YES! Santa Monica is a great choice as it has great dining and shopping and, of course the beach and the sunsets (of course, we have the sun setting in our neighborhood to -- LOL).

But the fact is: you're not going to STAY IN ONE NEIGHBORHOOD. You're going to move around. You're going to Beverly Hills and Universal Studios and the Farners Market and that means driving to EVERY ATTRACTION you'll be visiting. If you stayed in Santa Monica, then every day, you'll head east (past the attractions you visited the previous days to visit other attractions -- what a waste of time!) If you drive 'into the city' during rush hour, you'll hit traffic. If you wait for it to end, you're shortening your touring day by an hour in the morning and maybe the same in the afternoon.

Yes, central L.A. can be 10 or even 15 degrees hotter than the beach areas but the high temps don't happen every day and when they do, it's not until 11 a.m. or so that it's starts to become significant. By the end of the afternoon, of course, the temps are falling. If you were sitting on the front steps of your hotel all day, you'd feel these temperature swings but since you'll be touring, it doesn't matter where you stay (temperature-wise) because you won't be at your hotel during midday.

In fact, Universal is in one of the hottest neighborhoods in the L.A. metro area and much of it involves being outside queuing up in the sun and the heat (there are shelters from the sun in some places but not in others). The best way to visit Universal is to get there 30 minutes BEFORE it opens so you can be poised to rush in when the gates open. This way, you can minimize the 'long waits in the sun'. If you stayed in Hollywood you'd be 10 minutes from Universal (which you could reach by metro rail). If you were staying in Santa Monica, you'd have a drive of an hour plus the time it would take to 'queue up' to pay for parking, find a space and then transfer (10 minute walk or tram ride) to the entrance to the Park.

Bottom line: you want to be able to get to the attractions in the hottest neighborhoods as soon as possible and you can't do that if you're staying in Santa Monica. Then, on the day you visit Santa Monica, you'll leave your inland hotel before it gets uncomfortably hot (if, in fact, it's going to be excessively hot on that day) and head west to the lovely place that is Santa Monica.

Besides, you'll be able to stay in a much nicer hotel for the same money if you don't stay in Santa Monica.

Hope this helps.

Santa Monica...
Destination Expert
for Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Mammoth Lakes
posts: 20,475
reviews: 21
7. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

It's your honeymoon - up the budget and book The Shore or The Fairmont in Santa Monica. Even the Georgian (but no pool) or Viceroy.

York, United Kingdom
posts: 9
reviews: 7
8. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

thank-you for all your suggestions. I'm thinking of the beach but Santa Monica is very expensive at this time of year. we are in USA for 3 weeks so this is only 3 nights of our entire trip so trying to get the best value for money.

What are your thoughts on Marina Del Ray? Thinking Jamaica Inn or Venice on the Beach hotel right on Venice beach.

It's really hard knowing where is the best place to stay when you have never been and we want it to be special so all your advice is really appreciated

Thank-you

NYC area
posts: 319
reviews: 36
9. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

Hopskipjump...What area would you suggest staying in for a nicer hotel at a better price in a more convenient neighborhood?

Santa Monica...
Destination Expert
for Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Mammoth Lakes
posts: 20,475
reviews: 21
10. Re: LA for 3 nights - Suggestions on which area to stay please

You don't want to book Jamaica Inn for your honeymoon. Venice is fine, if that interests you.

Regarding Hop's post about driving to attractions from Santa Monica - he forgets that you are going AGAINST traffic. Meaning, it's the opposite direction for rush hour. Most tourists say they either wished they had booked SM hotel, or are thrilled they did - because at the end of the day, it is such a treat to walk to restaurants and bars and shops (that stay open until 9 or 10PM.

Otherwise, consider looking in West Hollywood along Sunset Blvd, like Best Western Sunset Plaza or Grafton or one of those hotels. Orlando is also a good choice at a great price in a nice walkable neighborhood.