I grew up in Studio City and always found this place interesting because the décor was Japanese-themed half a century before anime or sushi bars were trendy --- but naturally, living down the road I never stayed here! So a recent visit back to this area finally gave me the opportunity. I was pleasantly surprised, especially after reading some cranky reviews on this site.
We arrived late but the staff was friendly and helpful, and even greeted me by name. The lobby is rather swank, with nice Frederic Remington statuary on display, though what cowboy art is doing in a "Japanese" hotel is rather a mystery; then again, this is L.A., where you get to make it up as you go along. The free WiFi was up & working and very useful. They do ask for a $100 deposit on your credit card as security, but the charge was voided when we left.
Our room was comfy and well equipped ('fridge, coffee machine, hair dryer, iron, ironing board, etc.), the bathroom was spotless, and the bed was fine. We had a large balcony overlooking a well-planted courtyard, but the freeway noise (and the fact that it was still 80 degrees at 10:00 p.m.) chased us back indoors after a few minutes. With the A/C on low, we slept like babies.
The complimentary breakfast at the adjacent restaurant was adequate though not spectacular; again the wait staff were good-natured and helpful. Hotel guests get 10% off their meal if they eat in the restaurant for dinner, but we ate out with friends, so I can't comment on the quality of their Japanese cuisine. Many of the hotel patrons every morning were Japanese, however, so perhaps this speaks well of it.
Considering the rates at this hotel were literally HALF of what places a few blocks away were asking, you really can't beat the value for this area.
And attention, you surfers out there: my old board shop VAL SURF is still located across the road even after 45 years! It was a genuine pleasure to re-visit this landmark.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Two-story Motor Inn located just off Ventura Freeway (US 101) between Laurel & Coldwater Canyons. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Best Western Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Best Western