Time for a brief plug for the Hotel Angeleno, where I’m staying again this trip. Those of you whose Los Angeles experience goes back more than a few years may remember it as “the round Holiday Inn at Sunset and the 405,” but a decade or so ago it got a boutique hotel makeover, and it’s the kind of small hotel I like. There’s no blue lighting in the hallway like at a W, the staff wear ordinary-looking hotel uniforms, you can eat your bagel in the sunny lobby and no one complains; but it’s still nicer than any chain hotel (at left you see a cactus rock garden in the center of a coffee table in the lobby, a nice touch). And you can’t beat the location.
The rooms are very comfortable without being pretentious (they can’t be too pretentious, since they’re small and wedge-shaped); the staff are accommodating of special requests; and there’s a very good restaurant on the rooftop with excellent breakfast in the morning and fine dining in the evening. There’s even a small poolside area, pictured below. And for all this, I’m paying quite a bit less than I paid for the nice-but-relatively-generic convention Hilton in San Diego that I was at earlier in the week. Highly recommended.