L.A.'s best budget hotels
"Just like how mama used to make it" is the sentiment behind the restaurant at this Hollywood hotel's restaurant, and it's a theme that runs throughout the building. It's centrally located without being caught in the Walk of Fame's overwhelming mess. If you're going to stay in Hollywood, stay here—that it's budget-friendly is an added bonus.
With floor-to-ceiling windows that offer an expansive view of the city, food and drink by L.A.'s Roy Choi and a lounge by natives Mark and Jonnie Houston, The Line lives and breathes Los Angeles. With modern furnishings, numerous restaurants (including one in a greenhouse), a lifestyle boutiqute and free yoga on Saturdays, we don't blame you for never leaving.
This modernist four-star hotel is an absolute beauty. From the moment you enter The Garland you're met with de rigueur wood panelling, grasscloth wallpaper and a huge stone fireplace (there's another by the pool FYI). This design runs throughout; even the massive gym is swathed in retro orange. Rooms come with all the usual amenities and private balconies, plus dogs are welcome. So if you're travelling with your furry mate, they'll be treated to a dog toy on arrival, with a bowl and mat for them in your room.
Gone are the Farmer's Daughter's days of being a gingham-giddy motel. The new owners have duded it up in blue and yellow checks and denim bedspreads, and barnyard humour abounds. Amenities include DVD players, a small pool and Tart, which serves good ol' country cooking for breakfast and lunch. The rates are higher than they should be, given the amenities, but it is right by the Farmers Market and the Grove.
This unpretentious hotel underwent decorative renovations recently. Although it's still modestly furnished, it offers something most other Santa Monica hotels don't: free parking. Rates are reasonable, and advance reservations will secure a clean, comfortable room with an ocean view. One appealing feature is the retro blade sign on the corner, which harks back to the days when Santa Monica truly was a laid-back beach town at the end of Route 66.
Hilton's Universal City branch (so called because it's opposite the entrance to Universal Studios Hollywood) is a towering glass monolith. You can't miss it. And you'll be pleased to know that the inside is just as flashy as the outside. With custom serenity beds, an in-house convenience store, pool and compact gym. Family packages are offered as well, along with cribs, a children's menu and weekly kids' activities.
The $5 million renovation brought a tasteful, straightforward aesthetic and cultured amenities. Done out in crisp white linens, with clutter conspicuous by its absence, the rooms aren't massive but they're not poky either; standout features include comfortable beds and iPod speaker systems (the latter in some rooms only). The property also boasts a sparkling saltwater rooftop pool and the location is slap on pedestrian-friendly W 3rd St, lined with independent shops and restaurants, and within walking distance of the Farmers Market and the Grove.
Unostentatious yet fully modern, this affordable beachfront property functions more like an extended-stay boutique hotel. The handsome interiors, with exposed brick and plenty of natural light, perfectly compliment the kind of lazy-day-at-the-beach agenda that most travelers are here for (the hotel even supplies beach towels at no extra cost). And since every unit comes with a full kitchen—not to mention on-site washer/dryers—you’ll have the freedom to plan meals on your own schedule. The rooftop terrace with grills available for guests is another major perk.
You probably know 101 Coffee Shop as a cool, retro hangout that is open till 3am, but did you know that it's connected to the equally as cool and retro Best Western? The hotel is in a prime Hollywood location, minutes away from the Walk of Fame, Pantages, plenty of bars/restaurants and the very quaint Franklin Village. The lobby and rooms are adorned with photos of Old Hollywood, and there's an outdoor pool where you can get plenty of sunshine.
The rooms at the Beverly Terrace are smaller and less luxurious than other Beverly Hills hotels, but this mid-century spot does offer one of the best deals to be found in the area. Teak furniture and planted palms hint playfully towards a tropical getaway, while the decor in the rooms themselves (which aren't huge) is retro and minimal. Continental breakfast is included in the rates; Trattoria Amici, the hotel's restaurant, offers Cal-Italian cooking. There's also a small garden and a nice little pool.
Glendale may not be known for its scenic vistas, but the mountain view from this hotel's top floor lounge is remarkable. The hotel is definitely geared more toward business travelers, but the golden-hued rooms are still inviting. Unfortunately, you'll have to pay for internet and breakfast, as well as $18 for parking.
Staying right on the beach doesn't have to cost the earth. And we're not talking about sleeping under the stars. Venice on the Beach is a modest and affordable boutique joint right in front of the ocean. Each of their rooms have flat screens, fridges and microwaves. It's also worth booking one of their parking spots before you go for ease, but if you don't the hotel staff can advise on where's free to park nearby.
Try some cheap eats
From shish kebab in Glendale to tacos in West L.A., here are 10 cheap food finds that cost less than $10.