Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-07-10
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

TRAVEL A WeHo car-free winter escape
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Bill Malcolm
2018-01-02

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Winter is the perferct time to visit Southern California. With temperatures in the high 60s to 70s ( and everything in bloom as it is the rainy season ), the area is a great respite from the dreary winter in most of the country.

Best of all, you can relax and rely on transit and walking to get around with your visit to West Hollywood, arguable America's biggest gayborhood. They also have a shared bicycle system so bring your helmet if you plan to use it.

( The wildfires were north of LA in the Santa Barbara area so this will not affect your trip. )

Getting there: I grabbed a Southwest sale fare of $79 from Indy to LAX. From LAX, grab the shuttle to Lot C and take the Big Blue Bus #3 to Santa Monica for $1.25 ( ask for a transfer ). In Santa Monica, transfer to the 704 Rapid Bus Line to West Hollywood. ( Yes, I paid $1.25 from LAX to WeHo. ) Exit at San Vincente street and walk three blocks east to your hotel.

Stay: I loved the Ramada Plaza ( 8585 Santa Monica ). It is next door to Trader Joe's, across the street from the 24 Hours Fitness, and just steps to all the bars and restaurants. Tell them you won't be using the safe when you check in to avoid the annoying surprise "safe fee."

The Holloway Motel and Alta Cienega Motel are for the bargain minded. Other options include the London House and a rebranded Hyatt ( Andia ). Check Trip Advisor for other West Hollywood options or Air BnB.

Eat: The Tender Greens at 8759 Santa Monica or at 523 6th Street downtown has fresh cooked-to-order local fare. I had the salmon. The Demitasse Coffee Roasters ( 8700 Santa Monica ) has the best coffee in town.

The Shake Shack ( a NYC burger joint ) has great burgers and fries ( also on Santa Monica ). You will find them at 8530 Santa Monica Boulevard.

Party: The Flaming Saddles ( another NYC offshoot from the venerable Hells Kitchen neighborhood ) has dancing,choreographed cowgirls and cowboys ( on poles, ropes, doing somersaults, and more ). On weekends, the bartenders put on a choreographed show as well on the bar. It's WeHo's newest bar and a lot of fun. ( Details at FlamingSaddles.com whcih is at 8811 Santa Monica Boulevard. )

Also with dancers ( male and female ) is Micky's ( voted #1 by West Hollywood Magazine ) which you will find at 8857 West Santa Monica Boulevard. You can dance or watch dancers as well at nearby as well at Revolver ( 8851 Santa Monica Boulevard ).

Trunks is your neighborhood bar ( 8909 Santa Monica Boulevard ) with $4 glasses of wine and very friendly. It was rated the best gay bar by West Hollywood Magazine. The bars are all close together on Santa Monica Boulevard and welcome everyone ( gay and straight ).

What to do: I took the 704 Rapid Bus back to Santa Monica to explore the great, compact walkable city on the Pacific Ocean. It has a great pier, beach, and downtown boutique shopping on a pedestrian mall ( the Third Street Promenade ). Rent a bike and explore the area.

Next I took the new Expo light rail line from Santa Monica to downtown.It goes through the USC campus and LA Natural History Musuem. You will also find the California African American Museum and the California Science Center in the Expo Park neighborhood.

Downtown has amazing architecture and great spots to eat. Check out Pershing Square for winter ice skating. From there I walked over to Union Station and the LA Historical Park on Olivera Street, El Pueblo de Los Angeles, an official California State Park. It is where LA was founded with many historical buildings and an outdoor market.

When downtown, don't miss the Walt Disney Concert Hall designed by architect Fran Gehry.

Other things to do without a car include:

—Walking up to Sunset Boulevard in WeHo

—Exploring Beverly Hills or UCLA ( also along the 704 Bus Route west of WeHo )

—Taking the Amtrak down to San Diego ( the Hillcrest is the very walkable LGBT neighborhood near downtown )

—Taking the Amtrak to Palm Spings ( The train operates three days a week or you can connect on the Amtrak Connect at Fullerton. )

LA has many local and regional publications to help you plan your trip, including GED Magazine ( GEDMAG.com ), based out of Palm Springs; LA Blade ( an offshoot of the DC publication ), based in San Diego; The Fight; West Hollywood Magazine; and Adelante ( in Spanish ).

Other publications you will want to check out include LA Weekly, LA Independent and the LA Times.

I've grown to love Southern California. It's an amazing place with rich cultural diversity and a wonderful climate. It is a perfect escape for the LGBT traveller on a cold winter day. And you don't need a car with their great new light rail system, rapid bus lines, shared bike systems, and walkable neighborhoods.

Bill Malcolm ( billmalcolm@gmail.com ) is an Indianapolis-based freelance writer ( as a hobby ) who also writes for All Aboard Indiana and The Broad Ripple Gazette. He welcomes reader feedback.


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

TRAVEL Arizona: Hot and cool 2019-07-15 - "Arizonans are like lizards." I heard this sentence while recently visiting the neighboring cities of Phoenix and Tempe—and it certainly wasn't meant to ...


Gay News

Gay tourism group cancels Ethopian trip after death threats 2019-06-26 - Dan Ware, the owner of Chicago-based Toto Tours—which has a mostly gay clientele—has cancelled an October trip to Ethiopia after receiving death threats ...


Gay News

TRAVEL Portland: Something for everyone 2019-05-24 - First things first: Portland isn't nearly as granola as I thought it might be. Before visiting the Western city for the first time, ...


Gay News

LGBTQ activists travel to Springfield for Advocacy Day 2019-05-19 - On May 15, Equality Illinois hosted the annual Advocacy Day in Springfield, Illinois, in partnership with other statewide LGBTQ organizations. The daylong event ...


Gay News

STAYCATION REVIEW The Langham Chicago 2019-05-08 - The Langham Chicago ( 330 N. Wabash St.; http://www.langhamhotels.com/en/the-langham/chicago/ ) has earned plaudits from various publications, including five stars from Forbes. However, I ...


Gay News

MUSIC Trans singer-educator talks music, teaching, traveling 2019-04-09 - For singer-educator Tommy Lamont, living an authentic life as a trans woman has been a decades-long journey that culminated in publicly coming out ...


Gay News

NYC Pride announces World Pride opening ceremony June 26, Whoopi Goldberg to host 2019-04-05 - NEW YORK, NY, APRIL 05, 2019 — NYC Pride, the host of WorldPride 2019. Stonewall 50,formally unveiled today the location and initial talent ...


Gay News

Illinois Office of Tourism Wins Spartacus Traveler Award for #AmazingForAll 2019-03-19 - CHICAGO— The Illinois Office of Tourism's #AmazingForAll campaign received the Spartacus Traveler Award for best LGBTQ tourism campaign during ITB Berlin, the world's ...


Gay News

STAYCATION REVIEW Swissotel 2019-03-15 - The European-themed Swissotel Chicago ( 323 E. Wacker Dr.; http://www.swissotel.com/ ) brands itself as a luxury hotel—one of a part of a global ...


Gay News

STAYCATION REVIEW Fieldhouse Jones 2019-01-30 - River North spot Fieldhouse Jones ( 312 W. Chestnut St.; https://fieldhousejones.com/ ) is certainly unique, thanks to its loft-style rooms, pervasive sports theme ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.