Tying in first prize for “sprawliest” US city (with Houston), Los Angeles is a series of small towns and neighborhoods all joined together. Key hubs include Santa Monica (“SaMo”), Beverly Hills (‘BH”), West Hollywood (“WeHo”) and Downtown (“DTLA”). Los Angeles is a center of business, trade, entertainment, media and tech and continues to be home to the largest port in the US. Its growing tech community, Silicon Beach, includes Playa Vista, which is located 10 minutes from LAX airport and has attracted the likes of Facebook, Youtube, EA Sports, Yahoo and Google.

WHERE TO STAY

SANTA MONICA
The city of Santa Monica (home to NZTE’s HQ in North America), is close to major transport hubs and business districts in Los Angeles. In order of distance to NZTE’s office:

  • THE AMBROSE – Our local go-to hotel for value and location, the Ambrose has provided NZTE with a corporate rate for all customers. More info/booking.
  • THE DOUBLE TREE  Modern all-suite hotel situated three blocks from Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica Beach and the 3rd Street Promenade shopping area, it is also one minute to the 10 Freeway.
  • THE HUNTLEY – Art deco style, boutique hotel, a few blocks from 3rd Street Promenade, the Huntley has a fantastic penthouse restaurant and bar.
  • PALIHO– USE – Elegant Mediterranean Revival boutique hotel dating back to 1927, it is situated in a quiet leafy residential street. It offers eclectic, individually decorated suites with quirky touches.
  • FAIRMONT MIRAMAR – Upscale hotel overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the Fairmont is located in central downtown Santa Monica. Its excellent location encourages strolls to the beach, local restaurants, shops and attractions.
  • THE VICEROY – Cool and contemporary with a great bar and two outdoor pools with cabanas, the Viceroy has a resort-inspired poolside scene. It is situated just one block from the ocean.
  • SHUTTERS ON THE BEACH – One of the most iconic addresses in Los Angeles, this upscale, beach house-inspired hotel sits on the beach and includes an ocean-facing restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows and a cafe/bar with a large patio. It is the ultimate choice for a splurge visit or special occasion.

BEVERLY HILLS & WEST HOLLYWOOD
Both neighborhoods are flush with entertainment/media types and offer an incredible range of hotels, restaurants, retail shops and bars. Your stay here is best served if your meetings are north of the 10 Freeway.

  • SIXTY BEVERLY HILLS – A small and reasonably priced boutique hotel in the heart of Beverly Hills with a great rooftop pool and bar area.
  • THE PENINSULA – Surrounded by tropical gardens on a stylish shopping street, The Peninsula is the best hotel in Beverly Hills. It includes a cosmopolitan restaurant, trendy wood-lined bar, stylish rooftop eatery and a posh lounge serving afternoon tea.
  • THE MONDRIAN WEST HOLLYWOOD – An iconic hotel situated in the heart and soul of the Sunset Strip, the Mondrian hosts an indoor/outdoor seafood restaurant, a casual taqueria and tequila bar, and a lively rooftop pool with underwater music – not to mention its happening bar scene.
  • THE ANDAZ WEST HOLLYWOOD – Sophisticated hotel on the Sunset Strip, Andaz offers a complimentary happy hour daily, sophisticated rooms and an impressive rooftop.
  • THE LONDON WEST HOLLYWOOD – A glamorous all-suite hotel within walking distance to the Sunset Strip, the London also serves a free breakfast buffet and a cocktail bar/eatery with a menu by chef Gordon Ramsay. The rooftop is often referred to as the best in LA, perfect for hosting an event or unwinding by the pool.

DOWNTOWN LA
The Los Angeles center for financiers, lawyers and the courts system, DTLA is also an area of increasing significance as an influential hotbed for the arts and events.

  • THE LA HOTEL DOWNTOWN – A great option for price-conscious travelers, it’s a five-minute walk from the World Trade Center and Walt Disney Concert Hall. Microsoft Theater and Staples Center are also a short walk away. The hotel has a 24/7 business center and over 25,000 sq ft of meeting space (including 2 ballrooms).
  • THE ACE HOTEL LA – Uber hip, boutique hotel situated in the historic United Artists Building, the Ace is a 10-minute walk to all attractions including the Staples Center and LA Convention Center. Its swank rooftop lounge has a vista-inspired, poolside setting.
  • THE STANDARD HOTEL DOWNTOWN – Funky, upscale hotel in a landmark mid-century building, the Standard is situated dead center of Downtown LA. The legendary rooftop includes a heated pool, a bar with nightly DJ’s, a beer garden and waterbed cabanas.
  • THE LANGHAM PASADENA – Situated on 23-acre grounds in the elegant neighborhood of Pasadena, the Langham is 20 minutes from Downtown LA. This fancy hotel offers a posh spa, tennis courts, a heated pool and a sundeck with bar service.

PLAYA VISTA & LAX
Half a mile from LAX Airport, Playa Vista is the new LA HQ for tech companies such as Facebook, Youtube, EA Sports, Yahoo and Google’s new massive complex. LAX is a great place to be based on very short visits with a string of 3 – 4 star hotels close to the terminals. You won’t have an urban scene onsite but hotel rates are more reasonable.

  • CUSTOM HOTEL – Our pick for a boutique style property in the urban center of Playa Vista, it has a lively scene with restaurants and bars close by.
  • WESTIN LOS ANGELES AIRPORT HOTEL – Conveniently located just four blocks from LAX, the Westin offers a complimentary airport shuttle, as well as other hotel amenities such as an outdoor heated pool, a fitness center, spa and business center.
  • SHERATON GETAWAY LOS ANGELES HOTEL – Located just blocks from LAX, the Sheraton recently completed a multi-million dollar transformation providing world class accommodation and meeting/conference facilities. It also offers a complimentary airport shuttle.
  • HILTON LOS ANGELES AIRPORT  Located approximately 400 meters from LAX, this hotel is ideally situated for business travelers offering an extensive business center and a 55,000 square foot flexible meeting space perfect for seminars and conferences. It also offers a complimentary shuttle service to and from the airport.

CO-WORKING

  • CROSS CAMPUS – Four locations across Los Angeles including Downtown, Santa Monica, Pasadena and El Segundo (close to LAX).
  • WEWORK  10 locations across Los Angeles in all key business neighborhoods.
  • HOLLYWOOD PRODUCTION CENTER – Specializing in stylish office space for TV/film production, post-production, digital media and publishing companies.
  • CTRL COLLECTIVE – Close to LAX and Playa Vista’s tech community.

COFFEE & KAI

VENICE

COFFEE

  • INTELLIGENTSIA VENICE  – A Venice institution, Intelligentsia is a high-end coffee bar chain serving daily roasted brews in an industrial-chic setting. It is situated right in the middle of Abbott Kinney and is a perfect place to “see and be seen” whilst catching up on emails.

LUNCH & DINNER

  • GJELINA  – A staple in Venice culture, Gjelina offers New American farm-to-table cuisine served in a rustic-chic dining room. Call to book ahead as it’s near impossible to get seated without prior reservations. Perfect for lunch/dinner or fun business meetings.
  • TASTING KITCHEN – Our tip for the best place for cocktails in Venice, the Tasting Kitchen is an ultra hip Mediterranean restaurant well known for its inventive menu and creative food execution. Located in the heart of Abbot Kinney.

NIGHT SPOTS

  • HOTEL ERWIN – A favorite with locals for the rooftop lounge, it is the only rooftop scene in Venice. The Erwin has a fabulous ambiance, killer cocktail menu and views of the sunsets over the pacific.
  • BOWLERO – Retro bowling alley and lounge in Venice.

SANTA MONICA

COFFEE

  • ELA BREW – located two minutes from the NZTE office right inside the Colorado Center. The go-to spot for the most ‘coffee-snobbish’ among the LA NZTE crew.
  • THE REFINERY – located in downtown Santa Monica, this industrial-chic cafe offers artisanal roasters, espresso and pourovers. Its modern open plan setting makes it an ideal place for meetings.
  • ESPRESSO CIELO – a relaxed vibe cafe serving hot & iced coffees plus organic teas and pastries.

LUNCH & DINNER

  • PONO BURGER – gourmet burgers served in a contemporary beach-themed venue with a large, sunny patio. Pono is a favorite with the NZTE team as it’s ideal for an awesomely satisfying lunch and/or dinner.
  • THE WATER GRILL – iconic Santa Monica experience, fabulous seafood served in an ocean-front location. Offers extensive raw bar options and a menu that is updated daily.
  • THE HUNGRY CAT – upscale seafood eatery known for its raw bar selections & fresh-fruit cocktails. Don’t forget to try the lobster rolls, they are beyond words.
  • VALENTINO – arguably the best Italian in Santa Monica.
  • HERRINGBONE SANTA MONICA – great seafood and awesome venue for client meetings. If you’re here over a weekend their bottomless rose brunch every Saturday and Sunday is a great find.
  • THE IVY SANTA MONICA – ‘plantation/resort’ in décor style and classic Italian service. We love the location and the fact they serve complimentary champagne as you walk in. Ask to sit outside for the best views and people watching.

NIGHT SPOTS

  • BODEGA WINE BAR – fabulous spot for a post-work vino and a bite to eat. Quiet location situated off the main tourist drag. Excellent wine selection and great happy hour. They also offer small plates, pizzas & salads.
  • THE BUNGALOW – ocean-side with lush gardens and outdoor decks. A relaxed vibe and retro cocktail menu. You’ll be waiting in line if you arrive after 5pm so get there early to avoid the rush.
  • THE PENTHO– USE AT THE HUNTLEY  – we’ve listed The Penthouse for its amazing view of the pacific, Santa Monica and Malibu. Grab a seat at the bar sunset cocktails overlooking the bay.
  • THE VICEROY – awesome pool-side bar scene each night. The cabanas are often booked for private parties, however always has a great vibe.

CULVER CITY

COFFEE

  • COGNOSCENTI COFFEE – offering REAL barista coffee accompanied with a range of delectable pastries
  • BLUE BOTTLE COFFEE – a custom drip coffee bar offering an assortment and pastries, and over 100 books. If you travel on the metro, you can order a coffee and borrow a book to read on your journey. 

LUNCH & DINNER

  • AKASHA – Located in the renovated Hull Building in downtown Culver City, Akasha features rustic ‘New American’ cuisine in a rustic-chic setting.

NIGHT SPOTS

  • CULVER HOTEL – Hip historical landmark in downtown Culver City.

BEVERLY HILLS / WEST HOLLYWOOD

COFFEE

  • VERVE COFFEE ROASTERS – the best coffee in West Hollywood offering relaxed indoor/outdoor areas. Perfect location to catch up on work and also great for informal client meetings.
  • ALFRED – a super cool venue for coffee in the heart of the Melrose shopping district. Alfred’s in an excellent cafe to swing by and pick up a coffee or stay for a while and people watch.

LUNCH & DINNER

  • SUNSET TOWER – an art deco piece of history on the Sunset Strip – classic old school Hollywood. One of their best-kept secrets is the outdoor covered terrace for brunch/lunch meetings. Amazing views across the city and a relaxed poolside atmosphere.
  • RED O  – serves authentic high-end Mexican and light Californian cuisine in a large, contemporary space with great lighting and energized mood.
  • CECCONIS WEST HOLLYWOOD – modern classic Italian in a fabulous setting. Cecconis is a quintessential LA restaurant experience that offers remarkably affordable cuisine. The dining rooms tend to get busy evenings and weekends so book ahead. Keep an eye out for celebrities.
  • NORAH – one of the hottest lunch/dinner venues in West Hollywood. Lounge style with various spaces to eat and drink including a chef’s table for groups.
  • PIZZERIA MOZZA – on the border of West Hollywood and Hollywood. Offers an awesome range of wood fired pizzas and modern Italian cuisine.
  • TROIS MEC – a tiny, reservations-only eatery with a French inspired tasting menu and open kitchen. It is located on the border of West Hollywood and Hollywood.

NIGHT SPOTS

  • THE HONOR BAR – dark and cozy ambiance with fantastic cocktails and a wide selection of wines. Situated next to South Beverly Grill (another great spot for dinner after cocktails).
  • THE NICE GUY WEST HOLLYWOOD – ultra-trendy spot, décor in style of a decadent ‘mafia’ era with amazing mixology menu. Bookings only, remember to ask for a booth!
  • SKY BAR AT MONDRIAN – a must for perfect pool-side drinks with city views. You’ll be very ‘LA’ here!
  • BAR MARMONT – iconic swanky location on the Sunset Strip, well known for celebrity spottings in an old school, Hollywood intimate atmosphere. The perfect venue to see and be seen.

DOWNTOWN

COFFEE

  • GRAND CENTRAL MARKET – brings over 25 food and beverage vendors all under one roof, many open for breakfast lunch and dinner (and for great coffee).
  • GO GET ‘EM TIGER – LA times ranked their iced coffee as the best in America

LUNCH & DINNER

  • CAFE PINOT – located behind the library has its own gardens and amazing freshly baked bread.
  • SUSHI GEN – excellent sushi and quiet enough for a business meeting – but do book ahead.

NIGHT SPOTS

COOL HUNTING

BEACHSIDE

  • Rent a bicycle from a vendor in Venice Beach or Santa Monica and bike the beachfront. The South Bay Bike Trail spans a full 22-mile long paved trail that starts in Santa Monica and finishes at the Torrence County Beach while passing through Venice, Hermosa and Redondo Beach. Surfing schools are dotted all around Santa Monica and Venice beach. Stand-up paddle boarding around Marina Del Rey is also a fun option (information can be found here):  http://www.santamonica.com and http://venicebeach.com)
  • Hiking trails are abundant all around LA  with a local favorite being TEMESCAL CANYON trail, situated approx. 10-minutes north from Santa Monica.

BEVERLY HILLS / WEST HOLLYWOOD

  • Rodeo Drive is typically a must-see for first-timers, however Beverly Hills has a wealth of other options in the area such as self-guided walking tours and a regular program of events such as art gallery openings and a lively performing arts calendar.
  • Adjacent to Beverly Hills, West Hollywood is one of LA’s most diverse and fun neighborhoods for nightlife, the arts and events.
  • VISIT WEST HOLLYWOOD  also has a collection of fabulous hotels with LA’s best rooftops, hosting regular events through the Summer where you can access and enjoy hotel rooftops otherwise only for hotel guests.
  • Enjoy Lunch or Dinner (or just cocktails at the bar) at The Polo Lounge at the BEVERLY HILLS HOTEL
  • Live show and concerts at the HOLLYWOOD BOWL

HOLLYWOOD

  • CINESPIA play outdoor movies at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, check out the calendar for future movie listings.
  • Bring a pair of runners and get out into the Hollywood Hills for a sunrise or sunset hike. The most popular and easily accessible trails popular with locals are the hike to Griffith Park and the HOLLYWOOD SIGN and a favorite with locals and celebs – RUNYON CANYON also Griffith Park for a short hike including a walk around the GRIFFITH OBSERVATORY.

DOWNTOWN LA

  • Downtown LA and the general East side has a vibrant arts + culture scene. Check out TIME OUT LA’S “ARTS & CULTURE” page to see what relevant exhibitions and shows are on when you’re in town.
  • DLTA also has an incredible history and collection of architecture from Art Deco style right up to contemporary high-rises and iconic sights such as Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Bradbury Building. WALKING TOURS are a fun and safe way to immerse yourself in everything Downtown.

1+ DAY TRIPS

  • HUNTINGTON LIBRARY  a huge garden that used to be owned by the oil and rail baron of Southern California. It’s a beautiful setting with a peaceful Japanese zen garden containing every rose imaginable and even a small water area for kids.
  • The city of PALM SPRINGS situated two hours east of LA is another great place to visit. With its warm (hot) desert weather, Palm Springs is the ultimate place for poolside relaxation (and amazing hiking trails) in the Desert.
  • North of LA, drive the iconic Pacific Coast Highway which skirts along ocean-side scenery through beach towns such as Malibu. Venture further afield a couple of hours North to SANTA BARBARA COUNTY for wineries and beaches, towns like LOS OLIVOS and SANTA YNEZ.

GETTING AROUND

  • Public transport is limited in LA so driving is a must.  UBER or LYFTare the most reliable and cost effective ways to travel with fares from LAX to key neighborhoods ranging from USD $25-$50. Regular taxis can cost up to 50% more.
  • If you’re doing a lot of travel across the city renting a car is a great option too.  Locals navigate traffic peaks by planning routes with apps like WAZE. Traffic can be challenging so always build in a 10-15min buffer between meetings to find parking at your destination and anticipate accidents.  Beware – Angelenos are famous for never indicating when turning!
  • Flights from New Zealand all fly into LAX however if you’re staying/meeting in the Downtown LA area look into the possibility of using  BURBANK AIRPORT (30-mins from Downtown). Burbank (BUR) has daily flights to West Coast cities including San Francisco, Portland & Seattle plus daily non-stops to New York (JFK). We love Burbank as its small with considerably shorter lines!

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