Los Angeles, United States
When to go
Spring and autumn sees LA is at its best. Days are often warm and sunny but summer can see a rise in smog levels and sea mist (known as ‘June gloom’).
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Tales from our travels
PlanesLAX – aka Los Angeles International Airport (+1 310 646 5252; www.lawa.org) – is the somewhat chaotic international airport 16 miles from Downtown. Forget public transport: if you don’t have a car | take a SuperShuttle minivan (+1 800 258 3826; www.supershuttle.com) or taxi from outside Arrivals. The ride to Beverly Hills will cost about $35 and take around 30 minutes (longer in heavy traffic).
TrainsAmtrak (www.amtrak.com) connects Los Angeles to other US cities via Union Station at 800 North Alameda Street in Downtown; Metrolink serves regional stations (www.metrolinktrains.com).
AutomobilesLet’s cut to the chase: you need one of these to get a real flavour of LA (even if the freeways are hell on wheels). Zoom around like Hollywood starlets in a classic Corvette or Cadillac or, if you care about your carbon footprint, opt for a hybrid vehicle.
TaxisLA’s sprawl means taxi rides can be expensive. You’re unlikely to find a taxi rank, so book with one of the large cab companies, such as the Yellow Cab Company (+1 877 733 3305; www.layellowcab.com) or United Taxi (+1 800 822 8294; www.unitedtaxi.com).
There are few places better for luxurious lounging than Petit Ermitage: its paradisiacal outdoor restaurant is aflutter with butterflies and hummingbirds and the Hollywood-Hills-view rooftop pool is usually surrounded by a host of mojito-sipping beautiful people, especially around sunset, when they gather by the flickering flames of the outdoor fireplace. Room 323, a Junior Suite, is particularly quiet – located in the middle of the floor away from the elevator – leave the balcony door open and let in the night breeze while you sleep (check the minibar first for some, ahem, adults-only treats).