My Birthday Weekend at The Orlando Hotel My Birthday Weekend at The Orlando Hotel North America SHARE Jessica , February 6, 2015 / 33950 http%3A%2F%2Fapassionandapassport.com%2F2015%2F02%2Fbirthday-weekend-the-orlando-hotel%2FMy+Birthday+Weekend+at+The+Orlando+Hotel2015-02-06+05%3A36%3A50Jessicahttp%3A%2F%2Fapassionandapassport.com%2F%3Fp%3D3395 When my husband asked me what shiny new present I wanted for my birthday this year, nothing special came to mind. I could have asked for an expensive new bag, yet another Alex and Ani bracelet (which I love), or some other unnecessary material item that would get lost in my closet. And then I realized, why not spend my birthday in sunny LA? I mean, who doesn’t like jetting away for a few days, especially to 70+ degree weather the end of January. The great thing about the Los Angeles area is that it’s a gateway to so many other desired Southern California towns. Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, and West Hollywood are all within a half hours drive, meaning you can go shopping in The Grove and then head on over to the beach for the afternoon. That’s my kind of day, for sure! The Orlando, being a landmark hotel in West L.A., offers it’s guests a chic modern vibe with retro touches in one of the city’s most vibrant neighborhoods. The fact that you can walk across the street to Magnolia Bakery makes it’s location even that much sweeter, no pun intended. Absolutely perfect for my birthday weekend! Cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery Any hotel that is across the street from an award-winning cupcake bakery gets 5 stars in my book. Being my birthday weekend and all, I was delighted to find a scrumptious cupcake waiting for us upon check in, which was devoured almost immediately. What can I say, cupcakes are so my thing. I only had one or two sweets the rest of the weekend… yes, completely honest! Maybe 😉 Relaxing by the Pool Unfortunately, the pool was getting remodeled during our stay, but I suspect the updated area will be just as fab as the old one looked. And honestly, our weekend was completely jam packed, that I’d most likely have fallen asleep if I let myself float in the pool. I really hope they keep the salt-water feature, as I absolutely hate coming out of the pool smelling like chlorine and chemicals. Plus, with salt-water, you can pretend you’re in the ocean, just without all the seaweed and jellyfish! There is a small gym for hotel guests as well, which have all the necessities to lose some calories from all the cupcakes and cocktails you’ll be indulging in. Shopping on West Third Street For those who like to shop (and what girl doesn’t), some interesting boutiques dot the avenue. Social Butterflies, Shopaholic Sample Sales, Bedhead Pajamas, and Polkadots and Moonbeams all intrigued me. So many cool shops on the street, I could have spent an entire day perusing the shops and window shopping. Plus, The Beverly Center is just 3 blocks away, which boasts over 100 speciality stores. The famous Melrose Ave is just one street over, known for it’s abundent shopping, dining and entertainment possibilities. From our hotel window, I spotted a travel book store right on West Third, which was right up my alley- obviously! My one regret from the weekend – I didn’t make it through those doors! Next time, definitely! The Rooms at The Orlando The King Deluxe room we rested our heads in at night was surprisingly bigger than other boutique hotels I’ve stayed at. The bathroom was well-appointed with complimentary CO Bigelow toiletries, one of my absolute favorite brands which smells so, so, fresh. Perfect for after a hike! There were enough fluffy towels for a family of 10, and the shower had the most perfect water pressure. The room was spotless, with homey touches like robes and slippers. The chocolates and weather card we found each night at our bedside was the perfect little treat. And who doesn’t LOVE knowing the weather will be absolute perfect the next day the night before?! The Orlando Hotel’s Restaurants and Bars The Churchill, the restaurant attached to The Orlando, is known for it’s earthy vibes and farm-to-table food. The atmosphere was pretty funky, with strings of lights hung above and potted plants near the ceilings. We dined here for lunch one afternoon, and were seated at an outside table on the patio which proved to be great for people watching and admiring the palm tree views. The menu items all looked on par for lunch, and included wood-fired pizzas, sandwiches, speciality salads, and hand-crafted cocktails. My spicy italian sausage and house-made ricotta pizza was spot on and absolutely delish, so large that I could only eat half! The chicken club we ordered was completely smothered in brie (yes, that’s a good thing), and was 100% approved by my husband. Also featured on the menu was Clover Juice, which, the waiter explained to me, is kind of like drinking a salad. This just seemed a bit too healthy for my weekend of gluttony, and I chose to save my calories for after-lunch sweets. Speaking of sweets, what’s a proper meal without dessert? The blueberry and cantaloupe sorbet was divine and equally refreshing. Exactly what I needed on a hot LA day. My husband ordered the pecan pie, the chef’s favorite we were told, and he couldn’t stop raving about it all afternoon. I had a few bites (ok, maybe more than a few…) and can honestly say if you’re looking for a life changing dessert option in LA- head to Churchills for the pecan pie. Next time we stay at The Orlando, we’ll be dining at The Churchill for dinner, as it looked like an honest-to-god good time. And those cocktails I peeked at on the menu?! Yes please! I’ll take two (or three)! Location, Location, Location What’s a great hotel without an even better location? Poor planning. It’s safe to say that The Orlando resides in one of the best areas in LA – 20 minutes away from everywhere you’d want to go, or much less. Just step outside the hotel, and you’ll find world-class restaurants and bars within walking distance, including delicious Japanese, American, and Italian cuisine. Of course there’s a few Mexican restaurants within a mile or so – it is southern California! Juice bars, coffee joints, and sandwich spots can be found just steps away, and when you’re in the mood for a few pre-dinner cocktails, there are loads of Happy Hours to take advantage of. Even better- the Farmer’s Market is just a few blocks away, which boasts dozens and dozens of gourmet food stands and restaurants. You’ll surely be able to find something to eat here. Including some of the best ice cream in all of LA – we ordered peanut butter and cookie dough, and both were phenomenal. And with valet parking 24 hours a day at the hotel, it was easy to have our car waiting for us in front after calling down to the front desk. More Information Hotel: The Orlando Hotel Location: 8384 W. 3rd Street / Los Angeles, CA 90048 Accommodation: Boutique Price Range: $$ Disclaimer: I was a guest of The Orlando Hotel throughout my stay, but as always, all opinions are my own.