WHERE TO STAY
Lodging options are slim around Griffith Park, perhaps because there are so many rooms in nearby Hollywood. But there are a few spots, including these.
Hotel250, also known as the Hollywood Silver Lake Hotel & Suites, 250 Silver Lake Blvd., Los Angeles 90004; (213) 639-1920, http://www.hotel250.com. This former Holiday Inn, set on a hillside south of the 101 Freeway, has 65 rooms, free Wi-Fi, parking and continental breakfast and an unheated outdoor pool. The rooms in back are quieter; the ones in front have the best views. Website says $129-$259, but discounts as low as $110 (plus tax) are common on weekdays.
Los Feliz Lodge, 1501, 1503 and 1507 N. Hoover St., Los Angeles 90027, and 4357 Sunset Drive (same city and ZIP); (323) 660-4150, http://www.losfelizlodge.com. This four-unit residential-rental operation, opened in August 2007, is a series of Spanish-style courtyard bungalows that date to the 1920s. All have kitchens, and two have washer-dryers. Walking distance to Los Feliz Village, Sunset Junction and the Sunset-Vermont Metro station. Rates $150-$180 a night, with discounts for longer stays.
El Tres Inn, 4439 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 666-6351, http://www.eltresinn.com. Three boldly colored suites and a salon above El Chavo, a Mexican restaurant. Popular with musicians. The salon and rooms are often rented together for parties. Rates $189-$385, with occasional discounts.
WHERE TO EAT AND DRINK
Forage, 3823 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90026; (323) 663-6885, http://www.forageLa.com. Lunch and dinner in a long, skinny, chic space. Dinner main dishes usually $9-$11; side dishes $4 and up.
Trails Café, 2333 Fern Dell Drive, Los Angeles 90068; (323) 871-2102, http://www.thetrailslosfeliz.com or http://www.facebook.com/trailscafe. Breakfast and lunch, dishes up to $6.75. No reservations, cash only.
Vermont Kitchen & Bar, 1714 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 661-6163, http://www.vermontkitchenandbar.com. Since changing owners in 2009, this fine-dining restaurant (dinner main dishes $18-$36) has added two siblings: the lounge next to it (Barre, Vt), where elaborate cabaret shows draw big crowds (admission usually $10-$23.45 with two-drink minimum); and the more casual, largely hidden Rockwell, Vt, restaurant and bar (dinner main dishes $13-$25), a startlingly large space that offers upstairs and downstairs tables around a patio.
Alcove Café & Bakery, 1929 Hillhurst Ave., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 644-0100, http://www.alcovecafe.com. Set in an old cottage with a big shady patio in front. Alcove is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Dinner entrees $9.95-$17.95.
Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea, 3922 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90029; (323) 663-6173, http://www.intelligentsiacoffee.com. Open daily in the heart of trendy Sunset Junction. Coffee drinks $2.50-$7.
L.A. Police Academy Revolver & Athletic Club Café, 1880 Academy Road, Los Angeles 90012; (323) 221-5222, Ext. 3, http://www.lapraac.com. At the LAPD Academy site in Elysian Park, police memorabilia, burgers and coffee shop fare, with a top price of $7.99. Open 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Mondays-Fridays.
Short Stop, 1455 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90026; (213) 482-4942, http://www.myspace.com/shortstopechopark. This Echo Bar bar goes back to the 1940s. Once a cop haven, it's now a dive-style hipster hang with dance floor, pool table, smoking patio and Pabst on sale for $2 during happy hour. Open 5 p.m.-2 a.m daily.
Tiki Ti, 4427 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 669-9381, http://www.tiki-ti.com. Since 1961, this family operation has served up tropical drinks in a tiny space near the Vista Theatre. Usually 6 p.m.-2 a.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays. Cash only, no beer or wine. Often crowded.
Umami Burger, 4655 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 669-3922, http://www.umamiburger.com/umami-los-feliz/. A playground for carnivores; Portobello burgers for vegetarians. Lunch and dinner. Burgers $9-$13. Combinations $15-$16. Beer and wine. Often crowded.
WHAT TO SEE
Dodger Stadium, 1000 Elysian Park Ave., Los Angeles 90012; (323) 224-1471, losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com. Dodgers tickets typically run $12-$130, more for the luxurious club rooms. General parking is $15. The team offers daily 90-minute behind-the-scenes stadium tours for $10-$15. More info on their website.
Griffith Observatory, 2800 E. Observatory Road, Los Angeles 90027; (213) 473-0800, http://www.griffithobservatory.org. Open Wednesday through Sundays, noon-10 p.m. weekdays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. on weekends. Observatory and parking are free, but planetarium presentations cost $3-$7 a person.
Los Angeles Zoo, 5333 Zoo Drive, Los Angeles 90027; (323) 644-4200, http://www.lazoo.org. Admission $14 for adults, $11 for seniors (62 and older), $9 for children 2-12. Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily.
The Autry National Center's Museum of the American West, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Los Angeles 90027; (323) 667-2000; http://www.theautry.org. Open Tuesdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on weekdays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. on weekends, with extended hours in summer. Admission $10 per adult, $6 students with current ID and seniors (60 and older), $4 for children 3-12.
Architecture Tours L.A., (323) 464-7868, http://www.architecturetoursla.com. Architectural historian and tour guide Laura Massino Smith leads driving tours of Silver Lake and other L.A. County communities. Tours last two to three hours and typically cost $68 a person; reservations required.
Barnsdall Art Park and Hollyhock House, 4800 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles 90027, http://www.barnsdallartpark.com. Hollyhock Tours, (323) 644-6269, http://www.hollyhockhouse.net. Hourlong Hollyhock House tours Wednesday-Sunday afternoons (click "visit" on website for times), adults $7.
WHERE TO SHOP
Soap Plant/Wacko/Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 663-0122, http://www.soapplant.com. Open daily.
Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles 90027; (323) 660-1175, http://www.skylightbooks.com. Independent bookshop with lively reading lineup. Open 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily with an art-book annex next door.
Echo Park Film Center, 1200 N. Alvarado St., Los Angeles 90026; (213) 484-8846, http://www.echoparkfilmcenter.org. Open 2-7 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays, noon-5 p.m. Saturdays, event nights 8-10 p.m.
Time Travel Mart, 1714 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90026; (213) 413-3388, http://www.826la.org/store. The store is a front for the nonprofit organization 826LA, which is part of a national network that offers tutoring and teaches creative and expository writing.