Walt Disney Concert Hall
Claim to Fame: It’s hot, and getting hotter
The city’s central business district has been on fire for more than a decade. Once nearly irrelevant to daily—or visitor—life in L.A. (unless you were stuck having a job or business there), it’s now a nexus of hip attractions, great hotels and restaurants, and vibrant street life and nightlife.
Lines snake around The Broad daily, with art lovers eager for a chance to experience this architecturally stunning museum opened on Grand Avenue in 2015. It houses the postwar and contemporary works amassed by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad—it’s one of the world’s most significant collections. Groups can do before- and after-hours events. The Frank Gehry-designed Walt Disney Concert Hall is just north, and the excellent Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles is across the street.
Nearly 1,000 feet above the city in the US Bank Tower, private yoga classes are bookable for meetings and groups at Oue Skyspace LA, where guests can design their own yoga pants and detail their bodies with tribal art. Skyspace LA features 3,400 sq. ft. of event space and an all-glass, 45-foot outdoor slide. Also new here will soon be floor-to-ceiling screens and headsets to take guests on a celebration of L.A.’s role in arts, music and film.
Sleep and meet in the clouds at the soaring InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown, just opened at the top of the new, 73-story Wilshire Grand, which, at 1,100 feet, is the tallest structure west of the Mississippi. Expect nearly 900 guest rooms and 94,000 sq. ft. of event and meeting space.
Other downtown hotels recently opened:
-Freehand Los Angeles, with 226 guest rooms, ranging from traditional accommodations to high-design “poshtels”
–Hotel Indigo Downtown Los Angeles, a hip 350-guest room hotel with 21,483 sq. ft. of meeting space
L.A. Convention Center
- World-class technology
- 720,000 sq. ft. of exhibit space
- 147,000 sq. ft. of meeting space
- Newly renovated 299-seat presentation theater
- LEED Gold certified
- 11 event venues
- 90,000-square-foot event deck with a 42,000-squarefoot tent to accommodate 5,000 people
- Microsoft Theater, home of the Emmy Awards
- Staples Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers, Clippers and Sparks basketball, and LA Kings hockey
- The Ritz-Carlton, JW Marriott, Courtyard and Residence Inn hotels
City Market South
- More than 2.5 acres of repurposed brick warehouses and other historic buildings with a tree-lined central plaza at the edge of the Fashion and Wholesale districts
- First phase of this project has just opened, with restaurants, bars, a fashion showroom, work offices
- Coming: a movie studio and 20,000 sq. ft. of event space
–Downtown L.A. Proper, a high-end boutique hotel with 145 guest rooms in a historic 1924 building (Spring 2018)
–Hotel Clark, 347 guest rooms, north of Pershing Square in a 113-year-old historic building (date unknown)
–NoMad Los Angeles, 250 guest rooms in a historic 1923 building (November 2017)
–Park Hyatt at Oceanwide Plaza, across from Staples Center, with 218 guest rooms (2019)
–The Cambria at LA Live, a new-build with 247 guest rooms (early 2019)
–Trinity/Embassy Hotel, in a 1914 building, with 183 guest rooms and historic Trinity Auditorium (date unknown)
–W Los Angeles Downtown, 250 guest rooms, across from L.A. Live and Staples Center (2020)
An impactful keynote can be memorable, but an excursion to the self-described “greatest stadium in the world?” Priceless! Just south of downtown, at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams have migrated home after two decades in St. Louis, until they settle in at a new stadium in Inglewood in 2019. Meantime, they will happily share the Coliseum with your event. The stadium is also available for tours. Or, hit a home run by heading to the nearby Elysian neighborhood and Dodger Stadium, which can host meetings and events.
L.A. Insider Tip
Locals measure the distance between two points in time, not miles. Even though the freeway map has tentacles of pavement heading everywhere, rush hours are notoriously anything but rushed, and getting where you need to go by bus or auto is all timing. Why not consider the alternatives?
- Metro Expo streetcar: downtown to the Santa Monica Pier in 50 minutes.
- Metro Red Line subway: downtown to Hollywood and Vine, NoHo Arts District, Universal Studios Hollywood
- Metro Purple Line subway: historic Union Station downtown to Civic Center (The Broad, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Museum of Contemporary Art) and Pershing Square (Grand Central Market, pictured, a multicultural food emporium)