Nestled in your crisp white bed linens you slowly awake in your spacious room at The L.A. Grand Hotel Downtown. Are you still asleep? Or was last night all a dream? You start to stir with memories.
There was the skyscraper-lit stroll to the shimmering Walt Disney Concert Hall. Inside the Frank Gehry-designed concert space, Coldplay’s Chris Martin performed “L.A. Woman” with the Los Angeles Philharmonic alongside acclaimed LA Phil conductor Gustavo Dudamel, before an explosion of confetti spread through the crowd. You pull back the curtains—a circle of palm trees and the Downtown L.A. skyline reveals itself. Last night was no dream.
Your post-concert morning calls for a strong cappuccino along with a nest of chilaquiles at the hotel’s swank Ziran Restaurant. You’re in town to spark ideas for your next big civic project and hob nob with the mayor's staff—and your expectations have already been blown away.
You walk to your meeting at Los Angeles City Hall, passing Bunker Hill and the historic former Los Angeles Times building. Under the grand 32-floor City Hall, which was built in 1928, a mayor’s aide is waiting for you. She introduces herself and tells you that the building’s tower was created with sand from each of California’s 58 counties. Everything is white and dappled in sunshine.
It’s a gorgeous day, so she takes you up to the observation deck, which is located on the 27th floor and open to the public. On the deck you take in the massive Los Angeles city skyline and the day is so clear that you can see out to the Pacific.
You both cross the street to the green expanse of Grand Park, where she shows you the community terrace that's been carefully planted with drought-tolerant plants as you pass kids leaping and splashing around the giant fountain.
Lunch is outside on the stunning patio at the Patina Group's California-French spot, Café Pinot with the landmark Los Angeles Central Library as the backdrop. As you nosh on your croque madame and sip a California white, you wonder if this the best day-long meeting you've ever had?
The exterior of the Central Library is beautiful, with Egyptian and Mediterranean influences that include a dramatic tile pyramid. Inside, the aide—who is really becoming more like a friend—takes you to the second floor to show you the muraled rotunda with the famed Zodiac chandelier. You have so much fun poking around the historic library, which opened its doors in 1926, and its vast book collection that when you are both finished it’s already happy hour.
Happy hour is at Crane’s Bar Downtown which is housed in a former bank vault a short walk from your hotel. There’s nothing like this in your neck of the woods, which calls for a toast. You and your new friend raise your glasses and cheers to a Downtown day in the City of Angels—and you know that soon you’ll be skipping your return flight home.
The L.A. Grand Hotel Downtown
333 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles 90071