California dreamin’ your way to L.A. (and the Natty!)
It’s a given that Bulldog Nation is always up for a good road trip, and Georgia’s pursuit of its second consecutive national championship on Monday is more than enough reason to pack up your tailgating gear and hit the road!
Even better, there aren’t many better places to spend a few days than sunny California. Los Angeles is the nation’s epicenter of glitz and glamor, mixing splashes of Hollywood stardom with the sun and soul of the West Coast.
If you’re planning to cheer on the Dawgs, proudly barking at a few passers-by in the process, it’s important to come up with a game plan. There’s a lot to see and do in L.A., which is why we turned to some fellow Dawgs who call California home for some advice.
Check out these ideas from our friends at the Southern California chapter of the UGA Alumni Association and, if you visit any of them, take a pic and tag us on social using #AlwaysADawg.
Looking for a place to stay?
Unlike the Bulldogs’ trip to Pasadena for the Rose Bowl in 2018, many alumni and fans might be best suited by a stay on the westside of the city. Think crystal blue waters, bodybuilding by the beach and George Strait songs as Ocean Park, Marina Del Rey, Santa Monica and Venice will offer a mix of access and entertainment.
There’s no shortage of glitzy hotels, as well as price-conscious accommodations in that part of town. Here are some of the best ones to consider.
- The Ritz Carlton (Marina Del Rey)
- Marina Del Rey Marriott
- Loews (Santa Monica)
- Santa Monica Proper
- Shutters on the Beach (Santa Monica)
- Hotel Casa del Mar (Santa Monica)
- Hotel Shangri-La (Santa Monica)
- Hotel Erwin (Venice)
Interested in going sightseeing for celebrities during your time in California? Beverly Hills and Hollywood might be a better fit, and there are a few places worth checking out.
- Waldorf Astoria (Beverly Hills)
- West Hollywood Edition
- Pendry (West Hollywood)
- 1 Hotel (West Hollywood)
L.A. is a food lover’s dream, blending cultures and cuisines that will satisfy those with the most daring of culinary palettes, as well as those looking for a less adventurous meal. There’s no shortage of options!
- Tasting Kitchen
- Night + Market
- Dudley’s Market
- Wabi on Rose
- Bacari PDR
- Winston House
- Bodega Wine Bar
- Bay Cities Market
- BOA Steakhouse
- Bar Chloe
- The Bungalow
West Hollywood / Beverly Hills:
What’s a Bulldog to do there?
- If you want the full movie star experience, check out the iconic Chinese Theater which is located adjacent to the famed Hollywood Walk of Fame.
- The Pirate Tower on beautiful Victoria Beach looks like it’s straight out of a fairytale, and it’s just one magical spot in a place filled with fun activities from kayaking to hiking.
- The Japanese Garden, located near Encino, is a gorgeous, tranquil space that spans 6.5 acres and features a Zen meditation garden and expansive “wet” garden designed for casual strolling.
- Yes, we’ve given you a ton of food options here, but you can’t not check out Grand Central Market, which is a European-style food hall that’s been in operation for more than 100 years. It’s as much an experience as a culinary outing.
- LACMA is the largest art museum in the western U.S., featuring a diverse mixture of contemporary art and ancient cultural offerings. And it’s located right next to the famous La Brea Tar Pits, so you can check off two must-do items off your list in one visit.
- Our motto is “you’ll never bark alone” and if you visit Barney’s Beanery on N. 1st Street in Burbank, you definitely won’t as the Southern California chapter of the UGA Alumni Association regularly gathers there to cheer on the Dawgs!
Hopefully, this gives you a good idea of what to do and where to go in L.A. before the Dawgs take on Texas Christian University for the title. Check out other ways to call the Dawgs with fellow alumni as our team plays for the championship title for the second time in two years. Be sure to tag @UGAAlumni on social media so we can share photos and videos of another Bulldog Nation town takeover!
Written by Johnathan McGinty (ABJ ’00), Partner, The Trestle Collective