Summer is officially here and one of the best places to have fun in the sun is Los Angeles! Whether you’ve been to L.A. or not, you know that it’s infamous for being the global center of entertainment, where you can go to make your dreams a reality and often, be anyone you want to be. L.A., with all its varied experiences and magical landscapes, is one of the hottest travel destinations that literally offers something for everyone from sandy beaches, world class shows, and the best nightlife.
Head to L.A. and enjoy everything your gay heart desires–we dare you. While you’re there, here are some of our favorite places to sleep (or, you know), eat, and play in the City of Angels.
Sleep | Hotel Indigo Downtown Los Angeles
Located in the most premiere spot in Downtown L.A., Hotel Indigo is surrounded by a glass paradise of cityscapes and offers modern luxury like no other. The hotel’s design is an homage to L.A.’s Chinatown, Hollywood’s Golden Age of Cinema, La Fiesta de las Flores, and the underground speakeasy ways during America’s Prohibition Era. A major inspiration for the property’s decor is one of Hollywood’s earliest Asian American starlets, Anna May Wong.
As you explore the property you will see nods to the glitz and glamour that is woven into the history of Downtown L.A. Suede fedoras, velvet curtains, golden encrusted chandeliers, all welcome you to L.A.’s urban oasis. You can grab a drink at Metropole Kitchen & Bar or do some prohibition role playing at the hotel’s lounge, 18 social, which has unforgettable views of L.A. in all directions. It’s perfect for a nightcap, a close and personal conversation with a special someone, or just to bask in the ambiance and embrace the regal queen that you are.
Mood design carpeting that resembles glimmers of light leads guests to their impeccably decorated rooms. Each room is detailed with Art Deco-inspired motifs that complement the area’s history. And in case you need more, floor to ceiling windows are the pièce de résistance serving as a portal to an immersive L.A. skyline that will make you want to never leave your room. That’s not necessarily a bad thing! *wink wink*
When you venture out of the bedroom, a sparkling outdoor pool awaits you where you can plunge into the refreshing water or lounge in a cabana with the picturesque sites of Downtown L.A. as your backdrop.
Get some much needed rest and relaxation at Hotel Indigo DTLA: hotelindigola.com
Eat | Original Pantry Café
Just steps from Hotel Indigo is one of L.A.’s most iconic diners, The Original Pantry Café. The café is frozen in time with the charm from 1924, the year it opened. The current location on South Figueroa opened in 1950. The L.A. diner has seen the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and has served classic American food since the very beginning.
The original 15-stool space remains as the heart of the diner, but the restaurant has grown over its almost 100-year history and has become an official Historic-Cultural Monument in the City of Los Angeles.
Seldom is there not a line down the street to get into the Original Pantry Café. Angelenos and visitors alike flock to the diner for their famous pancakes and homestyle comfort food. The diner is also a 24-hour spot that is perfect for late night munchies and post-bar debauchery.
Next time you’re in L.A. the Original Pantry Café is a must! https://pantrycafe.restaurant/
Play | AFTERGLOW at the Hudson Theatre
If you’re looking for a titillating theatre experience, AFTERGLOW is a production that is currently running in Los Angeles and has been extended through July 24. The play is written and directed by S. Asher Gelman.
In AFTERGLOW, the climax is just the beginning. The show has been an international sensation that received acclaim Off-Broadway and in London. A raw, one-act play that explores the emotional, intellectual, and physical connections between three men and the broader implications within their relationships. It’s an up-close portrayal of a modern day throuple, a common experience in gay relationships–with full-frontal nudity throughout the entire show.
When Josh (Noah Bridgestock) and Alex (James Hayden Rodriguez), a married couple in an open relationship, invite Darius (Nathan Mohebbi) to share their bed one night, a new intimate connection begins to form and all three men must come to terms with their individual definitions of love, loyalty, and trust as futures are questioned, relationships are shaken, and commitments are challenged. Nate Richardson is the understudy for the production.
Beyond dialogue, the performances are often interpretive through lyrical dance and movement. With their bodies, the actors create a narrative that is a cautionary tale for relationships that struggle with poor communication and lack honesty with oneself and others.
If you’re looking for something exciting to do during your stay in L.A. check out this run of AFTERGLOW and unlock your inner voyeur.
AFTERGLOW is extended through Sunday, July 24 at the Hudson Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd. in Hollywood.
Performances are Thursdays at 8pm; Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 8pm & Sundays at 7pm.
Ticket prices are $48.00 for General Admission; $69 for Premium Reserved Admission, which also includes a souvenir program.
Tickets and more information are available at www.afterglowtheplay.com.
Explore the Urban Playground of Los Angeles
DTLA has reestablished itself as an up-and-coming queer neighborhood with a long and storied history, including some of the first LGBTQ+ riots in the country at Cooper Do-Nuts in 1959 and a collection of LGBTQ-friendly hangouts in Perishing Square called “The Run” prevalent from the 20s to the 60s. The neighborhood now puts on its own Pride festival, DTLA Proud, every August featuring entertainment, art, community booths and LGBTQ+ vendors.
The Grand Avenue Bar at the Millennium Biltmore was one of many popular LGBTQ centric or friendly establishments located in “The Run” of downtown Los Angeles. In addition, the Biltmore Hotel was the backdrop to a significant event in the LGBTQ civil rights movement in 1971. The hotel hosted a conference of the International Psychologists and Psychiatrists, which intended to endorse electric shock therapy as the official “cure” for homosexuality. Activists, including the Gay Liberation Front, interrupted the conference and initiated a dialogue with participants. By 1973, the American Psychiatric Association had declassified homosexuality as a mental disorder.
At the turn of the 20th century, the Merced Theatre (one of the oldest buildings in Los Angeles) also offered a safe gathering place for LGBTQ+ individuals through its hosting of masked balls and highly satirical plays across from Olvera Street. With concealed identities and LGBTQ+ lodging offerings, the Merced was a place where the community could gather without fear of hate.
Today, bars across Los Angeles act as gathering places for the LGBTQ+ community. The New Jalisco Bar is a longstanding dive spot popular amongst local Latinx Angelenos including go-go dancers, stiff drinks and a strong LGBTQ+ community. Precinct hosts some of the neighborhood’s most diverse programming including RuPaul’s Drag Race viewing and sex-positive parties in their sprawling space, making Precinct the largest DTLA gay bar.
Just miles from thriving Downtown Los Angeles, West Hollywood (WeHo) is one of the world’s most popular LGBTQ+ neighborhoods. Bustling with colorful lights and music escaping night clubs and bars off of Santa Monica Boulevard, WeHo is a must experience destination. With renowned clubs like Micky’s, The Abbey, Heart, Motherlode, Rocco’s and more, you’re bound to stumble on a place that will make your queer heart sing.
So what are you waiting for? Get yourself to L.A. and explore the urban playground that awaits you.
Gratitude in part to Hotel Indigo Downtown Los Angeles, Be Boldly Public Relations, and L.A. Tourism.