Located a just north of Sunset Boulevard near UCLA, the Hotel Bel-Air has a surprisingly secluded feeling.
Part of The Dorchester Collection, which includes the nearby Beverly Hills Hotel, Bel-Air closed in 2009 for a $100 million remodel. The 12-acre property, home to 200 species of flora and fauna is a child's dream. The grounds are straight out of a storybook with swans swimming in a small lake, walkways lined with tall trees that wind along a creek and courtyards to explore. When families check in, the fun begins with the children's welcome pastry, the youngsters find their name spelled in cookies surrounded with goodies.
The famous oval-shaped pool is of course a top destination for families. The junior guests are given sunglasses, lip gloss and the use of iPads loaded with children's games and activities. Kids of all ages love the complimentary mint lime iced tea and mini frozen treats that are periodically passed out by the pool attendants. The iPads can also be requested for the kids to play with while waiting for their orders in the restaurant. Kids adore Bel Air's signature plush robes so much that the gift shop sells them as souvenirs.
Children love Swan Lake and looking out for the three resident swans. The grassy park like setting makes it the perfect place for a picnic. "The Bel-Air Basket," designed by Wolfgang Puck, comes with a choice of à la carte delicacies such as Grilled Chicken "Santorini" Salad, Selection of Artisanal Cheeses, House Made Soft Bavarian Pretzels and Classic Cupcakes (children's menu available). The attentive staff sets up pillows and blankets and creates a magical place for family memories to be made. On Friday and Saturday afternoons, The Little Royals Tea is held in the hotel restaurant.
The Hotel Bel-Air's location makes it a perfect launching point for Southern California attractions. The concierge team can arrange outings for families to places such as the Getty Museum, Hollywood Studios and the beach. Professional babysitting can be arranged for parents to get some alone time. Complimentary transportation in one of the Bel-Air's Mercedes S-350 BlueTec sedans is offered within a three-mile radius, which includes The Beverly Hills Hotel. Room rates start at $500—be sure to check the hotel's website for special offers.
701 Stone Canyon Rd
Los Angeles, CA 90077
Elizabeth Peterson is always plotting her next getaway. To follow her adventures, visit her blog.
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