Staycation at Residence Inn LAX – Part 3 of 3: Photowalk at the Venice Canals



Our evening was threatening to come to a very early, very boring end.

My son and I had accepted an invitation to stay overnight at Residence Inn LAX, and the property only took about 15 minutes for us to explore before he whipped out his Nintendo 3DS and started to play. Clearly I could have told him to put that away, but then what? We hadn’t brought any games or art materials. And it was August, and we were right near the beach.

Unfortunately my kid was already beached out. So, thinking quickly I remember the Venice canals. Ah, the beautiful Venice canals. This kid had been there as an infant, when my brother visited from Massachusetts, because I usually only go to the canals with tourists.

venice canals 2005With Uncle Kevin, November 2005

But here we were: tourists.

After dinner at the nearby C&O Trattoria on Washington Blvd., we wandered into the canal neighborhood. I gave my DSLR camera to my son to take pictures, and at a few stops along our walk, I showed him different technical features of the device. I’m no expert myself, so it’s not like a showed him a magic trick or anything, but it’s really neat to look at the pictures and see what caught his eye. I’ve pulled some of them to show you here.





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IMG_2331  IMG_2385


IMG_1263Sunset really is a spectacular time to visit the Venice Canals. You should arrive with enough light to get yourself acquainted with the neighborhood – the houses are spectacular, the people so interesting, and the “please pick up your dog’s waste” signs curiously plentiful. Then, as the sun sinks down behind the horizon, the whole area has the most lovely glow. Capture it with your camera or just your memory. It’s such a lovely outing.

Venice Canals
Start at Washington and Strongs Drive

Staycation at Residence Inn LAX – Part 1 of 3

IMG_1202After a 1.5 hour slog through Sunday traffic, we finally arrived at Residence Inn LAX.

Over the summer I was invited by Residence Inn to stay at their LAX property. I finally accepted when it was clear that I need some quality time with my 10-year-old. The summer had been so busy that we didn’t get much time together, just me and him. Plus, he loves staying in hotels, and as I found out, he loves other key components of travel, so this turned out to be a perfect little excursion for us.

Normally I wouldn’t choose the airport area as a destination, but there are a few reasons that our night at Residence Inn LAX turned out to be wonderful: a comfortable, clean room to relax and snuggle in after spending time at a great restaurant and a picturesque local attraction that would otherwise take us over an hour to get to by car.

IMG_1205Part I: The Hotel

The Residence Inn LAX just opened this summer with a simple, elegant contemporary decor. The lobby is spacious and bright and there are some cool digital conveniences for guests, including an interactive map of local attractions (but curiously not local restaurants — there is nothing notable in walking distance of the hotel, if you ask the front desk they will send you to places that require a drive), and a live departures screen for flights leaving from LAX, as well as a luggage scale.







The pool area is small but has plenty of room, with comfortable seating and shade and even a cool fire pit for nighttime socializing. There is a special needs chair lift for the pool, and plenty of towels.



Our room was gloriously spic and span. I mean, you’d expect that from any hotel of Residence Inn’s fame, but I especially appreciated it because my own house has been such a sandy, dusty disaster due to neglect and beach visits. It was just so nice to get away from household duties for a night! And the goodies left for us were a lovely touch.





IMG_2253(FYI – no bathtub, just a sleek and clean shower)



Guests are given BOGO vouchers for use at the on-site fast casual restaurants, Z Pizza or Jersey Mike’s. We opted to go off-property for dinner, but we did use the free beverage at the also on-site Starbucks to get hot coffee and chocolate in the morning.

IMG_1269Residence Inn’s usually awesome continental breakfast hit a hiccup on the Monday morning when we were there, because an expected delivery hadn’t come in. Otherwise we would have eaten there. Instead we took our Starbucks drinks back up to our room and watched the rest of a movie we had started the night before. Cool thing: the rooms have Netflix on the TV’s, and you can log in with your own account. That was perfect for this mom and 10-year-old. We selected “Are We Done Yet?” which incidentally I recommend for helping you go to sleep. Watching the end of it in the morning wasn’t so bad.


IMG_1277 I enjoyed the view while I took notes

In separate posts I will talk more about how we passed the time. Once we arrived at the hotel Sunday evening, we spent about 20 minutes at the pool before it got too windy, and then considered what’s close by and set out from there. Parking for guests ($24 per night) is in a garage behind the building and coming and going is easy. Wifi is free in the room and works just fine. There is also an airport shuttle, so this is a great lower-cost place to stay the night before if you have a super early morning flight.

Residence Inn LAX
5933 West Century Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90045 USA
Rooms and Rates