There are many types of getaways, which grant us escape. Escape from the city… escape into the city… escape from stress, other people and… ourselves.
On a recent trip to Los Angeles, my girlfriend booked a room on Air BnB and invited me to stay with her to save expenses. We stayed with a Comedy Store comedian in the heart of Hollywood. The host was awesome! And so were her two cats …and two dogs. They were awesome too. It’s just that I have this thing with pet hair…
If feeling confined to a shared room in a single bedroom apartment wasn’t enough, there was miscommunication with my friend about sharing the rental car. She wanted to be the only driver on the rental agreement, drove “religiously” by the GPS, didn’t want to do much sightseeing …and the L.A, public bus could only take me so far. In a city of sprawling space and numerous things to do, sometimes saving money feels sensible.
Other times, it can feel like it just cost you your trip!
I needed a “selfie getaway” from this getaway.
From DIY travel chick to travel princess
“Bonjour! Welcome to the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills.” chirped the smiling French receptionist, as I bustled towards the front desk, chasing the bell boy, who had quickly hoisted my carry-on bag off my rental car.
Luxury hotels always make me a tad nervous. Mostly, it’s because I never know who to tip at these places (or how much). Hotel staff, who touch your luggage, are generally one of them.
Being a solo chick I’m versed in handling rugged adventures abroad. But the posh design of my new West L.A. habitat began melting my Gunga-Jane demeanor– my bustle transformed into a glide,… my New Balance jogging shoes, still minted with the soil of developing countries, fell off my feet, inviting my Cinderella-like fashion boots to feel like a glass slipper.
Yes,there’s a girl in me somewhere. Excavating her from the D.I.Y. travel survival chick takes persuasion.
Apparently, a French-themed one.
Ooh-la-la Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills
With a twist of French swagger and modern chic, the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills is how we’d all like to experience a star-studded city like Los Angeles.
A boutique hotel sandwiched between West Los Angeles and Hollywood (and across the Beverly Center Mall), makes it a traveler’s shopping paradise– it’s a shame I don’t like to shop! The lobby area and Riviera 31 lounge bar, offers an invigorating color design by day, which transforms into a sultry Hollywood lounge at night.
Complex, but not complicated. Sophisticated, but thankfully,… not snotty. Youthful yet elegant.
Le Chambre Magnifique
My bed was fluffed with a down comforter on top and underneath. I felt sexy just slipping between the covers!
There’s nothing lonely about having an entire king bed in a hotel to yourself, when you’re in a hotel like this. Nothing. It’s a definite perk to solo travel. Freedom to walk around in my undies… is the second sexy perk!
Solitude is freedom and I was finally able to step away from the woes of failed trip expectations, tense friendships and everything that smothered me thus far in my trip. Now with my own luxury sanctuary and rental car, I was able to create the type of getaway I wanted.
No pet hair included.
When I got back at 10:00 pm from dinner with a friend, turn-down service already happened– the window shades were drawn and bed slippers laid out, as if an invisible elf was there to perfect things for me.
I was staying in the Hollywood Hill View Luxury Room. What made it grand was its personal view of the Hollywood Hills. Each night, rather than drawing the shades, I slept with the curtains peeked open, so I could awake to that iconic view. Pillow views like these don’t come cheap!
Okay, when I stay at hotels, I like to act like a connoisseur of toiletries.
My top snobberies are about the brand, scent and texture of my bath products. I like a good lather and going to bed smelling “pretty”. My room had Lanvin products (the VIP rooms have Hermes products), a French brand which softens your skin and hair so that you feel milky. It was royalty in a bottle. Enough said.
Cashing in at Le Spa
My second day, I cashed in a gift certificate I won at an L.A. Travel Massive meetup for a free 90 minute massage treatment at Le Spa.
I try to sneak in at least one spa treatment on virtually every trip I take (yes, Korean skin care treatments, jjimjilbangs, Moroccan hammams and Thai massages… all count)! I use them as personal ‘timeouts’.
Travel can be fun, but it’s also work. Although the hotel stay was a little outside of my current budget range (I’m actually in Los Angeles location scouting a move!), the spa treatment was right up my alley. Bring it on!
Le Spa held nice surprises… which I’ll leave you to watch in my video (below). If you’re into massages and beauty treatments, you’ll love it here. I wanted a facial treatment, but the beautician didn’t wasn’t in on the day I requested, so I just got a massage. My masseuse, a “struggling actor”, used essential oils that when heat-activated, helped with the detoxification process. I loved it all, …except the black bathrobes, which were snuggly but quite heavy and blended with the unlit parts of the room. And the spa shower… well, you’ll have to watch the video to believe it!
If you can’t see this video, watch it here.
When it was time to leave the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, I was back to better spirits. Los Angeles shone with a bright face and as a woman alone, I had regained my feminine charms and was ready to tackle the road again.
As travelers, traveling alone or with others, we all need sexy selfie getaways from time to time. Don’t you think?
SOFITEL LA AT BEVERLY HILLS
8555 Beverly Blvd. (on the cross street of La Cienega and Beverly )
90048 LOS ANGELES
Phone : (1) 310/278-5444
Note: My stay was complimentary of the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hill in exchange for a review. My spa package was a gift won at a Travel Massive event and before you think I’m a horrible friend, I offered it to my girlfriend as a peace token, but she declined. We’re still friends). As always, opinion expressed here are my own.