In most of America, fond farewells to late summer strolls, roof deck soirees and warm sand happen Labor Day weekend.
Make Los Angeles your backyard with outdoor movies, free concerts, beach days and beautiful public pools. The countless ways to enjoy sunny, sprawling SoCal prove that Labor Day in the city of angels is what you make of it.
Ease your way into the heart of Los Angeles with Amtrak and these helpful hints.
1. Arrive in style
From Chicago via Kansas City or New Orleans via Tucson, Amtrak has the coolest ride to Downtown Los Angeles. Without dreaded middle seats to cramp your style, the comfy ride is perfect for reading that book you never get to at home or making a new friend heading your direction.
One of the most spectacular of California routes, the Coast Starlight from Seattle takes you directly into DTLA. Once you arrive at the art deco-inspired station, grab your bags and head to your nearby hotel.
2. Great hotels
- Le Parc Suite — Have your friends over for a pre-party in this beautiful hotel.
- Palihouse — This West Hollywood lodge offers a rooftop bar and open-air interior courtyard.
- Ramada — The best location for living it up in WeHo because of its proximity to bars and clubs.
3. Outdoor adventures
Enjoy bacon-covered funnel cake and carnival rides (preferably not at the same time) at the opening weekend of the L.A. County Fair. (Aug. 31 – Sept. 23)
Enjoy the spiral waterslide at the renovated Hollywood Pool.
Bask in the sun along the shores of Hansen Dam.
Outdoor movies are a warm-evening tradition in Hollywood. Hollywood Forever Cemetery draws moviegoers for a date under the stars. Bring a picnic, and check out one of these classic films:
- Aug 30: Get Out at Sunset Triangle Plaza
- Sept 1: Selena at Autry Museum in Griffith Park
- Sept 1: Wizard of Oz at Park Center, Griffith Park
- Sept 1: The Wedding Singer at Will Rogers State Historic Park
4. Water works
The breathtaking views from LA’s rooftop pools are another way to extend summer. Grab a cabana at Mondrian and alternate between lounging and dips in the pool. Atop WeHo’s stylish Le Montrose is a pool with sweeping views of the sprawling metropolis.
- Bar Mattachine — Downtown, Bar Mattachine is an institution. People watch while sipping craft cocktails street-side or take in a drag show on the upper level.
- Akbar — Grab a quick ride to the hipster haven of Silverlake.
- Gym Sportsbar — Before heading into haunts like Micky’s and Abbey, pop into Gym for a sportier experience.
6. Foodie paradise
- Pump — Resplendent with an olive tree grove worthy of Italy, this eatery rules the bustling corner of Santa Monica and Robinson Boulevard.
- Eveleigh — Weekend brunch is better at this brightly lit Sunset Strip staple.
- Cliff’s Edge — Because indoor/outdoor dining is what Labor Day weekend is all about, a warm evening on the treehouse-like patio of Cliff’s Edge makes total sense. Like cooling craft gin drinks? Great White Hype is for you.
Book early and save when you take Amtrak to Los Angeles this summer.