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Pearl64

Need help with Precruise LA

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We are taking a short Oceania Cruise Dec.7 which leaves out of San Pedro. We want to come in several days early to see the Reagan and Nixon libraries. Here is my tentative plan. Fly in on Tuesday and spend two nights at a hotel close to Reagan and the Getty. See Reagan Library on Wednesday and the Getty on Thursday. Sometime in the afternoon head towards the Nixon library possibly near Corona so we could visit with family. Spend two nights hotel there. Saturday am return rental car and somehow get to the ship which has a 9 pm departure. Is this doable? My questions are where to stay and where to return the car rental. Are there drop offs near the port or at least closer than driving back to LAX?

 

We have a port stop in Monterey. Are there close to the port car rental agencies? We want to do the 17 mile drive. This is a tender port so I am  wondering if this is doable. How long does it take to tenders dhow long to drive the ocean route?

 

Thank you in advance for suggestions.

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The libraries are about 85 miles apart, and to get to either would in all likelihood involve heavy traffic.

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We understand that there will be major traffic but it is on my husband’s bucket list. That is why we are doing them on separate days and the library is the only thing we are doing on those days. So any help with car rental questions?

 

Thank you.

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Posted (edited)

Yes totally doable.  However, LA traffic being what it is you have to plan for the unexpected.  Our son lives near the Reagan and we visit often.  We are Hilton brand loyal so stay at a Hilton property depending on the price.  The Hilton Woodland Hills has good prices most of the time and book an Executive floor room.  It's a little more money but gives you access to a cocktail lounge with heavy appetizers and a decent breakfast buffet.  Cocktails were free, now just low cost.  Hopefully they have moved it back up to the top floor from the lobby floor, which doesn't have the view.  

The hotel sits almost in the middle between Getty and Reagan.  From that hotel you can drive N/W to Reagan and S/E to Getty using surface streets or freeways depending on traffic.  My rule of thumb for LA traffic is have three routes and GPS.  

The Getty should be more than a one day visit.  To avoid the most traffic plan to go late and stay late.  Maybe plan to have dinner close by and then drive out toward Corona and Nixon Library.   If you're visiting family in Corona just stay out there and use the Express Lane 91 to come back to the Nixon.  

Saturday shouldn't be an issue getting to the port by 9:00 PM just drop the car and UBER  if you have to.  

We do weekends in Monterey frequently and have been in town when ships have been in.  They anchor not far from Old Fisherman's Wharf and tender takes about five minutes.  Not sure where the nearest car rental agency is.  But Monterey is a fairly small town so it can't be more than five minute UBER or taxi from the wharf.    Seventeen Mile drive is about 15 minutes from the wharf and you can drive it in about an hour without stops.   However, there's a couple of places to stop for a nice lunch nearby that could take some time.  On the wharf is Fisherman's Grotto, which has been our go to spot for 40 years for lunch or dinner.    

Edited by ATSEAMYLIFE

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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, Pearl64 said:

We are taking a short Oceania Cruise Dec.7 which leaves out of San Pedro. We want to come in several days early to see the Reagan and Nixon libraries. Here is my tentative plan. Fly in on Tuesday and spend two nights at a hotel close to Reagan and the Getty. See Reagan Library on Wednesday and the Getty on Thursday. Sometime in the afternoon head towards the Nixon library possibly near Corona so we could visit with family. Spend two nights hotel there. Saturday am return rental car and somehow get to the ship which has a 9 pm departure. Is this doable? My questions are where to stay and where to return the car rental. Are there drop offs near the port or at least closer than driving back to LAX?

 

Okay, doable, but, yes, a lot of time on freeways...

 

First--the Reagan Library and the Getty.  (This is my neck of the woods--I live about halfway between the two--or three...and grew up immediately next to the Getty Villa) For one, know that there are not one, but two Getty Museums...There is the "Getty Center"--which houses the art collection--paintings, etc.--which is located right off the 405 in Sepulveda Pass--the main mountain pass between the Los Angeles Basin and the San Fernando Valley--one of the most heavily traveled freeways in the world...AND there is the "Getty Villa" which houses the "Antiquities collection"--statuary and other artifacts from ancient civilizations, located off Pacific Coast Highway--always referred to as "Malibu" but really located in neighboring Pacific Palisades.  The Reagan Library is located off the 23 Freeway on the Western edge of Simi Valley.  The three sites are really not all that close...but certainly drive-able from a single base location--probably somewhere near where I live.

 

I would NOT recommend staying in Simi Valley...it's a bit remote and, with my apologize to my Sister-in-law and Brother-in-law who live there, a bit dull--sort of a middle class bedroom community...I would stay either near the Getty Center or somewhere in between the Reagan and the Getty--in the "Las Virgenes Corridor"--the towns along the 101 between the San Fernando Valley and the 23 Freeway--Westlake Village, Agoura Hills, Calabasas (my town)...It's an upscale area and a little out of the traffic one finds closer in to the city...with some pretty nice hotels not quite as expensive as what you may find closer in to the Getty...For a nice Hotel, you might look at the Hyatt Westlake--which is fairly close to the 101 and 23...or, you could come to my neighborhood and stay in the hotel we will be calling home for the next several days (while our home is undergoing some renovations)--the Hilton Garden Inn Calabasas (which I find much more relaxing and comfortable--and beautiful-- than staying in the hustle and bustle of the bigger hotels in Woodland Hills/Warner Center--with easy and FREE parking--something you won't find in many areas of Los Angeles).  You could come here from LAX, spend Tuesday night...lots of good and interesting restaurant choices near the hotel in the Calabasas Commons (King's Fish House, Marmalade Cafe, and more) or along Calabasas Road (Sagebrush Cantina, the Six and others).  It's a fairly easy drive from here to the Reagan even on a Wednesday morning...and return here after visiting that...The next morning, you have two choice, depending on whether you want to visit the Getty Villa or not...If so, you can take one of the mountain passes--either Las Virgenes Road/Malibu Canyon or Topanga Canyon...Both rather interesting and very scenic--cutting through the Santa Monica Mountains to Malibu (likely taking Las Virgenes as Topanga is often closed for one problem or another and, if open, may have some difficult traffic if rush hour on a Thursday...and Las Virgenes is slightly easier to drive--and a little more scenic though less rustic)...then you turn left on Pacific Coast Highway driving through Malibu to the Getty Villa...a left on Sunset Boulevard winds you through Pacific Palisades and Brentwood to the 405 and the Getty Center.  After visiting those, you could take the 405 to the 91 for the long, uninteresting 70 mile ride out to Corona (though, aside from having family there, I can see very little reason to stay there)...You will pass right through Yorba Linda (where the Nixon Library is) on that route...You may want to consider staying in Yorba Linda/Anaheim/Fullerton and asking your relatives to come meet you for dinner there...

 

Returning the rental car:  Sounds like you're embarking on Saturday (good, because the San Pedro car rental places are closed Sunday), Enterprise and Hertz both have locations in San Pedro--right at or next to the Crown Plaza--about 3 blocks from the cruise terminal...easy to drop off luggage at the pier, return the car and either walk back--or ask if the car agencies will shuttle you back...

 

Good luck...

Edited by Bruin Steve

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Steve gave some good advice.  However, he probably doesn't "visit" as we do.  My son lived in Studio City and Calabasas before moving up to Agoura Hills.  So we have stayed at several hotels along the 101 from Universal Studios to Agoura Hills.  I do like the Garden Inn Calabasas but it's usually more expensive than the Hilton Warner Center, even booking an executive floor.  Plus it's a little further north than being central between the Getty and Reagan.  

 

From the Hilton Warner it's an easy shot up the Topanga Cyn Blvd (27) to the 118 to Reagan.  There's also a back way from Agoura but's it a little slow.  Also from Hilton Warner to Getty you can either take the 101 to 405 or if there's a Sig alert go down Ventura Blvd and take some surface streets.  

 

Been to Sagebrush Cantina for Sunday brunch it's a lot of food, crowded, and expensive.  Been to Kings Fish house in Calabasas and wasn't impressed.  Marmalade Cafe has always been outstanding and doesn't fail we spot a star while there.  You can also check the Hampton Inn Agoura Hills as it's close to Reagan.  Just down the street is the Twisted Oak Tavern that has great food and they will do a whole roasted pig head (never got it but seen it).    There are several Fat Sal's around and they aren't to be missed for lunch. 

 

I totally agree on not staying out in Simi as it's boring and way out of the way from what you want to see.  

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Atseamylife,

I beg to differ on Calabasas vs. Warner Center...First, the two aren't that far apart so, the routes/drives aren't much different--just that there are choices...101 to the 23 to the Reagan is NOT a "slow" "back route"...it would actually be the preferred way to get to the Reagan...Topanga Canyon Blvd. is SLOW...traffic signal after traffic signal...lots of cross traffic...and, from the 118, you have to backtrack a bit through Simi to get to the Reagan...101 to the 23 is virtually all freeway...and mostly against any traffic...I just "googled" it...and Hilton Warner Center via Topanga and the 118 is 22.7 miles and would take 42 minutes right now (Wednesday morning at 8:40) and the Hilton Calabasas, using the 101 to the 23 is 20.8 miles and would take 29 minutes right now!

 

As to the route to the Getty from that area...if, by Getty, you're ONLY referring to the one in Sepulveda pass, then you COULD take the 101 to the 405 from either the Hilton Warner Center or the Hilton Calabasas-and the time would be virtually the same (getting TO the 101 from the Hilton on Canoga in Warner Center is more difficult)  BUT, the reason I recommended using Las Virgenes/Malibu Canyon was not for the time...It is just a far more scenic and spectacular route plus, it takes you by the Getty Villa--which I find more interesting than the newer art museum.

 

Those two hotels are less than 5 miles apart.  But the Hilton Warner Center is amid high rise urban sprawl while the one in Calabasas is in a very upscale residential area surrounded by beautiful hillsides.  The Warner Center Hilton charges $20 per day to self-park a car in a large multi-level structure it shares with office buildings and restaurants.  At Calabasas, parking is easy and FREE--and right outside the hotel door...

 

And, yes, there are other hotels in the area...In Calabasas, another choice is the Anza...There are a Homewood Suites, a Sheraton and a Hampton Inn in Agoura Hills and a Four Seasons and a Marriott Residence Inn in Westlake (aside from the Hyatt)...

 

I just emphasized the Hilton Garden Inn because I'm staying there right now and I really like the location...AND it is NOT "a little further north than being central between the Getty and Reagan"...It's 20.8 miles to the Reagan and 16.8 miles to the Getty Center (via the 118 and 405) ...14.9 miles to the Getty Villa via Topanga or 22 miles via Las Virgenes...Pretty danged central...

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There is an Enterprise Car Rental on Del Monte Ave in Monterey. I just googled and saw three. The other two are near the airport. Looks not far from where we tender. We're looking into renting while in Monterey as well. 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, MCM1173 said:

There is an Enterprise Car Rental on Del Monte Ave in Monterey. I just googled and saw three. The other two are near the airport. Looks not far from where we tender. We're looking into renting while in Monterey as well. 

 

I saw that Enterprise location also and that's an easy walk.  If you Google map it they probably take you out to Del Monte Blvd and along the street.  But realistically you can walk through the parking lots in a more direct route and it's probably about 75% shorter.  Yes, airport locations are to far.  

 

Bruin Steve, thanks for your input.  We are all entitled to our opinion.    I didn't see you disagree with my suggestion of Fat Sal's.    

Edited by ATSEAMYLIFE

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17 hours ago, ATSEAMYLIFE said:

Bruin Steve, thanks for your input.  We are all entitled to our opinion.    I didn't see you disagree with my suggestion of Fat Sal's.    

 

I love Fat Sal's--great sandwiches...But there are only THREE of them--Westwood, Hollywood and Encino (Ventura and Balboa)...even that last one might be a bit far from these sites...

 

As to King's Fish House, we ate there last night.  I had the BBQ Nawlins Shrimp--OUTSTANDING!  The bread is pretty danged good as well...  Sagebrush is crowded on Sunday mornings--it's when all of the Harley Davidson clubs roll in... (and it is the second highest grossing restaurant in the state of California--surpassed only by the original Gladstone's at Sunset and PCH)...

 

Also, a favorite of ours in Agoura is Wood Ranch (the one there is one of the original ones before they got big and started opening all over SoCal)...great Ribs, Tri-Tip and Steaks...

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Thanks to all who responded. I finally got a paper map from AAA to see all the recommended places and routes. I did make reservations at the Hilton Garden in Calabasas and the à Résidence Inn in Yorba Linda. Bruin Steve, your suggestions several years ago were spot on. My husband loved the Luxe hotel near UCLA. You have raised an interesting dilemma: the Getty Villa which we have not been to or the other Getty which we have been to! I can always change these reservations but at least we have them.

 

Thanks for the rental car information. Monterey worked out. Returning the car to San Pedro did work but the agency closes at 1 pm so here’s hoping we can get there from Yorba Linda in 3-4 hours. We didn’t want to leave that early but we will do it to save getting to the port from LAX.

 

two other pieces to complete: flights which are through the roof price wise and figuring how to get to LAX from San Pedro on disembarkation day.

 

Thanks again. We are excited to see Southern California.

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I wouldn't stay halfway between the Getty and Reagan Library, all that does is assure you have longish drives to both. I'd stay closer to the Getty because it is a nicer area with better restaurants, others sights, etc. If you go from near the Getty to the Reagan Library you are going opposite the heaviest traffic.

 

For the Nixon Library, the Embassy Suites Brea North Orange County at the Brea Mall is a nicer area and nicer hotel than the Residence Inn Yorba Linda.

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