Shopikon launches in San Francisco, CA

Shopikon Mobile

 

Whether you’re new to the area, just visiting or a local yourself, finding the sweetest spots in such a compact city can be a daunting task if you don’t know where to look. Skipping the chain stores and discovering the city’s independent “hidden” gems couldn’t be easier with Shopikon, an online shopping guide, launching this past week in San Francisco, CA! Read More

Travel

Chill out at Hotel Solamar in San Diego’s historic Gaslamp Quarter

Plus video tour of the spa guest room

Hotel Solamar sits on 6th Ave. inside the 16 and a half block radius of the historic Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego. This convenient hotel is blocks away from Petco Park, home of the Padres, and The San Diego Convention Center, home of Comic-Con, the largest comic book convention in the world. Beside the clear-cut landmarks, Solamar is within walking distance of an abundance of bars and restaurants from TV chef Brian Malarkey’s Searsucker to local favorite, Neighborhood, a craft beer-centric American gastropub. The contemporary 235-room hotel aims to provide an urban lifestyle mixed with beach attitude. Read More

Travel

Ten best American cities for dating

Cities include NYC, SF and Miami

miami-south-beach-hotels

Yahoo! Travel recently released its list of the top ten cities when it comes to being single and dating – cities were considered based on the outdoor environment, fun dating possibilities, and overall number of singles. It seems relevant that a good dating-scene is just one of the many reasons to travel, and while Yahoo!’s list focuses on this, they also highlight other reasons to travel to these metropolitan areas. See what cities make the list. Read More

Alaska Airlines to serve Starbucks onboard starting today

Two Seattle-based companies

Starting today, all passengers onboard an Alaska Airline flight will be offered complimentary Starbucks coffee. To celebrate the collaboration between the two companies, the airline will be running a “text-to-win” contest at four Starbucks stores (February 7 in Seattle, February 14 in Portland, February 21 in San Diego and February 28 in San Jose) for a chance to win a pair of round-trip tickets. Specific store locations, time and instructions will be announced every Tuesday in February at 8 AM on Alaska’s Facebook and Twitter as part of #TravelTuesday.

Photography provided by Alaska Airlines

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Travel

Top 5 places you’d want to go to after visiting the L.A. Travel & Adventure Show

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Like most trade shows, there are exhibitors who sit there because their bosses make them, and there are those that actually make the experience fun. Sure, this doesn’t automatically make what they’re selling gold, but in this case, I am more open to visiting these 5 countries. Read More

Travel

Top 5 list of 2012 travel locations in the world

From Andrew Zimmern, Samantha Brown, Pauline Frommer and Patricia Schultz

taiwan-food

If you have travel plans for 2012, you might want to change them after reading these recommendations from L.A. Travel & Adventure Show‘s, happening this weekend at the Long Beach Convention Center, star guests. Check out the lists from Andrew Zimmern, Samantha Brown, Pauline Frommer and Patricia Schultz. Read More

Travel

Venetian and Palazzo’s year of the dragon celebrations

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Las Vegas will be having a couple celebrations to welcome Chinese New Year and the dragon. On January 23 at 1 PM, a ceremonial dragon dance with firecrackers and eye painting ceremony will begin at The Venetian porte cochere, making its way through The Palazzo. The spectacle will feature a parade of dancers and musicians dressed in elaborate costumes playing authentic music. Read More

Drink + Food + Travel

Best stories of 2011

10 of our most viewed and notable stories

best-stories-of-2011

Based on your views, Facebook likes and whatnot, here is our best stories of 2011 with commentary from the pens and cameras. Read More

Best photos of 2011

We took a lot of pictures this year, most of them will never see the light of day. But we’ve gathered up the best photos we took in 2011 for you right here. Read More

2011 video round up

If you don’t like to read our stories, at least watch them. Here is a round up of all the videos from 2011. Read More

Travel

Air travel health tips

From the LA County Department of Public Health

air-travel

It’s almost time to get on your planes, and the last thing you want is to be sick for the holidays. You might think the recirculated air is a risk to your health, but it’s actually the very dry cabin air and fatigue that cause most upper respiratory infections. Not to mention germs and bacteria all over the plane. Here are some tips from the LA County Department of Public Health. Feel free to ignore all the tips on your flight back to legitimately call in sick after the holidays. Read More

Travel

Escape and decompress at the Mondrian Los Angeles

Plus video tour from the penthouse to the pool

penthouse

Driving by, you may miss the Mondrian Hotel on the Sunset Strip because it doesn’t boast any obvious signage, and that’s the point. But if you look up, you’ll notice the huge double doors a la Alice In Wonderland. The Mondrian aims to be an oasis of escape from L.A.’s hectic way of life and part of the charm comes from its nondescript exterior. A walk through the doors brings you the two themes the Mondrian is built around, escapism and decompression.

Check out their penthouse, Asian-Cuban fusion restaurant Asia de Cuba, and mojito specialized Skybar in our video tour. Read More

BBC’s how do you solve hotel insomnia?

We want to know!

BBC’s “how do you solve hotel insomnia?” segment on their Fast Track show various ways in dealing with insomnia while traveling. They gave $1000 night hotel packages that guarantee a good nights sleep, low doses of sleeping pills, reading in the afternoon to slow your mind down at a critical time and more. Read More

Travel

TripAdvisor’s December survey shows an increase in travel plans

southwest-travel

TripAdvisor announced the results of their annual December holiday travel survey of 2100 U.S. travelers. While it may not be representative of the nation, there is a 5 percent increase from their last year’s survey, from 38-43 percent, of participants planning on traveling this December. Read More

Do travelers actually return for a local experience?

travel-perspective-uk-expedia

Expedia‘s recent statement that London was Britain’s top European travel destination this Autumn included a list of activities that locals enjoy. The insider’s guide included treasure hunting in the Thames and visiting the Billingsgate Fish Market. While the fare is geared towards the Brits, curiosity drives the question, do people really want to go back to a destination to experience a deeper travel experience? Read More

Have a girls’ day at Laguna Beach’s Pacific Edge Hotel

Cyndi Lauper was right

It might be winter, but that won’t stop the Southern California sun from seeping through. Pacific Edge Hotel in Laguna Beach is offering a “Girls Just Wanna Have Sun” package.

Starting at for $800 for up to four of your BFFs, the package includes a full day cabana rental, valet parking, 30 minute full body massages, manicure or pedicure, lunch, gift bags, and a cabana host. Gift bags include sunscreen, lip gloss, lotion, waterproof mascara, flip flops and beach towels. Call 949-290-9039 to book or email rpeng@jdvhotels.com.

Photography provided by Pacific Edge Hotel

Food + Travel

Where is Marina del Rey?

A day in the Rey + video of chef Daniel Roberts catching and cooking us some fish

Be honest, how many of you know what’s up with Marina Del Rey? Boasting the largest constructed small yacht harbor in the world, isn’t it weird that it doesn’t stand out more to you? We spent half a day in the Rey to check out what exactly was going on over there.

What do you do in MDR?

Here’s a short list.

Or you could do what we did, venture onto a chartered sportfishing boat and catch your dinner. Read More

Drink + Travel

Take a custom brewery tour with ‘Brew Hop’

Travel like Diddy but instead of poppin' Champagne, you're pouring craft beer

Drinking and driving is only fun when the guy doing the driving hasn’t been drinking. Imagine rolling down the streets of San Diego in a stretch Escalade with a jacuzzi filled with petals of hops. Brew Hop, a company based in San Diego does just that, well not the jacuzzi part, yet. Brew Hop is a service available in San Diego and Seattle. Not only providing the fancy transportation from stretch limos to Hummers, they also offer craft beer education, facility tours, and beer tastings. Read More