Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hotels FAQ

There are a wide variety of hotels in the Los Angeles area. Using a site like or will offer many choices with discounts. Unfortunately, there are only a few hotels located near the wedding site in Malibu and most are very expensive. 

The Santa Monica area is a good go between area with many activities in the area(Santa Monica Pier, 3rd Street Promenade, Venice Beach), but prices out at mainly above average. The Westlake Village area is another go between and has very modest prices, but is far from activities.

The Sherman Oaks/Studio City area is very close to the Rynew household and while situated in the San Fernando Valley, is still located less than twenty minutes from many attractions (Universal Studios, Hollywood, Getty Center). Lastly, there are a choice of hotels by the airport(LAX). While it is an area where you'll be driving at least fifteen minutes to the nearest attractions, it does provide convenience to the airport and car rentals.

As of July 9th, the best deals appear to be going through As it changes, we will update this page.

Below is our list of recommendations that are in the different regions:

Sportsman's Lodge

Located a 1/2 mile away from the Rynew house. Is only ten minutes away from Universal Studios, fifteen minutes to Hollywood, and thirty minutes to Santa Monica. Hotel rates average $175, but there is a special on currently at $105.

Courtyard Marriott - LAX

Located with easy access to the airport. It's about 75 minutes to the wedding site and 35 minutes to the Rynew house. There aren't any immediate attractions in the area, but you are within five miles of Marina Del Rey, Venice Beach and Santa Monica. Currently rooms are going for $84.

Residence Inn - Westlake Village

Although isolated outside the Los Angeles area, it has easy access to the wedding site(30 minutes) and offers Suites for families at a reasonable price. It is also about ahalf hour away from the Rynew house and the Camarillo Outlet Mall. Currently rooms go for $114.

Malibu Accommodations(for the night of the wedding)

There is a somewhat limited supply of residences in the area and most are in the two to three star range. The nicest of the lot is Malibu Country Inn, which also happens to be the closest(6 miles) from the nature preserve. There are only about a dozen rooms left mostly at starting around $200. Another close alternative is Malibu Riviera Motel, but accommodations are most "quaint". About eleven miles away is the Malibu Motel which is also on the beach and rooms range from $119 - $219. 

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Engagement photos.

Barbara and I took our engagement photos a couple of weeks ago with Jimmy over at Will Rogers Park. It was an overcast day, as we were to expect May Haze out in the Palisades, but it actually turned out to be perfect for photos.

Jimmy's wife Sen was along too and they really know how to complement each other on recognizing light, setting up shots, and just being easy to be with. These are the first shots they sent us and they look great. Once again, you can check out his site at:

We chose this location not just because of our love of California History, but also my love of trail running. Will Rogers Park is the start of the Backbone Trail, which at 68 miles is the longest trail in the Santa Monica Mountains. I have run most of the trail at various stages and have even won a trail race on it. Okay, the men's 30k. The topping on the cake though is that the trail ends near our wedding site. I challenge anyone to make the entire trek on August 29th.