The ‘City by the Bay’ is brimming with sights to rival many of America’s biggest cities. Expect photogenic landmarks, fantastic food, gorgeous parks and speciality museums in abundance. During your California family holiday, you’ll be swept off your feet by this magical, fog-feathered destination and its eccentric, forward-thinking culture.
Straddling the vast strait of its namesake, a visit here would be incomplete without crossing the iconic Golden Gate Bridge at least once. Cycle over the bridge during a half-day bike tour of the city’s eclectic neighbourhoods, ending in Sausalito. Here you can recoup calories at the local delis, catch some live music courtesy of Jazz and Blues by the Bay, then hop on the ferry back from Fisherman’s Wharf. For something less labour intensive, book one of the city’s famous vintage cable cars. You’ll have this transport all to yourself for an extraordinary sightseeing experience with the family. You can even cruise under the bridge on the deck of San Francisco’s only America’s Cup racing yacht, or appreciate its majesty from up high during a seaplane tour.
One of the best times to visit San Francisco is September. At this time of year, the veils of fog draped over the city have largely lifted, the crowds have thinned out and the climate has turned positively Mediterranean.
We recommend a stay at The Zetta hotel in San Francisco’s SoMa – a district synonymous with tech-savvy entrepreneurship. In keeping with its neighbourhood, the stylish property boasts some neat hi-tech features, including wireless sound systems and smart device connectivity. But, most importantly, it’s a comfy place to bed down.
West Hollywood & Beverly Hills
This region of Los Angeles County wears its showbiz status on its sleeve, from affluent Beverly Hills to West Hollywood’s lively Sunset Strip. Neighbouring Hollywood abounds with famous film landmarks, and Universal Studios Hollywood is just a short drive away. During your family holiday in California, surround yourself with movie magic.
Stretching 15 blocks along Hollywood Boulevard, the Walk of Fame is a must-see when here. Spot the names of the American film industry’s greats memorialised with brass stars, then head to the gorgeously restored El Capitan Theatre to see more stars in action – this is where Disney films regularly receive their premieres. An even better way to immerse yourself in America’s film and television industry is to visit a set. With A&K, you and your family can rub shoulders with LA’s finest, and see how things work behind-the-scenes.
The Academy Awards ceremony is held between the end of February and the start of March, amidst mild, comfortable temperatures. Whilst the ceremony itself is an exclusive affair, there are always exciting fringe events open to the public – everything from open-air screenings and themed tours to famous aftershow parties.
For somewhere to stay, look no further than SLS Beverly Hills, a property which is flamboyant and glamorous in equal measure (a little like Hollywood itself). When you’re not out exploring Beverly Hills, enjoy the panoramic view from the rooftop pool, indulge in tantalising dining at the themed restaurants or retire to your classically chic room.