It’s that time of the year again… summer is gone and the slow, steady cold winds of winter start to creep up. Angelenos need a break from the everyday. Away from the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles, you’ll find a thriving city with the charm of a small town in which to relax. Claremont, once again, a diva’s getaway. From LA: Take the 134 to the 210 exit North Towne Avenue South. Ontario International Airport (ONT) – 10 miles Los Angeles – 40 miles
Hotel Casa 425 is just what it claims to be: a home away from home. Located on the town square, within steps of fine restaurants, cafes, boutiques, art galleries and the prestigious Claremont Colleges, Casa 425 is a sophisticated boutique hotel with spacious rooms with clean lines and understated art. This diva recommends you grab a drink at the hip lounge or a complimentary green apple on your way out.
Another great alternative is the Doubletree Hotel Claremont. DIVA’s TIP: All Doubletree Hotels offer a warm cookie at check-in. If you are nice, you can get more than one…. Want to float off into winter? Try Essentials Day Spa & Salon at the Doubletree Hotel Claremont 555 W. Foothill Blvd. Claremont, CA 91711 Phone: 909-626-2411 www.Doubletreeclaremont.com
Charming Downtown streets have a charm of their own. Reminiscent of middle America, with the advantages of LA’s technology-driven stores, downtown offers select stores, products and services, sure to satisfy the most eclectic of tastes. For the visiting foodies, La Parolaccia, an Italian gourmet corner restaurant seems to be the all the rage in Claremont Village. Within the fancy interiors, the first thing you notice is the smell of delicious garlic and the smile of our server. Try the Focaccia “Forza Italia,” a thin crust focaccia from their wood burning oven, topped with goat cheese, tomato sauce, arugula, fresh tomatoes and white truffle oil, or their Carpaccio di Bue con Arugola e Funghi, or as I called it, heaven in my mouth. This appetizer of raw beef tenderloin came topped with fresh arugula, mushrooms, capers and shaved parmesan cheese. La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana 201 N. Indian Hill Claremont, CA 91711 909-624-1516 http://laparolacciausa.com/
This tree-lined downtown houses a myriad of mom and pop places as well as trendy favorites. You’ll find a specialty cheese and olive oil place, The Cheese Cave, where you can try cheeses from all over the world, specialty fennel salame and hand-pressed olive oils. Definitely ask for a taste of “Snow White.” You’ll absolutely adore it. You’ll never think of the fairy tale the same way again. Cheese Cave 325 North Yale Avenue Claremont, CA 91711-4727 909-625-7560 http://www.claremontcheese.com/
What a better place to start a hot date than a dimly lit place being served high quality wine and light fare, surrounded by comfy pillows? Add 1950’s standards to that equation and no woman could resist. Packing House Wine Merchants on First Street offers excellent service with an enjoyable, relaxing, and fun atmosphere at which to shop, drink, and learn about wine. This is definitely a place of which Sinatra would approved. Packing House Wine Merchants 540 West 1st Street Claremont, CA 91711-4618 909-445-9463 http://www.packinghousewines.com
For those looking for nightlife, there’s Hip Kitty, a swanky and intimate jazz supper club and lounge in downtown Claremont’s Village. Live music is featured on its stage 6 nights a week and every seat in the house has a great view. If comedy is your style, Flappers Comedy Club’s A-list comedians perform for very thankful audiences. Order the cheese plate, unexpectedly fantastic, and even the MC and host comedians were great. Make sure you drink plenty at the Wine Merchants downstairs and the comedy and cheese will seem even better. There’s also Piano Piano, your big city dueling piano bar with some of the most amazing talent you’ve ever seen come out of a small town.
La-la land getting too crowded for you? Come relax in Claremont. This is a place you will want to go back to time and time again.