When you're traveling, sometimes all you need is a safe and clean place to lay your head at night. But if you want to splurge a bit – and feel connected to the place you're visiting – the best boutique hotels are known for their personalized service, upbeat design and unique offerings. From Palm Springs and Temecula to Orange County and Los Angeles, these are some of my favorite hotel hot spots.
This used to be a cute but basically budget motel. It's had the kitschy farmer's daughter theme as long as I can remember, but now it has a great trendy look as well. Friendly staff and great location across from Farmers Market.
The O Hotel really nails the boutique hotel experience without being too much of a scene. The rooms ate a bit small, but who cares - you're in the heart of downtown L.A.! Try the onsite Bar Kitchen for cocktails.
This hotel really connects to the laid back culture of Huntington beach. The surf theme works well - it's cute, but not over the top. I like the onsite Zimzala restaurant, too for dinner and/or drinks.
This adorable boutique hotel is now part of the Joie de Vivre group. The rooms all have balconies or patios and are colorful and comfortable. Both onsite restaurants have tasty food and don't feel like typical hotel restaurants at all. Free bike rental and shuttle to town.
There are a number of lodging options in Venice, but this is the only boutique hotel. It's fun, hip and really fits in with the neighborhood. Check out the awesome rooftop bar.
This Italian-style boutique hotel is really a game changer for Temecula. There's simply nothing else like it around. Check out the Cellar Lounge, which is the only full bar in the wine country.