Single game tickets likely won’t be on sale till the summer. For 2011, they went on sale in early July. Right now UCLA is taking deposits on season tickets if you really wanted to lock yours down. UCLA definitely isn’t a sought after ticket these days so it could be a lot of work trying to flip the rest just to break even. Other than Nebraska, USC is their only marquee game on the home schedule.
The Rose Bowl seats 91,000 and last season UCLA hit 65,000 twice. The rest of their home games drew under 50,000 so there are plenty of reasons not to stress about finding tickets. There’s really not a bad seat in the entire Rose Bowl.
Californians for Nebraska will have a limited number of tickets in a block available to current members. If you haven’t already, join CFN (it’s only $25/year) and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on tickets.
LAX: If you’re not staying in Pasadena or the Burbank area, LAX should be your first option. Favorite airlines to use are Southwest, American, or United. As they’re in the first and last terminals respectively, it’s a little easier to get in and out of the mess that is LAX traffic. Picking up and dropping off a rental car takes a chunk time because all the agencies are off airport property. The agencies all have free shuttles to take you to and from.
There are plenty of hotels around LAX but staying at any of them is not recommended. They’re basically in a no man’s land and not very close to anything worth visiting.
Burbank: (aka Bob Hope International) Makes Eppley look like JFK. Super easy to navigate. If you’re staying in Pasadena, Burbank or even Studio City, it’s definitely worth a look as a first option. While the flights can be a little more expensive ($50 – 100) you’ll save yourself the time and headache of trying to cut across town.
Long Beach: Smaller than Burbank with fewer options. Consider only if you find a deal that’s way too good to pass up or if you have a reason to set up shop in Long Beach or Orange County. Otherwise, it’s just too far out of the way.
Ontario: About 30 miles or so east of Pasadena. Consider ONLY if you’re staying in Pasadena and don’t plan to do too much exploring.
A Guide to More LA Attractions
There are two things to consider about
With that in mind consider what’s more important- a short trip to and from the game, or being closer to all the other things you want to see and do.
hotels are within walking distance to
Marriot Pasadena – closest hotel to the Rose Bowl.
Vagabond Inn Pasadena
Howard Johnson Pasadena
Link to all Pasadena hotels
*If you'd like to stay close to Pasadena but want something a little more economical, consider staying in East Pasadena near the last Gold Line stop at Sierra Madre. It's a quick couple stops on the Gold Line to get to
Huntington Library - a drop dead gorgeous facility with amazing gardens and a wonderful art collection.
Descanso Gardens - another amazing garden.
Norton Simon Museum - Art museum with a wonderfully diverse collection.
Wayne Manor from the Batman TV series! 380 S. San Rafael Dr.
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) - Tour information
Ice House Comedy Club A very historic club in comedy world. Weekends have A-list line ups.
iPic Theaters - Takes the concept of dinner and movie to a whole new level.
Moore n Moore Sporting Clays - A short drive up the 210 from the Rose Bowl. Warm up for hunting season at a mountain side sporting clays course.
Hikes in the San Gabrielle Mountains - Take advantage of the scenery and pre-emptively burn off some tailgate calories. The Echo Mountain trail is a great hike very close to downtown
A good choice for base camp that's near
These are good hotels with equally good locations.
Holiday Inn Burbank - Located in downtown
Safari Inn - Classic 60’s style motel.
Link to all Burbank hotels
Bob's Big Boy - Classic car show every Friday Night
Warner Bros - More of a "field trip" style tour compared to Universal's theme park.
Tonight Show with Jay Leno - Ticket Information
Conan O'Brien - Ticket Information
Ellen Degeneres - Ticket Information
Universal Studios - Theme Park and City Walk with a ton of stores and restaurants. Definitely will suck up a whole day especially if you have kids. Good alternative to Disneyland if you don't want to make the schlep to
If you want to set up your base camp in the downtown
If you're looking for more of a "city" feel, downtown would be the place to set up shop. It's about as city-like (in the NY or Chicago sense) as LA gets.
While its nightlife and restaurant scene have gotten way better over the last few years, downtown remains a business district and sees a mass exodus after 5 which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Regardless, if you're a foodie or cocktail hound you'll be in heaven with all the options.
For the most part downtown is clean and perfectly safe but there are enough vagrants and/or crackheads to make things interesting and have you walking a little faster at night. The big key is to just ignore them and they'll ignore you.
If you really crave adventure and opt not to rent a car, downtown is the major hub for public transit making it much easier to get around without wheels. Unfortunately, the subway to the beach is another 10 - 15 years out so you'll be stuck riding the bus if you want to dip a toe in the ocean. The one upside to riding the bus is you will have a crazy story or five to impress your friends with when you get back home.
Hotels downtown can be on the pricey side but deals can be found. Be sure to hit up your favorite discount travel site. One thing to note is parking can run between $20 - 40 a day so keep that in mind.
Millennium Biltmore - Huge classic hotel that has stayed current with the times. Great bar in the lobby with all the free mixed nuts you can handle.
Hilton Checkers - Across the street from the Biltmore. On the tiny side and getting a little long in the tooth.
Hotel Bonaventure - Classic 60's style skyscraper hotel. Worth a visit just for the elevator ride and the revolving bar on the top floor.
The Standard - Definitely not a family hotel. If you're heading to the game with a bunch of your single friends, The Standard can't be recommended enough. At night you'll feel like you're walking through an episode of Entourage. The rooftop bar gets pretty wild. On weekends the bar is typically open hotel guests only but the doormen can be greased. During the week you can slide in at the start of happy hour no problem and stay as long as you like.
Figuroa Hotel - A clean, classic hotel with a kitschy Moroccan theme. Poolside bar is a lot of fun. Definitely a steal as far as downtown hotels go. It's right next to LA Live and The Original Pantry.
Omni - Pretty straightforward nice hotel.
JW Marriott at LA Live This is the newest hotel in downtown. Only a couple years old. It's the anchor of the LA Live entertainment hub across the street from
Link to all Downtown hotels
Grand Central Market Huge open air market that's basically a giant, exotic food court and fruit stand. The sights and smells can be a little overwhelming (in a good way). Be sure to ride Angel's Flight, the world's smallest railroad, across the street and Pershing Square is a block down the street.
Disney Concert Hall- An architectural landmark you see in every other car commercial. Tours are held during the day and if you didn't want the full tour you can roam around outside and inside a bit.
Central Library - Go here if you get homesick for the state capitol. It was designed by the same architect, Bertram Goodhue, and the look and feel is uncanny. The library is basically the stubby, semi-identical cousin to the
LA Live - The new entertainment hub for downtown. Club Nokia and the Nokia Theater are great places to see a concert. Several good restaurants and bars to choose from.
Museum of Contemporary Art - MOCA is directly across the street from the Disney Concert Hall. Definitely the "edgiest" of art museums in town. If the classics are your thing you might want to skip it.
Olvera Street - One of LA's rare historic landmarks. Oldest street in downtown and pretty much where LA started. Interesting shops and great Mexican food.
Santee Alley - Crazy shopping district. While The Man has put the brakes on a lot of knock offs and bootleg items, this is still the place to go if you want to find "Gucci" purses and other big ticket items for prices so low they can't be real. My mom loves going here when she's in town and always finds some good scores. Definitely read up so you know what to expect.
Dodger Stadium - About 5 minutes northwest of downtown. The Dodgers are out of town the week of the UCLA game but if you're a fan of checking out stadiums it's worth the trip. You can take a guided tour or visit the Top of the Park Gift Shop which is open during normal business hours and even if you don't buy anything you can explore the Top Deck and even take a picnic lunch to eat in the seats. Great photo op especially on a clear day.
Natural History Museum - About 10 minutes south of downtown pretty much on the USC campus and right next to the Coliseum. Great kid friendly spot and a good educational experience for them if you feel guilty for plucking them out of school so early in the year.
The Original Pantry - Restaurants don't get any more classic. Definitely a must visit. Never closes and often has a quickly moving line out the door at all times. The menu is right in the wheelhouse for 99.9% of
Philippe The Original Restaurant - Two words- French Dip.
Border Grill - Mexican restaurant owned by Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger (they've been on the Food Network since the last century).
Wurstkuche - On the "adventurous" end of downtown and can be a little tricky to find but once you get there you'll be treated to a German style beer hall with sausages and beer for days. Don't let the line scare you. Everyone orders at the counter and the lobby area is small. Once you get inside though a waitress will take your beer orders right away.
Frying Fish - Fun sushi bar in the heart of Little Tokyo. Just grab what you want off the conveyor belt and when you're done they tally up your plates. Be careful, if you're hungry it can get expensive.
Bottega Louie - Sit in the dining room and it's fancy or eat at the bar to keep it casual. Amazing pastry counter.
Nickel Diner - Three words- Maple bacon donut. Three more words - Biscuits and gravy.
The Gorbals - A dining adventure right out of
Pacific Dining Car - One of the best steaks in town and impeccable service that you will pay for. If you saw Training Day with Denzel Washington, this is where he goes to get permission and pay off the wise men.
Bars - Be warned. Depending on your tolerance level getting tipsy can be pricey. Expect a beer to run $5 - 9 not including tip. Mixed drinks can go anywhere from $9 - 15 if you get fancy. Don't drink and drive either. Even if you don't kill someone, getting a DUI will cost a pretty penny. Just isn't worth it.
Golden Gopher - All round good time.
Seven Grand - If you like whiskey this is your dream come true.
Cole's - Skip the food and head for the speakeasy style bar in the way back.
Big Wang's - If you need a sports bar. Good wings and pizza.
Casey's Irish Pub - About as casual as downtown gets without going to the full dive bar route.
Large portions of the above information was provided by