Cara Hotel & Restaurant: The Epitome of California Cool

There are few places that I would be excited enough to try that I would leave the westside of Los Angeles in peak traffic and head east…but the Cara Hotel and Restaurant is one of those places.

The gorgeous space sits right at the edge of Los Feliz and Thai Town on Western Avenue. The 1950’s property had deteriorated over the years and was once a popular cruising spot for the gay community, that touted free pornographic television. But when the new owners came in they completely gutted the space and transformed it into an elegant, alfresco hotel with 60 rooms. There’s a huge emphasis on all things California from the decor and artwork to the food and coffee served here.

The guest rooms all open onto the courtyard with its calming reflecting pool and 100-year-old olive trees. If you’re lucky for dinner you’ll get seated around the pool. It’s truly magical at night time, but there are several other patios for dining that are equally as nice, and of course the rich bar just off the entrance.

The menu is the creation of Chef Michael Patria, formerly of the Four Seasons Biltmore Resort in Santa Barbara. He offers timeless dishes with Cal-Italian nods like buffalo mozzarella and heirloom tomato starts, ceviches, lots of roasted fish, and a charcoal-roasted chicken with crispy potatoes that is not to be missed. I’ve dined here several times and have never been disappointed. I loved it so much I even shot a story for NBC California Live.

Cara Hotel
1730 N Western Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90027