On January 11th, one of my best friends turns 23. She’s hilarious, does great impressions, loves adventures, and loves trying new things. I wanted to make her birthday extra special and plan a new experience for her. Something different from the typical night-out-at-the-bars that we'd become accustomed to for every birthday celebration. After doing some research, I realized that sharing what I learned might be helpful for others as well! For those of you living in the Santa Monica, Venice, Hollywood area of Los Angeles, here are some fun “experience” birthday (or other event) ideas that are sure to be a blast and create lasting memories.
Lucky Strike Bowl is not your typical bowling alley. Forget those Sundays as a kid spent bowling with hot dogs and popcorn. Instead, check out these upscale, sophisticated alleys equipped with full bars and, if you're lucky, a live DJ. Lucky Strike specializes in parties for all ages; from bar/bat mitzvahs to bachelor/bachelorette parties.
Personally, to spice up the night even more, I was thinking about having a limo pick us up to continue the fun at one of the many Hollywood clubs after we had enough bowling.
Prices vary, for specific pricing check out Lucky Strike’s website: http://www.bowlluckystrike.com/locations/california/hollywood/plan-your-party/
We did this for my birthday a few months ago and it was a blast! Everyone had such a good time. To sum it up, it is a 17-person bicycle that everyone pedals together. For non-locals they offer touristy routes, but, for locals, this is a great way to gain a new perspective of your usual go-to bar route. Barcycles are for rent in Santa Monica, Venice, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach. We took the Santa Monica route and highly recommend it.
If you embark on the Beach Barcycle, ask for Larry to be your driver. He’ll show you a good time, guaranteed.
Price: $390 for a private bike (split between 17 people it comes out to about $23 a person).
Santa Monica Pier Arcade – Pacific Park
For you competitive types, head to the arcade on the Santa Monica Pier for a night full of air hockey, skee ball, tickets and prizes! I loved it because all the arcade games took quarters, instead of tacky arcade tokens. While there, grab a drink at the Sonoma Wine Garden, or a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants (the pier is full of great places to eat). There is always the infamous Santa Monica Ferris Wheel and roller coaster if you’re feeling adventurous. Depending on the season, the Pier also has other fun activities like live jazz music or movies playing from a projector onto a huge screen for all to see.
Our group has always wanted to go wine tasting but most of the time it can be pretty pricy. Malibu Wines is located off of Mulholland and is a great place to bring a picnic, drink a glass of wine and enjoy some live music.
For reference, a flight is $12 for four tastes and a glass of wine averages about $5.
Finally, if you enjoy dancing, but are looking for a unique experience, check out The Central SAPC. Once a month they have a silent disco. Instead of playing music through speakers, everyone wears headphones. That way, when you take them off it looks like everyone’s dancing in silence. This is actually a great compromise to wanting to dance but being in an atmosphere where you want to talk.
The cover fee changes depending on the night, as does the type of music, so be sure to check the calendar at http://centralsapc.com/