Los Angeles: Discovering L.A. Live Downtown


LA Live USA TodayMy article about L.A. Live is on USA Today



A Pulsing Center of Downtown

This is not to be missed, with something for everyone

Los Angeles Local Expert 

L.A. LIVE is a thriving hub of sports and entertainment in Los Angeles, which surrounds the STAPLES Center and Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE.

Come see the championship teams, including the Clippers, Kings, Lakers and Sparks for incredible sporting moments. Before a Kings Game, head up to the 24th floor of the Ritz Carlton at WP24 and enjoy Puck and Play, dim sum that is satisfying and fast and gets you in your seats on time.

Video: #DTLA: LA Live, Ritz Carlton Spa, WP24, The Nest

To explore L.A. Live, you can stay right here at the JW Marriott or Ritz Carlton
Photo courtesy of Lisa Ellen Niver

If you want to participate in some action yourself, then dress up to dance the night away at the Congo Room, co-owned by Jimmy Smits, Jennifer Lopez, Paul Rodriguez, Sheila E., Amaury Nolasco, Baron Davis, Trevor Ariza and will.i.am. Fashionable attire is recommended, and the food is pan-Latin cuisine.

Meanwhile, the music moves from salsa to rock en español, as well as jazz, urban, R&B and pop/rock.

At Lucky Strikes, put on your bowling shoes in one of the most fantastic lanes on the planet. Plan your next event here, and get ready to rock and bowl.

The Plaza in front of Nokia Live
Photo courtesy of Lisa Ellen Niver

You can eat in 21 locations around L.A. LIVE, with choices from SmashBurger to Boca at The Conga Room.

If you love entertainment, make sure to see the GRAMMY museum, which explores and celebrates all forms of music, the creative process and the art and technology of the recording process, as well as the history of the GRAMMY award.

There are over 50 programs to hear, with artists like Brian Wilson, Herb Alpert, Smokey Robinson, Dionne Warwick and Ringo Starr. Use the L.A. LIVE app to discover all the events that will be happening while you are “on set.”

Come to LA and experience star treatment at Club Nokia’s VIP room with a hosted bar and lounge seating, or rent a Cabana with bottle service.

Want prime seating at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE? Pick the The VIP Experience with front orchestra section seating, premier parking, priority checkin and hosted food and drinks on the private outdoor patio.

If you want special access during a Kings, Lakers or Clippers game, choose the San Manuel Club Premiere Lounges and Tables, with specialty food options, newly designed booths and living-room style seating.

Regal Cinemas has specials that allow you to dine and see the latest films without breaking your budget. But if you want to live it up like a Hollywood rock star, then use The Green Room at L.A. LIVE, where the movie studios set up their Hollywood movie premieres.

You can have your birthday with a hosted bar, lounge seating and high-top tables and Wolfgang Puck Catering to boot.

The Staples Center in Los Angeles, home to the Clippers, Kings and Lakers
Photo courtesy of Lisa Ellen Niver

Relax after all of your experiences in the sanctuary at the Ritz Carlton Spa. This five-star massage extravaganza will leave you feeling like you’ve just had a week’s holiday. Explore the couple’s treatment room options, especially the specials for holidays and Valentine’s Day.

Wondering how to make it through the week? Share your hump day with gLAnce Bar at JW Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE. Enjoy Wine Down Wednesdays with complimentary tastings of a selection of wines; this weekly event’s hosted by renowned winemakers.

The relaxing lobby of JW Marriott Los Angeles, where Wine Down Wednesdays take place
Photo courtesy of Lisa Ellen Niver



Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Ellen Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has explored 102 countries and six continents. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, she worked on cruise ships for seven years and backpacked for three years in Asia. She is the founder of the website WeSaidGoTravel which is read in 235 countries and was named #3 on Rise Global’s top 1,000 Travel Blogs. Niver is represented by Chip MacGregor of MacGregor Literary, Inc. Look for her memoir in Fall 2023 from Post Hill Press/Simon and Schuster. With more than 150,000 followers across social media, she has hosted Facebook Live for USA Today 10best, is verified on Twitter and listed on IMDb, and is the Social Media Manager for the Los Angeles Press Club. You can find Lisa Niver talking travel on broadcast television at KTLA TV Los Angeles, Satellite Media Tours, The Jet Set TV and Orbitz travel webisodes as well as her YouTube channel, where her WeSaidGoTravel videos have over 1.7 million views. As a journalist, Niver has interviewed Deepak Chopra, Olympic medalists, and numerous bestselling authors and been invited to both the Oscars and the United Nations. She has been a judge for the Gracie Awards for the Alliance of Women in Media, and has run 15 travel competitions on her website, publishing over 2,500 writers and photographers from 75 countries. For her print and digital stories as well as her television segments, she has been awarded three Southern California Journalism Awards and two National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards and been a finalist twenty times.   Niver has published more than 2000 articles, in more than three dozen magazines and journals including National Geographic, Wired, Teen Vogue, HuffPost Personal, POPSUGAR, Ms. Magazine, Luxury Magazine, Smithsonian, Sierra Club, Saturday Evening Post, AARP, AAA Explorer Magazine, American Airways, Delta Sky, enRoute (Air Canada), Hemispheres, Jewish Journal, Myanmar Times, BuzzFeed, Robb Report, Scuba Diver Life, Ski Utah, Trivago, Undomesticated, USA Today, TODAY, Wharton Magazine, and Yahoo. Awards National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards 2021 Winner: Book Critic: Ms. Magazine “Untamed: Brave Means Living From the Inside Out” 2019 Winner: Soft News Feature for Film/TV: KTLA TV “Oscars Countdown to Gold with Lisa Niver” 2019 Finalist for: Soft News, Business/Music/Tech/Art Southern California Journalism Awards 2022 Finalist: Book Criticism 2021 Winner: Technology Reporting 2021 Finalist: Book Criticism 2020 Winner: Print Magazine Feature: Hemispheres Magazine, “Painter by the Numbers, Rembrandt” 2020 Finalist: Online Journalist of the Year, Activism Journalism, Educational Reporting, Broadcast Lifestyle Feature 2019 Finalist: Broadcast Television Lifestyle Segment for “Ogden Ski Getaway” 2018 Finalist: Science/Technology Reporting, Travel Reporting, Personality Profile 2017 Winner: Print Column “A Journey to Freedom over Three Passovers” Social Media Presence YouTube Channel: We Said Go Travel (1.7 million views) Short form video:TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels, YouTube Shorts Twitter: lisaniver (90,000 followers) Instagram: lisaniver (24,000 followers) Pinterest: We Said Go Travel (20,000 followers and over 70,000 monthly views) Facebook: lisa.niver (5,000 followers); We Said Go Travel (3,000 followers) LinkedIn: lisaellenniver (9000 contacts)

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We Said Go Travel

We Said Go Travel