This action-packed theme park is one of the most popular activities in Los Angeles and requires careful planning – especially given the three-digit price tags for day passes. Here are the best hotels near Universal Studios to suit all budgets, bookable on Culture Trip.
Universal Studios is where the Hollywood magic happens – and then some. Take tours of working movie studios before cranking up the adrenaline on the theme-park rides – escaping t-rex in Jurassic World and soaring over the Hogwarts towers and Hagrid’s pumpkin patch on Harry Potter ride, Flight of the Hippogriff. Entry isn’t cheap and there’s plenty more to empty your wallet on while you’re there, thanks to the many ultra-convenient restaurants and souvenir shops. You’ll want to stay as close to Universal Studios as possible, therefore, to make the most of your time and money. These hotels are a short drive away, and some offer free shuttles to the theme park from family-friendly Burbank, ritzy Beverly Hills or trendy North Hollywood.
This relaxed and friendly hideaway was once owned by the legendary Hollywood actress Beverly Garland and has since been renovated into a hip boutique hotel. The centerpiece is the garden, which includes a pool, a lawn for yoga, and an indoor/outdoor bar area. There’s also a fitness center, plus a small shop selling high-end snacks and supplies. Family rooms include bunk beds for kids, while wellness suites are furnished with Peloton bikes. The restaurant, Front Yard, serves all three meals and has a dedicated vegan menu. Fuel up on Nutella-drizzled French toast before jumping on the free trolley to Universal Studios (regular drop offs and pick ups are available).
This modern boutique hotel in Burbank is just a few miles from the Hollywood Burbank Airport and the major film and television studios of California. Themed rooms and suites are elegantly decorated with a hint of old Hollywood glamor, and come with plush bedding, robes, balconies and spacious work desks. The outdoor pool, fitness center and complimentary bike rentals keep you active (and the kids busy) while the FYC Bar + Kitchen offers dining and drinking on the patio. Healthy options for breakfast, lunch and dinner – such as shrimp orecchiette with charred broccolini – offset the greasier theme-park grub that you’ll likely be indulging in.
This clean, comfortable and convenient option in Burbank comes with free parking and a free shuttle to Universal Studios. Standard rooms include bathrobes and Starbucks coffee, while you can upgrade to include wet bars, microwaves, pull-out sofa beds and even a unit with a full kitchen. As far as dining goes, you can order room service – or dine on breakfasts of eggs benedict and dinners of filet mignon and fish and chips at Olive’s Bistro and Lounge. The sister property across the street, the Safari Inn, has a heated outdoor pool and fitness center that guests here can use.
This modern boutique hotel is easy to spot on a corner in the heart of North Hollywood – just look for the lime-green accents. Newish rooms have several configurations and views, while the enormous penthouse has a huge patio, full kitchen and two bathrooms. Most guests hang out on the partially covered patio that has plenty of seating areas and an open-air bar, serving food and drinks such as burgers and mojitos (room service is also available). The hotel is also walking distance to more restaurants, as well as a park across the street – the North Hollywood Recreation Center – for those who want to work out in nature; otherwise a fitness center is offered. All rooms come with free breakfast.
You can’t miss the entrance to this place, thanks to its recognizable sign and colorful bougainvillea. This pint-sized hotel dates to the 1930s – the Golden Age of Hollywood. So strong is its old-world glamor that the hotel has served as the filming location for movies including La La Land (2016) and Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood (2019). The rooms have mini-fridges, coffeemakers and microwaves, and the small lobby offers helpful services including guest discounts to Universal Studios (the concierge can arrange transport). Continental breakfasts are free to guests.
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The Beverly Hills Hotel
Spa Hotel, Hotel
Courtesy of the Beverly Hills Hotel – Dorchester Collection / Expedia
First opened in 1912, the Pink Palace is more upscale than ever, starting with the brisk valet entrance and complimentary, bespoke Linus banana leaf bicycles that mimic the interior wallpaper of the hotel. Now owned by the Dorchester Collection, this LA hideaway offers a staggering number of room types and bungalows that blend vintage glamor with modern luxury across 12 acres (5ha) of lush, tropical vegetation. Hollywood royalty drifts in and out of the dining outlets, including the Polo Lounge – the epicenter of LA power dining. Do as they do and order a McCarthy Salad, while setting up a sun lounger by the pool and browsing the spa menu for later.
This stylish, tech-savvy boutique property is just a five-minute walk to Rodeo Drive in Beverley Hills, where you’ll find luxury shops, dining and green spaces. Built in 1927, the building combines art deco architecture with contemporary design. Leisurely breakfasts lead into long lunches and elegant dinners at the upscale bar, where cocktails, beer and wine are available in abundance (room service is also available). Checkin and requests for things such as fresh towels, dinner recommendations and room service are all done digitally, streamlining the process and keeping costs down.
This renovated, Sixties-era motel stands out on Beverly Boulevard, and is an affordable place to stay within walking distance of Hollywood Grove and trendy bars and restaurants. There are 52 rooms surrounding an outdoor pool and courtyard with greenery, sun loungers, tables and hanging chairs. Rooms come with coffeemakers, microwaves and mini-fridges, while some have big bathrooms with jetted tubs. Though lacking in more luxurious features, low-maintenance guests will appreciate the retro vibe. Valet parking is required, though rates are reasonable.
This 62-room hotel is a member of the National Register of Historic Places thanks to its 1920s architecture that dates to the silent film era. Spacious rooms have traditional and somewhat dated decor, but include mini-fridges, flat-screen TVs, coffeemakers and – if you’re lucky – views of the Hollywood sign. In other areas of the hotel, expect a color scheme of red and gold, dotted with black-and-white photography. There isn’t a pool, bar or restaurant – but it’s good value and has free parking. The pretty Larchmont Village neighborhood is just a short drive away, as is Universal Studios.
This hotel is a great value accommodation in a central location, about 6mi (10km) from Universal Studios. It’s set around an attractive outdoor pool and terrace, surrounded by plush striped lounge chairs, plant pots and a bar and lounge called Route 66 (look out for rising stars at the open mic nights). Contemporary rooms have pretty decor with platform beds, mosaic tile bathrooms, and luxury, ecofriendly bath products. Start your day with custom omelets and fresh fruit at the complimentary, hot American breakfast buffet, and once it’s gone down, hop on a Peloton bike in the compact fitness center.