Labor Day weekend I took my husband on a surprise trip to the Reagan Presidential Museum. We added on the Nixon Presidential Museum well. Since this trip was all for him I told him we would spend as much time as necessary and boy did we! We went to the Nixon library after arriving into LA and before checking into the hotel (mistake as they gave away our upgrade in the meantime). We ended up spending 4 hours and could have spent more time but they were closing - lots of reading and videos. Very nice place and fun to go through the Marine One that they have on site.
We were staying in Santa Monica at the I had checked into the hotel earlier on the app and saw that they had assigned us to an upgrade to a larger room and I believe a balcony. When we finally arrived the upgrade was gone and told there were no upgrades available. I also had called ahead (for an upgrade) and that we were celebrating our anniversary and said the same when checking in only to have it ignored. Okay, they aren't obligated but still ... I am a LTP and Platinum and thought that maybe they would make an effort to make it special in some way. The hotel I was staying in last year did and I was on business and without my husband. I did write a review. You can take a look at that here:
The next day we headed to the Reagan Presidential Museum and was blown over! What a beautiful spot! We arrived at 10 a.m. and left at 5 p.m. (open to close). My wonderful husband said he could have spent another day there - guess we should have gone back instead of walking Venice Beach. There is a lot to see and experience! We had sooo much fun! We ate on-site and was very pleased with the food. Make sure you do the audio tour - you learn so much more than what you get from reading the watching the movies. It brings the museum to life.
When we left there we headed to Santa Barbara for dinner at the brewery - recommended by the concierge as a nice local spot on State Street. By the time we got there - two hours later - and after walking all day at the museum we were tired and didn't enjoy the area as much as we could have but still glad we made the trip there. Luckily, the traffic was better headed back to the hotel.
The next day we took a taxi to the Venice Pier and got so see them fishing as well as a sea lion begging for fish. We then walked down the beach towards the hotel (and the Santa Monica Pier). Ate lunch along the way (wish I could remember where because it was GREAT), and had fun people watching. It was a nice day to enjoy the out doors and feel the ocean breeze before heading back to reality the next day.
I really appreciated the advice I got for our trip! It made the planning fun!