Sunday, May 07, 2006

Restaurant: Panera, Aspen Hill MD

13521 Connecticut Ave
Wheaton, MD 20906

Kind of a deli, kind of a copy of Cosi or Einstein Bros., but more about the bread.

Restaurant: Chipotle, Bethesda

7600 Old Georgetown Road
Bethesda, MD 20814

They're all the same. Big burritos, not expensive. The only down side - always crowded.

Restaurant: Legal Seafood, Washington DC (MCI Arena)

701 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001

Across the street from the arena, so very convenient when attending an event. Not very large, however, and fills up fast. You need to get there early - 2 hours before event time should do it.

Like other Legal Seafood locations - generally very good although the service at this one can be spotty due to the rush an event represents to them.

Metro: Chinatown/Arena station - go out the arena exit, up 7th street a block on the other side.

Last visit: October 10, 2006

Friday, May 05, 2006

Restaurant: Claim Jumper (Lake Forest Area)

Portions too big. Kind of a "gold rush" theme to the place (obviously), but not a very strong theme. Outside the wait staff wearing sheriff badges, the theme is decor only.

Very good quality food, but all in the "american" category. The chocolate cake is humorously too large - one slice is dessert for 4 or more. Moderately priced.

Hotel: Courtyard by Marriott Foothill Ranch

City: Lake Forest, CA
Chain: Marriott
Property: Foothill Ranch SNAFR
Address: 27492 Portola Parkway, Lake Forest, CA 92610
Phone Number: 949-951-5700

Check Out: May 5, 2006

8 stars out of 10

Out in the middle of nowhere, California's Orange County. Not too far from Anaheim, but not really part of that scene. It seems to be a part of the state that LA is just speading out into with mostly new development and highways. Didn't realize there were places not yet part of LA, frankly.

Relatively new, clean Courtyard experience. A real bar, which I didn't know Marriott's were doing in these. Not a great place for a family stay - mostly business guys blowing off steam with beer at the end of the day. Rooms were very well furnished, everything was good. What you would expect.


  • Safety: 1
  • Dining: 0 (breakfast only). Starbucks across the parking lot, though.
  • Bar: 1
  • Internet: 1, included!
  • Wireless in Common Areas: 1
  • Work Space, Power: 1
  • Shower: 1
  • Air Conditioning, Bed: 1
  • Common Areas: 1
Total: 8


Last Visit: May 5, 2006 (169 plus tax)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Hotel: Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles

City: Los Angeles
Chain: Millennium
Property: Millennium Biltmore Hotel
Address: 506 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90071
Phone Number: 213-624-1011

Check Out: May 4, 2006

7 stars out of 10

In downtown LA. A grand old hotel with service in the old style. Meaning that the random problems are "character" and not something to be addressed. Bathroom door didn't close, shower curtain didn't prevent too much water from getting out, elevator was old and slow, noise in room from traffic outside and punks was disruptive. Internet required getting a cable.

But, the hotel was pretty, the service staff top notch, resturant was good. The shower, while at sholder height, was a wonderfully wastefull waterfall.


  • Safety: 1
  • Dining: 1
  • Bar: 1
  • Internet: 1, but very overpriced at $13 a night.
  • Wireless in Common Areas: 0
  • Work Space, Power: .5
  • Shower: .5
  • Air Conditioning, Bed: 1
  • Common Areas: 1
Total: 7


Last Visit: May 4, 2006 (189 plus tax)