November 17, 2006

just plane cool

On Tuesday, my friend Kris from San Diego was in town for some meetings. He called to see about getting together after his meetings, so we decided to grab some dinner. I remembered while he was on his way to my place that he is an airplane nut, so I suggested going to "Encounter" restaurant in the Theme Building at LAX. I've eaten there before, but didn't remember it being as good as it was on Tuesday. Its pretty pricey, but I have to say that it was pretty good as well. And you can always go to just grab a drink and watch the planes coming and going.

The Theme Building (I love that it never got a better name than that) is the centerpiece of LAX Airport and its renovation and expansion project of 1961 to make LAX an icon of "the Jet Age". The building has always housed a restaurant (until '96 called "the Theme Room") and until 9/11 had an observation deck on the roof. In '96, Walt Disney Imagineering was hired to give the place a makeover, and Encounter was born. A caption on Wikipedia says it best: "The architecture shown in 'the Jetsons' was based on the Theme Building's exterior, then the ... interior was redesigned to have a 'Jetsons' feel." They've done a great job that even includes smart use of light and sound.

If you decide to go, its easy to get in and out without dealing with the mess of LAX passenger traffic. Just after terminal 1 on the ground (arrivals) level, theres a sign on the left that takes you on a shortcut directly to the base of the Theme Building. Parking is valet only (hey, its LA) right at the door. To leave, the center lane of LAX will shoot you right out of the airport. Just like the Jet Age...

  • The Lope: The Future was so Cool in 1961

  • Wikipedia: Los Angeles International Airport
  • 1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    I want to again, but this time bring my camera...and walk around the terminals too :)

    BTW, what is with these word verifications? They are long and rediculous.