Closer Dodger training digs
As Dodgers fans know, next year marks the team's spring training move from Vero Beach, Fla., to the Phoenix area. That means come March, L.A. fans can drive to the new ballpark called Camelback Ranch in five hours or so -- or take a one-hour flight to Phoenix and drive to Glendale. Single tickets won't be on sale till mid-January. But if you're thinking of going, here are some nearby places to stay.
* Comfort Suites, Glendale, 1.4 miles to the stadium. This is the most convenient spot for going to games. Rates in March start at $199, but the bulk of the remaining available rooms are suites and cost more. Info: (623) 271-9005, www.comfortsuites.com.
* Renaissance Glendale Hotel & Spa or Hampton Inn & Suites Glendale-Westgate, 3.2 miles to the stadium. The selling point for these spots is their proximity to the open-air Westgate City Center, which has 15 bars and restaurants. Prices at Renaissance start at $269. Info: (623) 937-3700, www.renaissanceglendale.com. The Hampton Inn starts at $209 and is showing good availability. Info: (623) 271-7771, www.hamptoninn.com.
* Glendale Gaslight Inn, 8.2 miles to the stadium. Rates at the two-story B&B with themed rooms start at $199. Info: (623) 934-9119, www.glendalegaslightinn.com.
For more places to stay, go to latimes.com/springtraining.
-- Sherry Stern
After a $7-million renovation, Colorado's Osprey at Beaver Creek -- the ski resort that claims to be the closest resort to a chairlift in North America -- reopened recently. The Colorado resort, previously called the Inn at Beaver Creek and about 15 minutes from Vail, closed in the spring to undergo a multimillion-dollar face-lift. The Osprey, operated by RockResorts, a subsidiary of Vail Resorts, is about 3 yards from the chairlifts at Beaver Creek, something that wouldn't be allowed to be built today. (Building codes have changed, but the Osprey was grandfathered in, a spokeswoman at the resort said.) Rooms start at $245 per night. For that you get flat-screen TVs, DVD players and MP3 docking stations and more. But with the chairlift right outside the door, who has time to watch DVDs? Info: (866) 621-7625, www.ospreyatbeavercreek.rockresorts.com
-- Hugo Martin
Sleep bag to go
Instead of slipping into a sleeping bag, consider wearing one. It's called the Selk Bag by Illinois-based Lippi Outdoor, and the only downside is that it'll make you look like the Pillsbury Doughboy. If you need to get out of your tent to, say, get a drink, you'll stay warm inside the wearable bag. The version we tested is filled with polyester fibers and rated to 32 degrees. It squeezes down to a 3.7-pound package, the size of a backpacking sleeping bag, though heavier. The price: $129.95. Info: www.lippioutdoor.com
-- Hugo Martin
On a fast track
Universal Studios Hollywood will jettison its "Buy a Day, Get a Year Free" ticket promotion for a new All Access Pass offering unlimited admission and some line-cutting privileges. The All Access Pass is good 365 days a year and gets you into the express lane at the entrance and priority line-cutting perks for the backlot studio tour. Plus, you can buy tickets for your Access-less friends at a $12 discount. The new pass will be available for $72 (or $5 more than the cost of a daily ticket) starting Monday.
-- Brady MacDonald
For more Travel news, go to latimes.com/travelblog.