Sitting on land that was originally part of Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana in the early to mid 1800s, the city of Irvine just seems to keep growing. During World War II, the El Toro Marine Base was built and later the University of California at Irvine campus. Today, this one-time agricultural area blends seamlessly with neighboring Santa Ana, Costa Mesa and Tustin. Irvine motels tend to be clustered near the John Wayne Airport to the southwest and along Interstate 5 and its connectors.
Candlewood Suites Orange County/Irvine Spectrum
The off-white and tan facade of the Candlewood Suites Orange County/Irvine Spectrum vaguely resembles an adobe building, appropriate for its Southern California locale. Offering 122 suites on three floors, this is one of those properties that straddles the line between hotel and motel. Moderately priced and with ample parking in a tree-shaded lot, this Candlewood is on the southern end of Irvine, right off of Interstate 405. All guest rooms offer fully equipped kitchenettes and are suitable for both long- and short-term stays. Pets are also welcome upon payment of a nightly fee. Take a dip in the year-round pool, relax on the guest patio that includes a barbecue grill and outdoor fireplace, or work out in the gym. Nearby eateries include Javier’s restaurant and bar, and Dave and Buster’s, a restaurant that also offers a video game room for the kids. If you have a bit of a sweet tooth, try the Cheesecake Factory for a meal and a tasty treat.
La Quinta Inn & Suites Irvine
The four-story La Quinta Inn & Suites Irvine has a bit of history all of its own. What was once a bean and grain warehouse in Irvine’s Historic Old Town is now a moderately priced motel complete with outdoor pool, hot tub, fitness center, and 146 rooms and suites. Some of the guest rooms have been created out of a former lima bean silo, giving them unusual shapes. Spend the night in a property that is listed on the National Registry of Historic Sites. La Quinta’s Free Bright Side Breakfast is included in the nightly rates. Restaurants within walking distance include Denny’s, Crazy Horse Steak House and the Yard House. If you have time, play a round of golf at the Oak Creek Golf Course less than a mile away.
Resident Inn Irvine John Wayne Airport/Orange County
Resident Inn is an offering of the Marriott hotel chain. Part hotel, part motel, this Irvine branch is filled with bright, bold colors and guest rooms suitable for long- or short-term stays. It is a fairly large property with 174 rooms, all suites with kitchenettes, spread out over eight floors. Spend a relaxing summer evening around the patio fire pit or swimming in the pool. Enjoy a buffet breakfast before you set out for the day, or take advantage of the Grab-n-Go Breakfast option and take your meal with you. The Nickelodeon Your Stay package is available during the summer months. Kids are welcomed with a Nickelodeon activity book and a bracelet that gives them the password to access a private gaming site. Pets are also welcome with payment of a deposit. This property is on the western edge of Irvine, off of Interstate 405 near the John Wayne Airport.
Motel 6 Irvine
The familiar blue and white sign with the big red "6" is probably one of the most recognized motel brands in the country. Motel 6 Irvine straddles the border between Santa Ana and Irvine on State Route 55. It is an inexpensive and convenient option for either city as well as the John Wayne Airport. This Motel 6 is one of the more impressive of the brand. You are welcomed into a light and airy two-story lobby with comfortable club chairs that is accented with potted plants. Guest rooms are simply furnished, but include the basics such as cable TV, microwave and mini-fridge. Wireless Internet access is available for an additional fee. Take advantage of the on-site pool, hot tub and sundeck on the motel grounds. You are surrounded by restaurants, including such fast-food brands as Carl’s Jr. and Del Taco. For a more formal dining experience, try the Irvine Ranch House. Check out the Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Dinner Theater to see if anything is currently in production. That way you could combine dinner out with an entertaining who-done-it show.