Discover Claremont

Savor The Surprise: Claremont Culinary Scene Is A Foodie’s Delight

CLAREMONT, Calif. (April 2012) – Claremont’s unique and wide selection of restaurants has long been “on the map” for many in Southern California and for the frequent international guests to the Claremont Colleges. With several hip, new restaurants and dozens of locally famous eateries keeping the food scene fresh, foodies and vacationers are discovering this Los Angeles-area hamlet as a delicious dining destination.

“A famous college town with international visitors demands a high level of fine dining experiences,” said Andrew Behnke of Discover Claremont, the Claremont tourism board. “We know tourists come to Claremont for the shows, museums, trips into the mountains, festivals, regional events or when visiting the colleges. Now is a great time to come Discover Claremont for its dining as the city is emerging as a culinary center for eastern Los Angeles County and the Inland Empire.”

With half of the city’s 80 restaurants located within the walkable downtown area comprised of the Claremont Village, Village Square and Claremont Packing House, visitors can choose to enjoy the city’s free parking and literally stroll to wherever their appetites lead them.

Many of the city’s notable eateries are within the famous Claremont Village, an idyllic collection of boutiques among peaceful tree-lined streets. In the village, epicureans encounter white linens inside wood-paneled restaurants, bustling outdoor cafés and gourmet bakeries. From Italian to Mediterranean and traditional American to Pan-Asian, the Village features a number of Claremont’s notable restaurants. Popular Italian choices include La Piccoletta, Aruffo’s Italian Cuisine, and the award-winning Tutti Mangia, with “best of the Inland Empire” Chef Jose Ruiz. Diners will find French cuisine at Harvard Square Café, tapas at Viva Madrid, Afghan dishes at Walter’s, and new American at Union on Yale.

In both the nearby Village Square and Packing House, diners will find rare wines, microbrews and fine American whiskeys at restaurants that include The Back Abbey, Eureka Burger, and the Packing House Wine Merchants. The Hotel Casa 425 lounge and outdoor living room is known for its signature margarita and offers a small plates menu by its outdoor fire pits. Other favorites here include La Parolaccia and Casa Moreno.

Local choices that combine entertainment with fine food include Hip Kitty Jazz and Fondue in the Packing House; belly dancing at Casablanca Bar and Grill, also in the Packing House; and The Press restaurant in the Village. Fine dining meets Broadway at Ben D. Bollinger’s Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre just a few blocks north of the village; and the lively PianoPiano dueling piano show right next door at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Claremont serves American bar fare to accompany their Las Vegas seasoned performers.

Plenty of great meals can be found in other parts of Claremont, especially along Historic Route 66 (Foothill Blvd.) where tourists will find stylish restaurants like Darvish and Inka Trails, and sushi choices including Hayato and the boat-shaped Sushi Cruise. The region’s lone Portuguese restaurant, Euro Café, is among choices on Baseline Road near Route 210, while Kickback Jack’s (signed as BC Café) is a popular breakfast choice near Interstate 10.

A weekend stay in Claremont means visitors can enjoy a leisurely Sunday morning stroll through the region’s largest farmers and artisans market in downtown Claremont, and enjoy coffee and freshly baked pastries at places like Some Crust Bakery and Last Drop Café. 

A complete listing of restaurants, hotels, boutiques, events and more can be found at Site Launches to Provide Information on Claremont Hotels and Attractions

New Tourism Website Features Claremont Restaurants, Day Spas, Boutiques and Visitor Events

CLAREMONT, Calif. (March 27, 2012) – Travelers to Los Angeles County and the Inland Empire seeking to escape the urban sprawl will find a pleasing collection of restaurants, day spas, attractions and hotels in Claremont. The city’s tourism board has launched a new website,, that provides a descriptive overview of Claremont hotel accommodations, links to the more than 80 restaurants in Claremont, and a list of the region’s visitor attractions.

Guests to Claremont will find information on about the city’s many “relaxing” amenities, like its dozen day spas and salons; popular galleries in the Claremont Village and at the Claremont Colleges; its numerous unique, locally owned boutiques; local bike-friendly and outdoor activities in the San Gabriel Mountains, including nearby Mount Baldy; and Claremont’s thriving food,  music and entertainment scene.

“More and more tourists are finding Claremont is truly the perfect getaway to take time to exhale and relax,” said Andrew Behnke of Discover Claremont, the Claremont tourism board. “We strive to turn your visit into an experience that you’ll be talking about for a long time. By visiting the new DiscoverClaremont website, you’ll get an idea of what Claremont has to offer for many return visits.”

Claremont hotels will feature special shopping, spa and dining packages, as well as post last-minute getaway deals on Hotel choices in Claremont range from economy to upscale, including luxury boutique Hotel Casa 425 in historic Claremont Village and the lush garden, resort-type setting at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Claremont. Budget-minded tourists will find the Hotel Claremont and Tennis Club, Claremont Lodge and Howard Johnson Express Inn Claremont.

Tourists seeking art and culture will find details on about such local treasures as the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, the Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre, and the museums, libraries and galleries at the Claremont Colleges. Claremont also features the only paleontology museum located on a high school campus in the nation, the newly remodeled The Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology.

An updated calendar of events for Claremont visitors will feature information about the city’s popular “Village Venture” and “Blues and Brews” events, as well as the weekly Sunday Farmers and Artisans Market in the Claremont Village. The website also tells you where to find professional jazz, rising regional rock bands, Las Vegas-style piano shows and even belly dancing.

Claremont Offers the Complete Package for Romance

A romantic getaway right in Southern California? Try a village! Southern California couples considering a romantic weekend getaway will find Claremont a very inviting choice with a range of creative and relaxing options.

This lush, European village-like “city” in the middle of urban Southern California quickly transports couples into an idyllic, romantic setting where they can stroll tree-lined streets adorned with charming shops, outdoor cafés, historic neighborhoods and nearby college campuses.

Claremont abounds with highly rated restaurants, inviting boutiques and evening entertainment to let couples design their own custom getaways that will provide lasting, loving memories.

Begin by considering the range of lodging options. Local hotels, such as Hotel Claremont and Tennis Club, Hotel Casa 425, the DoubleTree by Hilton Claremont Hotel, Claremont Lodge and Howard Johnson Express Inn Claremont, provide a full range of amenities and price levels.

Next, find the perfect dining experience with dozens of locally owned restaurants throughout the city, including many in the Claremont Village. Top choices include La Piccoletta (Italian fare at 114 N. Indian Hill Blvd.), The Back Abbey (Bistro, 128 N. Oberlin Ave.), Arrufo’s (Italian, 126 Yale Ave.), Harvard Square Café (French, 206 W. Bonita Ave.), La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana (201 N. Indian Hill), Tutti Mangia (Italian, 102 Harvard Ave.), Viva Madrid (Spanish, 225-B Yale Ave.), and Union on Yale (American, 232 Yale Ave.).

Or consider an evening at the Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre, which provides patrons with fine dining and performances the caliber of the Broadway shows. The 2012 season includes “Aida,” “The Music Man,” “Miss Saigon” and “Anything Goes.” Make reservations at

With dinner secured, it’s time to enjoy the rest of those special moments.

Couples may find inviting a quiet morning or midday walk among the many shops of the Claremont Village. Start the day with the warmth of a special brew of coffee, homemade pastries or crafted breakfasts at one of the local cafés, such as the Last Drop Café (119 Harvard Ave.) or Some Crust Bakery (119 Yale St.). From there, consider a tour of the internationally famous Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, or visits to the many local museums and art galleries.

The San Gabriel Mountains beckon to the north, and a dramatic view of Southern California is just minutes away by driving up Padua Ave.and continuing onto Mt. Baldy Rd. Couples who enjoy hiking and mountain biking together will find trails in the Claremont Hills, Marshall Canyon and the Glendora Ridge.

To start or end an evening with drinks, appetizers and/or dessert, consider the intimate settings found at the Lounge of Hotel Casa 425, walk across the street to the Packing House Wine Merchants, or enjoy the selections at Walter’s (310 Yale St.).

If nighttime entertainment is part of your romantic retreat, consider musical choices at the Hip Kitty Jazz and Fondue (502 W. First Street), the PianoPiano dueling piano bar at the Doubletree Hotel (555 W. Foothill Blvd.) or The Press restaurant (129 Harvard Ave.).

A complete listing of shops, hotels, events and more can be found at

Discover Claremont

Due east from Hollywood, at the edge of Los Angeles County, lies a town that a studio executive might have ordered up as a real-life Main Street USA movie set.

It might look like an Eastern seaboard village with blocks of bustling, locally owned shops. Or maybe a small Midwestern, railway town with a train depot within walking distance of trendy restaurants and hearty pubs. Or even a Southern community with its tree-lined streets of well-kept craftsman homes providing the ideal setting for a leisurely bicycle ride.

Beyond the beaches, but not quite to the mountains or desert. Beyond the master-planned suburbs, but not quite to sprawling bedroom communities. Beyond the Kellogg Hill interchange, but not quite the Inland Empire. It’s the kind of town that you fell in love with on a vacation to Maine – or was it Indiana? – but never thought you’d find again in Southern California.

It’s Claremont.

The City

The eastern-most city in Los Angeles County, Claremont is 30 miles east of downtown Los Angeles along Interstate 10. It’s a destination quite unlike any other in Southern California: A hidden gem within the sprawling, urbanscape of the L.A. basin.

Some still call it The City of Trees and PhDs, a legacy born more than 100 years ago with the founding of Pomona College amidst acres of foothills adorned with citrus ranches. In fact, it was only in 1889 that the town’s “shade tree committee” reported a gift of 250 trees, which were planted throughout the community shortly thereafter.

But the city is so much more than its seven nationally renowned colleges and 23,000 city-owned trees: It’s a true getaway from the everyday bustle of commuter Los Angeles, and a gateway to the mountains and deserts.

Claremont Village

It begins with a walkable – and yes, tree-lined – downtown. Claremont Village is adorned with more than 150 locally owned boutiques and galleries, restaurants, eateries and pubs with entertainment and music. The Claremont Depot, a California historical landmark, greets visitors at the south end of downtown, servicing the Amtrak and Metrolink trains that stop there daily.

Leaving the depot, pleasant strolls along Yale and Harvard Avenues and Claremont Village’s numbered streets await visitors, calling to mind a classic New England cape town or a mid-American downtown. The architectural features of Claremont’s downtown buildings reflect a city that came to rise in the early 1900s, with its classic bank and shop facades, and then grew with the rise of the automobile as seen in some of its more modern storefronts.

Across Indian Hill Blvd. are two unique shopping and arts centers – the modern Village Square Public Plaza, built in 2007, and the sharply retrofitted Packing House, a tribute to the city’s citrus roots that reopened in 2007.

The Public Plaza is surrounded by shops, restaurants and the boutique hotel Hotel Casa 425, and is home to the Laemmle’s 5 Claremont Theatre. A modern public art fountain meanders through the square, providing both soothing water sounds as well as space for outdoor picnicking and music.

The College Heights Lemon Packing House is one of four working packing houses that lined the railroad tracks during the city’s citrus heydays. In fact, Claremont citrus growers were among the first to organize a cooperative method for marketing their fruit, a coop which later became known as “Sunkist.” Art galleries, night clubs, a wine bar and dining now call the Packing House home.

Historic Route 66

While much of Claremont was built close to the train depot, Historic Route 66 runs alongFoothill Blvd., 12 blocks to the north. The businesses and restaurants along this district include the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Claremont and the popular Candlelight Pavilion dinner theater that is housed within the gymnasium of the Old School House, Claremont’s original 1911 school building that now is home to additional, unique retail shops and eateries.

Just upCollege Ave.from Route 66 is the famous Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, the largest botanic garden dedicated exclusively to California’s native plants. Encompassing 86 acres, the Garden displays about 2,000 taxa of California plants and includes those native to the California Floristic Province as a whole – from southern Oregon to Baja California. In addition to featuring a world-class botanical library and graduate-level education program, the Garden offers horticulture and community education programs to the public to encourage the use of California native plants in home landscapes.

The Colleges

Internationally recognized, locally admired and academically respected, the Claremont Colleges define the city in multiple ways – from the contagious intellectual capital that is nurtured by a traditional American educational system to supporting retail establishments to the overall lifestyle and commitment to community preservation.

Clustered both geographically and academically, the seven Claremont Colleges – five undergraduate and two graduate campuses – enable their students to attend a small, tightly-focused college even as they enjoy the benefits their “big school” seven-college consortium offers: cross-enrollment in classes; participation in a host of multi-campus social, academic, political, creative and religious organizations; all-campus dining privileges; and participation on a host of highly competitive NCAA Division III men’s and women’s athletic teams.

The Culture, the Arts

Naturally, the colleges foster the arts and independent studies.  Museums include The Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology, the Claremont Museum of Art, the Folk Music Center Museum, and multiple galleries both at the colleges and around town. Walks about the Village and on the campuses will reveal dozens of pieces of world-class public art.

A Way of Life

To visit Claremont is to be welcomed into a town that embodies the phrase “community spirit.” Its annual Village Venture Arts & Crafts Faire each October welcomes more than 20,000 visitors to Claremont Village. Community-oriented events such as Friday Nights Live! (summer), Claremont Farmers and Artisans Market (Sundays), First Friday Art Walks and classic-car Cruise Nite in the Village reflect a true slice of Americana in Southern California.

At just 14 square miles Claremont is easily navigated on bicycle, and the city takes great pride in being a leader in providing bicycle-friendly initiatives for visitors. The League of American Bicyclists has acclaimed Claremont as a Bronze-Level Bicycle Friendly Community, noting Claremont’s funding of bike lanes, road diets (reducing the number of vehicle lanes), and intersection improvement. The Claremont Wilderness Park has an additional 10 miles of mountain bike trails and five miles of shared use pathways. It’s no wonder the AMGEN Tour of California selected Claremont as a host city for its 2011 tour.

And indeed, Claremont is still a city of trees: It has been a winner of the National Arbor Day Association’s Tree City USA award for more than 20 years.

A Surprising Retreat

With its lush, European village-like setting, Claremont is an ideal destination for intimate, relaxing getaways. This “city” in the middle of urban Southern California quickly transports couples into an idyllic, romantic setting, perhaps taking them back to a different era as they stroll tree-lined streets adorned with charming shops, outdoor cafés and historic neighborhoods. And Claremont’s thriving community of spas, yoga and pilates centers, such as Essentials Day Spa & Salon, are ready to provide visitors with an array of personalized services and treatments to make their getaways complete.

Now, you get the idea why many chose Claremont to live, to learn, to enjoy nature…and to relax.

Warm Breezes, Cool Sounds and Fun Fairs Come to Claremont This Fall

CLAREMONT, Calif.Oct. 5, 2011 — While the fall brings Santa Ana winds to Southern California, it also brings studentsback to the seven world-class colleges in Claremont and a renewedopportunity for visitors and tourists to the Los Angelesarea to catch live localmusic and fairs.
The birthplace of Grammy-winner Ben Harper, Claremont is home to a wide variety ofmusical performances, ranging from classical at the Pomona College Department of Music, tostudent choral and orchestra performances at Scripps, Claremont McKenna,Harvey Mudd, and Pitzer Colleges, andtraditional jazz at the Hip Kitty Club inthe Claremont Packing House. Local pubs and clubs feature Los Angeles County and Inland Empire areabands performing seven nights a week.
The famous Folk Music Center and Museum in Claremont Village is owned by Ben Harper‘s family and includes acollection of rare and antique musical instruments and artifacts from aroundthe world. The Folk Music Center offers classes and workshops for buddingmusicians, a lineup of musical performances from local and international folk performers,and an Open Mic on the last Sunday of every month.

Followingare some highlights of Fall in Claremont 2011:

October 22 – 30th Annual Village Venture Arts & Crafts Faire
The Claremont Village is filled with over 450 arts & crafts booths including photography, pottery, jewelry, clothing, and garden knick-knacks at this annual faire. Just in time to kick off the holiday shopping season, visitors to Claremont will find something unique for everyone on their lists. Over 20,000 people attended in 2010. More information at
October 22 – Things That Go Bump in the Night at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
Meet the bats, owls, insects, spiders and plants who own the Garden at night. Pack a picnic dinner and flashlights and discover the wonders of the nocturnal world. Advance ticket purchase recommended; purchase tickets online or at the admission kiosk. More information at
November 5 – Marley’s Ghost concert at the Folk Music Center
Since forming in the mid-’80s, Marley’s Ghost has built a singular reputation among discerning roots-music lovers for its instrumental virtuosity, ultra-tight four-part harmonies and animated live performances.  They blend English folk, Jamaican reggae, Gospel, Country and R&B. More information at
December 4 – Holiday Open House and Free Garden Admission Day at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
Visitors receive free Garden admission, can visit with Santa and make crafts with the kids, and enjoy holiday gift sales, festive live music and prize drawings. More information at
Claremont’s weekly Farmer and Artisans Market, Sunday Mornings at 2nd Street and Indian Hill Blvd.
The market features fresh local and organic produce, plants, flowers and cheeses, gifts and jewelry made by local craftspeople, used books and more.

Summer Nights Are Perfect for Strolling in Claremont

CLAREMONT, Calif.June 8, 2011 — Southern Californians, business travelers to Ontario and Pomona, and tourists on vacation in the Los Angeles area looking for a peaceful night out this summer will find the evening weather perfect for strolling in Claremont.
Using Metrolink’s San Bernardino line, Claremont is a 50-minute train ride from Union Station in downtown Los Angeles and just minutes from neighboring cities, including OntarioPomonaRancho Cucamonga and Upland. Claremont’s historic train depot is located in the heart of the Claremont Village, walking distance to dozens of shops and restaurants and a short bicycle ride away from the Claremont Colleges and shopping along Historic Route 66 California.
Following are some highlights of Summer in Claremont 2011:
“Friday Nights Live” in the Claremont Village – Every Friday Night
All ages are welcome to enjoy bands performing free, live music, including pop, funk and jazz, every Friday night in public venues throughout Claremont’s downtown area. The music series continues through Oct. 28. More information at
Thursday nights, June 30 thru Aug. 4 – “Garden Groove” Summer Concert Series at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
Enjoy great music, picnic dinners and cool Claremont evenings at the Garden’s annual summer concert series. The Garden reopens to guests at 6 p.m., concerts begin at 7 p.m. Tickets available online or at the gate. More information at
July 1 – First Friday Art Walk
Held on the first Friday of each month, this family-friendly arts festival transforms Claremont’s Village into an arts district, featuring the work of visual artists, live musicians, street performers and children’s activities. Participating artists are predominantly from Claremont and surrounding communities. Art exhibits occur at the College Heights Packing House and participating businesses. More information at
July 4 – Fourth of July Celebration and Festival
Claremont’s 63rd annual Independence Day celebration is entitled, “We the People…Celebrate!” Community-oriented activities in Memorial Park include a traditional pancake breakfast, festival and food booths, and children’s and family games. The festivities culminate with one of Southern California’s largest fireworks shows and a classic rock concert at Pomona College. Details at
“Concerts in the Park” – Monday, July 11 and until September 5, 2011
The concerts are held at Memorial Park and begin at 7:30 pm.  The concert series is a tradition in Claremont and features a variety of musical genres including rock and roll, blues, oldies, and reggae. If you will be attending one of the concerts, remember to bring a blanket and chairs for seating. The Claremont Kiwanis Club will be selling refreshments but you may bring in your own food and drink. For more information, email
Sept. 9 – Vintage Village Wine Walk
The 10th annual event will feature wine tastings at businesses throughout the downtown Claremont Village business district. This event sells outs annually; tickets go on sale on August 1. More information at

Claremont Accommodations
Claremont has several hotel choices for overnight travelers. The upscale boutique Hotel Casa 425 in downtown Claremont caters to couples and business travelers alike, while the Doubletree Hotel Claremont is a full-service business hotel and conference center located within a short drive to the Village center.
Three locally owned motor inns near Interstate 10, Hotel Claremont and Tennis ClubClaremont Lodge and Howard Johnson Express Inn Claremont, provide value-priced lodging options. Visitors can find more information about Claremont and local activities at and
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