There've been a wave of new hotels and restaurants going for a certain note of nostalgia in recent years.
Think bubble lamps and Formica counters and round booths and starburst decorations and other "Mad Men"-style details.
But a few businesses embody that period better than the businesses that conducted business during that period. The Sportsmen's Lodge on Ventura Boulevard is one such swinging spot, and while it has had some design evolution and changes over the years, a recent refurbishment has summoned some of that bygone, oh-so-'60s-esque kind of cool once more.
Lending some retro-kick to the swanky setting? The Aqualillies, Southern California's much-seen-on-screen synchronized swimming troupe. The precision team is known for popping up at hotels and swim clubs during the warmer weather months, for a show or two, but they'll be teaching beginner and intermediate classes at The Sportsmen's Lodge every Sunday evening through Sept. 28.
And the splashy kicker? You don't need to be a hotel guest to jump into a lesson. Guests do get a slightly lower rate -- twenty bucks for a single class versus twenty nine dollars for a non-hotel-stayer -- but anyone with a love of old-school swim-tertainment and flowery rubber head caps can come give it a whirl.
Note: You do not need a flower-bedecked swim cap to take a lesson, but, obviously, if you have one, you'll wear it.
Three-lesson packages are available as well, if you find synchro to be your jam.
Just be sure to plan to have a cocktail or mocktail after your aqua adventure, with the friend or friends you've signed up with. If you're going to play at being in the mid-century, in a mid-century-esque hotel, with an Esther-Williams-style swim troupe, a sip with maraschino cherries would complete the stylish scene.
The Aqualillies and The Sportsmen's Lodge are a solid pairing, as solid as colorful pool noodles and blow-up beach balls.