OUE Skyspace LA Closed: What to do in Downtown LA? [2023]

oue skyspace la closed - downtown LA attractions

OUE Skyspace LA used to be one of the most popular attractions in Downtown Los Angeles, and it’s easy to see why. Located in the US Bank Tower on 5th Street, this highest open-air observation deck in Los Angeles provided visitors a 360° view of the stunning skyline.

Not only would you be able to experience breathtaking views of downtown LA and Hollywood Hills from OUE Skyspace LA, you could also take a 43-feet transparent “Skyslide” down to the lower scenic terrace. 

Unfortunately, OUE Skyspace LA has announced that it will be permanently closing its doors in 2022. The news left many visitors disappointed, but rest assured that there are still plenty of other options for you to explore downtown Los Angeles. 

Don’t have time to read the whole article? The best cheap alternative is to take the Old & New Downtown Los Angeles Walking Tour & admire the beautiful views from the City Hall Observation Deck. Looking for more fun? Grab the Go City Los Angeles Pass for access to Universal Studios and more popular Hollywood attractions!

As the center of business and economic activities, Downtown Los Angeles has some of the most impressive skyscrapers and modernist architectures in the area. It is a vibrant, bustling area with plenty of things to do.

From historical buildings and art galleries to live music venues and world-class restaurants, there’s something for everyone here. If you want to see what it’s like to be right in the middle of all this action, check out this list of the best things to do in downtown LA!

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Best Things to do in Downtown LA

From its sunny beaches to star power in Hollywood, the southern Californian metropolis of Los Angeles has a reputation for being one of the world’s greatest cities, full of fun, fashion, and celebrity glamour. You can explore Downtown Los Angeles, the Bunker Hill area, and Historic Core on foot, where you will find a variety of cuisine, historic architecture, and outdoor activities.

1. Pershing Square

Pershing Square is an urban oasis located in downtown Los Angeles, just down the street from OUE Skyspace LA. The public park is one square block in size, bounded by 5th Street to the north and 6th Street to the south.

Pershing Square is the heart of LA Downtown Historic Core, where you will find the signature early 20th-century architecture and plenty of art deco buildings.

Travel Tips to ask for a Free Hotel Room Upgrade

2. Angels Flight Railway

Angels Flight Railway is a historic and iconic landmark in the heart of downtown LA. It is known as the world’s shortest railway, with only two funicular cars that connect one very steep block between Hill Street and Olive Street. You may find these orange and black cars familiar, as they have made several onscreen appearances, including Perry Mason and La La Land!

📖Wanna learn more about Downtown LA Historic Core? Check out this popular & cheap walking tour!

3. The Broad

The Broad is a contemporary art museum with unique exhibitions and educational programs with free general admission to the public. It’s also only a few minutes’ walk from MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art), which also offers free admission.

Next to the Broad, you will find Walt Disney Concert Hall, home to the LA Phil, one of the world’s most prominent orchestras. The best way to experience the Walt Disney Concert Hall would be to attend a concert or a classical music performance, but if that’s not in the budget, it’s still worth checking out the lobby and taking pictures with this famous architectural landmark.

4. Grand Central Market

Grand Central Market has been a downtown LA landmark since its first opening in 1917. It was then called the “Wonder Market”, filled with local cuisines and billed as the best public market on the Pacific Coast.

Grand Central Market offers a variety of healthy snacks, prepared meals, desserts, drinks, and coffee. You can find everything you want here, including some of the best breakfast sandwiches in town!

One of the best things to do in Los Angeles California is to hike to Hollywood Sign

5. Broadway Historic Theater District

Los Angeles is the epicenter of American filmmaking, and what could be a better place to learn about the history of film than in the Broadway Theater District, the first and biggest theatre district in the United States? The area consists of 12 historic movie theatres along six blocks of Broadway Street and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

6. Bradbury Building

Bradbury Building is one of the most stunning architectural structures in Downtown Los Angeles and an iconic filming site for several movies, including 500 Days of Summer, Blade Runner, The Artist, and more.

Opened in 1893, this office building has attracted visitors from all over the world not only for its striking facade of white terra cotta tiles but also for its impressive ironwork, intricate staircase, and glass skylight.

7. Los Angeles City Hall

Los Angeles City Hall is one of the tallest buildings in LA and a great alternative to OUE Skyspace LA if you’re looking to admire the views of the city.

The observation deck on the 27th floor of the City Hall is free and available on weekdays from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. You must bring your ID and go through security to obtain the pass, but the whole process is easy and straightforward.

After a visit to the Los Angeles City Hall, you can walk to the Little Tokyo Historic District to try some amazing sushi and Japanese food or continue north to find the Union Station and Olvera Street, a colorful Mexican historic district and marketplace.

Fun fact: Union Station is just around the corner from Olvera Street. This train station has been featured in several significant films including “Catch Me If You Can”, “Blade Runner”, and “Pearl Harbor”.

los angeles city hall oue skyspace alternative

Best Things to do near Downtown LA

Within a 20-minute drive from Downtown Los Angeles, you will find plenty of other popular things to do in the area of Hollywood and Universal City.

8. Griffith Park

Griffith Park is one of the largest city parks in the United States, three times the size of New York City’s Central Park. As a haven in the urban sprawl, it offers a variety of activities to visitors of all ages and easy access to the Los Angeles Zoo, the Griffith Observatory, and the famous Hollywood sign.

9. Iconic Hollywood Sign

You can see the distinguished Hollywood Sign from many places around the city, but as a frequent visitor to Los Angeles for years, I struggled to find a good spot to take pictures with the iconic sign. Sometimes it’s too far you have to zoom in to see the sign, and sometimes it’s too close that the letters look unevenly squished together.

So, if you’re looking for the perfect spot to take that iconic picture, I highly recommend taking a walking tour up the Hollywood sign. The guide will share with you interesting stories as you embark on an entertaining hike through Griffith Park, the Hollywood Hills neighborhood, and stop at the perfect spot where he can help you take pictures with the Hollywood sign.

📷Looking for the Perfect Spot to Take Pictures with the Hollywood Sign? Check out this tour with FREE water and photos!

10. Griffith Observatory

No visit to Griffith Park would be complete without a stop at the Griffith Observatory, a public astronomical museum that features many educational programs about astronomy and space sciences.

Although it won’t be like observing the city from a high observation deck like OUE Skyspace LA, you can still find several spots at Griffith Observatory to explore Los Angeles’s extraordinary skylines.

Finding the structure familiar? It’s because Griffith Observatory is also one of the legendary landmarks that appeared in several movies including The Terminator (1984) and La La Land (2016).

11. Hollywood Walk of Fame

Hollywood Walk of Fame spans 18 city blocks with brass stars embedded on the sidewalks to honor the celebrities and artists who have made contributions to the entertainment industry. Here, you will find the names of the best in movies, television, music, dance, and theatre. It’s fun looking for the name of your favorite artist!

12. TCL Chinese Theatre

TCL Chinese Theatre is a Hollywood landmark completed in 1927 with Exotic Revival architecture. It has been hosting countless glitzy red-carpet movie premieres. In the front yard, you will find various handprints and footprints of famous artists on cement.

There is a Chinese Theatre Guided Tour that you can book to tour this famous venue and learn stories about its history of hosting the biggest movie premieres, special events, and celebrity sightings since the 1920s.

🏠Want a different view of Hollywood? Check out mansions where movie stars live with the Celebrity Homes Tour!

13. Dolby Theatre

Since its opening in 2001, the Dolby Theater in Hollywood has become the annual home of the Academy Awards ceremonies. Having the architecture of an ancient European opera house with the cutting-edge technology of Dolby, the theatre also hosts concerts, TV specials, comedy shows, film premiers, and many other events.

14. Universal City Walk

Universal CityWalk is an entertainment district outside of Universal Studios Hollywood. After a day at the theme park or exploring the city, this is a great place to be for dining, shopping, and live shows. There are over thirty restaurants, a multiscreen movie theater, souvenir shops, indoor skydiving, and a live concert venue.

15. Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios Hollywood is an entertainment theme park and film studio that is a must-see attraction for movie fans. You can go behind the scenes to see where many Hollywood movies are made and find thrilling rides, shows, and attractions including Jurrasic World, Despicable Me Minion Mayhem, Transformers™: The Ride 3-D, and Fast and Furious–Supercharged, King Kong 360, and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™.

Because of its popularity, rides at Universal Studios Hollywood may take a lot of waiting around. To avoid the wait, you should consider purchasing skip-the-line tickets with express access to the theme park’s rides and attractions. It is absolutely worth it, especially if you’re visiting during peak seasons (summer and national holidays).

The number of Universal Studios Express Tickets is limited each day, so it’s better to pre-purchase than wait till you arrive at the park – it may be sold out!

Grab the discounted Skip the Line Ticket at Universal Studios Hollywood here!

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💡Tip: Save 70% on Best LA Attractions with Los Angeles Pass

Go City Los Angeles Pass is the all-Inclusive pass that allows visitors to travel to many of the city’s top attractions without having to pay any extra fees. You can choose how much money you spend per day or week (1, 2, 3, 5, or 7 days), allowing you to see as many sights as possible. It offers a great discount compared to buying tickets separately.

For example, instead of buying a ticket to LEGOLAND California for over $115, you can buy a one-day Go City Los Angeles Pass for $89 and get free admissions to LEGOLAND. That alone would save you $25/person, but you can always add more adventures to your itinerary and save more! Remember that since the pass is all-inclusive, the more activities you do, the more money you save! Kinda works like a buffet for food!

To obtain the greatest savings with Go City Los Angeles Pass, you should make advance reservations for activities requiring booking and plan your itinerary around the hours of attractions.

Some of the most popular and high-value attractions that are included with the Go City Los Angeles Pass are:

  • Universal Studios Hollywood (available with the 3, 5 and 7 day passes)
  • Madame Tussauds Hollywood
  • LEGOLAND California – more than 60 fun rides, shows, and attractions
  • Knott’s Berry Farm
  • Six Flags Magic Mountain
  • Hop-On Hop-Off Big Bus Los Angeles Tour
  • LA Galaxy Game Ticket
  • Malibu Celebrity Homes Tour
  • Whale Watch & Dolphin Tour
  • Catalina Flyer
  • Celebrity Bike Tour

Find the full up-to-date list of attractions included in the Los Angeles Pass here!

Where to Stay in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is known for having some of the world’s finest hotels and resorts. From luxury five-star hotels to budget-friendly hostels, there is something for every traveler. If you want to stay close to the action, consider Downtown LA, Hollywood Boulevard, and Universal City. For those looking for a little peace and quiet, consider staying in Venice Beach, Beverly Hills, or Santa Monica.

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The Wrap-Up: Best Downtown LA Attractions/OUE Skyspace LA Alternatives

The chapter of OUE Skyspace LA at US Bank building has closed, but it doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy Downtown Los Angeles. There are plenty of iconic landmarks, historic buildings, and art galleries within walking distance from OUE Skyspace LA, so you can see some of the city’s most famous sights without having to drive.

As you venture outside of Downtown LA, you will find yourself in different neighborhoods with their own unique offerings and features like Hollywood and Universal City. One thing for sure is that you will never run out of options in shopping, dining, nightlife, or culture.

California Travel Resources

  1. Best Fun Things To Do in Northern & Southern California!
  2. 16 Epic Northern & Southern California Coast Road Trip Ideas!
  3. 11 Best Hot Springs in and near Mammoth Lakes, California
  4. 15 Best Things to Do in Little Italy San Diego: A Local’s Guide!
  5. 7 Best Snorkeling Spots to Explore in San Diego!
  6. 15 Best Downtown Los Angeles Attractions
  7. Best Time to Visit California for Perfect Weather, Great Deals, & More!