Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >
Oct 28, 2006 04:48 PM

Help! 30th Birthday Dinner for 30 LA area?

30th bday is fast approaching and I can't make up my mind.
On a budget since it's for 30 family & friends and I'm not paying. A lot of places seem to cap it at 20 people. So I'm looking at the little loft area at the Electric Lotus-they impose a 2-hour time constraint for that area on Sat. nights for larger parties.

Lala's will do 30 people and the atmosphere is a little more festive, but it seems so... regular night out. Checked out Thailand Plaza 2nd story restaurant, but I think I'll save it for another day even though it looks like fun..

Should I do Lotus? Lala's?? Another place in the LA area that would be special and affordable, yet yummy?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. what about a chinese restaurant? you could get a private room with an amazing meal at sam woo seafood (NOT BBQ) in alhambra for a pretty reasonable price, or even at empress pavilion for that matter.

    1 Reply
    1. re: shimpiphany

      thanks for the suggestions! um, i do love empress pavilion but my family eats regularly there for EVERY special occasion- anytime someone dies, graduates, or arrives, we feast at empress. sam woo's is a bit far for me although their eats are yummy. i'm thinking more along the lines of la- downtown, los feliz, silverlake, ktown, jtown, etc.

    2. for something different you could check out the mercadito on 1st and lorena (3rd floor). they have huge restaurants with mariachi.

      for a similar vibe but closer and a bit pricier (although the food isnt all that great) you can go to la fonda in macarthur park.

      1. thanks for your help! la fonda is a cool idea for atmosphere, but their food is questionable... hmmm. think i'll call them and ask about groups... forgot all about el mercadito!

          1. re: blissin

            yeah. its good, monte alban on the westside is better - but not sure if the 8th street location can handle 30 people - maybe in the k-town location.

            what about korean? chosun galbi has a huge patio, and while it's not my favorite, dang il jang has a big private room, just down the street from guelaguetza. taylors might be fun too - old-school steak house with pretty reasonable prices and passable food, on 8th street next door to guelaguetza. also, what about the papa christo's dinners? not sure what night they do them now, but that would be fun and different, and they definitely could handle a crowd in that room.

            1. re: shimpiphany

              So here is my follow-up on the venue I decided on.. I am just getting back to this board after all the birthday madness has settled down a bit. Thanks for all your suggestions! I ended up doing Moun of Tunis on a last minute whim, despite it being a bit over my projected budget. It was worth it! Moun of Tunis was PERFECT and I can't wait to return. The staff here was exceptionally accomodating and no deposit was necessary for my party of 40 (not 30); the food was exotic (I've never had Moroccan before, and this was a first for many of my guests as well). The menu was diverse enough to please both carnivores and veggies, and the food kept coming all night long. The highlight was, of course, the belly dancing and the private tent. It definitely set the mood and helped to make my 30th celebration incredibly memorable. I would definitely go back to this location and highly recommend it for those seeking a unique and festive dinner celebration location.

              1. re: blissin

                that sounds great! i am in the same dliemma as you were. ticking over to 30 and have yet to decide on a place to celebrate the occassion. thus far, opus and a few izakaya places (sasaya, musha, etc) are in the running.

                1. re: wilafur

                  Moun of Tunis sounds fabulous. I'm moving it up my list.

                  Here are a few more suggestions on group parties that I've done successfully:

                  Monsoon Cafe - Santa Monica
                  Baja Cantina - Marina del Rey (needs lots of notice and follow
                  Guelagetza - Palms (rehearsal dinner here on a Friday night. Small place, but SUCH good food)

                  Smaller groups (up to 10 ish) have been successful at:
                  Duke's Barefoot bar in Malibu
                  Fritto Misto in Santa Monica
                  Orris in West L.A.
                  Roman Cucina (Sunset Beach)
                  La Paella mid-city ish.

                  Other places that I think would work well, but haven't thrown parties at:
                  Chameau in mid-city; for 8-10 people

                  Cucina Paradiso in Palms - just went here (owe the board a review) and wow! On Saturday, they had a private party for 150 in the Palmer room. Someone else recently posted a review of a party they had in the back room.

                  Have fun! and report back.

                  1. re: ElissaInPlaya

                    Yum! Guelaguetza is next on my list. I've heard nothing but good things about this place. I haven't been to La Paella in years but I think it's time I returned! You will love Moun of Tunis.

                  2. re: wilafur

                    You will not be disappointed if you decide on Moun of Tunis. I haven't been to Opus but it seems to have gotten good reviews... Good luck and let me know what you decide!

            2. Check out Koutoubia on Westwood Blvd near Wally's. My husband had a 34th b-day party for me there a few months ago for about 35 people and aveyone had an great time. The food/drinks were delicious, the tent is really fun and everyone got into the theme (the belly dancer was fun too).