Visiting California - Advice?? Please??





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Discus: Parents Forum: 2004 Archive - Part 2: Visiting California - Advice?? Please??
By Tkdgal (Tkdgal) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 05:42 pm: Edit

Hi! I thought this might be the best place to ask this. My mom and I are flying to California to visit Pomona and Occidental. We have never been to California - we are from Jersey and neither of us has ever been west of....Western PA! What airport is better to fly into in LA, and can someone recommend hotels for us? Which school should we visit first? Any other tips? AHH!

By Dadofsam (Dadofsam) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 05:53 pm: Edit

Welcome to Calfornia, in advance.
Cross-country flghts mainly come into Los Angeles international airport (LAX), which is close enough to both schools.

Occidental is just north of LA; Pomona is about 1 to 1 1/2 hour's drive to the east, depending on traffic. I don't know the hotels in the area, but any one just outside the city to the north or east should be convenient.

The Claremont colleges (Pomona, Scripps, Pitzer, Claremont-McKenna, Harvey Mudd) realistically compose a single campus that is subdivided among the schools. They share a common library and a few other buildings; students can eat at any of the facilities. You can walk the entire campus easily. COnsider attending an information session/tour at one or more of the others while you are at Pomona.

By Mini (Mini) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 05:58 pm: Edit

Ontario airport is the nearest, by far, to Pomona. You will also get the cheapest rental cars from there. You can also fly into John Wayne, which is about 45 minutes from Claremont - for westcoasters, it usually has the cheapest flights, but I don't know how it is coast-to-coast. If you stay down by John Wayne, you are close to Newport Beach (fun!), but driving up to Occidental might not be so much fun (it is the north/south LA corridor, and you are going right through the middle of it, which isn't too much fun.) So probably scratch that thought. Burbank Airport is actually quite close to Occidental, but I doubt you'll find any east coast flights to it.

I'd probably try to figure it out from Ontario Airport. Doesn't matter which you visit first from there. Ontario is about 7 miles from Claremont. It really isn't too far from there to Occidental, which is close to East Pasadena, right? I'd avoid LAX all together.

By Fluter (Fluter) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 06:25 pm: Edit

Couple of hotel suggestions for Claremont:

Sheraton Suite Fairplex (888) 627-8074 or (909) 868-5933.
Approx. $110/night
Located in Pomona - 9 miles west of Ontario International Airport - the Sheraton Suites Fairplex is an all-suite hotel featuring 247 two-room suites. The hotel includes a fitness center, heated outdoor pool, restaurant, and hotel lounge.

Sheraton Ontario Airport Hotel (888) 627-8074 or (909) 937-8000.
Approx. $94/night
The Sheraton Ontario Airport Hotel is located two miles from Ontario International Airport. The hotel has 164 guest rooms, an outdoor heated lap pool and whirlpool, and a resturant. The Sheraton Ontario Airport Hotel is convenient to shopping and entertainment venues.

Ontario Airport is easy and convenient - much less confusion than LAX or John Wayne. JetBlue flies into Ontario.

By Texas137 (Texas137) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 06:26 pm: Edit

We flew into Ontario when we visited Harvey Mudd and Caltech. That was cheaper for us from Texas than flying into LAX, and was very convenient distance-wise.

By Arizonamom (Arizonamom) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 06:42 pm: Edit

The Pomona website has a list of hotels as does all the Claremonts. I would prefer to stay near there then Occidential as the area around school seems nicer. We did Occidental and CMC in the same day my son's junior year. He is ending up at Pomona-liked having the small college benefits with the resources of a larger college.Good luck. We stayed at the Best Western , they have suites. It was adequate and very reasonable but there are much nicer and more expensive places.

By Lamom (Lamom) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 08:21 pm: Edit

I also vote Ontario, we just flew to the East for a reunion. Ontario to Newark. Would have been same price $350-$370 at Logan or Philadelphia-got tickets 6 or 7 days ahead. When sister in law flew into LAX it was not as nice traffic or parking wise.

By Tkdgal (Tkdgal) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 11:59 pm: Edit

Wow - thanks a lot....that was fast! I was looking at the other Claremont schools. I think the only other one I am interested in is Pitzer - anyone have anything to say about it? Also, I realize now how close the Claremonts are in proximity, but I've read that Pomona likes to distance itself from the other schools. How true is that?

By Robyrm (Robyrm) on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - 12:04 am: Edit

Can I suggest you stay at the Claremont Inn. It is quintessential California Mission architecture- you will immediately know you are not in New Jersey, and it is very close to the Claremont Colleges..the price was comparable with the hotels noted above. The hotel is fine but nothing special, but it is really Californian!!

By Mini (Mini) on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - 12:39 am: Edit

We visited the 5 colleges. It is no doubt true that Pomona is the best overall. But it is also true that each of the schools had something better than Pomona itself. At Claremont-McKenna it was government/politics/international relations, at Pitzer itw was linguistics/sociology, at Scripps it was Romance languages, studio arts, and music(and, if you like that sort of thing, its humanities core, which gave each class greater cohesiveness), at Harvard Mudd it was Physics/Math/Engineering. Scripps/Claremont-McKenna-Pitzer combine together for their sciences, and actually have a huge number of premeds.

When we were there, we did feel that Pomona came across as rather snooty (my d. actually thought she'd have a better experience at Scripps - food is better, too), but I'm sure it is different for each student -- which is why you need to visit! And Occidental is a great school, too.

By Arizonamom (Arizonamom) on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - 01:52 am: Edit

I have to add that Pomona was the least snooty of any school we visited in fact the opposite, students are voted the happiest students by Princeton Review and professors and students are incredibly friendy and helpful and just plain nice. They are well rounded kids. We never did the tour at Pomona and I heard that some people got that attitude from the information session. Someone at the session asked if it was better to take an AP class and get a B or a regular class and get an A. The answer was to get into Pomona you need to take the AP class and get an A. That scared my friends D off who ended up at Brown. In reality however every conversation with a professor, the college president and students has been impressive. Many Pomona students take classes at other schools and vice versa. There is a real rivalry sports wise between CMC and Pomona but that is a lot of fun. It is interesting the different impressions one can get .I would just hate to have someone count Pomona out due to that. Just my 2 cents worth. My D is looking at Pitzer this weekend so I will let you know. She is reluctant to visit Scripps still as the idea of all girls is still very negative to her but I want her to at least visit and keep an open mind.


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