These are tips about the SRF annual Convocation sent by devotees.
Add New Convocation Tip
- Safety - do not go outside the hotels after dark without a group.
- Airport Transportation
SuperShuttle Airport Transportation to and from LAX or Amtrak Train Station
- shared van rides at a reasonable cost... My husband and I have also used
the SuperShuttle service when flying into San Diego Airport to visit the Encinitas
Hermitage... Online Reservations: supershuttle.com...
or call (800) BLUE-VAN or (800) 258-3826...
From Johanna W.
- Bus from LAX to Lake Shrine or Downtown
To take the bus to Lake Shrine, take the C Shuttle from the terminal to the
City Bus Terminal (C Parking Lot)
Take Big Blue to downtown Santa Monica ($1.50). Then transfer to Sunset Boulevard
to get to Lake Shrine. Walk 500 feet to Lake Shrine.
Bus 439 goes from the airport bus terminal to downtown ($1.85).
- Supermarket Near Bonneventure
Devotees attending Convocation will be the first to be able to shop in a real
supermarket in downtown Los Angeles. The downtown area has been without a
supermarket for more than 50 years. Within the last couple of weeks, a new
Ralph's Grocery Store
has opened at 645 W. 9th Street.
If you want to pay supermarket prices instead of hotel prices, exit the Bonaventure
on the Flower St. (east) side and walk south (right) on Flower until you reach
9th. Turn left (east) on 9th, and look for the address.
From Art E.
- Whole Foods
Whole Foods is located at 788 South Grand Avenue. Open 7:00am to 10:00pm every
FROM THE BONAVENTURE: Coming out the Flower Street exit of the Bonaventure,
take a right and go two blocks. Take a left on Wilshire Boulevard (between
Sixth and Seventh Streets) for a couple of blocks, then take a right on Grand
Avenue for a block or so.
FROM THE BILTMORE: Coming out the front entrance of the Biltmore, take a left
and go one-third of a mile and it's right there.
From Phil B.
The central market has a
large variety of inexpensive fruit, vegetables and other items. The hotel
can give you directions. It is about a half of a mile from the Bonneventure.
Many devotees go there for fruit.
FROM THE BONAVENTURE: Coming out the Flower Street exit of the Bonaventure,
take a right and then the first left onto West Fifth Street. Go one long block
and two regular blocks. Take a left at Hill Street for almost two blocks.
The market is on the right.
FROM THE BILTMORE: Coming out the front entrance of the Biltmore, take a right
and then the first right onto West Fifth street for two blocks. Take a left
at Hill Street for almost two blocks. The market is on the right.
From Phil B.
- Farmer's Market: LA Library Street Market
From Traci Z:
There is a weekly Farmer's market in front of the LA Library. I believe
it is on Thursdays, possibly Wednesday, but I believe it is Thursday. It
starts in the Morning and goes through the early or mid afternoon. They
sell crafts and the like - but they also have a booth selling flowers. I
Picked up my flowers there last year - they were beautiful. If you go later
in the day when they are starting to close up - they might make you a good
deal. The man there last year made me and my friend a great deal on 3 bunches
There is also a Farmer's Market, which is about four blocks away from the
Bonaventure near the Kawada Hotel at 650 West Fifth Street. (from
- Parent/Child Room
If you plan on attending with your babies or young children be sure to reserve
places in the Parent/Child room early so you don't need to wait each day on
the standby line (by Master's grace everyone on the standby line last year
always got it, it was often close down to just a seat or two).
From Steve F.
- Drug Store
There is a drug store (Rite Aid) one
or two blocks past the Biltmore, going away from the Bonneventure. Then right
a block. They have juice, water, milk, and other supplies. I do not have the
exact directions or name, so if someone can help me out with this I would
- Biltmore Hotel Lobby
From Karen S.
I would like to mention the Biltmore
Hotel Lobby. A pilgrimage to this spot is always one of the highlights
of my convocation week. For those who may not know, the lobby was formerly
the music room where Master entered Mahasamadhi at the dinner for the ambassador
from India in 1952. It is still permeated with Master's vibration. You can
find the exact spot where he sits in the picture of "The Last Smile",
by the fountain. If you take a copy of the picture with you to the Biltmore,
you can see the designs on the wall which have been preserved, and find the
The Biltmore is a short walk down 5th St. from the Bonaventure, on the right
hand side as you walk down.
- Lake Shrine, California Ballroom
From Dawn W.
- Go to the service on Sunday at Lake Shrine. It's always nice to get
in an extra experience.
- I was thinking about it I was planning on bowing to Master's picture
when I first walked into the room instead of waiting until I got to my
seat. Maybe it wouldn't have gotten me a better seat but it would have
been nice to remember Master before running for a prime seat.
- Sit on the left side of the room if you are going to be in the California
ballroom. The AV equipment blocks a lot of the seats on the right side
of the room. There really aren't any bad seats in the Pasadena room.
- Remember why we are all there and don't push and shove on your way
into the California ballroom.
- Using the Subway to get to Hollywood Temple starting
from Pershing Square (near the Biltmore)
From Sonia: The best I can suggest would be
to take the subway
going to North Hollywood and get off at Sunset / Vermont. Both the exits from
the Vermont / Sunset station lead to Sunset Blvd and then one would need to
walk about 3 blocks west and you can see the Temple on the left side of the
- Ice Chest, Side Trips
From Dave C.
I have a couple of tips for the Convocation.
First of all we bring our own ice chest. We stay at the Bonaventure usually
but I am sure the other hotels wouldn't mind. With a large ice chest, the
ice is replenished by me from the ice machine on the floor we are staying
on, we are able to keep things like milk, fruit drinks and soft drinks cold.
This way we bring our own cereals and bowls and have breakfast in our room
without the expense of the restaurant. It also means that there is cold water
and drinks available for us in our room without expending money for those.
It's like having a small kitchen with us.
Secondly, I would recommend that if any attendee has a free morning or afternoon
and has transportation they visit the L.A.
Zoo (http://www.lazoo.org/ ) or the Getty
Museum ( http://www.getty.edu ). The Zoo is located in Griffith Park near
Hwy 134 and Interstate 5, just a short drive from the Bonaventure. It is worth
a visit. The Getty is in the foothills above Beverly Hills off Interstate
405, a little longer drive than the Zoo but worth it. The Getty is world renown
for its Renaissance art and Greek sculpture. Also well worth a visit. You
might call now for reservations to the Getty because it is very popular.
- Folding Cooler
We recently purchased a folding cooler for a reasonable amount and it worked
very well. It holds 24 cans and is made of nylon with insulation inside.
- Paru's Restaurant
We went to an Indian restaurant near the Hollywood Temple the last time that
we were there. It was wonderful food, the owner was friendly, and it just
felt Indian to be there.
Sonia: The restaurant is still operating and favourite with devotees! It is
called Paru's and it is about
3 to 4 blocks west of the Hollywood Temple, just after Sunset / Normandie,
on the left side of the street [south side!]. Week day hours are from 11:30
to 3 PM and again from 6 PM to 10 PM. On Saturdays and Sundays, they are open
right through from noon until 10 PM. Click here
for a 10% discount coupon!
- Los Angeles Public Library Card
If you have children along, the Los
Angeles Public Library, between the Bonneventure and Biltmore, will allow
you to check out books from the library, even if you do not live in Los Angeles.
- Downtown Transportation
The downtown DASH system runs inexpensive
busses around the downtown area. You can visit Chinatown, the Japanese district,
Toy district and so on.
- Free Internet Access
From Meledath D.
If you need Internet access it is free at the LA Public Library, very near
the Bonaventure and Biltmore. If you have a laptop, they have free wireless.
If not, get a guest card and use their PC's. The hotel charges an arm and
- Affordable Convocation Hotel
From Bryon R
For those trying to save money, a room at the Stillwell Hotel is the most
affordable that I have found in the Convocation area.
Even though Mother Center does not list the Stillwell on their registration
form, they make sure that the shuttle bus runs every half-hour to/from there
to accommodate the many devotees who stay at the Stillwell. And the hotel
is also within walking distance of the Bonaventure.
One year I waited too long (until June, I think), and it was too late to get
a room at the Stillwell. All the rooms were taken. During April might be a
good time to make a reservation...tell them you will be there for the SRF
Convocation. I believe the rooms are still less than $60/day!!!!!!!(and even
cheaper if you share)
Stillwell Hotel Phone: (213) 627-1151
- Downtown Parking
(Will be updated in 2021)