Whether it's on a date, or a night out with friends, bowling is one sport everyone can enjoy. It's fun, the rules are simple, and most importantly, you don't have to be in the greatest shape to master it. But why bowl at some third-rate alley? Here are some of the best bowling alleys L.A. has to offer.
Jewel City Bowl: Whether it's a kid's birthday or a gathering among co-workers, Jewel City Bowl in Glendale is a great place for relaxing with some friends, and knocking over some pins. Drinks are cheap, the food is a step above most diners, and just in case you're the type of person that likes to compete, they also offer multiple leagues throughout the year. Parties are their specialty though, which is why Jewel City offers all types of discounted rates for big groups, as well as monthly promotions and events. Jewel City also has a late night happy hour from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m., which features jager bombs for $5, mystery shots for $2, and all pitchers of beer for $2 off. To learn more, check out their website at www.jewelcitybowl.net.
135 S. Glendale Ave., 91205; 818-243-1188
Shatto 39 Lanes: Walk into Shatto 39 Lanes in Korea Town and you'll see a well-lit bowling alley with an old-school atmosphere and good time vibe. You'll never have to wait for a lane because there are plenty of them, domestic beers will run you $3.25, and just in case you get tired of bowling (or have thrown one too many gutter balls), there are several pool tables and arcade games. And how many places can find the original Pac Man in perfect working order? Shatto is open until 3 a.m. on the weekends, with a game of bowling starting at $3.50.
3255 W. 4th St., 90020; 213-385-9475
Lucky Strike Lanes: Everything about Lucky Strike Lanes in Hollywood screams L.A. – from the D.J. Booth and pool table, to the HD TVs and appetizers. After all, what other bowling alley in the country serves tuna tartar, and homemade Belgian fries (as in the country)? And unlike traditional bowling alleys, which tend to be heavily lit with fluorescents, the entire interior of Lucky Strike Hollywood is illuminated with ultra-hip neon lights. Just be sure to call ahead if you plan on coming with a big group of people. Lanes here tend to fill up quickly.
6801 Hollywood Blvd., 90028; 323-467-7776
Pinz Bowling Center: The best part about Pinz in Studio City is that it's connected to a Jerry's Deli. So you can enjoy a corn beef Reuben sandwich while you wait for your lane. Aside from the 32 bowling lanes with runner lights that Pinz boasts, it also has pool tables, a full arcade – even air hockey! It's also been known to be a favorite non-L.A. hangout of celebrities, who often times will be seen bowling right alongside us normal folk. You see, they really are just like us! Pinz also offers free parking, glow in the dark bowling, and private parties that can accommodate up to 250 guests. Check out their website for more details.
12655 Ventura Blvd., 91604; 818-769-7600
All Star Lanes: There's no fancy lights or techno music playing here. In fact, with its unpretentious interior (ordinary is probably a better word) All Star Lanes has the look and feel of a run-of-the-mill bowling alley you might find in some country town like Peoria. And that's quite all right, because people come here for one reason and one reason only – to bowl. Well, that and drink too, which is why ASL's cocktail lounge gets jam packed with thirsty twentysomethings on Friday and Saturday nights. ASL also has a fairly decent Chinese restaurant inside that also serves American favorites like pizza, steak quesadillas, chicken wings, and onion rings. Because what's a bowling alley without a food menu chockfull of fried stuff?
4459 Eagle Rock Blvd., 90041; 323-254-2579
AMF Lanes: Like most bowling alleys, AMF Lanes in Mid-City is great for both children and adults. It’s even better if you happen to plan your birthday party or office party there. What separates AMF from the other bowling alleys in the area, however, is its music. Put it this way, you won’t hear classics from Marvin Gaye and Aretha Franklin at Lucky Strike, or any other spot that’s geared towards twentysomethings. In fact, AMF prides itself in its old-school appeal. It’s why the vending machines are throwbacks from the Nixon-era, and why you still have to manually push buttons in order to keep score. Of course, the only downside is now you have to be fully aware if someone’s cheating.
4645 Venice Blvd., 90019; 323-933-7171