Tuesday, September 22, 2015

HOLAwave: Our Adventure at the 2015 Emmy Awards, Part 1

[HOLAwave represents a series of guest blogs by industry insiders giving informative and educational tidbits for the Latino performer. They can range from acting and auditioning advice, tech tips, legal advice, marketing, producing tips, and so on. Get caught up in the wave– the HOLAwave.]

Our Adventure at the 2015 Emmy Awards

[HOLA member Susanna Guzmán had a recurring role in the first season of the Emmy Award-nominated Netflix series "The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt". As such, she and her husband, HOLA member Anthony Ruiz, were invited to the Emmy weekend. Ruiz tells us what it was like to be at the Emmys.]

We left New York's LaGuardia Airport on time. Smooth flight on a Delta Brazilian T-170 model jet. Arrived at Houston International Airport. Stopped at Fly Bar (Terminal D) and had several of the best Bloody Marys I’ve ever had. Then back onto another plane to LAX (Los Angeles International Airport).

Upon arrival we find out that our luggage was involved in probably the first drive-by shooting of a piece of luggage in history. For some unknown reason there was a hole, like a bullet hole, going through it (seriously). Delta at LAX was very nice and replaced it with an identical piece of luggage. It seems that these drive-by conveyer belt shootings are not that uncommon. Welcome to El Lay.

Not having a car, we got a minivan airport bus to drop us off at our hotel the Ritz Milner in downtown L.A. The ride was hot and long, like the third grade. Susanna’s phone kept sounding off every thirty seconds– text messages from Netflix, Emmy people and her manager. After about 30 minutes of that, a miracle happened, the battery on her phone died. Finally, peace and quiet. Upon arrival at the hotel we found out why the airport minivans are cheaper then cabs. The doors don’t work! The doors on the van got stuck and we couldn’t get out of that HOT TIN COFFIN! After what seemed like a lifetime the doors finally gave up and fresh HOT POLLUTED air rushed in. The hotel is nothing fancy but not a dump either. Rooms are clean, the staff is great and sweet just like the sweet smell of pot that greets you as you enter your room. Nice.

We dropped off our bags, used the bathroom and off we went to the Lux Hotel in Beverly Hills on Rodeo Drive for some FREE Emmy gifts. And NO, we did not get another minivan. We got a car service and made a deal with Santos (our driver) for the entire the day. What's more, the doors to Santos'  Lincoln town car work. 

Here is how the Lux Hotel free gifts giveaway works– you walk in and are handed over to an actor (everyone is one in L.A.) who escorts you to each "station” (the actor also carries all the gift bags for you, nice), where free gifts are handed out. All the vendors/designers/creators (you pick a title) want in return for giving you FREE STUFF is a photo with you holding their product. If you become a winner at the Emmys, they’ll use that photo in their online promotions. Not a bad deal. All the gifts were nice. Free bags of African coffee, free organic food, organic cookies (everything is organic out here except the air), eco-friendly juices, swimsuits, perfume, hair products, T-shirts... you get the picture.

Now I have to stop here and explain what I think was the dumbest gift in the world, so dumb, that we just couldn't take a picture. Drumroll please! An empty glass bottle for putting water in. That’s it. “Water tastes better in a glass bottle,” said the creator of this wonderful product. At that point we had to leave. So with bags in hand and no map of the area we strolled Rodeo Drive looking for a bar. You know like the ones you find in every corner in New York. (Yeah, we are so not from L.A.) Finally after about 45 minutes, we found a cigar bar owned by the only Cuban in L.A. It was meant to be. 

After several drinks and smokes we headed back to the Lux to be picked up by Santos. Not having much to eat since our wonderful “snack” provided by the Lux and Delta Air Lines (peanuts) we asked Santos to take us to eat in L.A.’s best Mexican fast food joint. So off he took us to the dark side, the un-organic side of L.A., to a place called El Taurino in Pico-Union. After eight tacos and four burritos ($19), off to bed we went. My only concern now is, How will I fit into my tux after such a wonderful Mex-fest? 

To be continued....

Anthony Ruiz is an actor, playwright, screenwriter, director, cinematographer and photographer. Most recently he acted in the films Daughter of God (written and directed by gee Malik Linton, and starring Keanu Reeves, Ana de Armas, Mira Sorvino and Christopher McDonald) and Custody (written and directed by James Lapine, and starring Emmy Award winner Viola Davis, Ellen Burstyn, Hayden Pannettiere, Catalina Sandino Moreno and Olga Merediz); and in a commercial with John Leguizamo and (once again) Olga Merediz.

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