A window to the genuine southern California.
Brea is primarily for shoppers, but if you don't mind driving and want a safe base offering competitively priced accommodation to tour from, it is only 1 hour to the coast, 1.5 to San Diego, 45 mins to Disney, 1 hour to LAX and apx 3.5 hours to Vegas.
Being a shopping mecca, there are numerous chain restaurants to choose from, my preference was the Cheesecake Factory while there, to grab convenient meals. I felt safe at all times of day and there is a lovely space to relax in Craig Park, immediately south of the main Brea Mall. ($3 for parking, great value!!!)
If you want to see a slice of modern history, there is the Richard Nixon Museum, in the next town of Yorba Linda Only 15 minutes away.
It is ideally placed in the highway system to access most of southern California's main centres.