A visit to Southern California without a visit to the beach is a visit wasted—so make sure you make it to L.A.’s spectacular coast, which never fails to awe.
The Best Los Angeles Beach Hotels
Better yet, to truly soak in the saltwater and sand, stay overnight at one of these 10 excellent Los Angeles beach hotels.
Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey
One of the most luxurious options among the Los Angeles beach hotels, the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey offers guest rooms that are oases of calm, many with private balconies and sweeping views over the sea or city. The hotel sits right on one of the world’s biggest recreational marinas, with plenty of access to water sports and beachfront trails.
Amenities: Marble bathrooms with Asprey toiletries, terry bathrobes, iPod docking stations, 49-inch flat screen TVs, Egyptian cotton bedding, overnight shoeshine service, waterfront pool and hot tub with cabanas, alfresco Cast & Plow restaurant, the luxury Spa del Rey, a nail salon, a fitness center overlooking the pool, two waterfront tennis courts, sundry shop, jewelry shop, a club-level experience available at additional cost, pet-friendly policies, bicycle rentals, and car rentals.
Shutters on the Beach, Santa Monica
Ranking high on the list of the best Los Angeles beach hotels, Shutters boasts interior design by Michael S. Smith, whom President Obama hired to decorate the White House. Smith gave Shutters an airy, inviting beach-cottage feel and filled it with art by famous masters. The 186 rooms and 12 suites are eminently comfortable, and many have balconies right over the sand. Take a yoga class on the beach, a surfing lesson, or borrow volleyball equipment or kids’ beach toys from the front desk.
Amenities: Hardwood floors, 42-inch LCD TV, marble bathroom with Jacuzzi tub, cashmere throws, built-in entertainment centers, laundry and dry-cleaning service, concierge service, pool and hot tub with oceanview deck, upscale 1 Pico restaurant on the beach, casual Coast cafe and bar, fitness center, bicycle rentals, spa featuring Kerstin Florian products, seaside lobby with morning coffee and evening cocktails, a Tesla shuttle car, and EV charging spots.
Casa del Mar, Santa Monica
Perhaps the most elegant of the L.A. beach hotels, Casa del Mar is a Leading Hotels of the World member for a reason: service is excellent, decor is stately with inspired plantation and tropical touches, and guests wake up in four-post beds to wide views of the Pacific Ocean.
Amenities: Italian marble bathroom with flat-screen TV and massage tub, 42-inch plasma TV in the bedroom, swimming pool and Jacuzzi with ocean view, Catch restaurant, new spa, wine bar, lobby lounge with live music, business center, fitness center, bicycle and inline skate rental.
Malibu Beach Inn
Malibu has L.A.’s most iconic beach but not many hotels—with the exception of Malibu Beach Inn, a respected member of the Los Angeles beach hotel scene, and also a member of the prestigious Leading Hotels of the World consortium. Featuring modern decor and art, and wonderful service, this 47-room boutique inn sits on a privately owned stretch of sand, so you fall asleep to the sounds of waves.
Amenities: In-room fireplace, glassed-in balcony, pillow-top mattress and Bellino bed linens, Bamford toiletries, custom robes, 37-inch HD TV, Bose Bluetooth speaker, Nespresso machine, free Wi-Fi, daily yoga class on the beach, waterfront dining terrace (the Carbon Beach Club), a craft cocktail bar, concierge services, and a spa suite offering massages and facials.
Fairmont Miramar Hotel and Bungalows
Many L.A. beach hotels are located in Santa Monica, but the Fairmont Miramar Hotel and Bungalows stands out as a particularly memorable stay for its tropical gardens, famous 140-year-old fig tree at the entry, koi pond and waterfall, and the loveliness of its 302 rooms and suites.
Amenities: 42-inch LCD flat-screen TV, Keurig coffee maker, bathrobe, Fig Restaurant featuring organic ingredients, alfresco dining at the lobby lounge and patio, bell and concierge services, laundry services, pet-friendly policies, outdoor swimming pool, 24-hour fitness center, Exhale spa, barbershop, jewelry store, and an onsite blow dry bar.
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel has, quite simply, anything you’d want in a hotel—ocean views not least of all. It’s easy walking distance to the best local attractions, including Third Street Promenade and the Santa Monica Pier. Inside, this Los Angeles beach hotel is comfortable and welcoming as well as upscale and refined.
Amenities: Julien Farel toiletries, 52-inch flat-panel TV, touchscreen lighted bathroom mirrors, patio fire pit in some rooms, Keurig machine, room service, Ocean & Vine restaurant, BarBelle, Blue Streak, a fireside lounge, Ocean Spa offering organic treatments, heated ocean view pool and hot tub with two-level deck and game area, fitness center with cardio classes and yoga, free Wi-Fi, 24-hour business center, onsite rental shop (cars, bikes, skates, boogie boards, roller skates, skateboards, scooters), free shoeshine service, free shuttle service (one-mile radius), concierge, dry cleaning, beach amenities including towels and beach chairs, and many niceties for kids and pets.
A bit farther south than the rest of the L.A. beach hotels, 102-acre Terranea Resort is surrounded by water and nature on the ritzy, windswept Palos Verdes Peninsula. It’s a true getaway, offering vast views of jumping whales and dolphins—as well as nearby Catalina Island—right from most guest rooms.
Amenities: Private ocean view balconies, four-fixture stone baths, flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations, hardwood floors, granite countertops, vaulted ceilings, fireplace, eight dining venues including Mar’sel, large spa and fitness center, oceanfront yoga studio, nine-hole golf course, four heated swimming pools, 140-foot water slide, kids’ club, bocce ball, croquet, boutique shops, business center, 24-hour concierge, Discovery Trail nature hike, and an activity center offering falconry, tide pooling, full-moon yoga, horseback riding, and many aquatic sports.
The Portofino Hotel & Marina, a Noble House Hotel
Sitting on the edge of the Redondo Beach Peninsula, this recently renovated Los Angeles beach hotel sports nautical decor that blends the classic and the modern. Each of its 161 guestrooms has a private balcony or patio over the water, within earshot of a colony of sea lions. The 181-slip marina has offered a lovely view of boats bobbing on the harbor ever since it opened in 1962 as a hangout for race car drivers.
Amenities: Flat screen or plasma TV, DVD players, rainfall shower head, heated pool overlooking ocean, loaner beach cruiser bikes, Baleen restaurant, fitness center, 24-hour business center, bedtime cookies and milk.
Hotel Erwin, Venice
Reflecting the loveable eccentricity that its Venice Beach ‘hood is famous for, 119-room Hotel Erwin is one of those Los Angeles beach hotels sure to make hipsters and artsy types feel at home. With modern, edgy decor, pops of bright color, and an unmistakably beachy vibe, Erwin has been embracing the local surf culture since 1974.
Amenities: Pillow-top mattresses, 300-thread count linens, 55-inch flat-screen HDTVs, free Wi-Fi, iPhone docking station, in-room snack bar curated by the local Whole Foods, private balconies with beach views, loaner Sole bicycles, a free pass to the original Gold’s Gym, Barlo restaurant, and High Lounge (Venice’s only rooftop bar).
Shade Hotel, Manhattan Beach
Shade Hotel in Manhattan Beach (which has an eponymous—and equally recommendable—sister property in Redondo Beach) puts forth sleek decor and energetic social spaces, drawing a stylish clientele here to have a bit of fun. This L.A. beach hotel also has balconied guest rooms, a location just 15 minutes south of LAX, and a robust list of amenities.
Amenities: California king-sized Tempurpedic bed, Sanijet spa tub with mood lighting, in-room Keurig machine, a pillow library, complimentary breakfast buffet, free Fiji water, free Wi-Fi, rooftop pool, indoor-outdoor dining and a craft cocktail bar, loaner cruiser bikes, free entry to Equinox Fitness Club (three miles away), business center, adjacent spa, concierge services, 24-hour room service, homemade cake pops at turndown, and champagne on arrival.
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– Original reporting by Avital Andrews