Out-of-towners are often disappointed when they arrive in summer to find Los Angeles’s beaches cool and foggy (locals call it “June gloom”). On the other hand, the fall, with its warm, dry weather, is a surprisingly superb time of year to enjoy the coast, and these hotels put you close to the sand in style.
Quaint country inn (think four-poster beds and in-room fireplaces) meets the Santa Monica surf lifestyle at this serene B&B housed in a Colonial Revival home. Grab a hearty breakfast (Grand Marnier French toast, anyone?) then walk a block to the beach. In the evening, unwind with wine and freshly baked cookies.
Stay within steps of the funky Venice Beach boardwalk at this retro-styled hipster hotel. Bright colors and geometric prints give the rooms a mod, upbeat feel, but don’t spend too much time inside. Take to the rooftop lounge, a local hot spot, for crafty cocktails with unfettered ocean views.
This beachfront boutique has star cred: it’s owned by David Geffen, and the balcony of each shell-toned guest room overlooks Carbon Beach (a.k.a. Billionaire’s Beach for its rich and famous neighbors). Savor the celeb-studded Malibu good life with an alfresco sunset dinner at the Carbon Beach Club restaurant or with the hotel’s beach yoga and boot camp classes.
The interiors at this contemporary Manhattan Beach boutique may have been inspired by luxury yachts, but the vibe is California casual. Hang loose by soaking in your in-room Jacuzzi tub (set beneath “chromatherapy” lights), imbibing in the chic Zinc lounge, or taking one of the Strand cruisers for a complimentary spin.
Modeled after a Nantucket beach house (albeit a rather sprawling one), Shutters brings East Coast–style chic to the Pacific shore. Exploit the oceanfront location (right near the Santa Monica pier) with an alfresco meal, a surf lesson, yoga on the beach, or a bike ride on a Kate Spade cruiser.
If you can peel your eyes away from your room’s ocean view at this haute hotel, you’ll be dazzled by the green-on-white Hollywood Regency décor. Equally retro-glam is buzzing Cameo Bar, the lobby/poolside lounge where you may want to join the festive scene in the cabanas and skip the beach altogether.