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Beach front hotels around LA

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I don't want to be any closer to LA than Malibu, but there's only one place in Malibu which is the Malibu Beach Inn which frankly doesn't look that great. Is there some kind of special place somewhere around LA or should I go all the way to Santa Barbara for the weekend?

I'm looking for something special and serene.
post #2 of 13
I have not been here myself, but have heard good things about it. http://www.terranea.com It's about 15 minutes from where I grew up, and I can say that the location is fantastic -- a beautiful spot on the cliffs overlooking the ocean. (In high school I actually worked on the property in its former incarnation, which was Marineland -- a smaller, crappier precursor to Sea World.)
That said, I think it's more sprawling resort than small, intimate hotel.
Your impression of the Malibu Beach Inn is correct -- it's fine, but not great.
I imagine there are some nice places in Laguna Beach if you wanted to go that direction, but that's really no closer than Santa Barbara and not nearly as nice of a drive. (PCH > 405)
If you do bite the bullet and stay in Santa Barbara, you might want to check out http://www.spanishgardeninn.com I stayed there this past fall and really liked it. It is not on the beach, though; it's a few blocks off State Street.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lawyerdad View Post

I have not been here myself, but have heard good things about it. http://www.terranea.com It's about 15 minutes from where I grew up, and I can say that the location is fantastic -- a beautiful spot on the cliffs overlooking the ocean. (In high school I actually worked on the property in its former incarnation, which was Marineland -- a smaller, crappier precursor to Sea World.)
That said, I think it's more sprawling resort than small, intimate hotel.
Your impression of the Malibu Beach Inn is correct -- it's fine, but not great.
I imagine there are some nice places in Laguna Beach if you wanted to go that direction, but that's really no closer than Santa Barbara and not nearly as nice of a drive. (PCH > 405)
If you do bite the bullet and stay in Santa Barbara, you might want to check out http://www.spanishgardeninn.com I stayed there this past fall and really liked it. It is not on the beach, though; it's a few blocks off State Street.

I'm strongly considering SB. It is for a special weekend so I would like the hotel to be as nicely appointed as possible, and hopefully not in the dreadful "California casual" style, if possible.
post #4 of 13
I remember when I was in college I took my girlfriend to Shutters for one night of sun and sex, and when we got there we looked out the window and some disgusting woman was taking photographs for what was clearly the beginning of her career in porn.

I love the SB Biltmore. It is a little run down, or was the last time I was there, but I think it remains one of the very special places in CA.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsstillmatt View Post

I remember when I was in college I took my girlfriend to Shutters for one night of sun and sex, and when we got there we looked out the window and some disgusting woman was taking photographs for what was clearly the beginning of her career in porn.

I love the SB Biltmore. It is a little run down, or was the last time I was there, but I think it remains one of the very special places in CA.

I was at Shutters this weekend.

I will maybe check out the biltmore.

What about Carmel? Is that nice?
post #6 of 13
The town of Carmel is so awful that it almost ruins what is an absolutely beautiful setting. The Lodge is a little like the BH Hotel or the Biltmore. A CA classic.

If you are willing to go that far, however, the best waterfront hotel in CA, without question, is in Big Sur. That is an hour or so closer to LA.
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsstillmatt View Post

The town of Carmel is so awful that it almost ruins what is an absolutely beautiful setting. The Lodge is a little like the BH Hotel or the Biltmore. A CA classic.

If you are willing to go that far, however, the best waterfront hotel in CA, without question, is in Big Sur. That is an hour or so closer to LA.

Which is that one, the Post Ranch Inn?
post #8 of 13
Yeah. It's pretty much the best place in the entire world.
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Are you being serious? I will make a reservation based on this...
post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsstillmatt View Post

I love the SB Biltmore. It is a little run down, or was the last time I was there, but I think it remains one of the very special places in CA.

Stayed there last weekend. Our room was not particularly special, but the grounds are spectacular. It's a cool place with a bit of an old school vibe.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by lawyerdad View Post

I have not been here myself, but have heard good things about it. http://www.terranea.com It's about 15 minutes from where I grew up, and I can say that the location is fantastic -- a beautiful spot on the cliffs overlooking the ocean. (In high school I actually worked on the property in its former incarnation, which was Marineland -- a smaller, crappier precursor to Sea World.)
That said, I think it's more sprawling resort than small, intimate hotel.
Your impression of the Malibu Beach Inn is correct -- it's fine, but not great.
I imagine there are some nice places in Laguna Beach if you wanted to go that direction, but that's really no closer than Santa Barbara and not nearly as nice of a drive. (PCH > 405)
If you do bite the bullet and stay in Santa Barbara, you might want to check out http://www.spanishgardeninn.com I stayed there this past fall and really liked it. It is not on the beach, though; it's a few blocks off State Street.

Hey! I grew up 15 minutes from this place too. Rolling Hills!

Terranea is beautiful and has some amazing views of the ocean. With that said, it's not a "beachfront" hotel. There's no easy access to the beach. It has some nice pools though. The restaurants are really great too.
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ctkim View Post

Hey! I grew up 15 minutes from this place too. Rolling Hills!

Terranea is beautiful and has some amazing views of the ocean. With that said, it's not a "beachfront" hotel. There's no easy access to the beach. It has some nice pools though. The restaurants are really great too.
RPV here. The former Rolling Hills High School, class of '86.
post #13 of 13
LD, good to see you posting again!

The recommendation for the Terranea is a good one. I've stayed there a number of times and will be there again later this month. It's our go-to staycation spot. Good whale watching this time of year too.

CT, you're half-right. There is a technically a beach connected to the property, but it is small and rocky, not sandy, and not particularly pleasant. The adult pool or spa pool is the place to be when you are there.
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