With its incredible location, this beachfront property gives its oft-corporate clients a front row seat to Santa Monica sunsets. Lovers of the Marriott brand will likely feel at home here as the hotel’s design and ambiance are reminiscent of similar Marriott locations, which doesn’t necessarily take into account its unique location. But standard features apply--Marriott Rewards users will be able to make the most of their stay.
Many rooms here have ocean views and spacious balconies. Style-wise, the rooms blend together with beige trimmings and pillowtop mattresses. They've got pet-friendly accommodations and the rooms are equipped with coffeemakers. There’s also 24-hour room service and turndown service.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Wi-Fi is $12.95 a day--but if you want to stream video and watch Netflix, it can run you $16.95 a day.
The marble bathrooms are similar throughout the hotel and come with shower/tub combos and lighted makeup mirrors.
The spacious lobby has the feel of a business hotel, without any distinguishing design aesthetics. There is, however, plenty of couch and chair options for reading the morning paper in peace. An outdoor patio gives guests ocean views off the back of the lobby and a bar with TVs and high-top tables clutter the floor.
There’s an enormous outdoor deck with tables, chairs and bright blue umbrellas. This all leads towards the beach where the guest-only pool is typically filled with families and business travelers who prefer cabanas and lounge chairs to the Santa Monica beach.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There’s a $9 "destination fee" on rooms that gives you access to beach chairs, umbrellas and ice chests. So, if you weren't planning on using those things, reconsider maybe doing this.
Spa Le Merigot has an incredible array of services including body wraps, facials, couple’s massages, Paraffin treatments and waxing. There are separate locker-rooms for men and women, which both include steam and sauna rooms.
The fitness center is fully equipped with machines and free weights.
If you want to get some exercise with your four-legged friend, Pacific Street Dog Park is only an 8-minute walk south of the hotel.
Cézanne is the hotel’s California-French restaurant that’s available for breakfast only while the lobby and patio features Le Troquet Patio Lounge with lunch and dinner options.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The menus on the hotel’s website show lunch and dinner options at Cézanne, which isn’t available. Also, don’t be fooled by the French-sounding names--there’s little here that resembles French cuisine.
The Lobby Sports Bar is a great place to unwind after a day at the beach, or to watch a Lakers game or some other sports thing.
It’s only a 10-minute walk to the Downtown Santa Monica train station that gives you access to the entire city, including Hollywood, Downtown and Universal Studios. Taxis and Uber rides are easy to hail, but if you want to get to Malibu or drive down to the South Bay, just rent a car.
Cora’s Coffee Shoppe (2-minute walk) has mouth-watering breakfast and kick-your-ass coffee. Catch (5-minute walk) is a seafood spot inside Hotel Casa del Mar with beautiful views of the ocean and some of the freshest fish in town.
Chez Jay (5-minute walk) is a historic dive bar up the street. Ma’Kai restaurant/lounge (10-minute walk) has guest DJs Thursday through Sunday and is a lively Santa Monica hotspot.
WHY WE LIKE IT
The best part of this hotel is its location. Walking out the backside, you’ll find yourself right on the beach and a stone’s throw from the Santa Monica Pier. The hotel itself doesn’t do a great job of blending into its surrounding environment and aesthetically isn’t all that unique or original. The spa here is great, however, and the access to restaurants, bars, lounges and attractions is hard to beat. Families and corporate travelers with Marriott Rewards points are regulars at these places--but would do well to get out of the hotel and enjoy the neighborhood.