Fodor's Expert Review Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
1700 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, California 90401, United States See on Map
When guests picture what "a beach hotel in Santa Monica" might look like, the Loews, with its nautical themed aesthetic, would probably be exactly that. Grandiose windows, a laid-back vibe and an unmatched location are what make this place special. The hotel caters to both families and business travelers who are looking for an incredible vacation spot with unlimited access to all that Santa Monica has to offer.
The spacious rooms offer incredible views of the beach and outdoor pool deck. Full-size sofa beds are perfect for families and balconies are fabulous for people-watching on the boardwalk down below. The rooms also come equipped with noise machines if the sound of the waves isn’t enough to put you right to sleep. There are also Keurig coffee makers in each room and free Wi-Fi.
Request a higher floor for the best sunset views, or opt for the poolside cabana rooms that give direct access to the pool, which also comes complete with fire-pits for romantic nights outside.
The highlight of the large bathrooms is the vanity mirror that has both day and nighttime settings via touchscreen. Fans of Julien Farel will love the bath products.
Nothing short of stunning, the lobby is a giant glass-cased atrium that also features a bustling lounge/restaurant--and no shortage of comfy couches to post up with your morning coffee.
Loews has a dog-friendly program called Loews Loves Pets. There’s a special pet room service menu, placemats, water bowls, treats and more. The fee is $100 a day.
A massive deck surrounds the beach-facing heated pool that’s perfect for kids during the day and a great spot for grown ups to curl up at night. On cold winter days, there’s a large hot tub and cold winter nights feature romantic fire pits overlooking the water. There’s also a pool table and other beach games to keep families fully occupied, if the ocean isn’t enough.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There is a daily "resort fee" of $25, but this does include a shuttle for the area, the fitness center, internet access, beach chairs and umbrellas. So, utilize these things to get your money's worth.
Ocean Spa is equipped with steam rooms and saunas for jetlagged travelers. They offer massages, facials and body treatments, and there's a hair and nail salon.
The rather large fitness center gives guests a full complement of cardio machines and free weights for a complete workout. The hotel also offers upwards of 40 classes a week that are free for hotel guests and include yoga, water aerobics, dance, Pilates and more.
Ask about the free weekday classes at Santa Monica’s Muscle Beach. Not to be confused with the Venice location, the Original Muscle Beach has been here since the 1930s.
There’s a lot to love here. Ocean & Vine is the signature hotel restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner, serving Cali-cuisine, fresh seafood and smoothies. BarBelle is the lobby lounge with great views, shared plates and signature cocktails. Beach Barn sits on the opposite side of the pool and serves vintage candy and mouthwatering gelato (but is only open on the weekends).
YOU SHOULD KNOW Room service ends at midnight, so if you’re looking for late night snacks, plan ahead.
Santa Monica is remarkably walkable. There are dozens of restaurants, bars and attractions all within 10 minutes of the hotel. The Downtown Santa Monica Train Station is also a 10-minute walk away and gives you access to more of the city, including Downtown, Hollywood and Universal Studios. If you’re looking to drive, there’s a Hertz right in the hotel if you want to rent a car.
For fresh seafood, you can’t go wrong with Catch (6-minute walk) at Hotel Casa del Mar. If you want something casual, there is an array of options at the Santa Monica Pier (4-minute walk) or Third Street Promenade (10-minute walk).
Chez Jay is a dive bar institution across the street from the hotel. For something more refined, check out 41 Ocean (4-minute walk), a chic lounge with incredible cocktails.
WHY WE LIKE IT
If you’re looking for a great family beach vacation location, or you're a business traveler who simply loves the ocean air, you can’t beat the location of this hotel. Out the back, you’re literally on the water and can find things to do, eat or drink all within walking distance. The hotel is stunning, with sunset views through wide-open windows and there are enough food and drink options and activities to keep you busy. The hotel wants you to enjoy the location and tries going the extra mile to make your stay great.
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