Shutters on the Beach – Los Angeles, California is ideal for those looking for laid-back California elegance. With art that includes works by Hockney, Lichtenstein and Motherwell, and a master sommelier on staff, the property takes the craft of living well seriously. Michael S. Smith, the Obama White House interior designer, has made it an oasis of beach chic: guest rooms have hardwood floors, cashmere throws, built-in entertainment centers and shelves stocked with thoughtfully chosen books.

The airy beachside restaurant 1 Pico, and the café-bar Coast encourage lingering. Besides the fitness center, Shutters offers yoga on the beach, bicycle rentals and surfing lessons, as well as preferred appointments at ONE Spa, which has a range of treatments using Kerstin Florian products.

This white and grey shingled hotel, which faces the ocean, is a favourite of locals, tourists and even a few Hollywood celebrities. The hotel’s casual-chic restaurants and bars afford gorgeous sunset views. Guests can step outside straight onto the Santa Monica beach promenade and bicycle trail.


Of the hotel’s 186 guest rooms and 12 suites, most have balconies as well as whirlpool tubs inside sparkling bathrooms stocked with a treasure chest of luxury bath-and-body products. Michael Smith’s design aesthetic is high-end American beach house, showcasing romantic four-poster beds, walnut desks and nightstands, louvered white shutters, custom-made bed linens and hand-woven Tibetan rugs.

Most of the tranquil rooms make you feel like are staying at your own private beach cottage, and have balconies and white wooden shutters that open to catch the sea breeze.


You can watch sunset over the Pacific at different venues:

Coast Beach Café & Bar

An inviting beachfront cafe with indoor and outdoor seating, Coast is a relaxed but sophisticated bar offering fresh California dishes. Stop by any time, from early morning to late evening. Special offerings include the impressive Happy Hour, savory weekend brunches and Wednesday Farmer’s Market dinners.

One Pico

Perched above the beach with sweeping ocean views, a burning fireplace and a seasonal market menu, One Pico is your destination for upscale coastal dining. Enjoy the “Love the Grape” menu, a 3-course prix fixe with wine pairings from the monthly featured vineyard, or try the Meat-Free Monday menu featuring new specials each week.


ONE SPA is a rejuvenating oasis offering six treatment rooms, including two wet rooms with Shutters’ exclusive tropical rain showers. Relax and unwind with a facial, massage or body treatment; signature therapies feature an exclusive line of Kerstin Florian products. Mani/pedicures and waxing services are also available, as is a fully equipped fitness center.


Santa Monica is LA’s cute, alluring, hippie-chic little sister, its karmic counterbalance and, to many, its salvation. Surrounded by LA on three sides and the Pacific on the fourth, SaMo is a place where real-life Lebowskis sip White Russians next to martini-swilling Hollywood producers, celebrity chefs dine at family-owned taquerias, and soccer moms and career bachelors shop at abundant farmers markets.

All the while, kids, out-of-towners and those who love them flock to wide beaches and the pier, where the landmark Ferris wheel and roller coaster welcome one and all.


Envy is an ugly thing, New York. While your denizens spend their time sniffling and throwing shade in the snow, Angelenos are busy riding waves, tying up their hiking boots and counting their copious blessings. Think about it: in how many megalopolises can you gallop across rugged mountains just nine miles from City Hall? Despite its heaving head count, LA is a city indelibly tied to mighty Mother Nature. Here, dense, vibrant neighborhoods back onto golden beaches, city streets lead up to flower-carpeted hillsides, and huge, deep-blue skies are an IMAX screen for lingering sunsets made to pierce your heart.

Creative Overload

Dreams are serious business in La La Land. Home to Hollywood, this is a city where fantastical thoughts are encouraged; a place gleefully wrapped in endless layers of modern legend and mythology. Every year countless small-town dreamers pour onto its streets, itching to share their tales with LA and the world – on screen and stage, in lyrics, or on the whitewashed walls of galleries. The end result is an electrifying whirlpool of creativity: edgy art spaces, cult-status rock venues, acclaimed concert halls and thought-provoking stages, all fueling a city addicted to the weird, the wonderful and the downright scandalous.

Architectural Riches

LA’s obsession with creative expression extends to its stucco and mortar. After all, this is where movie palaces look like Chinese temples and ancient Egyptian tombs, where concerts halls twist and curve like steely cartoon characters, and where soda bottling plants look like landlocked ocean liners. Indeed, LA celebrates architectural diversity with astounding gusto. From storybook Hollywood abodes and Silver Lake modernist prototypes, to downtown theaters channeling the Palace of Versailles, no other American city delivers such a thrilling mash-up of architectural styles, statements and role models…often on the very same palm-studded street.

Food & Drink

So which really has the better food scene: LA or SF? While the latter may claim more Michelin stars, LA packs one heck of a culinary punch. It’s here that you’ll find California’s best tacos, the country’s most authentic Korean and one of the nation’s biggest concentrations of vegan restaurants. And when it comes to imbibing, SF best take a cable car home. From dirty martinis in a basement power station, to craft brews in a steampunk bowling alley, LA has a knack for turning humble drinking sessions into otherworldly adventures worthy of a toast or three.

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