After writing about luxury travel for 8 years now, it is such a joy to have found a brand like Preferred Hotels & Resorts that is so consistently fabulous when it comes to their 5-star accommodation. And, thankfully, they are the world’s largest independent hotel brand which means you have over 750 hotels across 85 countries to choose from. Our team at Carmen’s Luxury Travel has been exploring some of their properties on both coasts of the U.S. (read about them here and here) and most recently we enjoyed a stay at Hotel Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
When it comes to being a tourist in Los Angeles, Santa Monica is where you want to be as you have access to so many great beaches, parks, restaurants, nearby museums and more. Even locals frequent spots around here like Main Street and nearby Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice Beach. Hotel Casa Del Mar gives you the best of both worlds as its a beachfront oasis right in the center of all the action.
The interiors of Hotel Casa Del Mar took my breathe away the moment I stepped through the doors, which were kindly held open by the friendly doormen and valet staff. Fun fact: Hotel Casa Del Mar is in the National Register of Historic Places as this originally was a private beach club beginning in 1926, where many famous Hollywood celebrities and socialites visited back in the day. The grand, split staircase is certainly a showstopper which then leads you into an elegant and lavishly decorated lobby lounge where check-in is a breeze.
If you keep walking through the lounge, you will see off to the side some indoor cabanas which are the perfect place to enjoy a happy hour drink or evening musical entertainment. And if you keep walking towards the ocean views, you will find their famous seafood restaurant Catch (temporarily closed) and also the beautiful, two-level Terrazza Lounge & Patio. We enjoyed dinner here our first night but more on that later!
Oceanfront Accommodation at Hotel Casa Del Mar:
I was absolutely giddy walking into my room since I was upgraded to an oceanfront room on the ground level (literally steps from the sand) with the most incredible outdoor space.
Our private patio was so spacious, especially compared to LA’s hotel standards. It was the perfect place to sunbathe or enjoy a delicious room service breakfast in the morning. Quick tip: don’t miss out on ordering their Eggs Benedict for breakfast whether it’s room service or at their restaurant – one of the best I’ve tried in LA! Also, I highly recommend becoming an I Prefer Hotel Rewards member so you can also enjoy possible room upgrades, exclusive member rates, and more.
Back indoors in my room, I thoroughly enjoyed the mix of elegant yet homey interiors. The built in book shelf was such a nice addition and not something you see often in hotel rooms. Hotel Casa Del Mar not only gives you complimentary water bottles, Nespresso coffee pods plus slippers at turndown, but also two books to take with you to the pool, beach or even back home! As someone who loves to read, this was such a special touch.
Every room at Hotel Casa Del Mar has a beautiful Italian marble bathroom with a Hydrothermal massage tub. The cute rubber ducky was a cute little addition too! I also enjoyed being able to watch TV while soaking in the tub.
Amenities at Hotel Casa Del Mar:
While I could’ve happily stayed in my room and private patio all day, I wanted to pay a visit to their Sea Wellness Spa. This eco-friendly spa at Hotel Casa Del Mar understands that relaxation is part physical but mostly mental so they’ve created a tranquil space in the midst of busy Los Angeles. Their 60-minute Swedish Massage was just what I needed and I loved their use of lavender essential oils to aid relaxation. This massage can also be customized to each guest’s needs and my lovely massage therapist, Trish, was so great at pinpointing exactly what I needed.
If you need another spot to relax, other than the spa, head to their pool that looks out onto the Pacific Ocean. The location could not be better, and I can easily see why this was such a popular beach club back in the 1920s. While the pool is small, the surroundings are stunning and you can always choose to relax on the sand as well.
And if you want to host meetings, conferences, or a big event, there are several spaces to choose from at Hotel Casa Del Mar. I would say the most popular and grand venue would be the Colonnade Ballroom which holds up to 450 guests. Everything about this hotel just screams Great Gatsby! I’m in love with the interiors and history at Hotel Casa Del Mar.
Dining at Hotel Casa Del Mar:
Later in the evening it was time to dine at Terrazza Lounge which perfectly overlooks Santa Monica Beach & Pier. The restaurant’s interiors really wowed me with lush greenery, high ceilings, and beautiful combinations of blue and green sea colors in the tiles and furniture. Our waitress was so kind and attentive, as well as helpful when it came to menu suggestions. Although Catch Restaurant was closed, we could order some sushi off of their menu and I enjoyed a fresh and flavorful salmon and cucumber roll as an appetizer.
However, if you want a larger appetizer to share between a few people, I highly recommend their impressive charcuterie board accompanied with some of the best bread I’ve ever had. For our entrees, we chose the Seared Chilean Sea Bass and Filet Mignon with seasonal vegetables. Both dishes were so colorful and bursting with flavor. The sea bass was a favorite for me and I absolutely loved the leek parsley sauce accompanied with some Manila clams. For dessert, I recommend the seasonal fruit cobbler and house made chocolate brownie with Tahitian vanilla gelato.
Overview of Hotel Casa Del Mar:
My only complaint about my stay at Hotel Casa Del Mar was that it was too short! But we will most certainly be back, the hospitality, spacious rooms, beautiful surroundings and delicious food are just too much to resist. Even if you live in Los Angeles, I would recommend dining here, enjoying a spa treatment, or simply visiting their Lobby or Cabana Lounges in the evening for a drink. After all, Preferred Hotels & Resorts never disappoint.
Disclosure: I was a guest of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, but all opinions here are my own.