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The best hotels on the beach in LA

Looking for a beachfront hotel? From Malibu to Manhattan Beach, here are the best Los Angeles hotels on the beach.

Photograph: Courtesy Lisa Romerein
Casa del Mar.

If you're looking for one of the best hotels in Los Angeles, why not find one on the beach? At these hotels on the beach you'll find ocean breezes, crashing waves and maybe the occasional stray Venice Boardwalk weirdo. From secluded spots along the best beaches in LA to swanky suites in Santa Monica, these are the best hotels on the beach.

9 best hotels on the beach

Shutters on the Beach

Formerly a cool retreat for hot Hollywood stars and now a sister to Casa del Mar, Shutters has a relaxed but decidedly upscale style. Filled with comfortable sofas, club chairs and prints by modern masters such as David Hockney, the lobby mirrors the beach-cottage ambience of the rooms and suites, which in turn feature lovely, dark hardwood floors and the hotel's signature white shutters. Guests who prefer gentle pampering to the myriad outdoor beach activities can spend a day at the spa or sit poolside sipping wine and taking in the ocean views. The luxury is low-key, but it's luxury all the same.

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Santa Monica

Hotel Erwin

Live like a local at Venice Beach's only beachfront hotel, just steps from the famed boardwalk and the Pacific. Rest your head in one of the oceanview rooms or stay up at your own beach house party in the two-person tub and turntable-decked Dogtown Suite. Locals and tourists alike can visit the rooftop bar for sunset cocktails.

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Venice

Terranea

Welcome to Paradise. Situated on an oceanside bluff in posh Rancho Palos Verdes, the picturesque resort is the pinnacle of relaxation and resort life. Accommodations range from the usual rooms and suites to larger, more luxurious bungalows, casitas and villas. The 102-acre resort boasts a nine-hole golf course, spa, four pools (including adult-only), and eight—count 'em, eight—restaurants. And if that isn’t enough to keep you busy, there's also paddleboarding, snorkeling and horseback riding excursions nearby. Though most of the coastline is rocky here, you'll find a path to a secluded cove on the property's east end.

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Rancho Palos Verdes/Rolling Hills Estates

Casa del Mar

Located on the sand, close to Santa Monica's shops and restaurants, this elegant and architecturally significant hotel is a local landmark. Most of the plush rooms and suites offer ocean and coastline views; for a really opulent stay, reserve one of the two-story penthouse suites or the super-deluxe presidential suite. An afternoon at the spa is a vacation in itself; salon services can be enjoyed in one of five Mediterranean-style treatment rooms or, better yet, under a cabana on the fifth-floor pool deck. The bar in the ornate and well-furnished lobby is a popular meeting spot for the bronzed and beautiful locals.

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Santa Monica

Venice Beach House

This craftsman-style inn was built in 1911 by Warren Wilson, the owner of the now-defunct Los Angeles Daily Journal. Now on the National Register of Historic Places, it's been faithfully restored and furnished with exceptional antique pieces; many of the rooms are named after characters with ties to the area (Venice founder Abbot Kinney, sometime local Charlie Chaplin). Each of the nine rooms has its own character and amenities, though four share a common bath. The more extravagant suites offer an ocean view, a fireplace, a patio or a private entrance.

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Venice

Shade Hotel

This sparkling property hasn't been solely responsible for making Manhattan Beach a destination, but its influence has been huge. The 38 stylish guest rooms make great use of the space: Multi-purpose tables can be rolled back and forth over the beds for breakfast or for use as a desk, while all rooms have vast spa-baths, free Wi-Fi and color-adjustable chromatherapy lighting. It's a downhill hike to the beach from the hotel, but that's about as close as you can get when it comes to South Bay accommodations.

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Manhattan Beach

Malibu Beach Inn

Located on the sand, Casa Malibu is the only hotel on this stretch that has its own beach for exclusive use of guests. Malibu Country Mart is within a mile, and Malibu Pier is right next door, where fabulous breaks provide some of the best longboard surfing in Southern California. The inn offers a couple of room types, all of which come with a private balcony and face the water in some fashion. It's not cheap, but that's the price for your own slice of paradise on one of LA's most coveted stretches of beach.

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Malibu

Hotel Shangri-La

This Art Deco beauty reopened in the late aughts after a $30-million makeover, and the results are stunning. The streamline moderne exterior has been preserved, while inside, the rooms have been upgraded with hardwood floors, windows that open (yes, it's a rarity) and modern tech amenities. All offer ocean views and many have balconies and kitchenettes. A restaurant and pool have also been added, and, on the rooftop, guests can enjoy a drink at the Suite 700 lounge or a spa treatment. If you want to bury your toes in the sand, cross the street and the PCH pedestrian bridge and you'll find yourself on the beach.

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Santa Monica

Venice on the Beach Hotel

This oceanfront spot proves that staying on the beach doesn't have to come at a premium and saving a few bucks doesn't have to mean slumming it. Rooms are bright, clean and comfortable—which is all you really need when the sand is just a few steps away. Consider reserving one of the hotel's limited number of parking spots, lest you have to trek halfway across Venice to find a spot.

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Venice

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