Shutters on the Beach, Santa Monica California, USA

Located literally on top of the world-renowned Santa Monica Beach and within walking distance to the historic Santa Monica Pier, Third Street Promenade, Santa Monica Place, and Venice Beach, historic Shutters on the Beach feels like an escape from everyday reality and into a Los Angeles fantasy.

Immediately as I pulled up toward this sunny Santa Monica property I could sense that it was an ideal destination for enjoying a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle of the Angeleno lifestyle. This property emits a sort of “East Coast Luxury Vacation” vibe, with New England Cape Cod style design influences such as white shutters and breezy balconies.

From someone who has actually spent half her life living in Massachusetts and visiting the original quaint cottages of New England’s Cape Cod, it brought back summer memories of my time spent exploring “The Cape.”

Valet attendants greeted me and whisked away my car somewhere safe so I could focus on making the most of my stay. Shutters offers 186 guest rooms and 12 suites, many of which feature fabulous balcony views of the pool below, along with classically Californian seaside sunsets.

First I checked into my room, which was extremely clean and well-organized. I had a gorgeous view of the pool and the ocean below as well as a balcony with *shutters” that opened out to enjoy the fresh air!

I explored the property’s grounds and scoped out the pool, which offers food and beverage and towel service. There was ample seating, and the chairs face toward the beach so you can enjoy the pool while also admiring pacific ocean views.

For dinner, I enjoyed a meal at the onsite restaurant Terraza, which is located at Shutters’ adjoining sister property right next door, Casa del Mar. This eatery featured flavors with Spanish-style influence, and a trendy upbeat soundtrack to add to the ambiance. At the moment the restaurant is only offering al fresco dining (which is fine with me, and seemingly with the rest of the guests too — because it just means that we get to listen to the sounds of the ocean and sit closer to the sand. 

The only challenge I anticipated with outdoor, night time dining was being cold (living in SoCal has made me soft when it comes to internal temperature regulation) and it was an extremely windy September evening on the coast — but there were ample heat lamps protecting each table. 

For dinner, there were more than enough choices for starters, entrees, drinks and desserts — and items for diners of any age (there was a kid friendly in-room dining menu, as well) and accommodating any type of dietary restriction.  In addition to the formal dining at Terraza, Shutters also hosts the onsite restaurants 1 Pico and Coast which offer food fare in a more casual setting.

When I returned to my room after dinner, I discovered that turndown service had paid a visit and prepared the room for a restful night’s sleep. Housekeeping had deposited a coffee maker onto the desk in the room that wasn’t there when I had arrived — which I appreciated because it’s absolutely no secret that I’m a coffee fiend. Overnight, I slept very well without facing the noisy disruptions that could traditionally be associated with such a popular tourist area. No disruptions, here.

The next morning I went for a run along the boardwalk which was just steps from the west-facing entrance of the hotel. Shutters’ location is quintessential for exploring greater Santa Monica, and extremely walkable (and bike-able) from all the nearby tourist attractions. It’s a safe, clean, friendly and hospitable location to set for home base as a staycation for local Angelenos, or for a visitor to experience weekend getaway and enjoy some time in the city of Santa Monica.

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