Splendor by the Sea: Indulge in coastal California luxury at Marina del Rey Hotel

Sitting outside allows one to take in the sights and sounds of the marina. (Marina del Rey Hotel/Submitted)

By Bridgette M. Redman

In a city known for its views, few can compete with those from the restaurants and rooms of the Marina del Rey Hotel.

It’s one of the grand dames of the coastal town, having been built in 1964 and fully renovated in 2014.

From the moment one turns down the dock leading to this waterfront hotel, everything is designed to transport guests to a seaside paradise, one where boats and bikes reign supreme and water is a constant source of both comfort and activity.

Nestled between the Santa Monica Pier and the Venice Beach Boardwalk, it is right off Highway 1. Hints of luxury are immediately apparent at the property’s exterior, which boasts a collection of Tesla superchargers.

Upon arrival, guests are greeted warmly by valet attendants, who whisk away their cars and luggage, letting them immediately slip into vacation mode.

The lobby reflects the California coastal landscape, incorporating marine-like colors throughout. The walls are covered in waves, and wood tables float like driftwood on blue and red area rugs. Generous amounts of cushioned seating and greenery beckon guests in and tease of the nearby ocean with nautical touches like handsome engravings of the lobby’s longitude and latitude in the floor. Looking up, there is a flock of sculpted seagulls eagerly flying toward the water.

Uncommon common areas

While many hotels save high-scale design for lobbies, guestrooms and restaurants, the Marina del Rey has intentionally hospitable corners all throughout the property. One example is found on the second floor right outside the elevator, where an oversized couch stretches before a bookcase, inviting anyone to take a leisurely hour or two in comfort exploring its books.

Each floor has expansive artwork visible from the lobby, a feature that invites people farther into the hotel and adds a touch of class and luxury.

Marina del Rey boasts 10,000 square feet of event space for those seeking a picturesque place for meetings or special occasions. As a wedding venue, it offers lovely spaces indoors and out.

The Regatta Ballroom can accommodate up to 300 people and connects to the Edgewater Room if more space is needed. In addition, floor-to-ceiling windows provide a spectacular view of the sunset. The Edgewater Room’s 80-person capacity and outdoor patio space is ideal for smaller gatherings. Outside, the 3,500-square-foot Marina Garden is Marina del Rey’s waterfront lawn, and the hotel offers it for events of up to 300 people.

For vacationing guests, one of the most attractive features can be found right off the lobby — the outdoor pool and hot tub. From the heated infinity pool one can view yachts and boats in the harbor, while blue-and-white-striped loungers with tents and umbrellas for shade invite relaxation.

Of course, if you want to go to a beach rather than a pool, Marina del Rey Hotel is ready to accommodate you with the rental of bikes which you can pedal to nearby Venice Beach.

Home away from home

A boutique hotel, the 164 rooms range from poolside accommodations to those with marina or city views and private patios. The property also offers a variety of suites — some with wraparound patios, some with bars, some with cozy living rooms.

While the rooms are designed for luxurious comfort, they too beckon you to enjoy the beauties of the natural coastalline. With sleek white décor, there is an almost constant reminder that a marina is near and ready to be enjoyed via swimming, boating and hiking. Even if you have little time to leave your room, Marina del Rey Hotel wants to make sure you get a chance to enjoy the coast. Patios provide views and the opportunity to sit outside and take in the sights and sounds of the marina.

The bathrooms offer plenty of modern comfort with walk-in showers. The amenities are from Lather: Modern Apothecary and include such sophisticated sundries as lavender-lime moisturizer, yuzu bergamot conditioner and mint-thyme shampoo.

Feeding the soul and the stomach

Sean Collins is the executive chef in charge of the culinary delights found at Salt Restaurant and Bar. Set on the waterfront with tall, thin floor-to-ceiling windows, Salt offers a combination of seafood and classic cuisine with a constantly changing menu. There is daily brunch, happy hour and dinner and then a special executive chef’s weekend brunch.

The weekend brunch offers a 10-course price fixe meal at $80, starting with mimosas and lox, moving through salads and egg dishes and ending with Irish coffee and espresso.

Dinner is an opportunity to leisurely enjoy several courses that draw upon locally sourced ingredients mixed with delicacies such as caviar, charcuterie and charred octopus. Soups and salads are followed by a selection of prime meats, seafood and vegetarian dishes. In addition, Salt offers a variety of craft cocktails and mocktails, including some on a rotating and themed menu.

The food is fabulous, and the atmosphere makes you want to linger and savor. The chic cushioned chairs in blue and white are designed for comfort as well as elegance.

With upscale accommodations and exceptional amenities, the Marinda del Rey Hotel is a tempting choice for leisure and business travelers alike, and a worthy option for Ventura County residents looking for something special just a short drive away. It purposely reflects all that makes the location unique, blending in with the beauty and adding to the seduction of LA’s Westside.

Marina del Rey Hotel

13534 Bali Way, Marina del Rey