It’s almost Valentine’s Day, and there’s no better place to celebrate love than on the Westside. Whether you already live in Marina del Rey and you’re looking for the perfect place to propose or want great date night ideas in Santa Monica or Venice throughout the year, the Westside is chock full of great places to explore.
A sultry sunset, drinks by the firepit, and a delicious Valentine’s Day menu—what could be better than an evening at Salt? How about waking up to an ocean view after a night at the Marina del Rey Hotel, where special romance packages include chocolate, champagne, and late checkout. Talk about making a favorite Marina del Rey hotspot even better!
If you want an upscale dining experience in an alluring atmosphere, you can’t go wrong with Melisse in Santa Monica. “If romance for you means Michelin-star caliber food, truffles, and a 10-course tasting menu, your best LA bet is Melisse,” said Thrillist. “It’s one of the few refreshingly refined restaurants in town where a suit and even a tie (!!) are appropriate. A Champagne cart arrives table-side upon your being seated, setting the tone for a very different LA dining experience. If you’re at Melisse, you may as well go all out and indulge on one of the wine-paired tasting menus. Sure, it’s slightly snobby (and very expensive), but that’s part of the fun.”
If you’re planning a proposal for Valentine’s Day, or any day of the year, Thrillist recommends Little Door in Santa Monica. But if you’re just looking for a night of romance on the Westside without a ring involved…you may want to go elsewhere, they said. “Since its opening in September 2014, The Little Door Santa Monica has followed in the footsteps of its Mid-Wilshire sibling, becoming THE new hot Westside proposal spot. That’s because, like its forbear, this newbie is rustically charming and oozes intimacy. The only problem is that it’s hard to enjoy if you’re NOT popping the question: your date will, unquestionably, think you are. So, be ready to deal with that probably.”
This upscale Westside hotel oozes romance all year long, especially with features like the rose petal turn-down service. On Valentine’s Day, a special prix fixe menu at Cast & Plow includes three delectable courses.
A true gem in Venice, the restored craftsman-style inn was built in 1911 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. All of the rooms are quaint and charming, but try for one of the Super Deluxe Suites to turn the romance up further. “The more extravagant suites offer an ocean view, a fireplace, a patio or a private entrance,” said Timeout.
Waking up to an ocean view is always sexy, and this landmark hotel in Santa Monica is one of the few that’s right on the sand. Reserve a room with a view (obviously!) and take advantage of the special Valentine’s Day menu at Catch and special spa packages for couples.
Looking for some Valentine’s Day fun on the Westside that’s a little different? “Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Watson Adventures Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt for nudity at the Getty Center,” said Go Los Angeles. This special activity, going on February 11–12, is not as spicy as you’re thinking; you’ll be fully clothed, but searching for “secrets hidden in works of art involving nudity while tackling witty, tricky questions.”
The Food Network recently lauded this Westside ocean-view restaurant as one of the best in L.A. “Café del Rey matches its surroundings with a nautical feel that pairs well with the California fare that’s available for brunch, lunch, and dinner.” The Marina del Rey eatery is also featuring a special Valentine’s Day menu.
This secret garden is located on the UCLA campus and offers a peaceful, scenic setting in the heart of the city. Stroll along the grounds enjoying the ferns, flowers, and cacti, or have a picnic lunch while watching the koi and turtles.
If you live on the Westside, the idea of hitting the pier with a bunch of tourists may not seem so inviting. But there’s something inherently romantic about riding the Ferris wheel together, trying your hand at carnival games to win a giant stuffed bear, and then sharing a couple of corn dogs. If you’d rather opt for some fine dining at the end of your day of fun, The Lobster offers upscale yumminess right there on the pier.
You can have a view of the water, you can be near the water, but perhaps no place offers the level of romance that actually being on the water provides. Romance on the Westside includes an array of choices that don’t involve sand in your shoes. Take a Hornblower Dinner Cruise in Marina del Rey, or go Old Plank Sailing with Captain Mancini for a sunset dinner cruise or moonlit sail. Or, perhaps the most romantic option of all: take a sunset gondola tour with Gondolas d’Amore.
It’s not all about the beach, right? Head east about 10 minutes from Marina del Rey to The Corner Door, “an excellent choice for Westside love birds,” said Eater. They’ve earmarked the restaurant for its “solid renditions of American gastropub fare…and cocktails that would set anyone’s nerves at ease.”
For more information about moving to Marina del Rey or owning a new condo near the beach, visit X67 Lofts. X67 Lofts features 67 contemporary new loft-style homes on the Westside with 15 uniquely designed floorplans and high-end features and finishes including gourmet kitchens with center islands with eating bar (per plan), KitchenAid® stainless steel appliances, frameless European-style cabinetry, and Caesarstone® countertops.
Resort-style amenities at X67 Lofts include a dipping pool with cabana-style lounges, a Residential Concierge Attendant seven days a week, a fitness room, and a community room.
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