I know the beach town of Manhattan Beach very well. I’ve lived there for the past twenty years, after all, but recently I did something very out of the ordinary: I spent a night in our local hotel, Shade Hotel, and boy was I impressed. Shade is the first and only luxury boutique hotel in this upscale beach community and the owners have created something special. BTW: If you aren’t familiar with Manhattan Beach it’s located 15 minutes from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), and Shade Hotel is just three blocks from the Pacific Ocean. Here’s my Manhattan Beach guide.
If you ever have an overnight layover at LAX, or just want to have a beach vacation in one of the best beach communities anywhere, I highly recommend spending a night (or a hundred) at Shade Hotel. Here are my 10 reasons to stay at Shade Hotel in Manhattan Beach, California.
1. Beautifully designed rooms with Tempur-Pedic beds
Shade has just 38 rooms, all of which are beautifully designed. How can you not love a hotel that has Tempur-Pedic mattresses wrapped in luxurious Mascioni linens and offers a pillow menu?
2. Glass of Champagne at check-in
It’s always nice when you check into a hotel and they offer you a free glass of Champagne.
3. Cake pops and Fiji water
Twice a day, housekeeping leaves mini bottles of Fiji water and the best homemade cake pops ever.
4. Two-person spa tub
Each room has a two-person spa tub by Sanijet. And that’s just the beginning of the romance factor. See below.
5. Cyclone fireplaces
With a flip of a switch, a unique cyclone fireplace will turn on to create a warm and romantic atmosphere.
6. Mood lighting that I had to Wikipedia
Above the tub is a panel of lights—with which the hotel offers a chromotherapy color menu. I had never even heard of chromotherapy so I needed to look it up to make sure they weren’t making it up. They weren’t. According to Wikipedia, it “is a complementary medicine method. Trained chromotherapists claim to be able to use light in the form of color to balance “energy” wherever a person’s body be lacking, whether it be on physical, emotional, spiritual, or mental levels. The practice is pseudoscientific, since it does not employ the scientific method.”
7. DirecTV and free Wi-Fi
Every room has a 32″ TV and DVD/CD player. There’s also DirecTV and cable so you’ll never be bored. On top of that there’s free Wi-Fi.
8. Keurig coffee machines
Every room has a Keurig coffee machine so you can quickly make a cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate like I did.
9. Breakfast is included
I was shocked when I went downstairs, saw the continental breakfast buffet and was told it was free for all guests. Eggs and pancakes are offered for an upcharge.
10. Complimentary beach bicycles, chairs and towels
Another little thing that the hotel offers is complimentary Strand cruiser bicycles and towels for the beach. There’s nothing like going for a ride along the Strand on a warm summer day. TIP: Bring a sweatshirt because when the sun goes down it gets cold quickly.
I’ve could’ve doubled this list, but I’m running out of time and you’re running out of attention. But I will say that the hotel design had to be created by a traveler as they thought of so many of the small things that matter to us. I didn’t even mention the sliding balcony doors, the bounty of electrical outlets or the late checkouts. It’s no wonder that Condé Nast Traveler listed Shade as the #6 reason to visit LA.