A location in Santa Monica for a relaxing stay. A review of Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows

I decamped to the Miramar Santa Monica from the Chateau Marmont, in Hollywood, as I wanted a few days to relax, enjoy a view of the Pacific, shop and take in some treatments at the spa.

I checked in 3 hours early with absolutely no problems or comment. I'd opted for a Santa Monica Premiere room in the tropical gardens, also referred to as 'bungalows'. I had a large room with french doors out to a private patio with table and seating and pretty planting and flowers, huge marble bathroom (with a tub big enough space for 2 for anyone on a romantic break) wet bar, tv, cd player etc. Plenty of closet space, 2 phones etc The room was modern, clean and the little dish of sand with shells by an old photo of Santa Monica Pier was a cute touch on one of the bedside tables.

My bungalow was next to the pool but for most of my stay it wasn't so busy or noisy to be a bother. Sunday there was an impressive outdoor brunch on offer, which again made things busy around the pool area...so request a bungalow away from the pool if that's an issue for you. Although they will all be just a short walk away.

I used the spa for a massage and facial, very pleasant. I believe you can arrange for a massage in your room also. The concierge made my arangements for me as I was in the UK.

My rate of $269 per night for 2 included a full American Breakfast which can be taken in your room. If you want a view of the ocean from your accommodations opt for a Fairmont Deluxe. These are in the main hotel and have balconies. The original Palisades Suites sound nice, historic 'old' Hollywood, but have no balconies if access to the outdoors is important. It's worth checking the Fairmont website for deals and packages at the hotel.

The hotel is perfectly placed for the beach and the Third Street Promenade (all walking distance) with it's shops, theatres, restaurents and street performers - especially on a Sunday afternoon. You can also walk to the shops on Montana if you like walking, a rare opportunity in sprawling car mad LA, and again there are cafes and restaurents where you can rest and watch the world go by. Main Street looks interesting, but get a taxi over there...a bit too far to amble.

As a woman travelling on my own while at this hotel I have to say I felt quite safe both in and around the hotel and walking in the immediate area. True, the Pallisades Park seems to be home to many homeless men, but they don't seem to bother anyone. Certainly no-one approached me.

The staff were, without exception, discreet but helpful when needed and friendly. Oh, and there's an airport Shuttle Bus from the hotel which only costs $12 to LAX, which is a bargain in my book!

So, to summarise if you feel like maybe spending a little more for something special, I can't fault the Fairmont Miramar for a stay in Santa Monica. And the place seemed kid friendly for those travelling with little ones.I'll certainly return.

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Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows
1265 reviews