The Bottom Line
- Excellent location within blocks of the pier and promenade
- Well-done renovation that respects the art deco design
- Excellent restaurant and outdoor dining area
- Guests-only rooftop deck offers sweeping Santa Monica Bay views
- Parking fee is much higher than the overnight rate at nearby parking garages
- Water temperature in the shower fluctuated wildly, requiring constant adjustment
- 1301 Ocean Avenue
Santa Monica, CA
- 71 rooms and suites in several configurations. Call to reserve instead of doing it online if you have specific needs
- Valet parking for a fee
- Complimentary WiFi, wired connections in rooms
- Fitness center, pool
- Standard amenities for a high-end, boutique hotel. No in-room coffee maker
- 100% non-smoking, pets not allowed
- Restaurant on premises, room service, rooftop bar (guests only)
- Dining area around pool (open to the public) was under construction when we visited promises to be exceptional when completed
Guide Review - Hotel Shangri-La
If the Shangri-La were a woman, you might say she has "good bones." The classic, clean-lined, art deco-style architecture holds up well in the 21st Century and we applaud the renovation team for creating a modern-style hotel that respects and enhances the building's original design.
Every room at the Shangri-La has a view, and even the ones facing Ocean Avenue are quiet, thanks to cleverly-installed interior glass that preserves the view, cuts the noise and still lets you open the window if you want.
The Shangri-La's management team set out to execute a fine vision of what a luxury boutique hotel should be. They have assembled a friendly, helpful staff who deliver a high level of service. Stay there more than once and they'll start to know (and cater to) your preferences.
The Dining Room's chef draws inspiration from the Santa Monica Farmers Market, which is located just outside the hotel's doors. It's an especially nice spot for a relaxing breakfast, best enjoyed any time they can open the windows to catch the ocean breeze - but with warm, inviting decor that creates an intimate evening dining ambiance.
We stayed at the Shangri-La in May, 2009. At that time, the rooftop deck and pool area were still under construction.
As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary accommodation for the purpose of reviewing the Shangri-La. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.