Gorgeous design and laid-back vibes meet at the Santa Monica Proper hotel, conceived by LA-based designer Kelly Wearstler. From the curved woven headboards to hand-glazed ceramic tiles, details are everything here, and a white and sand palette makes the property feel like an extension of the famous beach that’s just blocks away.
Where is the Santa Monica Proper?
The 267-room Proper, comprising two buildings, is situated on a quiet corner in downtown Santa Monica, LA’s beloved beachfront community. Expect the ride from the airport to take between 30-40 minutes depending on the city’s notorious traffic.
What’s near the Santa Monica Proper?
The neighbourhood hotel is within blocks of the beach and is a stroll from cafés, such as Sidecar Doughnuts and Huckleberry, parks and boutiques. The bluffs overlooking the sand and surf are a 10-minute walk from the property, with the iconic Santa Monica Pier and its solar-powered ferris wheel just further south. With outposts of Zara, Gap, J.Crew and more, the pedestrian-only Third Street Promenade shopping area is also very close. Perfect for an evening nightcap, cosy Esters Wine Bar & Shop is just down the street.
Divided between a 1920s historic building and a contemporary wing, all rooms are gorgeous and generously sized, though those in the contemporary wing are even more sprawling with floor to ceiling windows and soaking tubs in the travertine ensuites. Rooms in the historic Spanish Revival building are labelled Landmark, with the Landmark Garden Terrace being particularly charming. In the contemporary wing, opt for a Premier Suite, equipped with a balcony for ocean breezes. The Proper Two-Bedroom and Three-Bedroom Suites feature living-cum-dining areas along with multiple bedrooms and baths, and unique artwork curated by Wearstler herself.
Restaurants & bars
The hotel has two on-site restaurants. Lobby level lounge Palma goes from serving blueberry ricotta pancakes and omelettes by morning to bucatini and cacio e pepe, cocktails and wine by night. Meanwhile, rooftop restaurant Calabra is open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, with a menu that leans more Mediterranean. Think baba ganoush, chicken kebabs, falafel and more. Be sure to try the AmeriCabo, made with mezcal, hibiscus, lime and Cointreau. Santa Monica institution Rustic Canyon, known for its seasonal and produce-driven dishes and extensive wine list, is only a few blocks away.
The Santa Monica Proper is a LEED Silver-certified building. Along with reducing laundry and water use, offering glass bottles for filtered water, and sourcing produce from the farmer’s market, the property also works with Clean the World to recycle single-use hotel bar soap.
Travel for Work
There are a variety of options for meetings and conferences, from boardrooms to event spaces (bookings required), that are equipped with the latest technology and audiovisual equipment.
Pool, Gym & Spa
The hotel offers extensive wellness and fitness options, from the heated rooftop pool that’s open year-round to the bright and glass-encased fitness centre equipped with Woodway treadmills, Peloton bikes, water rowers, dumbbells and barbells, and more. Yoga classes are held daily or weekly on the terrace, depending on the season. An on-staff personal trainer is also available for private sessions. At the spa, the focus is on Ayurveda, with holistic treatments such as Abhyanga, Shirodara, energy, breath and sound work. The property also offers 3 to 28-day Ayurveda-based retreats helmed by Ayurvedic expert Martha Soffer.
What you need to know
Like each hotel in the Proper portfolio, the Santa Monica outpost is reflective of its setting: beachy and laidback. The rooftop restaurant-cum-bar has quickly become a favourite see and be seen local hangout.
Best for: Couples
Design: Mid-century Minimalist
Number of rooms: 267
Rates: From US $489 per night
Parking: Valet parking with nightly rate of $55
Address: 700 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90401