Shopping season is approaching quickly, and even the most dedicated browsers and buyers can tire of hunting for the perfect gift or holiday outfit. Why not make it fun this year and head to the South Bay for a shopping staycation?
The Westdrift hotel in Manhattan Beach is just steps from stores, restaurants, snack spots and entertainment options for everyone in the group. It’s pet-friendly, too, so no one has to be left out. Shopping-averse guests can ride a hotel-provided bike on the Strand, catch a film at the nearby movie theater, or head to the pool, beach or nine-hole golf course. The expansive lobby combines natural woods, netting and entry columns designed to suggest the pillars that support the Manhattan Beach Pier. Artwork depicting underwater scenes in dazzling ocean blue also reminds you of the nearby shore as soon as you walk in. Rooms and suites continue the theme, with colorful beachy artwork and modern furnishings that add a bit of New York City–style sophistication.
The hotel’s bright, open lobby boasts comfortable workstations, table games, inviting seating areas and Jute Coastal Bar & Kitchen, the restaurant offering breakfast, lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. Executive chef Octavio Sabado, formerly with chef José Andrés at Bazaar, has created a new brunch menu that includes a breakfast flatbread, quail egg sandwich, build-your-own poké bowl bar and a bloody mary bar with everything you could ever think of adding to your cocktail. The regular breakfast menu includes avocado toast topped with pomegranate seeds, heirloom tomato and colorful flower petals; eggs Benedict on brioche slices with your choice of house-cured lox or jamon Serrano; omelets; chilaquiles; and French toast. For lunch and dinner, guests can enjoy salads, tacos, flatbreads, charcuterie, sliders, steaks or seafood along with a selection of desserts that includes a popular version of Key lime pie and sugary doughnuts.
A concentration of new shops and restaurants in Manhattan Beach and El Segundo provides convenience and lots of choices. At the Point, shoppers will find Lucky Brand, Lululemon, Madewell and boutiques along with dining options that include North Italia, Superba Food & Bread, Lil’ Simmzy’s on the Deck for burgers and beer, sushi at Umi, gourmet sandwiches at Mendocino Farms and healthful dishes at True Food Kitchen.
Nearby at Plaza El Segundo, restaurants include Marmalade Cafe, Salt Creek Grille and Sammy’s Woodfire Pizza. Shoppers will find what they want at Anthropologie, Banana Republic, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, H&M, Home Goods, J. Crew, Nordstrom Rack, Sur La Table and PetSmart.
Manhattan Village offers Macy's, Ann Taylor, Apple, Chico’s, Pottery Barn, Tommy Bahama and Williams Sonoma along with dining at California Pizza Kitchen, Corner Bakery, Islands, Chili’s, Tin Roof or Olive Garden, all open during the current mall expansion project.
The South Bay is the ideal place to combine holiday preparations with a weekend getaway and a chance to try some new dining spots. It just might go over well enough to become an annual event.
Westdrift, 1400 Parkview Ave., Manhattan Beach; (310) 272-5908, westdrift.com.