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Ayres Hotel Manhattan Beach / Hawthorne 3.5

Manhattan Beach, Los Angeles, California

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Review Summary

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Pros

Cons

  • Unattractive views; some rooms overlook 405 Freeway and big-box stores 
  • 15-minute drive to Manhattan Beach 
  • Breakfast isn't included
  • No spa
  • Fee for self-parking

Bottom Line

For those expecting another typical airport hotel right off the 405/San Diego Freeway, the Ayres Hotel Manhattan Beach / Hawthorne is a complete surprise. The three-and-a-half-pearl hotel has surprisingly ornate interiors, and extra spacious rooms (all of which were renovated in 2015, and feature microwaves and iPod docks). There's also an outdoor pool and the restaurant has a great outdoor terrace. But some rooms have unsightly views of big box retailers, and while the short drive to LAX is convenient, the drab location surrounded by strip malls makes this choice less than ideal for all except those with an early flight out. For a more contemporary vibe and closer proximity to the ocean, check out The Belamar Hotel, a boutique with similar rates.

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Scene

An airport hotel with a Renaissance theme, complete with authentic antiques 

Interiors of this airport hotel are surprisingly majestic, such as the elegant lobby lounge, which is anchored by a 400-year old statement fireplace

At first glance, this 174-room, purpose-built construction dating to the mid-aughts, part of a family-owned chain of hotels, is just another cheerless stopover on the way to the airport. Which is why its majestic interiors come as a welcome surprise. The Ayres family, multigenerational local real estate developers since the early 1900s, invested significantly in what they dub a "European boutique hotel," and it shows. A 400-year old statement fireplace, originally from a Loire Valley chateau, anchors the lobby's lounge under a grand open staircase. Venetian plaster wall treatments give the walls a faded look, and mingle with a French and Italian Renaissance themed decor throughout. There's a copy of Three Graces sculpture at the end of the main hallway, and a late 17th-century tapestry woven with silks and metals, amid heavy wooden doors carved with mythological creatures imported from central Europe. Elsewhere a collection of original Russian Impressionist paintings adorn the walls under archways or wood-beamed ceilings. There are 21st-century amenities, though, including a heated pool and hot tub, free Wi-Fi, and rooms that -- while still ornate -- were renovated in 2015. 

But despite the romantic ambience, most guests here are business travelers or airline crews. For good reason --  despite the Manhattan Beach address, this four-story hotel is a less-than-inspired, 15-minute drive to the ocean past one sprawling shopping center after another. Most leisure travelers will choose to stay closer to Manhattan Beach at the Belamar. It has smaller standard rooms but similar amenities, and sits on the edge of a residential neighborhood just a five-minute drive from the water.

Location

Next to the 405 Freeway, a few miles from LAX  

Map of Ayres Hotel Manhattan Beach / Hawthorne

Despite its moniker, the Ayres Hotel is a disappointingly unscenic, 15-minute drive to Manhattan Beach with its quiet strip of unassuming bars, restaurants, cafes, and shops (other hotels, including The Belamar Hotel are much closer to the water). The hotel is, however, very convenient to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), also about a 15-minute drive away. The immediate area is littered with fast-food chains and big box retailers like Costco and Staples. The 405/San Diego Freeway (and the Rosecrans Avenue exit) is right outside, providing easy access across the city.

Rooms

Large rooms have microwaves, mini-fridges, and iPod docks

The surprisingly large Two Queen Standard Room incorporates ornate details for a deliberately traditional look

A 2015 renovation updated the hotel's 174 rooms and suites while still preserving their deliberately traditional look. Ornate wallpaper, frilly drapery, and heavy wood furnishings don't exactly stick to the Renaissance-inspired theme, but the vintage style still has a welcome flow to it. The rooms are unusually large, starting at 435 square feet, and have sitting areas with small tables for two, work desks with leather roller chairs, and big wooden armoires, whose doors open to reveal flat-screen TVs. Most have two queen-size beds, or king-size beds accompanied by sofa beds. The suites have the same amenities as the standard rooms, but with separate bedrooms and living rooms with sofa beds. Free Wi-Fi comes standard, as do with iPod docks, mini-fridges, microwaves, and coffeemakers. The bathrooms have marble vanities and average shower/tub combos.

Features

Heated outdoor pool, hot tub, restaurant with outdoor terrace, fitness center, business facilities

Matisse restaurant serves regional fare in an old European space with exposed stone walls and an attached bar

Matisse Restaurant has an attached bar and an impressive wine selection in an old European (almost medieval) space with exposed stone walls. Menu highlights include regional fare like a juniper berry crusted rack of lamb and potato wrapped Chilean sea bass. There's also seating on a great outdoor terrace amid classical statues and a fountain. The heated outdoor pool and hot tub are set in a courtyard with a small sundeck that has a few loungers, and there's a small fitness center with cardio machines and free weights. Business facilities include several meeting rooms and two ballrooms, the largest of which can hold 350 people, along with a 24-hour business center

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Things You Should Know About Ayres Hotel Manhattan Beach / Hawthorne

Address

14400 Hindry Ave, Hawthorne, California 90250-6740, United States

Phone

(310) 536-0400

Also Known As

  • Ayres Hotel at Hawthorne / Manhattan Beach / LAX
  • Ayres Hotel Hawthorne
  • Ayres Hotel Hawthorne Manhattan Beach
  • Ayres Hotel Manhattan Beach

Room Types

  • Deluxe Room
  • Executive Suite
  • Junior Suite
  • King Courtyard Room

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