A team of Oyster reporters spent weeks exploring 59 top hotels in and around Los Angeles, including Beverly Hills, Hollywood, and Santa Monica. We slept in the beds, lounged by the pools, ate in the restaurants, and even sampled the nightlife, all with an eye toward selecting the most distinguished properties. Here’s a list of the most romantic hotels we found.
A location right on the sand (one of only two L.A. hotels with this feature), gives Santa Monica's luxury Casa del Mar plenty of opportunity to exploit stunning, romantic views -- be it from the 5th-floor rooftop pool and hot tub, the large, sumptuous suites with Jacuzzi bathtubs, or the elegant Veranda restaurant with its 20-foot high windows. Couples can sip cocktails and listen to live nightly jazz in the intimate lobby, enjoy private in-room massages -- or take them poolside in the ocean breeze -- and walk barefoot on the beach just a few feet from the hotel. An excellent, accommodating staff that's keenly respectful of privacy ties it all together.
With super-luxurious, 400-thread-count bedding (800 in suites), deep-soaking tubs, and private balconies, the rooms at L.A.'s Beverly Wilshire are made for romance. Couples can arrange candelit dinners for two and couples' massages en-suite, or canoodle in a quiet, poolside cabana with champagne and foot rubs. There's charming, sidewalk dining at The Blvd., a fashionable crowd at Wolfgang Puck's trendy CUT steakhouse, and a polished staff that takes care of any request with pleasure; all the glamour of L.A. without the pretense.
A quiet, residential Beverly Hills setting and a sexy, 24-hour rooftop pool with 360-degree city views and private cabanas help make the Raffles L'Ermitage a top pick for romantics. Huge guest rooms have balconies, deep-soaking Jacuzzi-style tubs, a six-pillow menu, his-and-hers plush bathrobes, and flexible checkout times, while the downstairs JAAN Patio features a cozy fireplace. Plus, the stellar service includes free Mercedes-Benz rides around town.
Couples find a true getaway at this Rancho Palos Verdes resort, with breathtaking cliffside sunsets over the ocean, outdoor firepits, and a quiet, beachfront location on 100 manicured acres. All rooms have balconies or patios and 24-hour room service; villas have private hot tubs and fireplaces. An enormous spa with outdoor pool and hot tubs overlooking the coastal bluffs, offers signature couples' suites and treatments, while lovely, landscaped trails can be explored by foot or on horseback.
Even without many of the services and amenities of larger, luxury hotels, the cozy 43-room boutique Maison 140 competes on the romantic front with a unique French-meets-Mandarin décor and chic, individually decorated rooms with sensual touches (textured wallpapers, dramatic red headboards, patterned ceilings, Chinese-woman lamps). There's no pool, spa, or restaurant, but the stylish-yet-snug lobby bar offers absinthe happy hours and cocktails, and room service runs until 10 p.m.
Feeling more like a secluded miniresort than a city lodging, the Beverly Hill Hotel is one getaway that exudes classic Hollywood-glam romance. From the landscaped pool with 21 private cabanas to the large rooms with Frette linens to the discreet, fawning service that includes bellmen who swoop in to open car doors, a housekeeping staff that wears French maid uniforms, and free rides in Bentleys, there's reason enough for honeymooners to head here. Tucked back from Sunset Boulevard on 12 lush acres that include the celeb-laced dining hot spot, The Polo Lounge, there's plenty of space for both quiet conversation and L.A.-style excitement.