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Watching a Sunset in Santa Monica

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I want to have dinner and actually see the sun set. When I was in Malibu you couldn't actually see the sun setting. Any suggestions of places in Santa Monica that aren't too expensive?

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  1. The Lobster and One Pico are options.

    7 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      The Lobster
      Casa del Mar
      Penthouse at The Huntley
      Gladstones (north of Santa Monica)
      the end of The Pier (can't think of name of the restaurants)
      Back at the Beach stays open late in summer, I think

      1. re: yogachik

        Just from the height factor, the Penthouse makes for one of my favorites.

        You could even just have a drink in the bar, then head to another restaurant after the sun goes down.

        1. re: Swoshmn

          That's probably what I would do to save money. Have a beer at the Penthouse and then walk over to Musha on Wilshire.

          1. re: mollyomormon

            is the penthouse super expensive for dinner

            1. re: erinl

              I would say that apps run $15 and up, entrees run around high 20's and up (BF's surf and turf last time was around 50 or 60, though), desserts (or happy endings as they call them there) are all 9, I think. Cocktails are probably 12 and up.

              1. re: erinl

                All entrees are between $30 and $40. All of them. Drink prices went up over the weekend, all are now $15 (something about the old Toppers managers ran the place, and there's a whole new team now, and they raised the initial prices, or so the GM told me last night when I commented/complained that my usual drink [gimlet] was $10 the other night, and all other nights, but was now $15)

                1. re: yogachik

                  I definitely recall that the roasted chicken was in the $20's the last time we were there around a month ago so that must mean they've raised the prices on entrees as well. Annoying. And that really sucks about the drink prices since all the drinks I've tried there have been very weak.

      2. The Lobster is very expensive. There is a Bubba Gump on the pier now. Gladstone's patio is nice too.

        1. The restaurant at the end of SM Pier is Mariasol. It's so-so Mexican food, but the view is terrific. Gladstone's is also so-so food-wise, but is right on the water. The Lobster will be out of your price range.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ogawak

            I wish there was a great flagship restaurant on the pier. You are very kind to call Marisol "so so". I'd much rather have a Poquito Mas on the pier than Marisol, for goodness sakes.

          2. A couple of Godmother's, Anti Pasto and Bottle Rootbeer from Bay Cities and a Blanket from home. So basically a picnic on the park along the beach...

            --Dommy!

            3 Replies
              1. re: Dommy

                Yes, great option!

                And maybe tack on a ride on the Ferris wheel on the pier right at sunset, if you want a higher-elevation view of the sunset (and the city). My favorite date "spot"...

                1. re: LicketySplit

                  Question: How much do you have to tip the guy running the ferris wheel to stop the ride while your at the very top right when the sun is setting?

              2. It's not exactly in Santa Monica, but the Reel Inn (up the PCH just beyond Topanga Canyon Blvd) is just across PCH from the ocean, and they have reasonably priced seafood.

                I think one can watch the sun set from the inside booths near the window and from their outside tables. Someone else would have to confirm the actual lines of sight, as I haven't been there in awhile. I should note that when busy, the place is somewhat zoo-like, with lines and no guarantee of getting the seat you want.

                Parking can also be difficult when it's busy (I've heard there are valets now, and I'm not sure one can still park along the road or near the nearby convenience store). But the place is fun and cheap.

                3 Replies
                1. re: emmy

                  what about i cugini on Ocean

                  1. re: emmy

                    The Reel Inn has lovely ambience but the food is bad enough to cancel that out - and that takes some BAD. Gladstones is an example of mediocre food being overcome by a lovely setting; at the Reel Inn the food is so excruciatingly bad the setting just can't win out. FWIW, the Reel Inn's setting is more rustic patio-like - I don't think you can watch the sunset from there.

                    Just a couple doors down PCH is Cholada Thai - if you get a window seat you have the same view as the Reel Inn, and the food is fantastic.

                    The Charthouse is also a good place for drinks and apps and the sunset.

                    If you watn to go high end, Shutters and Casa Del Mar are good for drinks and sunset.

                    I like Dommy's idea best, though!

                    I like the idea of the Penthouse at the Huntley - someone else just told me about this place, and I'm going there soon!

                    1. re: emmy

                      Can't recommend it and it does not seem to me likely to promise a great view.