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Christmas Eve & Christmas Day in Santa Monica/ LA

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Hi,

We are staying at Shutters on the beach in Santa Monica for Christmas this year.

We're arriving on Christmas Eve. Is this a busy night for restaurants? Any suggestion for somewhere buzzy not too far from our hotel.

Any ideas on where to go for a fabulous Christmas day Lunch/ Dinner (either or both! ;0)) I think my husband would like something traditional - maybe turkey?!? We're both from London, travel a lot and like cool restaurants...

We will have a car and willing to drive if need be.

Suggestions welcome!
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  1. Funny, I am going to Paris for Christmas and London for New Year's and have been trying to get some recommendations for those places on the France and UK Boards! Hotels are often the best places to dine on the Holidays and Shutters is really nice. I am not sure whether Shutters or its sister hotel, Casa Del Mar which is next door have the best meal, but I am sure they are serving a traditional meal. If buzzy means hip and cool, you might check out "the Penthouse" at the Huntley Hotel, also in Santa Monica. It has uber chic decor and beautiful people, but I am not sure if they are open on Christmas. West, atop the Hotel Angeleno is not terribly far and also beautiful for dinner with a bird's eye view of all of the Los Angeles city lights. The Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Hotel Bel Air restaurant are L.A. classics, though not as "hip." Other restaurants nearby would be the Ivy at the Shore, Boa, Abode, Capo and Ristorante di Giorgio Baldi. You could contact the concierge at Shutters and have her/ him checkwhat is open and what they suggest. Do you have any ideas for me during my travels? I will be with my husband and 9 and 14 year old daughters.

    1. If you are up for Chinese food, drive east to the San Gabriel Valley (only about 30 minutes with holiday traffic). Just about every Chinese restaurant will be open. Here's some info about Chinese restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley:
      http://www.geocities.com/raytamsgv/ch...

      3 Replies
      1. re: raytamsgv

        recommending someone to drive all the way to San Gabriel valley during their vacation for only a few days in Santa Monica? that's just insane. There are Chinese restaurants on the westside that will be open if they're really interested in that, within 5-10 mins. However, considering they want turkey etc, I don't think it's an option.

        1. re: smartcooki

          The Chinese restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley are far superior to their counterparts in West L.A. Besides, it's only about a 30 minute drive. That would probably be faster than trying to find parking and waiting at a more trendy Westside restaurant. But that's only if they want good Chinese food. If they want turkey, they'll need to look elsewhere.

          1. re: smartcooki

            I'd just as soon eat at a "Chinese restaurant" (cough, cough), on the westside as I would order the "fish of the day" at a steakhouse.

        2. I agree that the Chinese restaurants on the westside pretty much suck. You have to go to Monterey Park or San Gabriel Valley for authentic food.

          1. Hello! My wife and I are staying at Shutters also for Christmas (we're from Napa Valley), and have done some investigating. The one restaurant I know for sure will be open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day is "Cezanne" at Le Merigot Hotel which is close by - 310.395.9700. "Whist" at the Viceroy Hotel is a possibility. I, too, crave a traditional Christmas dinner as your husband does and "Cezanne" advertises turkey, prime rib and veal. I'll check further and reply again if I find something else. Maybe we'll see you at Shutters!

            1 Reply
            1. re: ertrjrjr

              Whist at the Viceroy has an ultra cool patio, and had really good food when we ate their a while back, but has since changed chefs, but not the decor, thank heavens.