A Los Angeles Beachside Haven Becomes A Foodie’s Dream
Kristin Braswell, Contributor, Forbes
Maybe it was the endless dishes– generous bites of roasted lamb and mint on flatbread, decadent burrata topped with heirloom tomatoes, a blueberry lemon curd cake. Or maybe it was the ocean just across the way, wafting in a breeze of aromas that served as a reminder of what was sure to be a memorable culinary adventure. This month, 34 restaurants offered inventive dishes from some of Los Angeles’ best restaurants, alongside 11 bars to imbibe and a lively crowd. The 14th annual Live and Dine L.A. food festival is a highly anticipated event that showcases the growing diversity of the city’s restaurants. Long overshadowed by other region’s inventive kitchens in years past, Los Angeles’ food scene is definitely having a moment. Angeleno Magazine’s s annual event is the best proof of this, with seasonally fresh produce, remixes on traditional cuisine from around the world, and an enviable location.
Situated on the bluffs of Santa Monica and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, The Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows has a history and loyal patronage both intimately tied to the city of Los Angeles. City council, famous faces and ocean lovers have all called it home. An 80 foot Moreton Bay fig tree stands just inside the gate of the hotel, and is the second largest of its kind in California.
Miramar has also served as a haven for Hollywood legends, including Greta Garbo, Marilyn Monroe and Sir Anthony Hopkins. But, you don’t need to have a star on Hollywood Blvd. or screen credits to feel at home at this beachside beauty. Though located in one of the city’s most popular neighborhoods, the property is a sanctuary dotted with bungalows nestled between trees and high-rise views of the endless Pacific Ocean. Poolside, families and singles enjoy smoky margaritas and the California sun. There is a lively lobby with an impressive cocktail menu. At the property’s restaurant, Fig, seasonally inspired Mediterranean cuisine can be enjoyed on an outdoor patio or airy indoor space.
Headed by Chef Yousef Ghalaini, specialties include a lamb merguez pizza with pickled onions, yogurt and mint, and the wildly popular bread balloon– a sort of flatbread on steroids that can be accompanied with hummus, eggplant salad, or marinated lentils. A Honig Sauvignon Blanc from Napa Valley should not be missed. Crisp and airy, with notes of peach and lengthy finish, it is the perfect summer drink.
Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows’ accommodations feature casual furnishings that accentuate its oceanside vibes. There are 302 guest rooms, including 32 intimate garden bungalows, 25,000 square feet of meeting and conference space, restaurants, a gym, spa and pool. The guestrooms are comprised of 3 distinct structures, the Pacific Palisades Building, Ocean Tower, and single and bi-level bungalows that epitomize Southern California beachside living. There is also living room with sofa bed and outdoor terrace space.
If you want to break a sweat, Exhale Spa offers challenging barre classes on the premises. Nearby Los Angeles attractions include the Santa Monica Pier and 3rd Street Promenade. And then there’s the beach, just across the street, bustling with bikers, runners, surfers and visitors who answered the call of their California dreaming.