Where to Stay and What to Do in Malibu

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Life is a beach in the tony seaside community of Malibu. That said, you can’t spend all of your time soaking up the sunshine on El Matador or Zuma: you have to take a break from the sand and surf eventually. Here are the spots you simply must hit after throwing in the towel—literally speaking, of course.

Where to Stay

Malibu Beach Inn
Malibu Beach Inn

Malibu Beach Inn
22878 Pacific Coast Hwy.
(310) 456-6444

The Malibu Beach Inn went through some changes in 2015. In addition to its new fabrics and bedding, Malibu’s posh boutique hotel also received an update in its ownership. Billionaire entertainment mogul David Geffen sold his 47-room Carbon Beach property to West Hollywood-based real estate investors Simon and Daniel Mani of the Mani Brothers Real Estate Group for the reported sum of $80 million. For the moment, this is the only drastic change you’ll find at the charming, picture-perfect hotel. Its interior is still inviting thanks to cozy gas fireplaces, balconies with views of the Pacific and beyond, and the white, sandy beaches of “Billionaire’s Beach” below; its amenities are still luxe, such as custom-made Ortho pillow-top mattresses, Frette linens, Molton Brown bath products, free-for-use in-room iPads, and an 11-bottle in-room wine selection of handpicked California-specific varietals. Though the hotel no longer has Geffen’s Midas Touch, its ambiance is still as magical as ever.

Where to Play

Getty Villa
Getty Villa

Getty Villa
17985 Pacific Coast Hwy.
(310) 440-7300

Get your art fix at the stunning Getty Villa, a museum complex founded by oil tycoon J. Paul Getty to resemble a first century Roman country house (complete with Venetian plaster walls and terrazzo floors). The Villa reopened in 2006 after a $275 renovation, and guests can now enjoy an evening performance at the beautiful 450-seat outdoor Greek theater, hang out in the open-air pavilion, or sigh in quiet delight at the gardens, which have been planted with fruits and herbs native to the Mediterranean. In addition to permanent collections of Roman, Etruscan, and Greek antiquities, visitors can check out exhibitions like “Mosaics of the Roman Empire” and “Renaissance Splendors of the Northern Italian Courts” this spring. Don’t leave without taking a moment to reflect on the absolutely staggering views of the Pacific in the distance.


Before Napa, Sonoma, and Santa Barbara, Malibu was once the champion of California-based wine. For the first time since the mid-1800s, Malibu wines are once again on the rise thanks to a select group of entertainment moguls, restaurateurs, and entrepreneurs. Though you won’t find a Screaming Eagle here, you will enjoy the wines on offer, which most resemble those of France’s Rhone Valley. In our opinion, the perfect day includes a picnic and tasting at Malibu Wines followed by an afternoon sipping Rosenthal Estate viognier and Surfrider pinot blanc at Rosenthal—The Malibu Estate, or cabernet sauvignon in Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate Vineyards’ tasting rooms.

Malibu Wines
31740 Mulholland Hwy.
(818) 865-0605

Rosenthal—The Malibu Estate tasting room
18741 Pacific Coast Hwy.
(310) 456-1392

Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate
Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate

Malibu Rocky
Oaks Estate Vineyards
340 Kanan Rd.
(877) 676-7660


Malibu Country Mart
Malibu Country Mart

Malibu Country Mart + Malibu Lumberyard

Though not all Malibu shopping is relegated to the adjacent Malibu Country Mart and Malibu Lumberyard, most can be done at these high-end outdoor retail centers.  At the Lumberyard, you’ll find the likes of Alexis Bittar, James Perse, Maxfield, Tory Burch, Vilbrequin, AllSaints Spitalfields, and Alice + Olivia, while at the neighboring Country Mart you can shop until you drop at Westime, John Varvatos, L’Occitane, MAC Cosmetics, Vince, Ralph Lauren and Ron Herman. Both centers also have dining options as well. At the Lumberyard, Rande Gerber’s Café Habana is always the best place to end your day, while over at the Country Mart your options range from the Greek staple Taverna Tony to upscale Chinese at Mr. Chow, to ambient authentic Italian at Tra di Noi.

Malibu Country Mart
3835 Cross Creek Rd.
(310) 456-7300

Malibu Lumberyard
3939 Cross Creek Rd.
(310) 456-7395

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