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“It wasn't as spectacular as its price” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel

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Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1700 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90401   |  
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Ranked #17 of 34 Hotels in Santa Monica
GreenLeadersBronze level
Newcastle, Australia
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“It wasn't as spectacular as its price”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2012 via mobile

I am not sure what I think of this place. It was expensive BUT it was a perfect location.
The room was tiny BUT we did have views of muscle beach. It wasnt spectacular though and I think that's what I was expecting.
After reading other reviews I would be more than happy to try out The Shore next time.
On the other hand I'm not completely unhappy with Loews. I guess it didn't really have that special quality I was expecting. It was pretty good but not excellent if you know that I mean.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Scarsdale, New York
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2012

I just spent two nights at the Loews. In my opinion, the only good thing about this hotel is the location which is lovely, right on the beach, and walking distance to many places in Santa Monica. Other than that, the rooms are very average in appearance for the high price. We had colder than usual weather, and there was no functioning heat in the room. The keurig coffee maker was broken and there was no hot water in the shower. I complained to management who provided a $75 food credit to the room. However, the heat was never fixed.

In addition, I typically never take much notice of the housekeeping staff at a hotel, but you could hear them yelling and talking to each other loudly - this on more than one occasion. They also did not come to clean the room until after 4 pm, although we had been out all day. Then a separate person came again to refill the mini bar/coffee area who practically walked in without knocking. Too many issues for these prices!!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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San Francisco, California
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2012

Gosh, it’s SO MUCH FUN to stay at a luxury hotel that’s in the process of removing all the furniture from 50% of its rooms, said NO ONE EVER.

Short version:

- Loews garage can’t accommodate a van so you have to drive yourself two blocks away to a competitor hotel to park yourself. Meanwhile, groups of 5 or more valets stand around doing nothing.

- Loews was in the middle of moving 50% of its furniture out of the hotel for a special event. The piles of furniture and other messes in the halls, frenetic activity, and roving gangs of workmen ruined my stay, which was supposed to be a serene, relaxing getaway. There's no excuse for not warning a customer: clearly, at Loews, hotel management greed overcame the importance of customer experience.

Long version:

I booked two night stay at Loews for a stress-relieving break. In the past, I’ve stayed at The Oceania, which is FABULOUS (see my review), but this time I was traveling with my dog and the Oceania doesn’t allow pets. Loews’ website says they welcome pets, so I booked there.

The first, smaller problem occurred immediately, when I drove up in my van. The parking garage at Loews can only accommodate cars less than 6.5 feet tall. The valet told me to go park at the Viceroy hotel, which was two blocks away, save the receipts, and they would reimburse me. This was annoying – every time I needed something from the car, I was galumphing back and forth along the boulevard to the competitor hotel, their valet had to fetch the car, I’d get what I needed, and then I’d galumph back to Loews. Dear Loews Valet Manager: every time I exited the hotel lobby there were five valets standing around talking to each other. Can’t you arrange to have ONE of THEM drive my car two blocks away for me, and retrieve it when I need it? And don’t cite insurance rules about driving off premises – plenty of other hotels do this for their guests, including The Oceania. Barring that, please break up the man-groups the valets are forming – it’s unprofessional and they make single women travelers uncomfortable.

But the major issue was that the management of Loews allowed customers to book stays while the hotel was in the middle of emptying furniture out of 50% of its rooms for a two week long special event. They didn’t even have the grace to warn me.

People don’t come to luxury hotels for beds – you can get a bed at a Motel 6. People come to luxury hotels for the serene, comforting atmosphere, great service, and food. Instead of serene, I got piles of mattresses in the halls, gangs of workmen grunting and moving massive TV credenzas, giant blue plastic rolly-bins piled with hundreds of in-room coffee makers; large cardboard moving boxes full of bedding, hallway carpets covered with massive swaths of saran wrap, foyers covered with cardboard and blue masking tape, housekeeping staff running wildly from one room to the next, and at night, dark, creepy, open doorways into the emptied rooms, which made me want to scream Redrum. Do I sound whiny? Ok, ok, maybe I am a bit whiny, but look at my photos, then tell me whether YOU’D want to pay $400 per night (after taxes and pet fees) for THAT.

To give credit where it’s due, I was not bothered while sleeping, and the room was spacious and perfectly nice if not special in any way. And when I complained to the manager he gave me $185 off one night’s stay. But my “relaxing” break from work was completely ruined.
After leaving Loews, I decided to stay one night at the Viceroy. I thought, what the hell, the valets at the Viceroy not only know my name, they know my dog’s name as well. Here’s how the two hotels compared overall:

Location: Although both hotels are on the same street, two blocks apart, Loews wins on location, as it’s on the beach side of the street. It’s possible that the uppermost floors at the Viceroy have ocean views, but Loews has more ocean view rooms and the view has to be better.

Exterior: Loews is prettier and more impressive from the outside, with a fountain and circular drive; Viceroy is a total sleeper behind a huge hedge - perhaps it was a Holiday Inn in a past life.

Check-in: way better at Viceroy, where it was done over a low desk with seating for the guests. The staff was warmer at Viceroy.

Lounge atmosphere: Much livelier at the Viceroy, and the ambience is pleasant. I’d come in just for a drink.

Rooms: Rooms are larger at Loews; interior design is newer and artier at Viceroy. Mabttresses and bedding were the same good quality at both. Loews had a balcony-ette and a view of the pier and sea north towards Malibu, which I had to pay extra for; my Viceroy room was hermetically sealed and had a view of the busy street front (but zero street noise in the room thanks to heavy duty windows). Bathroom was nicer at the Viceroy, as the tub wasn't partially tucked under the sink counter the way it was at Loews. Both rooms had good climate control.
Pet friendliness: Loews gives you a doggie package, including tiny bowl, placemat, poo bags, and a doggie cookie with a bow on it, and charges $25 extra for the dog. Viceroy doesn't give you anything for Fido and charges $100, but when I said $100 was exorbitant (especially since I’d brought sheeting to cover all their furniture and beds), they removed it from my bill – yay and thank you - and they made a note in my file that when I return, they will only charge $25! There’s really no place to take your dog for walkies at the Viceroy, whereas Loews has a beachside exit as well as grass and shrubs for your pet to use. You do know that dogs aren't allowed on any of the beaches in Santa Monica, don’t you?

Room service: For breakfast, Loews was a little faster and the food was a little warmer than the Viceroy.

Valet: Since I didn't actually get any valet service at Loews, I rate it a big fat zero, and give their valet manager seven big fat demerits. Conversely, at the Viceroy, they all knew my name and my dog’s name after day 1, and always offered me bottled water, EVEN THOUGH I WASN'T STAYING THERE. I’m no longer using plastic bottles, so I declined…. So the valet manager ran inside and brought me some mineral water in a glass bottle. Total rockstar experience. Thank you, thank you, Viceroy valet man.

When I go back, I’ll book at Viceroy.

Room Tip: Before booking ask if there are special events going on that might ruin your stay. If you decide to...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2012 via mobile

Myself and 2 friends stayed at Loews Santa Monica Beach for 3 nights in September and what was supposed to be a highlight of our trip was quite a disappointment. After travelling for 18 hours we arrived at 11pm to find that although we had confirmed a room with 2 double beds with a rollaway, we had been allocated a king bed room. The checkin staff were very unapologetic and quite rude about it and said nothing could be done, blamed it on our travel agent (who was one of the travellers in our group) and that we could move rooms the following day - as we were going out for the day, he did offer to have our bags moved for us. This was not the best start to our vacation. The location of the hotel cannot be beat, right on the beach near the famous pier. The rooms are rather small and there was not much room to move around the beds, and the bathroom in both rooms had not been cleaned properly - we found hairs and purposely left the wrapping of the soap on the floor and it was still there when we returned after housekeeping had serviced the room. Whilst i realise tipping is the done thing in the USA, when the rollaway was finally brought to our room the staffmember just kept hanging around like he was waiting for a tip when this was no fault of ours and should have already been in our room. We ate breakfast twice in the hotel and it was great both mornings. We also hiref a car from Hertz and when it was brought up to us it hadnt been cleaned and had rubbish in the middle consoles.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Warwick, England, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
145 reviews 145 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 78 cities Reviews in 78 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

Stayed here in with wife and 14 and 12 year old teenager. Hotel is ideally situated for santa Monica Pier, beaches, shopping area. Staff are very friendly. You have to pay quite a bit extra for the car park, about 36 dollars per day. Breakfast is overated and pricy, but after Las Vegas buffets anything will seem less value for money. Moved rooms thanks to helpful staff, had double corner room with 2 extra beds put in for teenagers.Did not eat in the hotel as nearby shopping area has got nice restaurants where you can eat al fresco. Coffee bar is well stocked, pricey for ordinary coffee.

Room Tip: For family with children ask for corner room, much bigger.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gold coast
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

After spending 4 great nights at Loews Hollywood, we were looking forward to a "splurge"night at Santa Monica. Upon arrival we were told our room wasnt ready, which was fine we just hired some bikes and went for a ride down the beach and waited for the phone call. It never came, when we checked back 2 hrs later, they had "upgraded" us to a 1 bedroom suite from a beach view room. The suite was pokey, on the 3rd level, below reception, and our view was of a building and some of the beach, I felt ripped off since we had paid over $400 for this night. The attitude of the staff sucked, and basically we were told that the room was worth $1000 and to make the most of it. Its not that much on the website by the way.I think they sold our room again and moved us. We ate in and had a meal delivered, the food was lovely. We then got a phone call to come straight to reception and give a credit card as they had forgotten to swipe one!! They had our car parked in valet, it wasnt like we were going anywhere!!! the only nice person who worked there was the guy around the pool, the rest of staff were pompus and acted like they didnt want to be there. It's a nice place but lots of little things going wrong made it an unpleasurable stay and we would not waste our money here again.

Room Tip: Ask for the highest floor to make the most of the view
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

I love Santa Monica, its one of the reasons I travel to the States so regularly. Loews is one of those Hotels that has the best location and atmosphere, its a great place.
I just dont get why the staff have such large ego's. I understand hospitality can be tough, but I paid a lot of money on more than one occasion to stay at this hotel.
After a 14 hour flight, you kinda want rest, a nice refreshment and nice people. You dont want the wrong room, poor attitudes & bad service.
I am sure Loews will pick it up, I am just getting tired of waiting... Is there another hotel?

Room Tip: Loews has a great reputation, some of their hotels can ruin it... I hear there are better places to...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel

Address: 1700 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90401
Location: United States > California > Santa Monica
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Santa Monica
#7 Green Hotel in Santa Monica
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Monica
#11 Luxury Hotel in Santa Monica
#12 Romantic Hotel in Santa Monica
#13 Business Hotel in Santa Monica
#15 Family Hotel in Santa Monica
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 342
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on the Pacific Ocean with the thriving Santa Monica city on one side and the sands of legendary Muscle Beach on the other, the Four-Diamond Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel is a beachfront retreat offering dramatic views of the Pacific Ocean and beyond. Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel has become the first luxury hotel in Santa Monica to receive the Santa Monica Green Business Certification. Offered through a partnership between The City of Santa Monica, Santa Monica Convention and Visitors Bureau, Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce and Sustainable Works, the certification program honors businesses that have taken measurable steps to incorporate sustainable practices into their operations.Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Ocean & Vine offers the option to dine fireside or outdoors on a spacious patio while enjoying breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and world-famous Santa Monica Pier. Chef Keith Roberts’ California contemporary cuisine showcases creative interpretations of the familiar favorites. Located in Ocean & Vine, the chic new Sushi at Sunset sushi bar features a variety of inventive rolls as well as traditional sushi, nigiri and sake pairings. Recently named one of the “Best Hotel Spas” by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler for the second year in a row, Ocean Spa & Fitness offers an array of supremely-relaxing services. From Heated Lava Shell Massages to Age defying Facials, the eco-friendly Ocean Spa will keep you feeling relaxed…naturally. An expansive fitness center features state-of-the-art cardio equipment with iPod docking stations and personal televisions. Guests may also take advantage of the full service salon. World-class biking, surfing, dining and shopping are right outside the hotel’s door. Offering convenient access to everything Santa Monica has to offer, the hotel is just blocks away from the Santa Monica Pier, Third Street Promenade and the new Santa Monica Place mall. Muscle Beach's 26-mile paved strand offers the ideal setting to bike or blade. Santa Monica also boasts rich cultural history with an abundance of museums and theaters. Working with one of the hotel’s Les Clefs d’Or certified Concierges puts all this and more at each guest’s fingertips. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Santa Monica Loews

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