The magic of Malibu cannot be understated – it’s the perfect place for luxury lovers dreaming of golden sun, peeling surf, an effortless chic and a healthy dose of Californian food and fashion. Malibu is where the celebrities flock to escape the smog of Los Angeles, where billionaires kick back with iced tea and sublime sunset views and a place people urge is a state of mind.
The coast runs a staggering 27-miles from Topanga to Ventura, with the rocky bluffs dotted with some of the most beautiful homes in North America that push the architectural boundaries. Despite its wealthy status, Malibu has also been a welcome outhouse for hippies, surfers, writers and artists – lending a beautiful bohemian vibe and dose of culture. For those seeking their kiss of California living, we have rounded up the very best of Malibu.
Where to Stay
Malibu Beach Inn is the sun-kissed spot that everyone raves about. You can clearly imagine Joan Didion smoking furiously and hiding behind her shades on the terrace. Sitting pretty on Carbon Beach means private access to the fine white sands, days lounging and nibbling at their beautiful beach club restaurant, and smartly dressed rooms that seem straight from a contemporary art or home design spread.
Combining the breathtaking panoramic ocean views with the laid-back elegance of Malibu, the 47 guest rooms manage to be both intimate and stylish. The spacious balconies embrace the golden beachfront location with comfortable tables and chairs, while the Scandinavian-inspired furniture prioritizes comfort and relaxation with ease.
Our Malibu Destination Guide also includes a comprehensive hotel guide with our selection of the best places to stay.
Where to Dine
As to be expected, Malibu is a foodie dream. When you combine all that Californian air with fish-laden waters and a dose of health-conscious karma – you get creatively glorious restaurants. The Malibu Farm Café is a dreamy example of just this; perched at the end of the pier, boasting mezcal cocktails at sunset, and with delirious fresh fish tacos and other laid-back gourmand ideas for lazy afternoons and early evening suppers.
As the sunset views approach, it’s time for an unforgettable dinner, even though Malibu Farm is open also for breakfasts and lunches. BLT kale Ceasar salad is among the best we’ve ever tried, but if you want something richer and indulgent, go for the beetroot burrata salad. Malibu Farm does amazing tacos, and their meat and fish mains are also cooked to perfection, offering the best flavors on the Pacific Coast.
Our Malibu Destination Guide also includes a complete restaurant guide with our selection of the top places to eat.
What to Do
Malibu can keep you out all day and up all night. The Malibu Lagoon State Beach is where you will find the beautiful people, soaking up the sun and splashing in the waves, all wearing designer bikinis and Joan Didion style sunglasses. However, if you want to hang with the A-Listers, then Carbon Beach is the spot to snag a conversation beneath a parasol with the likes of Laird Hamilton and Cindy Crawford.
If you prefer to spend your days sipping and swirling with elite company, then Malibu Family Wines has become something of a local institution. The stunning ranch offers endless space brimming with avocado trees, orchards and lakes. Spend the day picnicking, sampling the finest Californian wines, and listening to live music beneath the twinkle of soft fairy lights.
Splurging in Malibu is an easy feat; when surrounded by so many stunning little stores it would be rude not to. Zuma Canyon Orchids is something of a local church – stacked to the hilt with rare and splendid butterfly, gold, and fuchsia orchids. Every CEO and celebrity in town swings by to buy up these blooms.
What to Pack
Stylish beach essentials are must-haves when visiting Malibu – and this Mizele Sun Bag Raffia-Cotton Tote is a great example. The excellent craftsmanship means that the bag is reliable enough to hold and protect all your personal belongings, while the design is undeniably California cool. From the beach to the hotel and back to the pool, these Studio Amelia Leather Sandals are a comfortable option that you can easily slide on and off. Designed with a classic flip flop silhouette and an open square toe, they also evoke a chic summer look that will suit you well throughout your stay in Malibu.
As with all fabulous beachside destinations, a trusty pair of shades is your best friend. The gentlemen can opt for these Alexander McQueen Sunglasses, which are made from matte-black acetate in a classic square silhouette for timeless style. You can also opt for a stylish pair of casual shoes that will accompany around all parts of town, such as these Givenchy Leather Low-Top Sneakers. Let the clean, minimal style do the talking – as they’re versatile enough to suit everything from boutique shopping to sunset dinners.