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Ocean View Dining in Los Angeles

Malibu, Pacific Coast, Pacific Coast Highway

Want to have a nice meal while looking over the ocean in Los Angeles? While there are many options involving hot dogs, here are four great places to get both wonderful food and a good view. They are great for a casual lunch, a family outing with visiting relatives, or a romantic date.

Located north of Santa Monica along Pacific Coast Highway is Moonshadows, a wonderful seaside bar and restaurant. This is a great hot spot, with a great club and bar scenes, and a hang out for Malibu locals. The restaurant has been in the tabloids after visits from celebrities including Mel Gibson and Britney Spears. They have a great patio overlooking the ocean with nice big comfortable booths and large day beds. Be careful, it’s quite easy to get carried away with the great food, the great wine and the view, enjoyed on a day bed on a sunny afternoon in Malibu. This is a loud, hip restaurant with loud dance music. Older people or those who don’t like that scene may want to consider another option.

20356 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA

This is the fanciest of the choices and the one most needing a reservation . Located about 30 minutes North of Santa Monica in Malibu, this place is well known by locals but not too well visited by tourists. This is a true California classic, opened in 1983 in an idyllic setting overlooking the Pacific in Malibu. The restaurant is amazing, the view and the atmosphere almost surpass the fine cuisine. It’s surrounded by lush landscaping and multi–million dollar homes. A note, it’s pronounced JOFF-REES, not JEFF-REYS, so you will sound like a regular. The menu is eclectic and everything is fresh and delicious.

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Geoffrey’s Malibu
27400 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90265

Located smack dab at the intersection of Sunset Blvd and Pacific Coast Highway is the venerable Gladstones. It’s an old favorite that had lost a bit of direction over the years, now renovated by by SBE, the impresarios behind Hollywood hotspots Hyde and Colony and eateries XIV by Michael Mina and Katsuya. The restaurant has been an ocean view Los Angeles mainstay for years, known as a great place for big family dinners or as the spot to take out of town guests. Gladstones probably has the widest menu of any of these choices, offering many steaks, chops, ribs and a range of non-seafood options, in addition to all the standard fish, lobster, clams, shrimp and all that good seafood.

Gladstones Malibu
17300 Pacific Coast Hwy
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

The Lobster
Hey guess what you can get at The Lobster? Yes, lobster, as well as a nice range of other seafood, along with steaks and chicken. The restaurant is at the end of the famed Santa Monica Pier on a raised location, overlooking the pier and the ocean, truly one of the best ocean views in town. The menu is all about seafood, everything is fresh and delicious. The location makes it very popular with tourists and it’s always packed. Originally built in 1923, the original restaurant closed in 1985 and remained vacant for ten years while the city, owners and developers argued over its fate. A plan was approved, re-construction started and The Lobster re-opened in 1999.

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The Lobster
1602 Ocean Ave.
Santa Monica, California 90401

If you plan on dining at any of these establishments on a special occasion or want to ensure your dinner is a special occasion, call ahead and ask about reserving a window table. You may be asked to provide a credit card but it’s worth it to get that special view unobstructed by other diners.