WHERE TO STAY
The Beach House at Hermosa Beach, 1300 the Strand, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 374-3001, http://www.beach-house.com. Ninety-six rooms, each with fireplace and balcony or patio. Rooms for two $229-$349 in winter, $299-$489 in summer.
Shade Hotel, 1221 N. Valley Drive, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266; (310) 546-4995, http://www.shadehotel.com. Thirty-eight rooms, a small pool and restaurant, Zinc. Two blocks from the beach. Rooms for two $275 in winter, $365 in summer, with occasional Sunday-night discounts to $225.
Sheraton Gateway, 6101 Century Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90045; (310) 642-1111, http://www.sheratonlax.com. It has 802 rooms. Rooms for two as low as $102 with advance purchase, otherwise usually $119-$159 on weekends, $195-$229 weekdays.
Belamar Hotel, 3501 Sepulveda Blvd., Manhattan Beach, CA 90266; (310) 750-0300, thebelamar.com. 127 rooms. In-house restaurant. Rooms for two usually $179-$289, more for suites.
Renaissance Los Angeles Airport Hotel, 9620 Airport Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90405; (310) 337-2800, http://www.marriott.com. 499 rooms and suites. Rooms for two usually about $129-$149 on weekends, $229 on weekdays.
Westin Los Angeles Airport Hotel, 5400 W. Century Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90045; (310) 216-5858, http://www.westinlosangelesairport.com. It has 740 rooms and a massive lobby that features a Daily Grill serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. In summer, weekend rates dipped as low as $79 for auto club members. Rooms for two usually about $139 on weekends, $229 on weekdays.
Portofino Hotel, 260 Portofino Way, Redondo Beach, CA 90277; (310) 379-8481, http://www.hotelportofino.com. 160 rooms with nautical overtones and lots of blue and yellow. Waterfront location. Barking sea lions nearby are such a fixture that the front desk offers free earplugs on request. Small pool. Rooms for two usually $189-$289, more for suites.
Surf City Hostel, 26 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 798-2323, http://www.surfcityhostel.com. Three private rooms and several dorm rooms, with 67 beds in all. Shared bathrooms and kitchen. A block from beach, and directly above a loud restaurant and bar. Rates $25 a person in winter, $30-35 in summer.
WHERE TO EAT
The Strand House, 117 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Manhattan Beach, CA 90266; (310) 545-7470, http://www.thestrandhousemb.com. New American cuisine, with indoor/outdoor dining overlooking beach. Dinner main dishes $23-$39.
Green Temple, 1700 S. Catalina Ave. No. 103, Redondo Beach, CA 90277; (310) 944-4525, http://www.greentemple.net. All vegetarian, with Asian accents and a small courtyard patio. Main dishes $9-$15. Lunch and dinner, with breakfast on Sunday. Closed Mondays.
Gum Tree Café, 238 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 376-8733, http://www.gumtreela.com. Breakfast and lunch up to $11. Closed Mondays.
Watermans, 22 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 372-4462, http://www.watersmanshb.com. Opened in 2010. Big dining room and patio on a raucous beachfront block. Entrees $8-$29.
Good Stuff, 1286 the Strand, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 374-2334, http://www.eatgoodstuff.com. Casual, healthy breakfast and lunch with a patio. This locally based chain has four locations in all. Main dishes up to $10.59.
The Rockefeller, 418 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 372-8567, http://www.eatrockefeller.com. This gastropub opened in spring 2011, offering beer, wine and a short menu of burgers and sandwiches. Entrees up to $14. Dinner daily, with lunch on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and breakfast from 9 a.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
Manhattan Beach Creamery, 1120 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beach, CA 90266; (310) 372-1155. http://www.mbcreamery.com. Ice cream, yogurt, cookies, frozen bananas and other sweets. One scoop of ice cream: $3.50. Open 11 a.m.-10 p.m. daily.
Rock'n Fish, 120 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Manhattan Beach, CA 90266; (310) 379-9900. http://www.rocknfishmb.com. Surf and turf in a merry beach-adjacent atmosphere. Beware of two-hour time limit on all tables. Most main dishes $14-$40, some surf 'n' turf combos more.
Encounter, 209 World Way, Los Angeles International airport, Los Angeles, CA 90045; (310) 215-5151, http://www.encounterlax.com. "California fresh" cuisine. Lunch and dinner daily. Dinner main dishes $23-$31.50
The Proud Bird, 11022 Aviation Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90045; (310) 670-3093, http://www.theproudbird.com. Lunch and dinner daily, with Sunday brunch from 9 a.m. Dinner main dishes $14-$39.
Shanghai Red's, 13813 Fiji Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292; (310) 823-4522, http://www.shanghairedsrestaurant.com. Happy hour drinks and snacks $5-7. Dinner nightly, lunch weekdays, brunch from 10 a.m. Saturdays and 9 a.m. Sundays. Dinner main dishes about $16-$37.
WHAT TO SEE AND DO
Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium, Manhattan Beach Pier, Manhattan Beach, CA 90267; (310) 379-8179, http://www.roundhouseaquarium.org. Open 3 p.m.-sunset Mondays-Fridays, 10 a.m.- sunset weekends. Free, with suggested donation of $2 per person or $5 per family.
Hermosa Cyclery, 20 13th St., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 374-7816, http://www.hermosacyclery.com. Open 9 a.m.-6 p.m. daily.
The Comedy & Magic Club, 1018 Hermosa Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; (310) 372-1193, http://www.comedyandmagicclub.com. Dinner entrees about $11-$26. Most shows start at 8 p.m. (with doors opening at 6:30), and prices vary. Often, the club offers 10 comics for $10. Saturday nights often include shows at 6:45 and 9:30. Sunday nights with Leno usually start at 7 and cost $32 with a two-drink-or-menu-item minimum.
Burton Chace Park, 13650 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292; (310) 305-9595, http://www.chacepark.com. Marina views, shaded picnic tables, grass. Open 8 a.m.-8 p.m. daily.
Redondo Beach Pier, 100 Fisherman's Wharf, Redondo Beach, CA; 90277; http://www.redondopier.com.
Hermosa Beach Pier, 1 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254; no website.
TO LEARN MORE
The Redondo Beach Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau, http://www.visitredondo.com
Hermosa Beach Chamber & Visitors Bureau, http://www.hbchamber.net
Manhattan Beach Chamber of Commerce, http://www.manhattanbeachchamber.com
Marina del Rey Convention & Visitors Bureau, http://www.visitmarinadelrey.com
Los Angeles International Airport, http://www.lawa.org/welcomeLAX.aspx