In Los Angeles, locals describe the Santa Monica neighbourhood as Silicon Beach, the surfside equivalent of Silicon Valley, due to the concentration of technology, entertainment and digital media companies that have established offices just a few blocks from the ocean. Among the liveliness, the Santa Monica Proper hotel has become a smash-hit since opening mid-2019, winning the hearts of visitors and locals alike. Nestled within a six-storey Spanish Colonial Revival-style building originally designed by Arthur E. Harvey in 1928 and renovated by Howard Laks Architects, the light-filled interiors of the hotel were created by famed American designer Kelly Wearstler.
The designer bestowed the space with collected wares among her signature palette of soft and warm colours. Raw materials including wood, stone and marble envelop each space alongside organic textiles and an abundance of artworks by local artists. In the 271 serene rooms and suites, many with sunny terraces, Kelly curated European-style, mid-century furniture against floral wallpapers and geometric motifs, evident in swoon-worthy pieces such as wall sconces and arc-shaped headboards.
Outside the sleeping quarters, the public grounds of the hotel continue the refined and relaxed beachside aesthetic. The ground floor comprises the Palma lounge and a relaxed library nook. Calabra, the sweeping rooftop restaurant and bar, offers sparkling ocean views against which to savour Mediterranean and local cuisine.
As can be expected, the hotel pool is a star attraction for sun-seeking holidaymakers while event spaces and an on-site shop provide relief from the rays. The Surya Spa, created in collaboration with internationally acclaimed Ayurvedic doctor, chef and herbalist Martha Soffer, is also on-hand to allow guests a moment to luxuriate.
Santa Monica Proper forms the latest offering from Proper Hospitality, a company that Kelly’s husband Brad Korzen founded with Brian De Lowe. Located on Wilshire Boulevard in the coastal city, every corner of the impressive property is an ode to the spirit of Southern California.