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There's certainly no shortage of hot spots in Los Angeles. From high-end eateries to bustling nightclubs, Hollywood's trendsetters and elite love hitting the town. But there seems to be one destination particularly popular for both day and evening excursions: the hotel bar. Whether perched high above the city or tucked discreetly in the lobby, hotel bars in L.A. are known for their expertly crafted cocktails, chef-driven bites, and star-packed guest lists. These are the best hotel bars in the City of Angels.
Skybar at The Mondrian Hotel Los Angeles
Known for its sweeping views, Skybar at Mondrian Los Angeles is a chic outdoor pool lounge where you can lay out during the day and dance at night. The bar hosts an exclusive Night Market complete with high end vendors, poolside performances, and daytime pool parties where the world's most popular D.J.s spin. Guests can also chow down on fresh California ingredients while sipping creative cocktails, pitchers, frozen cocktails, and more.
The Bar and Lounge at Hotel Bel-Air
The Bar and Lounge at Hotel Bel-Air, part of Dorchester Collection and an American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts property, has long been a go-to spot for locals and travelers looking for that bygone era glamour. The space is outfitted with a fireplace, grand piano, and wood paneling. Images of stars and innovators like Cher, Tina Turner, and Steve Jobs line walls as guests indulge in inventive cocktails made with high-end spirits. You can also enjoy a menu by Wolfgang Puck that includes a Mediterranean mezze platter of artisanal cheeses and full-sized entrées.
Broken Shaker at the Freehand
Looking for an escape from bustling Downtown LA? Broken Shaker at the Freehand is the perfect locale as it's perched on the rooftop pool deck. While there, you can enjoy award-winning handcrafted cocktails and light bites. The bar was the winner of Tales of the Cocktail's Best American Hotel Bar award and a James Beard Award finalist. The menu finds inspiration from the beach with its homemade elixirs and exotic ingredients.
Calabra Rooftop Bar at Santa Monica Proper Hotel
Calabra is the only restaurant, bar, and lounge on the Westside. Its carefully curated menu features boutique wines, seasonal cocktails, and small-batch spirits prepared in an inspiring surrounding with the ocean as the backdrop. The Design Hotels member marries the elevated design of Kelly Wearstler with a 1920's era- landmark building and new contemporary architecture. The bar is accessible to hotel guests only or by reservation.
Lobby Bar at The Garland
A hotel with true Hollywood roots, The Lobby Bar welcomes guests with classic SoCal hues and a vintage-inspired design that pays homage to California's architectural interiors in the late 1970s. And to mark the 100th anniversary of Prohibition, The Lobby Bar is highlighting cocktails of that era with a modern take on speakeasy favorites (think: Grasshopper, Yuzu Whiskey Sour, etc.) Guests can enjoy various libations and small bites, all while relaxing poolside.
Avec Nous at Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills
Historically, Avec Nous at the hotel—an American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts property—was once known as the Writers' Bar, as it was an exclusive hangout where business and entertainment deals are signed, and Hollywood elites come to dream up their next big hits. Famous screenplays such as Good Will Hunting, The Godfather, Jaws, Ocean's Eleven, and The Graduate started at the hotel's Writer's Bar. The Big Wedding (Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton) was written and directed by Justin Zackham, a former bartender at the hotel. As a result, the bar created new cocktails based on screenplays that were written here.
Polo Lounge Bar at The Beverly Hills Hotel
For over half a century, the iconic Polo Lounge at The Beverly Hills Hotel, part of Dorchester Collection and another American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts property, is still considered "Hollywood's commissary." It's where Hollywood's greatest stars, from Charlie Chaplin to Marlene Dietrich to Elizabeth Taylor, have held court from their favorite tables. The Polo Lounge Bar features more than 250 different kinds of wine from around the world, as well as Single-Malt Scotches, Cognacs, and Ports. Tri-color tortilla chips, fresh guacamole, salsa, are a cocktail hour tradition.