Summer is your absolute favorite season, and you’ve spent all year wishing for sun-kissed skin, gentle sea breezes and a substantially more boho existence. Thankfully the Hotel Erwin - the cheerful, mid-century style boutique hotel in Venice Beach, has been helping California dreams come true since 2008.
As Beach Boy Brian Wilson famously pointed out, “Venice Beach is poppin”, so once you’ve taken in the view from your newly-renovated room, you’ll grab a bite at the much-lauded Eggslut downstairs, or pick up a pour-over and matcha croissant at Intelligentsia before venturing out into the storied fray.
You’ll borrow one of the Erwin’s loaner bikes to explore the filigree of criss-crossing canal network that give this neighborhood its name, before taking a deep breath and heading for the world-famous Boardwalk: the eccentric two-mile stretch of beachfront whose sights and sounds are sure to nourish your inner beatnik. As you observe its jugglers, breakdancers, and myriad tie-dyed fashions, you’ll inhale incense mixed with salty air, happily noticing that your inner vibe has been re-set to “chill."
You’ll see the surfers shredding some waves, and make a mental note to rent a board and book a surf lesson yourself. As you roll by the Venice Skatepark, you’ll recall that Venice Beach is the home of the Z-boys, founders of modern skateboarding, as depicted in that cool documentary by Stacy Peralta.
Ready to jump off the gloriously beaten tourist path, you’ll point yourself towards Abbot Kinney and Lincoln Boulevards and immerse yourself in the minimalist, design-conscious side of Venice Beach. You’ll pick up your Cali lifestyle essentials at Burro and General Store, your concept flowers and crystals at Flowerboy Project, some serious designer fashions at Heist, LCD and III Luxury Collective. If it’s a Saturday, you’ll stop into Artists & Fleas at Westminster Elementary School, where more than 100 of the coolest vintage vendors and artists will sell you their wares.
You’ll continue to notice how remarkably chill you are feeling; in fact, you’re realizing you’re dangerously close to using the word “dude” more often. As in “Chill pecs, dude,” as you glide by Muscle Beach, remembering how much you secretly enjoyed Arnold Schwarzenegger in his 1980s weightlifting doc, Pumping Iron.
By now, you're so very tempted to rent a Jeep and drive up PCH to Malibu, but it’s getting late and everyone knows, there’s only one place to be at sunset on this golden stretch of paradise - your very own Erwin! Take the elevator to HIGH, the rooftop lounge with panoramic 360 views, and order a Blood Orange Julep while you watch the last of the sun’s rays disappear and think to yourself that summertime really doesn’t get more summery than this… dude.
1697 Pacific Ave., Venice 90291