The Most Romantic Restaurants in Los Angeles

Spectacular views, luxury menus and hidden gems

Creekside Patio at Inn of the Seventh Ray   |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa
Creekside Patio at Inn of the Seventh Ray  |  Photo:  Yuri Hasegawa

Romance is everywhere in the Los Angeles dining scene. Legendary stars of Hollywood's Golden Age wined and dined at landmark restaurants, and lovers of all ages continue to find inspiration in restaurants both classic and modern. From spectacular city and coastal views to luxury destinations and hidden gems, read on for the most romantic restaurants in L.A.

View from the bar at 71Above in Downtown LA
Photo: 71Above, Facebook


One of L.A.'s hottest dining destinations, 71Above features elevated modern American cuisine by Chef Vartan Abgaryan, and boasts panoramic views of the city from Downtown L.A. to the coast. Abgaryan's three-course tasting menu changes seasonally - recent highlights include poached oyster with uni & caviar, hamachi crudo, salt-roasted beets, king crab, bbq octopus, foie gras terrine, diver scallop, venison, and ribeye steak. For a more casual experience, head to the bar and nosh on bar bites and shared plates while you sip craft cocktails and enjoy the gorgeous views at one of the most elegant restaurants in town.

Photo: Beauty & Essex Los Angeles
Photo: Beauty & Essex Los Angeles

Beauty & Essex Los Angeles

Designed to give guests the impression they're dining in a jewel box, Beauty & Essex occupies 10,000 square feet of space at the Dream Hollywood hotel on Cahuenga Boulevard. The Beauty & Essex experience begins when you step into the pawn shop-inspired retail store, which sells an eclectic collection of vintage and one-of-a-kind treasures. The double-height main dining room offers natural light from a 20-foot oval skylight, while outdoor seating is available in the ground floor courtyard and a patio on the second level. It's one of the best restaurants for anniversary or special events. Other spaces include the Locket Room and the Pearl Lounge.

Chef Chris Santos features globally inspired dishes such as Korean chile dusted tuna, tandoori spiced chicken, spaghettini, red snapper tacos, and Beauty "Banh Mi" Slider. Ideal for couples, shared plates include Moroccan braised lamb, Thai style deep-fried shrimp, chile relleno empanadas, sweet cherry tomato ragu pizzetta, roasted beets & burrata, and the signature grilled cheese, smoked bacon & tomato soup dumplings.

A couple dances at Cicada Restaurant | Photo: Cicada, Facebook
A couple dances at Cicada Restaurant | Photo: Cicada, Facebook

Cicada Restaurant

In the mood for a famous fancy restaurant in Los Angeles? It's been nearly 30 years since Pretty Woman was released, and Cicada is still known as the “Pretty Woman restaurant.” Located in Downtown L.A.’s historic Oviatt Building, Cicada is a stunning Art Deco restaurant and special event venue that was known as Rex Il Ristorante when Pretty Woman filmed there. Guests can request the table where Julia Roberts had her snail-eating mishap in that famous scene, and the host will point out where the eagle-eyed waiter stood at the ready to catch the “slippery little suckers.”

Dinner guests won't find escargots on their plates, though. The Italian-inspired menu features highlights like eggplant parmesan, a decadent linguine with lobster, veal chop Milanese, and filet mignon with prosciutto di parma, apple puree and black peppercorn sauce. On select nights, the restaurant transforms into Cicada Club, featuring a classy evening of dinner and dancing with nostalgic music performed by swing and jazz bands.

Creekside Patio at Inn of the Seventh Ray   |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa
Creekside Patio at Inn of the Seventh Ray  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa

Inn of the Seventh Ray

Founded in the early 1970s by Dr. Ralph and Lucile Yaney, The Inn of the Seventh Ray is nestled in the heart of Topanga Canyon, adjacent to Topanga Creek and surrounded by a forest of sycamore, oak and pine trees, it’s one of the most romantic places to eat. The picturesque setting makes the Inn a popular wedding location - whether it's a bright, sunny day or a warm evening, there isn't a bad table on the fairy tale patio. On cooler nights, seats by the fireplace are highly coveted.

A longtime advocate of vegan and vegetarian cuisine, the restaurant continues the Yaneys' mission of offering their guests the benefits of cooking without chemicals or artificial additives - the chicken and beef are raised naturally and grass fed, fish is wild or line-caught, and sauces are made with minimal use of dairy products. The wine list includes a large selection of organic and Biodynamic wines. Dinner highlights include 8-hour black vinegar braised short rib, red roast Mary's Free Range half-chicken, pan-seared scallops, miso glazed sea bass, and creamy truffle risotto.

A lavish weekend brunch buffet includes salad bars, pastry bars, waffle bar, fruit bar, seafood bar, vegan & gluten-free selections, and a wide range of dishes such as Eggs Benedict with duck bacon, green apple chicken sausage & fennel, and chipotle-barbecue free range chicken.

Starlight Booth at La Boucherie in the InterContinental DTLA
Starlight Booth | Photo: La Boucherie

La Boucherie - Intercontinental Downtown Los Angeles

An elegant steakhouse steakhouse and one of the most beautiful restaurants in Los Angeles with a French twist, La Boucherie is perched on the 71st floor of the spectacular InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown, which occupies 37 floors of the Wilshire Grand Center, the tallest building west of Chicago. If you’re looking for exceptional romantic restaurants in Los Angeles with a view to match, La Boucherie features discreet, intimate private dining and VIP booths with floor-to-ceiling privacy screens that offer panoramic views of the L.A. skyline. Globally sourced and seasonally updated, the menu features reimagined French classics, premium steaks and fresh seafood, all prepared with the finest ingredients. The dining experience is enhanced by a cheese atelier, charcuterie cave and an extensive, curated wine list featuring 1,200 international and American wines.

The Lobster
The Lobster Restaurant

The Lobster

Originally opened in 1923, the current incarnation of The Lobster opened in 1999. Boasting 180-degree views from its location at the top of the historic Santa Monica Pier and hailed as one of the most romantic restaurants in Santa Monica, The Lobster has famously hosted up to four or five marriage proposals a day. If you're planning on popping the question, be sure to book one of the highly-requested window tables.

While The Lobster is renowned for its signature California spiny lobster and Maine lobster, the recent addition of Executive Chef Govind Armstrong has elevated the seafood-focused menu. Start with the chilled shellfish platter for two, which includes 6 oysters, 4 Mexican white shrimp, half-dungeness crab, 6 black mussels, and half of a 1.5 lb Maine lobster. Entrees include shellfish & black chitarra pasta, barramundi fish & chips, and seared rare yellowfin tuna with dungeness crab fried rice. "Surf & Turf" options include grilled 12 oz N.Y. Steak & Frites, seared 8 oz angus filet mignon, and grilled Nebraska 18 oz bone-in prime ribeye, with half or whole 1.5 lb lobster add-ons.

Nobu Malibu | Photo: Henry Hargreaves, for Nobu Malibu
Nobu Malibu | Photo: Henry Hargreaves, for Nobu Malibu

Nobu Malibu

Originally opened in the Malibu Country Mart shopping center, Nobu Malibu relocated down Pacific Coast Highway in 2002 and the stunning beachfront location and refined Japanese cuisine have beckoned diners ever since. This place's beauty makes it one of the most romantic restaurants in Malibu and longtime  fans can expect Nobu Matsuhisa's signature dishes such as tiradito, yellowtail sashimi with jalapeño, and black cod miso. Be sure to explore Malibu favorites created by Executive Chef Gregorio Stephenson, including ribeye with truffle butter sauce & crispy Maui onions, Heirloom Tomato & Snapper New Style, as well as kobe beef with crispy shiitake mushrooms & sugar snap peas. Plan on reserving well in advance if you want to snag one of the outdoor tables. 

Providence  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa
Providence  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa


Chef Michael Cimarusti's Michelin-starred Providence is renowned as one of the best seafood restaurants in the country. The elegant dining room evokes the ocean with design touches like deep blue seating, coral-like wall patterns and clustered seashells along softly lit walls. The luxurious menu options include the Providence Tasting Menu ($120 per person with $170 optional wine pairing), and the Signature & Seasonal Tasting Menu ($185 / $275). Highlights of the 11-course Chef's Tasting Menu ($220 / $330) include sea urchin, Nancy's Day Boat sea scallop, spider crab chawanmushi, spiny lobster, striped bass, a5 wagyu and artisanal cheeses. For an unforgettable culinary experience, reserve the Chef's Table for an intimate view of the kitchen in action - Cimarusti himself might chat with you. Chef will create a custom menu with advance notice, and you provide the romantic music with your iPod and the private sound system.

Sir Winston's at The Queen Mary
Sir Winston's at The Queen Mary

Sir Winston's Restaurant & Lounge - Queen Mary

To step onto the decks of the legendary Queen Mary is to step back in time to the grand era of transatlantic travel. Sir Winston's, the flagship fine dining restaurant and one of the most romantic restaurants in Long Beach, is the perfect setting to enjoy classics like Beef Wellington, Chateaubriand for Two, and Dover Sole Meuniere. Other favorites include bone-in New York steak, Australian rack of lamb, Sea Trout Almondine, and Herb Chicken Roulade. Lady Churchill herself reportedly granted permission to name it after her late husband, who was a former passenger. It’s fitting, given the prime minister was a well-known lover of beefsteak, and the Wellington in truffle sauce here is an elevated classic.

Traxx at Union Station in Downtown LA   |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa
Traxx at Union Station in Downtown LA  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa


In the waning days of the Great Railway Station, Union Station was the last of its kind in the United States, as the heyday of passenger train travel gave way to the Jet Age. Chef-owner Tara Thomas opened her destination restaurant, TRAXX at the landmark station in 1997. There are many nice restaurants in L.A. but there's an undeniable nostalgic charm to the historic transportation hub - sit adjacent to the Grand Concourse, watch the steady flow of commuters and travelers, and imagine the countless stories they could tell. Couples can opt for one of the tables roped off from the foot traffic, the quieter atmosphere inside a dining room banquette, or the private nook of No. 33. Thomas is partial to the round table in the front window. The eclectic menu features small plates like classic Caesar salad, jumbo crab cake, and grilled farmer's market vegetables. Heartier appetites can delve into house cured double cut pork chop, green chile posole with grilled chicken, spicy New Orleans style gumbo, and classic Steak Frites.

Herb Alpert and Lani Hall on stage at Vibrato Grill in Bel-Air
Herb Alpert and Lani Hall on stage at Vibrato | Photo: Vibrato Grill, Facebook

Herb Alpert's Vibrato Grill Jazz

Not all romantic places in L.A. are atop a fancy hotel. Located in a Bel-Air strip mall, Vibrato is the brainchild of Grammy Award winning music legend Herb Alpert. Vibrato features top notch jazz performances in a warm, elegant setting with soft lighting, superb sound design, and artwork by Alpert himself. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane, who performs regularly at Vibrato, recently told The Hollywood Reporter, "I've been to jazz clubs all over the country, and Vibrato ranks with the best of them. The acoustics are fantastic; the vibe is great." Couples usually opt for booths on the main floor or a cozy table on the balcony. The menu showcases California cuisine, Italian favorites, classic steakhouse cuts and vegetarian dishes. Cover and show times vary, for more info visit the Vibrato Performance Calendar.

Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air dining room and fireplace
Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa

Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air

The signature Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air is located in a lush garden setting at one of the most storied hotels in L.A. There are numerous options for lovers - lounge in a booth, sit at the outdoor bar, or tuck into a private alcove overlooking Swan Lake. The terrace sparkles to life after dark, lit by twinkling lanterns and scented by bougainvillea and lavender that drift in on a warm breeze.The luxury appointments include heated floors and a retractable screen for year-round dining pleasure. Live music adds to the ambiance Sunday through Thursday.

The menu reflects the Southern California lifestyle with Mediterranean influences. High end starters include caviar and kampachi sashimi. Highlights include a decadent house made tagliatelle with white truffles & parmesan reggiano, Four Story Hill Farms veal liver, 28-day aged prime New York steak, Colorado lamb chops, Marcho Farms veal chop, Coastal Organics Tomato Sald, and Cauliflower "Steak."

Yamashiro, Hollywood   |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa
Yamashiro, Hollywood  |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa


It’s one of the classiest restaurants in Hollywood, boasting spectacular city views, stunning architecture and tranquil gardens, Yamashiro has beckoned guests to its romantic setting above Hollywood Boulevard since 1914, when it was built as a private estate. Today the restored "Mountain Palace" is renowned for its Asian fusion cuisine, numerous movie and TV appearances, and is a popular venue for weddings and special events.

You and your fellow sushi lover can indulge in the 36-piece Sushi Boat, a chef's selection of 8 pieces of sashimi, 12 pieces of nigiri, and 2 sushi rolls. Also popular with couples, the Mountain Palace Sampler Platters includes banana leaf pork spring rolls, vegetarian spring rolls, Thai peanut hummus, honey baked chicken wings, shrimp dumplings and sauces. Yamashiro's signature dish, the Ishi-Yaki Cooking Stone features a seared American wagyu steak that's served with a hot lava rock, seasonal vegetables, fingerling potatoes and pink Himalayan salt.