5 Upscale Places for Drinks Al Fresco in Santa Monica

Let’s face it: the weather in Santa Monica, even when it isn’t perfect, is still pretty perfect compared to most other cities in the world!

If you’re looking to enjoy the amazing weather, but ditch the flip flops, here are 5 upscale spots to socialize outside with your beverage of choice in Santa Monica.


Wilshire Restaurant
2454 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90403
(310) 586-1707

A long time Santa Monica staple, Wilshire Restaurant features a large, upscale outdoor patio, bar and lounge area that is surrounded by trees and twinkling white lights.  Looking for a little post-dinner dancing? This is your spot on most Thursday through Saturday nights as well!

1147 3rd St
Santa Monica, CA 90403
(310) 451-0843

Discreetly located a block away from the hustle and bustle of the Santa Monica Promenade, this restaurant features a lovely garden-like setting on the rather large back patio, perfect for dinner and/or drinks and maximum privacy.  A sophisticated spot for drinks and dinner out of the public eye!

Suite 700 at Hotel Shangri-La
1301 Ocean Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 394-2791

Ready yourself for stunning panoramic views of the City of Santa Monica, the Pier and the beach in this art deco throwback!  Also, ready yourself for lines if you arrive too late in the evening on any given weekend; the joint is a popular spot for the local glitterati.

Buffalo Club
1520 Olympic Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90404
(310) 450-8600

If you’re looking for a seriously hidden gem, then this is it! With a very nondescript entrance, it may not look like much on the exterior, but once you enter you’ll find yourself in a lovely, upscale setting that is reminiscent of the “Mad Men” era.

Cast at Viceroy Hotel
1819 Ocean Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 260-7511

You can’t get any more “Californian” than Cast! Saunter outside and enjoy your drinks in the poolside lounge area.  Bungalows are available upon request for private reservation.