In Santa Monica, you don’t have sacrifice the indulgences of luxury travel to go green. In fact, in 2015, Santa Monica Travel & Tourism was recognized by the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) and National Geographic Traveler with a prestigious Platinum Adrian Award for “Leadership in Sustainable Tourism.” As one would expect, the city provides many eco-friendly restaurants, hotels, attractions and transportation alternatives that allows visitors to protect the destination and environment.
Pacific Wheel on the Santa Monica Pier
This true Southern California landmark soars 130 feet above the Pacific Ocean and is the world’s first solar powered ferris wheel. It is home to an amusement park and the Santa Monica Aquarium, in addition to dining options that range from gourmet fare to cotton candy and ice cream cones.
The Santa Monica Pier Aquarium
*Located at beach level under the historic Carousel.
Featuring hands-on presentations and interactive exhibits, the Aquarium is a part of Santa Monica’s own “Heal the Bay” program, an initiative to educate, inspire and empower its visitors to be stewards of the environment. Kids 12 and under are free; all others have a suggested donation of $5.
Annenberg Community Beach House
A short and refreshing bike ride just north of the Santa Monica Pier is Annenberg Community Beach House—the country’s only public beach club and a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certified building that used recycled blue jeans for insulation. This public facility is located on five acres of oceanfront property that was initially developed during the 1920s by William Randolph Hearst for actress Marion Davies. Today, visitors can take a dip in the original marble pool where the old Hollywood elite once swam, play volleyball, have lunch, take yoga classes and learn about Santa Monica history with free docent tours at the Marion Davies Guest House. http://beachhouse.smgov.net
Biketineraries and the South Bay Bicycle Trail
Whether guests are interested in sightseeing, exercise, or a little bit of both, Santa Monica has a biketinerary that is sure to delight. The self-guided tours were created under different themes such as arts, wellness, vintage shopping and sustainability. Alternatively, visitors can soak in stunning views of the Pacific coastline and some of Santa Monica’s beach culture along the 22- mile South Bay Bicycle Trail, the world’s longest oceanfront bike path.
Shore Hotel is the newest addition to Ocean Avenue and the Santa Monica coastline. The LEED Gold certified property offers eco-friendly accommodations with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and a variety of fantastic amenities. Guests can enjoy an outdoor pool and patio, the adjacent Blue Plate Taco restaurant and bar, a fitness center, state-of-the-art meeting and special events spaces and a green concierge, the hotel’s own local expert on all things eco-friendly. http://shorehotel.com/
GREEN EATS AND SHOPPING:
Santa Monica Farmers Market
Named “Best in the Country” by Travel + Leisure, the Santa Monica’s Farmers Market only uses recyclable or compostable products and hosts a bike valet on Arizona Avenue on Saturdays and Main Street on Sundays. http://www.smgov.net/portals/farmersmarket/
Located at the entrance to the Santa Monica Pier, this green certified business offers fresh seafood, panoramic ocean views and solar panels on the roof. http://www.thelobster.com/
Main Street boasts a number of eco-friendly and individually owned boutiques. It is consistently filled with locals who love to stroll up and down the street and rub elbows with their neighbors. This eclectic street oozes laidback beach lifestyle and a commitment to sustainability. In fact, it is home to a community garden and the most certified green businesses in Santa Monica. http://www.mainstreetsm.com/
Santa Monica Place – LEED Gold certified
The entirely outdoor three story shopping mecca, features Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, Coach, Tiffany, in addition to over 80 other specialty stores. A third floor rooftop deck features gorgeous ocean views and an entire floor of dining, including “The Market”, where diners will find artisanal cheeses, wines, chocolates, olive oils, flowers and more. During construction of the Frank Gehry-designed Santa Monica Place, 90% of construction waste was diverted from landfills. Today, the shopping center has a green roof element and water-efficient landscaping, amongst many other sustainable efforts that have earned it the prestigious title of LEED Gold certified.
Santa Monica recently celebrated the opening of Tongva Park, a new public space that encompasses seven ocean-view acres in the heart of Santa Monica. The park boasts rolling hills and verdant lawns, picnic tables, winding walkways and soaring observation decks that offer beautiful views of the oceans, Pier and Los Angeles coastline. Designed by James Corner Field Operations, the team behind New York’s celebrated High Line Park, Tongva Park was inspired by the Southern California arroyo landscape of washes and ravines that once defined the site. The urban landscape features an abundant and ambitious planning scheme, contemplative walking paths, soothing water elements, and two viewing platforms with majestic views of the Pacific Ocean.
About Santa Monica Travel & Tourism
Santa Monica Travel & Tourism (SMTT), formerly Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau, is a non-profit organization designed to increase visitor expenditures, tourism revenues and local employment opportunities through the promotion of Santa Monica as a travel destination. For travel and accommodation information or a free copy of the official Visitors Guide, the public can write to the Santa Monica Visitor Center, 2427 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405; call 800-544-5319 or 310-393-7593; visit santamonica.com; or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow SMTT on Twitter @GoSantaMonica or become a Facebook fan at facebook.com/visitsantamonica.
Contact: Jackie Alvarez
Santa Monica Travel & Tourism