Shore HotelSANTA MONICA, Calif. — The Shore Hotel here just celebrated its first year in business, but it's still the newest hotel in town.

In fact, it's the first new hotel constructed in this oceanside enclave in a decade.

The site was previously home to a Travelodge (and the part of the property that sits on Second Street previously was home to the Pacific Sands motel), which might surprise guests when they see the Shore in its sharp-end-of-cutting-edge glory. It's a sleek property with ultramodern furniture in the lobby, and angled balconies on the higher floors offer a killer view of the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Monica Pier.

The hotel was able to accumulate enough points during construction to earn a gold certification under the U.S. Green Business Council's Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, or LEED, standards.

"When ownership started developing the project years ago, they could already feel the importance of moving toward a more ecofriendly society and decided the only option was to go green," said Marta Hagan, the hotel's director of sales and marketing. "They wanted to be ahead of the game and set an example for the community, so they started looking into sustainable products and practices vs. standard building materials."

Those balconies? Angled toward the beach not necessarily to maximize ocean views but to capture the sunlight. The all-glass showers that bisect the bedrooms and the bathrooms? They're all glass in order to enable natural light to filter into the bathroom (a touch of a button brings a privacy shade down over the side of the shower).

Shore Hotel poolThe rooms are a colorful blend of orange, white, teak-colored woods and turquoise.

"It's definitely a boutique hotel," Hagan said.

The property is designated a "limited amenity hotel" as per the City of Santa Monica. The Shore's Development Review Permit prohibits the hotel from having a spa, a restaurant or a bar onsite.

Blue Plate Taco, which is an outpost of the popular Blue Plate on Montana Avenue, is leasing the space adjacent to the Shore. There's a minibar in the Shore's rooms but no room service.
Hagan, who previously worked at hip Hollywood hotels the Standard and the Roosevelt, said the Shore is planning on making changes, but "one step at a time."

For example, a meeting room with foldaway doors just off the hotel's pool would be a likely spot for an indoor/outdoor bar and lounge, Hagan said.

But right now the hotel has a license that enables it only to sell liquor to guests — charges must be posted to a room in the hotel — so during a visit last fall the hotel had a small, portable bar set up by the pool in the evening.

For now, the Shore is, literally, a sleeper. It's popular as a corporate-travel hotel with small-to-midsize Santa Monica businesses, and it does a lot of business with production teams. It's also popular with international travelers, specifically Australians, who made up half of its international business, Hagan said.

Room rates ranged from $275 to $350 per night. In its inaugural year in operation, the Shore had an 88% occupancy rate.

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