On a triangle of land between the Pacific Coast Highway and the Pacific Ocean, Malibu is the Californian dream. The northern edge of Topanga Canyon is to Malibu's south, and rising behind all the area's gorgeous beach palaces are the Santa Monica Mountains. Its beaches are famous, especially Zuma. Malibu feels distant from Los Angeles and, indeed, is a separate city. If Malibu meeting venues feel intimate and very select, it's because they are.
Bob Hope Airport (BUR) is 40 miles to the northeast of Malibu. It mainly serves West Coast destinations but does have direct flights to Denver and New York City's John F. Kennedy. The airport also has a direct train link (the only airport in the whole Los Angeles Metropolitan area to do so) to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), which is approximately 34 miles to the south.
Hotel venues in Malibu include a handful of accommodations mostly hugging the very few pieces of shore large enough to house them between Eastern Malibu, to the south, and Malibu itself. The 47-room Malibu Beach Inn is by far the best of the few, but certainly adequate is the Malibu Country Inn (actually in Malibu), which has 16 rooms.
Malibu event venues are very special. The Malibu Pier, which is owned and operated by California State Parks, reopened in 2008 and parts of it, including restaurants, can be rented, as can individual sections of beach (mountains behind, surf crashing, sun shining—how can you fail?). Malibu's Pepperdine University Center for the Arts contains the Smothers Theatre, which has 450 seats arranged along 15 rows. For a memorable slice of 1930s Hollywood/California Coast lifestyle, take your group to the Adamson House in Eastern Malibu. No events can take place in the house, but up to 200 persons can enjoy stunning ocean views from the lawns. The Malibu Stage Company, which puts on numerous shows, has various spaces that can be rented, including a 99-seat theater and a covered patio.
Dining venues include the Sunset, which has space for 150 seats on the beach, 150 diners inside and 200 seats (300 standing) in a tent. Also hinting of Shangri-la is the Paradise Cove Beach Cafe, where the beach is 100-percent private and can host 350 persons. Malibu's Beau Rivage prepares a Mediterranean menu and has space for groups of up to 75 persons, while a little farther north up the coast is the eclectic Neptune's Net, which quite obviously features seafood. Lastly, back in the center of Malibu is Geoffrey's, with an innovative menu that features seafood, with some meat dishes, too, and which has room for groups of up to 180 persons for dinner, 300 for receptions; its Waterfall Room seats 60.
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