Costa Mesa, CA, USA

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What’s New at South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa

Posted on September 30, 2021 | 9:00pm

Get ready to hit the road because South Coast Plaza, the largest shopping destination on the West Coast, continues to define the luxury shopping and experience with award-winning dining, exciting new offerings and more this fall. With 250 boutiques and more than 30 restaurants, along with world-class entertainment just across the street at Segerstrom Center for the Arts and South Coast Repertory, there’s too much to see in one day. Now is the time to create your escape to Costa Mesa.

Knife Pleat

Knife Pleat, from renowned chef Tony Esnault and restaurateur Yassmin Sarmadi, was awarded a Michelin star in the 2021 Michelin guide. The elegant restaurant features Chef Esnault’s modern take on classic French techniques. In addition to lunch and dinner, Knife Pleat offers Saturday afternoon tea and seasonal tasting menus. Knife Pleat is the third restaurant in Orange County to receive a Michelin star, after Taco Maria and Hana re in 2019. All three are located in Costa Mesa.

Collage Culinary Experience

A two-story, elevated global dining collective, Collage Culinary Experience, features sit down restaurants, fast casual establishments and full-service bars. The restaurants within Collage include the debut of Paradise Dynasty in the U.S., along with Le Shrimp Ramen and Mah Jong’s by Chef Mike are currently open. Egg LXIII, Mochinut, Cha Redefine, Bruxie, Churrino, PhoHolic and more will join Collage.

Cha Cha Matcha x Tiffany & Co.

Have Tea at Tiffany’s! Cha Cha Matcha, the popular matcha shop in New York and LA, has a pop-up in Tiffany & Co. at South Coast Plaza. Cha Cha Matcha uses ceremonial grade matcha for calm, clear and centered energy. Stop in for a Tiffany blue matcha or one of their signature beverages and small bites. Cha Cha Matcha x Tiffany & Co. is open through October from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Bloomingdale’s

Bloomingdale’s recently unveiled its newly renovated store, featuring a completely transformed second floor. It includes new designer boutiques from Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, Saint Laurent and more, as well as men’s and women’s shoes from Saint Laurent, Gucci, Valentino, Dior and Jimmy Choo. The cosmetics department now offers dedicated brand shops from Valentino Beauty, La Mer, Cle de Peau Beaute, and Clarins, plus the most sought after brands such as Jo Malone, Cartier, Bulgari, Aqua di Parma, Diptyque, Hermes, and Charlotte Tilbury, along with the first Gucci Beauty counter in on the West Coast. Shoppers can also enjoy facial treatment services in the brand new spa treatment rooms.

Read our press release here.

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Posted in Food, Shopping

Shop, dine and play in Costa Mesa

Posted on August 31, 2021 | 10:00am

It’s back-to-school time, which means new clothes, gadgets and more. Whether you’re shopping for kids or just want a wardrobe refresh, Costa Mesa has unique boutiques and the largest shopping destination on the West Coast. While you’re here, check out the world-class dining and entertainment options available too. Want to make it a mini-getaway? Check out our summer hotel deals!

Photo courtesy of @aiden_oc_baby

The LAB

The LAB Anti-Mall is a great place for shopping small and, even, environmentally conscious. Buffalo Exchange is a second-hand shop offering basics, designer, trendy and one-of-a-kind fashion. On the opposite side of The LAB, you’ll find an Urban Outfitters too. Looking for sustainable school supplies? Eco Now, a zero-waste shop and refill station offers plastic free lunch containers, bags, utensils and more. There’s also a cosmetic and skincare section. 

There are plenty of restaurants, if you need a bite to eat. The Den Café serves a variety of breakfast and lunch dishes. Seabirds Kitchen is a popular vegan restaurant. Try their avo taco, a vegan version of the fish taco. The LAB also has a Baba’s Hot Chicken. Habana is a favorite of locals and visitors alike. 

Photo courtesy of @johnnybayday

The CAMP

Eco-friendly retail campus The CAMP has several shops that favor environmentally conscious clothing. SEED Peoples Market offers curated fashion from local vendors and responsible brands, such as Patagonia. 2nd Street USA is a second-hand shop where you can find clothes and accessories. Purre Boutique has women’s clothing, home goods and accessories.

Take a break from shopping at one of The CAMP’s Eatcation®-worthy restaurants. Old Vine Kitchen & Bar has something delicious any time you visit. Stop in on the weekend for an incredible brunch (make sure to get a cinnamon roll). Chopped champion Rachel Klemek’s Blackmarket Bakery offers breakfast, lunch, pastries, desserts and a full coffee menu. Vegan diners will love Native Foods. For a quick bite, try East Borough’s take on classic Vietnamese dishes. Vitaly is always a great option for traditional Italian food, including gelato. If you’re visiting after 4, make a reservation at Folks. Their naturally leavened pizza and natural wines are a definite treat. We also recommend trying their amazing meatballs.

South Coast Plaza

The premier destination for shopping on the West Coast has everything you need for back-to-school shopping. Whether you’re picking up new tech from the Apple Store, shopping for clothes at one of the boutiques or department stores, you can find it at South Coast Plaza. For a full list of stores for kids clothes, shoes and accessories, click here

There are more than 30 restaurants to choose from at South Coast Plaza. Try the latest concept, Collage Culinary Experience, a food hall with Paradise Dynasty, Le Shrimp Ramen and Mah Jongs by Chef Mike currently open. The grand opening takes place this fall. You can find a list of all South Coast Plaza restaurants here.

SOCO & The OC Mix

If you’re also shopping for babies or toddlers, check out Whimsical Charm at SOCO & The OC Mix. You’ll find adorable clothes, robes, blankets and shoes. While you’re there, stop for coffee at Portola Coffee Roasters or a meal at one of their restaurants. The Cheese Shop serves sandwiches, get pizza at ARC or have dinner at Michelin star Taco Maria.

Things to Do

Check out our previous blog for Broadway shows and concerts coming to Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Visit our calendar for all the entertainment options coming to Costa Mesa during your visit. 

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Posted in Misc, Play, Shopping

Where to Celebrate AAPI Heritage Month in Costa Mesa

Posted on May 7, 2021 | 8:20am

Costa Mesa is a proudly diverse city that offers a unique experience for visitors. Within the city you can find a variety of small businesses, the largest shopping destination on the west coast, street art and a world-class performing arts center. The cultural influences throughout Costa Mesa can especially be seen through the dining and small businesses that make up the city. In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we’re highlighting some of the AAPI restaurants and businesses in Costa Mesa here and on social media. Follow us on throughout the month to see even more AAPI restaurants and businesses in Costa Mesa. 

The LAB

Photo courtesy of Hana re

Hana re

Every seat is at the chef’s table at this one-of-a-kind Michelin Star restaurant. With only 2 tables, and 10 seats, Hana re is more than a sushi bar. It’s a truly unique Costa Mesa experience.You’ll dine from one of the omakase menus and enjoy watching chef Atsushi Yokoyama prepare his exquisite dishes. If you’re planning to visit Hana re during your Costa Mesa getaway, check with the restaurant about reservations early.  

Good Town Doughnuts

Try the handcrafted brioche donuts in flavors like raspberry pistachio, hibiscus or Nutella. There are plenty of vegan and gluten-free options. Good Town Doughnuts uses high quality ingredients such as organic sugar, pure maple syrup and fresh fruit. 

Blends/Carve

Originally from Japan, owners Tak Kato and Mike Toe blend international taste with global products, including apparel and accessories. They’ll also be opening Kuro Pizza at The LAB soon.

Nook Coffee Bar

Nook Coffee Bar serves signature drinks such as the Spanish latte, honey lavender latte and honey oat latte. Grab a specialty coffee to enjoy while sitting at one of The LAB’s outdoor tables.

The CAMP

Photo courtesy of The CAMP / Folks

Folks

From partners Chloe Tran and chef Joey Baugh, Folks has already won accolades in its first two years. The naturally leavened pizza dough, along with the rest of the menu, makes Folks a must visit in Costa Mesa. The meatballs with pork cheek gravy are delicious, as are the chicken wings with Italian fish sauce, calabrian chilies, parsley and lemon. 

East Borough

Enjoy Vietnamese street-cart style foods, such as bánh mi sandwiches, spring rolls or bo kho stew at East Borough. Everything is packaged for takeaway, so you can grab a spot at one of The CAMP’s many outdoor seating areas and take in the view.

South Coast Plaza

Terrace by Mix Mix

Chef Ross Pangilinan’s eclectic menu at TERRACE by Mix Mix is inspired by Italian, French and modern Filipino flavors. The pork cheek adobo and the bone marrow pizza are always popular. We recommend trying one of his pre-fixe menus.

Royal Khybar Fine Indian Cuisine

Located across Sunflower Ave., in South Coast Plaza Village, Royal Khybar Fine Indian Cuisine offers modern and classic dishes. The menu is prepared with locally grown produce, fresh spices, handcrafted cheese and yogurt. 

AnQi Bistro

AnQi Bistro is the noodle bar and bistro concept by House of AN, of Crustacean fame. Popular dishes include filet mignon potstickers and pan-roasted lobster. There’s also a secret kitchen menu with some of House of AN’s famous dishes such roasted crab and famous garlic noodles.

Photo courtesy of The Hall: Global Eatery

Poke Bar at The Hall: Global Eatery

The popular Hawaiian dish gets the Top Chef treatment at The Hall: Global Eatery from chef Amar Santana. Build your bowl with choices of base, protein, toppings and sauce. 

Learn more information about AAPI month at South Coast Plaza here.

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Posted in Food, Misc, Shopping

Why Costa Mesa is Perfect for Solo Travel

Posted on September 30, 2020 | 8:24pm

You’re independent and ready to travel. You want to go someplace fun, safe and close to home. Hop in the car and head to the heart of Orange County. Whether you’re coming for a weekend getaway or a mid-week retreat, Costa Mesa is the perfect destination for your next solo trip. Before you make plans, be sure to check out our hotel deals.

Relax at the beach

Fall may be here, but the weather is still warm enough to head to the nearest beach. If you want to stay active, start off at one of our beach-adjacent parks and hike or bike to the beach. Otherwise, Orange County beaches are just a short drive for our hotels. Nothing says getaway quite like a day at the beach. We recommend getting a Sidecar donut to take with you.

Go on the Costa Mesa Art Walk

Costa Mesa is the City of the Arts® and no stay would be complete without seeing some of the art the city has to offer. Enjoy your solitude by getting outside and socially distancing on the Costa Mesa Art Walk. Stroll along our self-guided path to see the unique sculptures, as well as the area around Segerstrom Center for the Arts and over to South Coast Plaza. It’s all about you, so take your time. 

Shop at SOCO & The OC Mix

From Michelin star dining to boutique shopping, SOCO & The OC Mix is a must for a solo trip to Costa Mesa. Make some you-time by shopping small boutiques like Local Fare, The Mixing Glass or Bona Spera. Sit outside to sip award-winning Portola Coffee Roasters. Grab takeout from Michelin star Taco Maria. The indoor/outdoor space is great for exploring the shops before relaxing at a quiet table.

Dine at The CAMP

There are tons of amazing restaurants in Costa Mesa. We recommend visiting The CAMP at least once during your stay. The eco-friendly campus is home to great dining. Old Vine Restaurant & Bar has delicious food and extended patio seating, including OVKB The Roof. Stopping by for Sunday brunch? Definitely try the Baked Caramel Apple French Toast. When you’re done, walk across the street to The LAB Anti-Mall for more unique shops, restaurants and Instagram-worthy pics.

Stay safe at our hotels

Our Costa Mesa hotels make your health a priority. They’ve put into place new safety and cleanliness standards, so you can have peace of mind. Some hotels––such as Avenue of the Arts, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, and Ayres Hotel––have restaurants with patio dining open. No matter which hotel you choose, be sure to ask the front desk for the Travel Costa Mesa QR code for our event highlights for that week!

Come to Costa Mesa for a mid-week break or a weekend adventure. There’s plenty to do safely while you’re here. Want more ideas? Visit our Create Your Escape page for a solo itinerary, hotel deals and more. 

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Posted in Food, Hotels, Music & Art, Play, Shopping

Create Your Shopping Escape in Costa Mesa

Posted on September 18, 2020 | 10:44pm

School may be back in session, but with warm weather and newly reopened businesses in Orange County, we can’t wait to get back to one of our favorite Fall activities–shopping. Costa Mesa is home to South Coast Plaza, one of the largest shopping destinations on the West Coast, as well as the first anti-mall, The LAB, and other unique options to shop small. Find out why fall is the perfect time to take a break to shop in Costa Mesa. Coming to stay? Take a look at our Create Your Escape hotel deals.

Photo courtesy of South Coast Plaza

South Coast Plaza

For the 19th year, South Coast Plaza and Angelitos de Oro are partnering to present the Angelitos Card. Cardholders get 20% off at over 80 boutiques and restaurants. Proceeds from the sale of the card ($60) benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Orange County and the Inland Empire. We love that the Angelitos Card discount applies to the latest fall fashions, not otherwise on sale. If you’re planning on shopping at South Coast Plaza this fall, we recommend coming during Angelitos Week, September 24-30.

South Coast Plaza has been innovating safe ways to shop, from their attention to health and safety indoors to debuting alternative shopping experiences The Pavilion at South Coast Plaza and SCP2Go. The Pavilion at South Coast Plaza features 14 open-air suites where guests can shop select participating boutiques by appointment. For those who prefer to remain contactless, SCP2Go offers curbside pickup at participating shops and restaurants. The process is easy: order, park, call and pop your trunk. There’s even a color-coded map for parking.

The LAB

Honoring the “little American business,” The LAB Anti-Mall features a variety of stores, restaurants, two hair salons, a bar, a brewery and an art gallery. The eclectic mix of businesses makes for a unique shopping experience. You can find everything from clothing to tarot cards to zero waste refills, not to mention some delicious donuts, here. The LAB is also one of Costa Mesa’s most Instagrammable spots, so be sure to snap a photo (and tag us @travelcostamesa) while you’re there.

The CAMP

Across the street from The LAB you’ll find its sister center, The CAMP. If you love the outdoors, The CAMP may be the perfect shopping location for you. The entire space is eco-friendly. Stop in to SEED People’s Market for their curated collection of ethical and sustainable brands. You can find everything from outdoor gear to artisan soaps and jewelry. Find a unique gift at Pürre Boutique or Organic Designs By Aggelige. There are great dining options at The CAMP too.

If it’s time for a little retail therapy, why not create a shopping escape close to home? In addition to our hotel deals, be sure to check out our hotel safety and cleanliness procedures. Want to know what else is open? Our business updates and restaurants pages have our latest info.

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Posted in Shopping