A Teen’s Guide to Hanging Out in Santa Monica

IMG_7672First a little introduction to me.  My name is Maddy Lewis and ever since I was a little girl my parents have always encouraged me to find the things I love and hold on to them. Now in high school, I’ve learned to take my hobbies and passions and apply them in my day to day life. Some of these include writing, film photography, drawing, and music.

My mom writes for Famadillo, and I’d like to do more writing also, so I told her that I’m covering out next trip.

With this being said, here’s where I start.

Whether your thing is shopping, listening to live music, walking, or finding cute coffee shops to relax at, Santa Monica has it.

Ambrose Suite Balcony

My mom likes to take trips just to get away for a quick bit.  And that’s what we did a few weekends ago!  Just the two of us.

I’ve lived in southern California my whole life and we’ve never actually hung out in Santa Monica.  I was excited.  Not just for some time away, but for some fun!

Traffic for San Diego to LA County stinks!  A normal car ride should last around 2 hours, our ended up being closer to 3 and 1/2, so when we showed up at The Ambrose Hotel   it was nice to be happily greeted by the staff, ready to help us and answer any questions that we may have had.  Honestly though I was so exhausted and ready to hop into our bed and bury my face into the fluffy pillows that I didn’t fully listen to the welcome speech. Walking into our suite was like walking into a home (though better decorated than most). Friendly, vivid, bright, and simple.

I soon found out that not only does The Ambrose have sweet rooms with very comfortable beds, but also free bikes and complimentary breakfasts! I can’t even begin to tell you how overly excited my dorky little self was hearing this news. All that was going through my head was “wow someone’s feeding me… for free???  I must’ve just won the lottery! Oh free transportation too??  Yes please.” We were just a fun bike ride away from the Santa Monica Pier and downtown Santa Monica.  Lots and lots of fun activities for the whole family!

Places to note….

Urth Caffe.


Famished and more than ready for lunch, we yelped “restaurants around us” and stumbled upon Urth Caffe.  Urth is an organic café which serves both pretty and nontoxic coffee (it’s a win win!).  Since I’ve heard many people rave about it, claiming it really is as good as the hype makes it out to be, I was so excited to try it myself. Mom and I shared the Panini El Diablo, and each got a latte. The panini was phenomenal. Each flavor was evident in the dish and it was large enough to share. We also ordered a honey vanilla latte, and a Spanish latte, both of which were Our drinks were amazing as well, though we both agreed they were a little too sweet for us.

Sushi Roku

It’s funny how we came upon this place.  We had heard so much about Sugarfish and kind of had our hearts set on it, but there was no way we were waiting 2 hours for dinner when it was already close to 7 pm.  So we opted for the other Sushi place not to far away.  We got right in.  That was a bonus.  But the food and drinks were great too!  By far one of the best Tuna Pokes we have had.

Santa Monica Pier

Rides, games, food, music and serious people watching.

With all of that being said…the highlight of this trip was Pepperdine University.  IT’S ON MY LIST and mom better win the lottery!  The campus is located on a hill, about five minutes away from Malibu Lagoon State Beach, making it a mellow 15 minute drive from our hotel.  Right away I completely fell in love with both the campus and location. Due to the fact that we visited on a Saturday, no classes were in session, though many rooms were open for us to peek into.  We found that the average class size is around 30 students per professor, giving students a closer relationship to their professors.

Santa Monica is in my future.  Determined.  Motivated. Excited.

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