If you want something contemporary and spacious, but not too pricey and prestigious, this low-key luxury hotel and spa will fit the bill. Ideally situated on the sandy side of Ocean Avenue in the heart of Santa Monica's beach scene, the 175-room property houses a well-regarded French-California restaurant, Cézanne, and the 6,500-square-foot Spa Le Merigot, which offers a full range of services along with an outdoor pool and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Some of the contemporary-style guest rooms offer partial ocean views, and all are furnished with plush carpeting, oversize lounge chairs, and pillow-top beds with Italian-cotton linens. It could probably use a refresh, which management is working on step by step, so although it's not a grand slam, it's still a pleasant place to stay.