Ahh, Malibu. The Los Angeles-adjacent beachside hideaway of celebrities, Hollywood moguls, and other well-heeled homeowners boasts some truly incredible estates, mansions, and villas among its cliffs and coasts—places where living the good life is only the baseline. This is an area where the no-detail-spared home becomes reality. Ever wanted to serve an ace on your private tennis court overlooking the Pacific, float in a suspended infinity pool that seems to merge with the sunset, or wander through Balinese-inspired gardens without leaving the U.S.? You’ll find it all tucked into Malibu’s magical 21 miles. Here’s seven of the area’s most exceptional spots to hole up for a weekend away. It goes without saying that you won’t want to leave.
Two Words: Private Waterslide
Luxurious Serra Retreat is a palm tree-studded haven with one particular standout feature sure to bring out the fun-loving kid in anyone: a sleek bespoke waterslide that whisks you into a stone-rimmed pool (which includes a diving board and hot tub, too). The poolside terrace is the heart of the house, with walls that nearly disappear between the airy kitchen and walk-out alfresco dining area—plus, there’s a coal barbecue and outdoor pizza oven that beg for use.
It’s impossible to be stumped on how to fill your hours. Read a book in the tranquil gazebo, sky-gaze from a hammock, or lounge on the Instagram-worthy rope-hung outdoor daybed; trek the hiking trails accessible from the property; then work up a sweat at the private tennis court (complete with night-lighting). Or simply relax poolside. And take another trip down that incredible waterslide.
Center Yourself by Escaping to Your Own Private Meditation Room
Plenty of holiday getaway homes are chockfull of entertainment spaces (billiard tables, pools, etc), but it’s rarer to find a seaside escape with a dedicated meditation room, too. The Bali Style in Malibu villa‘s pebble-walled sanctuary is a cool, cave-like space beset with South Asian-style floor cushions and a 1,100-gallon fish tank perfect for peaceful contemplation. That atmosphere of Zen-like calm extends elsewhere via the villa’s Balinese-inspired touches—South Asian stone and exotic wood detailing find their way into every room, from one bedroom’s dreamy hanging bed to rattan and handcrafted furnishings, artwork, and jewel-like vases.
Come sunset, indulge in a sundowner at the top floor bar for an unobstructed view of the Pacific, then make your way to the state-of-the-art home theater to watch a film of your choice in total comfort. There’s an outdoor dining area, a beautiful pool, hot tub, and three levels of decks to relax on, plus plenty of little nooks and crannies to discover. But if you’re truly focused on maintaining your Zen during your stay, don’t miss the chance to take a stroll to a secret cove that the villa has deeded access. Just say ohhhh-m already.
Where European Style Meets California Luxury
While the breathtaking Villa Contenta is aptly named, Villa Resplendenta might be more appropriate. This magnificent property has the atmosphere of a private world—that is, one where you’ve been transported into the lavish resort of a European royal. Situated on six oceanfront acres, the grounds and outbuildings are expansive enough to happily lose yourself within, again and again. The villa is comprised of a main house, guest house, casita, pool pavilion, and greenhouse, all surrounded by rose gardens, a saltwater infinity pool, croquet lawns, and a private tennis court. At every turn are spectacular friezes, hand-painted murals, and hand-laid marble mosaics, not to mention restored artifacts and carefully selected antiques like a 2,500-year-old Italian sculpture of a lion’s head. The classic Euro-style architecture is stunning—the entryway alone features two stories of carved limestone and a sweeping staircase—and arched high ceilings and proud columns draw the eye. And nearly every luxury must-have box was checked during the design process: there’s a billiards room, library, wine cellar, and screening room, in addition to nine expansive bedrooms.
Were it not for the near-perfect temperatures and Pacific horizon, you’d barely recognize that you’re in California from this awe-inspiring escape…and after all, that’s what a true weekend getaway is all about.
The Resort-like Ranch Hideaway of Your Dreams
Whether you’re an A-lister giving paparazzi the slip—or just dream of doing so—the Exclusive Malibu Ranch‘s whopping 28-acre park-like property is the place to hide. Not that you’ll want to stay indoors. There’s cozy lounge and dining areas are scattered throughout the estate, settled in shady tree groves or positioned on sunny lawns. Stroll through the manicured formal garden, settle on a chaise lounge next to the lengthy European-style pool, or sink into the sofa next to the fireplace inside the charming, ivy-covered pool house. Truly, the only question is where exactly among these riches you’ll choose to relax.
Inside, the vibe is boutique hotel meets cottage luxe. Each of the six bedrooms features an en-suite bathroom, and standalone tubs are de rigueur. One room even boasts an al fresco bathtub set next to an outdoor fireplace. Details like four-poster beds, tufted couches, and eclectic, colorful linens make the overall effect cozy yet curated. Did we mention it’s gonna to be tough to leave a spot like this one?
Discover Malibu’s Most Eco-Friendly High-End Weekend Getaway
Built to LEED platinum standards, and inspired by Balinese architecture, this oasis in Malibu’s exclusive Point Dume neighborhood is the ideal melding of beach-y style and eco-friendly luxury. The energy-efficient Malibu Tropical Retreat‘s peaked roofline, Brazilian hardwood floors and fold-back glass walls are a nod to Indonesia’s open-sided traditional pavilions, and standout furnishings like a carved wooden daybed and built-in sofa could have come straight from Bali. There’s also glass-walled showers and a scattering of Buddha sculptures, which allow you to pretend to be in a southeast Asian spa. Lounge in a hammock, warm yourself in the hot tub, or wander through the raised bed gardens to see what’s edible at the moment.
And don’t forget to spend a few moments indulging in the feel-good mentality of knowing that you’ve chosen an Earth-friendly escape.
A Family-Friendly Haven With a Touch of Tuscany
It’s unusual to find a home that caters to discerning adults and children, yet remains an opulent, dreamy escape. Villa Sogno manages this feat effortlessly. Adults will love the walk-in wine cave, wet bar, dedicated exercise room (with a massage table at the ready), plus a billiard table and shuffleboard that demand use; kids’ eyes will pop over sleeping in a set of triple built-in bunk beds with a secure walkway feature. And everyone will love the stunning, lengthy infinity pool and al fresco dining area complete with a pizza oven and fire pit, plus the chance to hang out in an impressive home theater with ultra-lush seating and a projection screen.
What’s more, the airy great room’s stunning beamed ceiling nods to Tuscan style. Though you’re not quite “under the Tuscan sun” here; the bright natural light that brightens this room via a wide skylight is Malibu’s own. And it’s equally fantastic.
Where a French Chateau Meets a Malibu Estate
If you regularly dream of a weekend getaway to the south of France, Malibu’s Maison de Reve is the next best thing. And once you take a good look around, it may even be better. The overall atmosphere is that of an exclusive European estate.
You’re welcomed by an 18th-century fountain, sculpted hedges and flickering gas lamps; inside, your eye bounces from exquisite details like limestone and walnut flooring, imported furnishings and fireplace mantels, hand-plastered walls, and custom ceiling moldings. But of course, this is Malibu—so the open-plan living and dining rooms open to the terrace through an expansive folding glass wall, to take full advantage of the indoor-outdoor lifestyle possible in southern California. Wander the 200-bush rose garden, explore the private orchard, and linger over wine in the charming, ivy-covered cabana complete with built-in sofas and a romantic fireplace.
In this gated community, no one will bother you—just as you’d like.