Travel: The OC Guide

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Having visited The OC in California earlier this year, I decided it was time to put my guide together to the best shopping and accommodation in the region.

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I had a blast discovering so many cute boutique stores in The OC region! On top of my must-visit list was Lido Marina Village in Newport – a mix of charming boutiques and stylish shops, set in a delightful village ambience. Each store looked so beautiful - think coastal/barn/country cottage style details with a treasure trove of wares to explore. Serena and Lily (pictured at the very top of post) was drop-dead-gorgeous – the outdoor space was very inspirational (I was jotting down ideas left right and centre). Sugar Paper (pictured above) was another highlight – as a self-confessed stationery addict, I could have easily bought one of everything in store! You can even enjoy al fresco dining overlooking the marina. A handy hint for those visiting in the Spring – Malibu Farm (pictured below) is opening a new restaurant on-site soon.

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Looking for a stylish stay in Newport Beach? Designed with an effortless sense of style and a definitive beach-house vibe, Lido House is Newport Beach’s newest designer hotel. The hotel’s design and iconic architecture celebrates Newport Beach’s Cape Cod aesthetic with elegant twists on a variety of nautical themes. This hotel is just another reason for me to visit The OC again. This beauty wasn’t around when I visited, but I’ll be sure to book a stay next time.


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I am so bummed that McGee & Co.'s brand new Costa Mesa store didn’t exist when I visited in February. Oh how I adore Studio McGee’s interior design style, and now that they have a shop, well that’s just too much temptation for me. Hmm, maybe it was a good thing they weren’t open when I visited, as I probably would have come back with a few extra suitcases and a dent to the old credit card! Their brand spanking new store is on my list of places to visit next time I visit the OC. Make sure to put it on yours too! Click here to check out this cute video of the store.

 Photos of McGee & Co. store by Kate Osborne

Photos of McGee & Co. store by Kate Osborne


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Laguna Beach in the OC is such a sweet little coastal town, filled with art galleries, cafes, and boutique stores, and a bustling beach scene. I stayed at Casa Laguna, a charming boutique hotel – small in size, but big on personality thanks to interior designer Martyn Lawrence-Bullard! Wallpapered ceilings, encaustic patterned tiles and fully stocked bar cart are just some of the endearing features of this hotel. Oh and did I mention the ocean views from the balcony, complete with loveseat? The complimentary breakfast, sangria on arrival, and freshly baked cookies in the afternoon are just some of the sweet additions to make your stay an unforgettable one.


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Whilst Pacific City is technically an outdoor mall, it’s a really cool one, designed well and oh-SoCal in style. It also helps that there’s some great shops to explore too. Plus a bonus is that there’s some great gourmet eateries in their Swell Eats food court. We popped in for some lunch after working up quite the appetite from a little retail therapy. There was even a place selling Aussie meat pies, that sold me! What can I say, it was the end of our trip and I was missing home. You ought to add Pacific City in Huntington Beach to your itinerary if you’re visiting The OC.

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