By Lacy Colley Yamaoka

Published on October 7, 2016

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Photography by @THEEXPATE

Hello friends! My name is Lacy and you can find me on Instagram @theexpate and in various travel publications featuring my adventures and zest for seeing the world. I reside in the palm-laden city of Santa Monica, California just minutes from the sand. More so than its architecture and infamous pier, the Santa Monica lifestyle defines it’s beachy design. Living near the ocean inspires me to eat local, pedal the boardwalk, and bring you along for the ride!

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Cora’s Coffee Shoppe 
@corascoffeeshoppe isn’t your typical LA coffee shop – think coastal Europe with its daily blackboard specials and intimate al fresco seating. Cora’s is quaintly tucked off Ocean Avenue and it’s retro marquee is easy to spot. Don’t miss their French press and benedict, sharing is caring!

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Santa Monica Beach 

The best way to truly see Santa Monica (@seesantamonica!) is to go car-free. Grab a green city bike @breezebikeshare and get moving outside. From the pretty beach houses lining the boardwalk to the iconic park cliffs and sunsets, be prepared to pull over for those ‘grams!

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Photography by @THEEXPATE
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Photography by @THEEXPATE

Viceroy Santa Monica 

This Kelly Wearstler designed hotel @viceroysm will have you swooning over its chic backyard. Classic black and white cabanas provide the perfect backdrop for after-work cocktails or a leisurely dinner. Viceroy’s sophisticated allure and neighborhood eatery makes it my go to staycation by the beach.

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RonRobinson Gift Shop

Curated for the cool, this flagship store @ronrobinson78 is the perfect spot for a luxury gift or fashionable home accessory. If you have a thing for design, make sure to stop by this shop and peruse the shelves on your way to the farmers market, up next!

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Photography by @THEEXPATE
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Photography by @THEEXPATE

Farmers Market 

A perfect morning spent in Santa Monica? Strolling and picking up beautiful ingredients. @smfms posts up around town every Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday, so you cannot miss the opportunity to get creative in your apron or just chat it up with the locals.

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Photography by @THEEXPATE
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Photography by @THEEXPATE

Marion Davies Guest House 

If you grew up enamored by old Hollywood glamour, visiting Marion Davies’ guest house is a must. This 1930s capsule displays American Architect Julia Morgan-designed tiles and other vintage pieces. Enjoy touring what’s left of Marion’s oceanfront estate and envision the grand, glitterati celebrations that went down here back in the day.

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Montana Street 

Posh boutiques and open-air bistros line this street also known for local celebrity sightings. Post-yoga, I love ducking into @kreationjuice for a quick green smoothie or acai bowl. And any night of the week popping into @rdkitchensantamonica with my husband for a glass of wine and dip duo hits the spot!