Hoku Explores Malibu

Even though we're total homebodies at heart, we love it when family comes to town because it's the perfect excuse to explore a new part of our city. This past Saturday, we drove all the way out to the ocean and up the Pacific Coast Highway to the scenic, coastal town of Malibu, passing surfers and other early risers along the way. First stop, pup-friendly* Malibu Farm for breakfast on Malibu Pier! (For parking, you can pay the big bucks to park in the convenient lot next door or just find street parking on the highway, like us.)

The eatery has two parts, Malibu Farm Restaurant located at the beginning of the pier and Malibu Farm Cafe located at the end of the pier, with a 180 degree view of the ocean. We made our way down the pier to the Cafe and headed up to the second story dining area to take in the views before settling for a shadier spot at the side of the restaurant on the first level. 

↑ Can you tell that Hoku really loves stairs?

We enjoyed the Swedish mini pancakes with whipped cream and berries, the fried egg sandwich and the multigrain pancake with maple syrup and bacon bits, along with coffees and fresh-squeezed orange juice. Hoku nibbled on arugula leaves and entertained himself by keeping a watchful eye on the seabirds flying by. To be honest, we tend to be skeptical of the quality of menu located in primo locations like this, but let me tell you, this one little cafe has seriously amazing food AND atmosphere. The fact that they welcome dogs is just the icing (er, maple syrup) on an already delicious (pan)cake. 

↑ The view from our table. 

With breakfast in our bellies, we continued our drive up the coast to Leo Carillo State Beach, where pups are allowed on leash. We explored the rocky cliffs before heading down to the beach to walk along the sand and waves. It wasn't the sunniest of days in LA, but being near the ocean always feels like home. 


*Malibu Farm is technically located on a State Beach that does not allow dogs. However, the restaurant itself welcomes dogs so bring your pup at your own discretion. 

Breakfast at Norma's at The Parker

Before hitting the road for the 2.5 hour drive home to San Diego, we stopped by the amazing Parker Palm Springs (formerly Le Parker Meridien) for brunch at Norma’s. We were seated on their colorful, Jonathan Adler-designed, dog-friendly patio and Hoku was immediately given a cookie and his own bowl of water. Such service! David, the benedict connoisseur, ordered the Eggs Florentine, and I got the Very Berry Brioche French Toast. Both were delicious, decadent and almost too pretty to eat. 

After breakfast, we walked around the gorgeous hotel grounds (which felt like a desert oasis) and David made himself comfortable on a hammock while Hoku did doggy yoga. For some reason, Hoku LOVED the Parker’s super lush lawn and kept rubbing his face on it and rolling around in it like it was the best grass in the whole wide world. Maybe they use some sort of bacon-flavored fertilizer? :)

Lunch at The Waterbar

For lunch we went to the Waterbar where Hoku got to meet his cousins Miriam and Brian for the first time! Brian was a little nervous but Miriam loved Hoku at first sight. Her mom said she couldn’t sleep the night before because she was so excited to meet Hoku. She barely touched her lunch and just wanted to pet him and play with him the entire time. 

The food at the Waterbar was fantastic, especially the ahi. The weather was perfect and we sat outside on their dog-friendly patio which has an amazing view of the Bay Bridge. It was a nice time catching up with family on our last day in the city.