Newport Beach is a quintessential Southern California coastal town, complete with a laidback surf community, glistening beaches, incredible shopping and a boat-filled harbor. Orange County is also where you’ll find some of the most luxurious five-star resorts on the West Coast, including The Resort at Pelican Hill and the celeb-adored Montage Laguna Beach. And while the SoCal destination has long had a reputation as a somewhat sleepy spot, recent culinary and hospitality developments have brought a new, welcome vigor to Newport Beach. While there are plenty of old icons in the area, these are the best new openings you should have on your radar before your next trip to Newport Beach.
Where to stay
690 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660
The highly anticipated Pendry Newport Beach is finally open, bringing with it three new dining outlets: Set Steak & Sushi, Bar Pendry and, finally, the Elwood Club, a members-only social club. The 295 guest rooms, including 114 suites, are designed by Studio Munge, with views of the Pacific Ocean, Newport Harbor or Back Bay, with rates starting at $395 a night.
The invite-only Elwood Club is located in a separate wing of the Pendry; while members will get priority, hotel guests will have access to the venue based on availability. The Cabaret, a speakeasy-style nightlife venue set within the social club, is inspired by 1920s cabaret bars and features live entertainment, a craft cocktail menu and top notch champagne offerings.
900 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660
Formerly the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa, Vea recently reopened following a full top-to-bottom renovation. The 400-key coastal getaway also debuted three new dining concepts and two new suite categories. Vea (which means “to see” in Spanish) is situated directly across from Fashion Island, a luxury shopping destination, and the nearby Balboa Island, so whether you’re looking to fill your afternoon with retail therapy or relax on a boat, it’s all just ten minutes away. Pro-tip: book a premium guest room with a fire pit for the ultimate cozy experience. Room rates start at $389 per night.
Where to dine
3110 Newport Blvd., Newport Beach, CA 92663
This trendy Mexican restaurant just opened an outpost in Newport Beach (the other location is in Hermosa Beach), and is breathing new life into the town’s dining scene. The menu is composed of Sonora and Baja-inspired dishes with a modern twist, including handmade tortillas, salsas, cremas and freshly-made moles. There’s an expansive tequila and mezcal menu, in addition to an impressive selection of margaritas that pairs nicely with the vibrant bar scene.
7972 Pacific Coast Highway, Newport Beach, CA 92657
For a casual and delicious brunch, head to Parakeet Café in the Crystal Cove Shopping Center. With several locations across Southern California, Parakeet Café understands what health-conscious Californians love, with an emphasis on locally-sourced produce, organic ingredients and house-made dishes. Choose from breakfast bowls adorned with pretty petals, a variety of avocado toasts and fresh salads—there’s something on the menu for every type of dietary preference, including vegan, gluten-free, paleo and vegetarian. End your meal with a superfood latte (try the Magic Mushroom Matcha) or a protein-packed smoothie for an extra pep in your step.
3400 Via Oporto Suite 104, Newport Beach, CA 92663
Skal Pizza is Malibu Farm’s sister restaurant, and it’s ideal for a perfectly-charred pizza topped with fresh vegetables and your choice of protein. But that’s not all that’s wood-fired here—vegetable dishes, including the carrots and artichoke, are a must. Balance your carb-loaded meal with one of the fresh salads, like the mushroom and fennel salad or arugula and seasonal fruit salad, drizzled with a fig balsamic vinaigrette.
191 Riverside Ave., Newport Beach, CA 92659
This upscale Asian fusion restaurant opened in spring 2023 in the Garden Shopping Center. This is Starfish’s second Orange County outpost. The menu offers fresh seafood, sushi and noodle dishes, and don’t sleep on the specials during Opium Hour, offered daily from 3 to 6 pm.
453 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660
This contemporary Fashion Island restaurant, which opened in January 2023, is the perfect pit stop after a day of shopping. Grab a seat on the large, airy patio around the firepit or sink into one of the plush booths and enjoy classic American dishes, with a few Asian-influenced options, as well.
Where to shop
545 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660
High-end jeweler Lugano Diamonds recently opened a private social club in Newport Beach, where members can connect with other brand aficionados. Guests are invited to shop for timeless gems while enjoying a slew of curated experiences in food, spirits and wine.
3424 Via Lido #101, Newport Beach, CA 92663
Stock up on colorful swimwear, cover-ups and beach accessories for your next vacation at the new L*Space store at Lido Marina Village. The Orange County-born brand is heavily inspired by California’s cool beach culture. Here, you’ll find high-quality yet comfortable bathing suits and resort wear that never go out of style.