[singlepic id=568 w=320 h=240 float=left]In Laguna Beach, we’re ushering in 2012 with serious style … tons of New Year’s Eve parties, phenomenal bands, the most renowned DJs, FREE New Year’s Eve parties, and high-end galas and celebrations. This is your definitive list – The 2011 New Year’s Eve Parties in Laguna Beach for every possible restaurant, hotel and resort participant. 

LagunaBeachBest.com also has a separate entry specifically focused on dining – click: 2011 New Year’s Eve Dining Laguna Beach. (If you’re reading this prior to Christmas, we also have articles on Laguna Beach Christmas Eve Dining and Christmas Day Dining )

Many of the Laguna Beach restaurants on New Year’s Eve serve dinner and then proceed to throw a party, so in this NYE Parties article, we cover restaurant party details, as well as Laguna Beach bars and gala celebrations at hotels and resorts. I’m also providing addresses for each of these establishments so that you can call and reserve your taxi in advance. 


Laguna Beach Restaurant & Bar Parties, New Year’s Eve 2011

Bounce, 1460 South Coast Highway, 949-494-0056. The last bar standing for those who staunchly support our “alternative lifestyle” here in Laguna Beach, Bounce is featuring special guest DJ Carolyn, party favors and drink specials till 2:00 a.m.

(The) Deck, 647 S. Coast Highway, 949-281-5703. A newcomer to Laguna Beach just this summer, this outdoors beach deck and private cabanas at the Pacific Edge hotel has become quite the popular watering hole with locals and visitors alike. For New Year’s Eve, they’re doing it up in style with a Cirque du Soiree New Year’s Eve Party from 10:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. Popular DJs From Another Mother featuring Sli Dawg from SOUL Project will kick off the entertainment early in the evening, but the entertainment promises to go well beyond music (think Cirque) all evening long. The Deck will feature a special holiday custom menu, food and drink specials, a champagne toast and more. To reserve a dining table well in advance, call the above number. Call the Sales & Event Team at 949-281-57803 to reserve group and VIP access to The Deck’s only Laguna-Beach based Surf Cabanas and The Villa from 4 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. The Green Room also offers bottle service from 10:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m., and should be reserved well in advance, too.

French 75, 1464 South Coast Highway, 949-494-8444. After offering a prix fixe menu (see French 75 Dining New Year’s Eve), the party starts in earnest from 8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., with live music from renowned Mike Hamilton, drink specials, party favors and champagne. Tickets are $100/person; call in advance to reserve or purchase.

Henessey’s, 213 Ocean Ave., 949-494-2743. DJ and dancing starts upstairs at 9:00 p.m. with a free champagne toast at midnight. No reservations are required, and there’s no cover charge, but this place fills up quickly, and they do adhere to fire codes, so get there early.

House of Big Fish, Cold Beer FREE New Year’s Eve Party, 540 South Coast Highway, #200, 949-715-4500. Celebrating a great year of fantastic business, this newcomer restaurant is offering regular and special menu items all day (see House of Big Fish Dining New Year’s Eve), then waltzes into a 10:00 p.m. full-on party with complimentary tray-passed appetizers, desserts, party favors, and countdown to midnight.

Katsuya, 858 South Coast Highway, 949-793-4030. One of our newest entries to Laguna Beach, Katsuya is going all out with a “Winter Wonderland New Year’s Eve.” The all-night party includes a renowned DJ (they’re not saying yet), a premium hosted bar and a buffet of signature chef dishes. Of course, there’s a midnight champagne toast, too. Tickets are $125 in advance and $150 at the door. VIP Packages are also available. Space is filling quickly, so best get on those reservations soon.

K’ya Bistro/Casa Del Camino FREE New Year’s Eve Party, 1289 South Coast Highway. Ater K’ya wraps its Chef Craig specials/dining (See K’ya Dining New Year’s Eve), its free New Year’s party begins at 10:00 p.m. in the Casa lobby. (Hey, one sibling restaurant can’t celebrate without the other getting involved.) Complimentary tray-passed appetizers, desserts, party favors and more. This is going to be a see-and-be-seen crowd, so get there early!

(The) Marine Room, 214 Ocean Ave., 949-494-3027. One of the long-standing of what I call the “triumvirate” of bars in Laguna Beach, you just can’t miss the Marine Room. Drink specials and special guest Freshy Freeman, 9 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. Cover is $10.

Montage Grand Ballroom New Year’s Eve Gala, 30801 Coast Highway, 949-715-6420. The “Grand Dame” New Year’s Eve Gala in Laguna Beach, this is a combo dinner/party package that includes a 4-course extensive dinner menu (see Montage Gala Dining New Year’s Eve); live music and dancing by the famed James Gang band; and all the party favors and champagne toasts you could want at midnight. The $300/person ticket includes beverages, wine pairings, tax and gratuity. (The Montage is also offering special New Year’s Eve room packages. If you stay as many as 3 nights, the Gala is complimentary. Click: Montage New Year’s Eve Room Packages.)

Montage Laguna Beach Kids’ New Year’s Eve Party at the Paintbox. If you’re a registered guest for New Year’s Eve, be sure to get your 5-12-year-olds registered for the Paintbox party at the Montage, an exclusive club for kids. Somehow, I don’t think this is going to be a frozen-pizza-warm-Dr.-Pepper kind of party like I used to experience as a kid …

Mozambique, 1740 South Coast Highway, 949-715-7777. Few live band bars perform as solidly as Mozambique, and the story is sure to remain the same for New Year’s Eve. While they finish up their prix fixe menu in the restaurant (see Mozambique Dining New Year’s Eve), the live funk and R&B favorite, Upstart, takes to the stage at 9:00 p.m. in the upstairs lounge. Either reserve your entire evening with dinner and the party upstairs included, or pay a $20 cover at the door.

Ocean Brewing Company, 230 Ocean Ave., 949-497-3381. This annual New Year’s Eve Bash begins at 9:00 p.m. with TWO favorites in the house – DJ’s Rhythm and DJ El. Drink specials run all the night long and include $5 shots of Agua and complimentary champagne at midnight. Cover is $10 early in the evening, possibly increasing as the night wears on.

Rockin’ Fish, 422 South Coast Highway, 949-497-3113. Offering a special menu this evening, (see Rockin’ Fish Dining New Year’s Eve), Brian Nicolet of the well-loved 3-Man Weave begins at about 9:00 p.m. through the New Year’s countdown.

Royal Hawaiian, 331 North Coast Highway, 949-494-8001. Offering a prix fixe menu (see Royal Hawaiian Dining New Year’s Eve), the RH rolls with live music, appetizer menu, hats, party favors and more till 2:00 a.m.

The Saloon, 446 South Coast Highway, 949-494-5469. What I love about our “triumvirate” three bars in town (Marine Room, Saloon and Sandpiper) is that these guys never have to change anything for any sort of holiday and they’ll still be packed to the gills on New Year’s Eve. Same SOP at The Saloon, and it’s sure to be the usual crowd fest till 2:00 a.m.

Sandpiper (the beloved “Dirty Bird”), 1183 South Coast Highway, 949-494-4694. What we love about the Sandpiper is that it never changes and it never has to – same drill, same great live band TBA, and a … shall we say … “memorable” party atmosphere till 2:00 a.m.

The White House, 340 South Coast Highway, 949-494-8088. This is a great deal: When you reserve a dinner reservation at 7:30, 8:00 or 9:00, you pay $50/person for a prix-fixe menu (see White House Dining New Year’s Eve ), champagne at midnight AND the table is all yours for the entire evening through midnight. Special guest DJ Soul Reaper (80s, electronica, top 40, club hits) begins at 9:00 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome at 10:00 p.m. with a cover charge ($20) that includes party favors and champagne for midnight countdown. Call for reservations; deposits are accepted over the phone.

Lastly, news from our neighboring neighbor, The Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel, 949-240-2000: The Ritz New Year’s Eve Celebration Experience features overnight stay, a 4-course dinner, and attendance at the Gala for live music and champagne toasts for $900/couple.


Then, Laguna Beach restaurants celebrating the East Coast New Year’s at 9:00 p.m. PST 

If you’re one of those folks who can’t keep your eyes open past 9:30 p.m., but still want to be in a party atmosphere to celebrate the New Year, these Laguna Beach restaurants are “honoring” the East Coast Times Square ball drop in lieu of (or in addition to) the “stroke of midnight” here on our Pacific shores:

The Broadway by Amar Santana, French 75, The Loft at the Montage Laguna Beach, Romeo Cucina, Splashes at the Surf and Sand, Ti Amo Ristorante, Sapphire Restaurant, Sun Dried Tomato, 230 Forest and Watermarc.

That’s it for now! Updates will be occurring regularly, so bookmark this page or check back often! I do hope you venture out and bring in the New Year in the best little place on the planet, Laguna Beach.


Hey, all you Laguna Beach restaurateurs … if you’re not on this list, contact me right away at Diane@LagunaBeachBest.com with your details.




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