The Malibu real estate market has boomed over the past year, and it’s no wonder why. The peace and tranquility of oceanside Malibu houses attracts homebuyers from all over the world. The guide below highlights the top Malibu beaches for a luxury home or lease. Jump to the bottom of the page to view active Malibu Beach homes for sale.
A Unique Location, with Weather and People to Celebrate
Malibu is located along the Pacific coastline, just north of Santa Monica, and stretches the backbone of Route 1 until the edge of Leo Carillo State Park. The City of Malibu was incorporated in 1991, but people have been making its beachfront property home for years before that. The city is approximately 19.83 square miles and features 21 miles of coastline stretching along the California coastline.
The 2010 U.S. Census listed a little over 12,000 residents. By 2019, that number had dropped by about six percent. The population is evenly split between men and women, and the median age is around 54 years.
The average income has grown over the years, to a little over $161,000 in 2019, with an estimated per capita income of about $131,000.
The Malibu Beach House Rental Market – A “Staycation” to Remember
In 2020, monthly rentals were more popular than ever due to an increased demand from renters looking to quarantine in luxury during COVD. However, luxury rentals were already in limited supply prior to the pandemic. Monthly rentals, seasonal rentals and summer rentals in Malibu all snatched up quickly.
And it’s a little wonder why. Leasing an elegant and amenity-filled house for a vacation that overlooks the gorgeous Pacific Ocean has truly become the “staycation” of the elite.
Malibu Beaches A Reason for Excitement
Many buyers are attracted to Malibu for its 20+ miles of shoreline that stretch along the Pacific Ocean. While there are plenty of larger beaches, its the smaller ones in the residential pockets that offer the quieter beachfront experience.
Here are some of the top beaches for luxury homes in Malibu, CA:
Carbon Beach – If you’re considering buying a Malibu beachfront home, you’ve probably heard of Carbon Beach also often called Billionaires Beach. It’s the place where you’ll find the oceanfront mansions of the Hollywood elite, and it is considered one of the premium locations to rent or buy a luxury home in the state of California. This mile-long stretch of beachfront is located between Malibu Pier, and Carbon Canyon Road, and features great access to places like the SoHo House Malibu, and Malibu Pier just to name a few.
Carbon Beach contains only 70 lots making it both rare and highly sought-after. As you might imagine, demand for homes here keeps prices high. One notable difference between Carbon Beach and some others in Malibu is that homes are built directly on the sand with no sea wall. The beach is a sunbather’s dream: a wide shoreline with luxurious, dry sand and a classic crescent shape.
Las Tunas Beach – If you’re looking to settle in the easternmost beachfront community in the 90265 zip code, Las Tunas Beach for you. The area is just west of Topanga Beach, and Topanga Canyon and the Malibu homes in this area can enjoy the sights, sounds, and pleasures of those areas quite easily. For example, Duke’s Malibu, a popular seafood restaurant is just a quick six-minute drive to the west down Route 1.
The beach is a wet-sand beach, which means that when the high tide comes in, the water does come up to the homes in the area. Luckily, the Malibu Beach houses for sale in the area feature caissons that can withstand much more than high tides, even during the fierce Pacific storms. The shore is rocky and serves as a great place for anglers and avid photographers alike. It’s also a great place to get up close and personal with marine life if you’re a bit on the adventurous side.
La Costa Beach – La Costa Beach is located in eastern Malibu and offers what many see as the Malibu lifestyle with unapologetic abandon. There is easy access to Santa Monica and Los Angeles, and restaurants like Nobu Malibu and Malibu Seafood make this a very popular place indeed. The beach is one of the more private in the area, making it quite popular with those requiring a place to truly get away from it all.
Malibu Colony – Continuing down the coastline, just west of Surfrider Beach is a residential enclave known as Malibu Colony. It features a guarded-gate entry just off of Malibu Road along with privacy and wonderful architecture. These beachfront Malibu homes exist alongside some great restaurants including Bui Sushi, and Ollo.
Entertainment and other wealthy individuals are often drawn to the community of Malibu Colony. It’s rare to find a gated community in Malibu. Even Los Angeles as a whole is low on gated neighborhoods relative to the large number of luxury homes. Privacy and 24-hour security are a major draw to homebuyers in Malibu Colony.
Malibu Road – If you talk to the locals in the area, this length of the residential beach is often called “The Old Road”, and used to be a part of the Pacific Coast Highway. Today, it is a retreat from the hustle of everyday life with a wide range of home styles. There is something for every taste here. The two to three-story homes that open out onto Malibu Road beach are some of the most desirable in the Malibu real estate market.
And it’s not just those who have put down roots here that see the benefit of this location. Homes located on this area of the shoreline usually lease out for around $15,000 per month during the off-peak season to over $100,000 per month during the summer. The beach is sandy, a delight for sunbathers and ocean lovers alike, and features access to many different local attractions quite easily.
Lantigo Beach – This beach serves as the dividing point between eastern and western Malibu. It is famous for its canyon region. The number of beachfront homes here is much smaller, the surf break is extremely friendly to novice and veteran surfers alike, and the beach is relatively quiet. Plus the famous Malibu Seafood is just a short distance away. And if you’re looking for something with a light, refreshing fare, and the chance to see some fantastic scenery, a great choice for lunch is the Paradise Cove Beach Cafe located at 28128 Pacific Coast Highway. The drinks alone are worth the trip!
Most Realtors would agree, what makes this area so attractive is the overall slower, more relaxed pace. It’s a great place for a quiet walk along the beach at sunset. The southeast facing orientation of the beach means that you’ll be protected from the harsh weather that sometimes comes from the west by Latigo Point.
Escondido Beach – If you’re looking for a beachfront property that is as varied as it is beautiful, you can’t go wrong with the luxury homes at Escondido Beach. Located just each of Paradise and the Big Dune community, this area of Malibu, CA features both homes and expansive compounds that both feature direct beach access.
There is so much going on for Escondido Beach, that one has to wonder why it isn’t more known than it is. Its geographical location means that many of the harsh afternoon winds don’t affect it as much and the beaches are relatively uncrowded.
Broad Beach – If you’re familiar with Zuma Beach, chances are you might have heard of Broad Beach, located just to the west. It features a long, relatively secluded beach with real estate lots on a quiet road just off the Pacific Coast Highway. And while the beach itself once lived up to its name, a large storm caused a large sand shift years ago. The beach now features a prominent rock wall to protect the homes in the area, and the community is working together to help restore the beach to its former glory.
There are still some breath-taking dunes and a beach during the lower tides. Homeowners of the shores of Broad Beach also enjoy the surf breaking within a few steps of your doorstep. It’s little wonder that this particular beach enjoys a strong leasing market, both during the peak and off-peak seasons.
The Malibu homes here have been visited and lived in by countless celebrities, including Frank Sinatra, Danny De Vito, and Ray Ramano to name a few, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a fantastic place where those who want to enjoy a quiet moment but still an active lifestyle can thrive. There are plenty of hiking trails and it’s just a short jaunt over to the Trancas Country Market.
Encinal Bluffs – If you’re searching for a truly private place to create your dream oceanfront home, one place you want to consider is Encinal Bluffs in Malibu. The homes here can only be described as lavish and extremely private. They are in high demand by both the locals and summer vacationers alike. There is limited public access to the beach so crowds often give this areas a pass. Nearby Neptune’s Net is a great low-key dining spot for relaxing just up Pacific Coast Highway.
County Line – At the westernmost point of Malibu’s oceanfront beach community is County Line. County Line is one of those beaches that have been mostly forgotten by both time and tourists, so it’s a wonderful place to relax and unwind after a long day. It not only features a fantastic surf break and the semi-casual restaurant Neptune’s Net, but there are several small, yet awe-inspiring homes that line the beach. This short little stretch of shoreline offers one of the best-unimpeded views of the Pacific Ocean in the area.