Graduation season is upon us, which calls for a celebration among many proud families. Whether you’re looking for something fun and casual or something more sophisticated and upscale, Los Angeles has some of the best places for hosting graduation parties. Either way, these places are sure to impress your guests as well as their palates.
RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen
10250 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90067
www.rocksugarpanasiankitchen.comFor last-minute grad gift shoppers, RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen makes an ideal place for a graduation party that will transport you and all your guests from the Century City Shopping Mall into the delectable world of Southeast Asia. RockSugar’s indoor and outdoor dining areas accommodate for as many as 12 to 485 guests. This Southeast Asian restaurant serves authentic cuisines thanks to its executive chef who was born and raised in Singapore. A-list celebrities like Halle Barry, Taylor Swift, CeeLo Green and Selena Gomez have been known to dine at RockSugar, giving it that extra “hot” factor when weighing your venue options.
525 S. Flower St.
Los Angeles, CA 90071
www.dragocentro.comThis classy and upscale Italian restaurant offers a unique celebratory experience for any high school or college graduate with private dining rooms, an open kitchen and a demonstration kitchen in what used to be a City National Bank vault. With more than its fair share of restaurant reviews, Drago Centro has fast become one of the best restaurants in Los Angeles, making it an ideal place to host a graduation party. The beauty of this venue’s architecture captures the luxurious essence of Italy in the heart of urban LA while serving up a fresh twist on authentic Italian cuisines. While the dining room can fit as many as 120 guests and the patio fits as many as 80, the most enticing rooms tend to be “The Flower Room” and “The Vault” which can fit 16 and 24 guests, respectively.
4500 Los Feliz Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90027
www.messhallkitchen.comThe summer camp vibe at MessHall Kitchen makes it the perfect place for a high school or college graduation party as the camp theme itself symbolizes the end of one era as a new one begins for the new graduate. Affectionately known as a “Gastro Tavern” by its founder, the MessHall Kitchen provides a relaxed social environment with plenty of open spaces and good ol’ American comfort food with an organic twist. The venue itself is rich with history having been around since the 1920s when it was a hot spot for Hollywood elite and one of the first restaurants in Los Angeles with air conditioning. The best part about the MessHall is its daily oyster bar featuring the freshest catches of the day.
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Shutters on the Beach
1 Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
www.shuttersonthebeach.comIf ocean views and beach luxury are more your scene, the iconic Shutters on the Beach, located along the boardwalk, promises to be the life of the party. It has several great spaces to accommodate party sizes as large as 280 people for a sit-down meal or 400 people for a reception. Whether you want a beach party in the sand or an elegant grad party with Venetian chandeliers and seashell decor, Shutters on the Beach makes for a great grad party location because it helps you plan the whole event. It even has multiple entree options for you to choose from and more than enough space to fit your guests.
120 Manhattan Beach Blvd.
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
www.rocknfishlalive.comRock’n Fish serves up some of the best seafood cuisine in the region and was even voted as South Bay’s best seafood restaurant in 2012. It uses the highest quality beef and the freshest fish brought in daily for all of its dishes. There’s no better way to celebrate a graduation than with menu options that make your mouth water. The mezzanine and patio areas can easily fit as many as 34 to 40, so it’s perfect for a more intimate celebration, especially with the use of velvet curtains that can be drawn shut for a more cozy vibe.
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Niki Payne is a freelance writer covering all things Entertainment in Los Angeles. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.