Best Lounge In High Places

Sitting atop La Casa del Camino hotel in Laguna Beach, the Rooftop Lounge boasts the most breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean you'll find in Orange County. Guests enter through the hotel and climb a rather long staircase to get to the Promised Land, but it's worth the trek for the mojitos—even if one costs $12. The hand-muddled mojitos are made with fresh mint and lime and come in various flavors (including mango, berry and pineapple), and each one is served with a stick of sugar cane. A visit to the Rooftop isn't complete without ordering a few appetizers: Try the warm baby brie with wild-berry sauce, toasted almonds and an assortment of crackers and breads, or the guava barbecue meatballs, a specialty of the house. Be sure to come at the start of happy hour—which lasts from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday—to snag a table from which to enjoy half-off mojitos, beer, wine and well drinks. The Rooftop fills up quickly, and the views (both ocean and crowd) and full bar are best enjoyed while lounging rather than wandering around looking for someone to give up a prized seat.

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