Where To Watch The Holiday Event And Have Boat Drinks
The annual Redondo Beach Holiday Boat Parade in King Harbor is not nearly as big as the one in Newport Beach or even Marina del Rey.
But it’s something people in the South Bay Beach Cities should check out because it’s a different type of entertainment (and also free!), it’s on the water and it has very strong party potential.
The 2018 event is Saturday, Dec. 8 – the night before the Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks – and PubClub.com provides this guide with information, the best viewing locations and bars to be at before, during and after the parade.
We’ll start with the latter: the best place to watch it is from the Crow’s Nest at Old Tony’s. That’s because you can see the boats in the channel and be drinking Fire Chiefs. Start there for sunset (about 4:45) and the parade starts at 5:30.
Another bar is Kincaid’s, where you can catch glimpses of the parade from the inside bar, but the best viewing is on the side patio. Happy Hour – which goes until 6:30, even on Saturdays – is served on the lanai.
A good bar to be at after the parade, which lasts until about 7:30, is BALEENKitchen. It faces the water but is actually on the other side of the channel so you can see boats, but not the parade.
The best viewing locations are right next to BALEEN along the concrete breakwall running from the Portofino hotel to its private facility building This is just down from Seaside Lagoon.
The boats go right by you here so close you feel as if you could reach out and hand them a boat drink. If that’s crowded, or you want another vantage point walk to the end of the Portofino lot past BALEEN to the picnic tables at the Rocky Point bait shop.
For a view with a little higher perspective, the end of the pier by Kincaid’s provides a great spot, plus the boats turn around there so you get to see them maneuver in the channel.
After the parade, if you’re in for some live music head to Starboard Attitude which has great blues bands on weekends (but hardly any crowd) or the new place on the pier The Boogie. It has bands, no cover and a cool crowd. It’s just across from Starboard Attitude in the former Dive at Brixton location.
For a friendly and casual drinking spot – often with acoustic live music – there’s The Slip Bar. Use the code words “boat parade” to get drink specials, including a $4 rum-based boat drink.
Shade Hotel is also having a party during and after the parade on its 3rd floor balcony ($10 cover).
Finally, a little about the parade itself. It is put on by the King Harbor Yacht Club and involves members boats decorated with lights and sometimes even music. They “parade” up and down the channel that goes from the Yacht Club to the harbor’s entrance, which is right along the Portofino.
Most of the boats are sailboats and there’s only a couple of dozen of them, so after about 45 minutes or so you’ve pretty much seen the same boats pass by several times, and that’s the time to get to the bars.
If you’re not there already.
King Harbor Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 8, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
King Harbor Marina Channel, Portofino Way and the Redondo Beach Pier