A Tranquil California Escape on the Newport Coast

The Resort at Pelican hill in Newport Coast is about a 45 minute drive from Los Angeles International airport where I was earlier this month prior to my cruise on board the Crystal Symphony to the Mexican Riviera.




Not one but two doormen  held the doors open for me to enter the reception area  to this extravagant resort which has magnificent expansive views of the Pacific ocean. The resort is set on a bluff  , but a complimentary shuttle( a schedule is given to you when you check in) provides transportation to the beach and Crystal Cove state park which are right below. Since I had just arrived from the “deep freeze” aka The Twin cities, I decided to have lunch by the ocean at the very popular Beachcomber restaurant which serves  delicious American cuisine with breath taking views of the Newport Coastline and Catalina Island.



 The resort at Pelican Hill is designed in a dramatic Tuscan-inspired Palladio style, with stunning man made landscape  with hundreds of elegantly swaying Canary palms, age-old olive trees, exotic flowering shrubs  and rose bushes. There are 204 bungalows and 108 villas.  My bungalow had an ocean view and was over 800 square feet, with a private terrace  and was very luxuriously appointed with a gas lit Italian limestone fireplace, which I did sit by in the evening.  If you do not feel like walking to the spa or restaurants on the property a shuttle will pick you up and take you where you want to go.

I spent both  evenings before dinner at the 23,000 square foot elaborate  spa in the warm Roman soaking pool as it was too cold to be outdoors at the the circular pool— the largest of its kind in the world . The spa boutique  carries Olivina skin products and  the founder of this company, Susan Costner-Kenward, was visiting for the weekend to talk about her products which are made from olive and grape seed oil.




There are plenty of dining options at the resort.  They have an Italian restaurant called Andrea and The Grill which is a distinguished Continental room and is known for  sampling thick aged beef and fresh-caught seafood, all while enjoying sunsets over Catalina Island. There is also a gourmet delicatessen  , a poolside venue and a 37th hole (there are two golf courses hereby Tom Fazio ) at the golf club. If none of these restaurants appeal to you then there are plenty of dining options in Carona Del Mar which is less than a 10 minute drive from the resort.

I have traveled the world and seen some beautiful resorts but there was something very special about Pelican Hill.  I was not ready to leave after a couple of nights of tranquility and luxury.  Everyone is made to feel special at the beautiful Pelican resort.  A perfect place to visit for a long weekend if you are within driving distance and are looking to get away or for longer if you are flying in.
 

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