A sanctuary that is in a category of its own, The Resort at Pelican Hill is one of the most impressive five-star resorts in Southern California. With its stunning Italian-inspired architecture, it offers luxurious accommodations, impeccable service and attention to detail, and countless amenities. It is truly an oasis for all—whether your clients are traveling for business, are on a romantic getaway, or like me, are traveling with a small fleet of little ones.
An Unparalleled Location
The Resort at Pelican Hill is spectacular in so many ways, the most magical of which is its location. It is set on 504 acres overlooking the Pacific Ocean in the luxurious Newport Coast area of Newport Beach, California. Perched just above the 3.5 miles of pristine coastline that make up Crystal Cove and adjacent to over 50,000 acres of protected parks and trails, the Pelican Hill truly feels like a world unto itself. And yet it is easily accessible, only a short 45-minute drive south of Los Angeles International Airport and 15 minutes from John Wayne Airport in Orange County.
Not Just a Place to Rest Your Head
The Pelican Hill is designed to feel like a luxurious home away from home. It offers 204 bungalows and suites as well as 128 villas, most with private entrances set on tree-lined streets that embody the feel of a local neighborhood. The well-appointed accommodations all have limestone fireplaces, wood-beam ceilings, deep-soaking marble tubs with separate shower, and private terraces, many with ocean views. They also offer large flat-screen TVs with the option to order movies, wireless internet, and Bose sound systems to keep your clients connected and entertained if they choose to stay in. And warn your clients—it will be very tempting!
For ultimate luxury, recommend a stay in one of the 2- ,3- , and 4-bedroom villas. Set in their own gated enclave, they boast some of the most enviable views in Southern California. Many of them offer vistas of the gorgeous golf course, the city of Newport Beach, and, of course, the Pacific Ocean, all from the comfort of one’s terrace. Tell your clients to get ready for some epic sunsets! These villas have fully equipped kitchens with top-of-the-line appliances, washer and dryer, and one’s very own 2-car garage. Needless to say, the villas leave guests wanting for nothing. They’ll also have access to a private clubhouse and fitness center, an infinity pool and a children’s pool that can only be accessed by villa guests.
A Foodie’s Paradise
Guests are in for quite a treat when it comes to dining at the Pelican Hill. The resort houses six restaurants and cafes—from fine dining at Andrea to snacks at the Cafe & Market, and, of course, 24-hour room service. My husband and I enjoyed a special anniversary dinner at Andrea, which is a delight for even the most discerning palate. The menu changes seasonally, incorporating the freshest of ingredients in their Tuscan-inspired dishes. The Coliseum Pool & Grill is another unique venue not to be missed, offering classic American fare, with kid-friendly options, overlooking their iconic pool and a backdrop of the Pacific Ocean.
Amenities for All
At this unique resort, clients will find all of the amenities for an indulgent and relaxing vacation, including a world-class golf club and spa, a kid’s club, and one of the world’s largest circular pools.
The award-winning Pelican Hill Golf Club encompasses two 18-hole courses designed by Tom Fazio with Pacific ocean views from every hole. The clubhouse is equally impressive, with a restaurant, shops, individual locker rooms and lounges for men and women, and a full-service practice facility. It’s enough to make this non-golfing girl seriously consider taking up golf! And this would be the place to learn, as their director of instruction, Glenn Deck, has been named among the top U.S. instructors by both Golf Magazine and Golf Tips magazine.
Similar to the golf club in both its impressive facilities and accolades, The Spa at Pelican Hill is the ultimate center for wellness and relaxation. It has been awarded the Forbes five-star every year since its inception. Its 23,000-sq.-ft. facility houses 22 treatment rooms, steam rooms, sauna, and saltwater Roman soaking tubs. It is, in a word, indulgent. Prepare to be pampered like never before!
However, at the Pelican Hill, it’s not only the adults that get to have all the fun! Camp Pelican is the perfect getaway for little ones. With a variety of toys, games and activities, parents can enjoy their adult time worry-free. For guests ages 4-12, they offer half-day and full-day programs, including lunch. Older children can participate in local excursions, such as biking, kayaking and surfing. All three of my children were lucky to spend a day at Camp Pelican during our stay. One of my favorite aspects of Camp Pelican is the quality of the program and the type of toys and games made available to the children. Our children were cared for by the attentive camp counselors who facilitated their play with educational toys and encouraged creativity through different crafts and sensory play.
When not visiting Camp Pelican, families can enjoy the iconic Coliseum pool. Inspired by the Roman Coliseum, this pool is an astounding 136 ft. in diameter and has over 1 million mosaic tiles, giving it a beautiful blue shimmer. One can easily while away the day relaxing by this exceptional pool, being catered to by one of the pool attendants, reading a book or simply gazing out to the Pacific.
Special Activities & Events
Because of its dreamy location, the Pelican Hill affords guests endless activities, both on and off property. Depending on the time of the year, your clients can enjoy ocean activities, such as surfing, kayaking, yachting, and whale-watching excursions. For some retail therapy, they can visit upscale shopping venues like Fashion Island or South Coast Plaza. Wine lovers can check out local wineries in Trabuco Canyon, while art aficionados will be in heaven in the nearby beach city of Laguna Beach.
However, some of the most dazzling events take place right at the hotel. The Pelican Hill delights its guests with special activities for all occasions, from Storytime with Santa and a palatial gingerbread house decoration in December, and Easter egg hunts in the spring, to special dining events and spa offerings throughout the year. The resort is a wonderful location for any celebration. It boasts a wide array of meeting rooms and ballrooms, and a separate event center, Mar Vista, all with an enviable seaside setting. We were lucky enough to witness an outdoor wedding ceremony from afar. What a vision indeed to be wed on a wide open, beautifully manicured lawn with panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean! When paired with the resort’s impeccable service and outstanding cuisine, it’s no wonder that the Resort at Pelican Hill is Southern California’s premiere wedding destination.
This story originally appeared in worldstompers.com, a family travel website created to inspire families with kids to expand their idea of adventures. You can follow the adventures of the Bazavilvazo family @worldstompers on Instagram and The Worldstompers on Facebook.