Tag: USA

Best Family Vacations in the USA

Best Family Vacations in the USA

Diego Travel Destination Guide

Best Luxury Family Vacations in the USA

MARIA DIEGO

Are you searching for the best family vacation spots in the US? There’s no shortage of family destinations in the USA, but there are some hotels and top family resorts in the US that really stand out from the rest.

Whether you’re looking for the best beach resorts in the USA for families, luxury family vacation ideas or the best family vacation summer destinations, we’ve selected our favorite family vacations in the US from the past couple of years. These are hotels and destinations that are perfect for the whole family to enjoy, escape the routine and spend some quality family time together.

As a Virtuoso travel agency, Diego Travel adds value and additional amenities to your stay every time. Contact us here to get started planning your next family vacation!

6 Ideas for your next Family Vacations in the US

Sea Island Vacation Rentals

1. Sea Island, Georgia

Located off the coast of Georgia, Sea Island is the ultimate East Coast family vacation spot. We loved it so much we came back twice in one year, take my word – it’s the best family vacation in Georgia!

With beautiful beaches and a huge range of family-friendly activities from dolphin watching tours, falconry or arts and crafts to bike riding or boat rental, the list of activities is enough to keep the kids occupied for the entire trip.

For the adults, there’s a spa, fitness centre, hot tub, golfing, horseback riding and a range of eateries from casual pubs to formal dining, including the only Forbes 5-Star restaurant in Georgia.

The Sea Island cottages and vacation rentals are also perfect if you’re looking for large family vacation rentals or multi family vacation spots, or even if you just prefer to have your own space.

Sea Island also offers The Cloisters, Ocean Residence, Beach Club, The Inn and The Lodge, so there’s plenty of accommodation options to suit you and your family’s vacation.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • $100 per day resort credit when you book a Sea Island cottage rental
  • $100 one-time resort credit + daily complimentary breakfast when you book a Sea Island hotel room

Blackberry Mountain Sunset

2. Blackberry Mountain, Tennessee

If you’re looking for the best luxury resorts for families in the US, this mountain retreat in the Great Smoky Mountains is the perfect property.

With a focus on wellbeing, outdoor adventure and delightful cuisine, Blackberry Mountain is ideal for active families who are looking for the top family vacation spots in the US that provide a holistic accommodation and hospitality experience.

Spend the day out on the hiking trails, water skiing on the pond or zip lining through the arbor treetops adventure course, followed by hot yoga, sound baths in the loft, clay sculpting or relaxing in the spa.

Blackberry Mountain offers a range of accommodation types including 2-5 bedroom homes – perfect for large groups and one of the best places for a family vacation in Tennessee.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • 5% off published rates
  • $50 spa credit
  • Upgrade at time of check-in, subject to availability
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability

Laguna Beach Coves

3. Laguna Beach, California

With so many outdoor activities in the area like hiking, horseback riding, museums, farms and beaches, plus plenty of restaurants, shops and attractions, Laguna Beach is the perfect base if you’re looking for all inclusive California family resorts for your next US vacation.

My three favorite hotels in this area of Southern California are Montage Laguna Beach, the Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel, and the Monarch Beach Resort. Their locations in Laguna Beach are perfect for weekend getaways or longer family vacations to enjoy everything this beautiful coastline has to offer.

The Monarch Beach Resort is a golf and beach resort that’s both kid-friendly and dog-friendly. With 3 pools, a kids club and Laguna’s only beach club, this is a great option for the whole family to enjoy.

The Ritz Carlton is further south and a must-stay for any surfers in the family! With plenty of restaurant options and fun activities such as whale watching tours organized by the hotel.

Montage Laguna Beach is the ultimate luxury destination for family vacation spots in the US. With 1,2,3 and 4 bedroom suites, ocean views, a kids club and kids programme, adults-only spa and exclusive beach access, the whole family is treated like a VIP when you stay here.

This coastal stretch of California is one of the best family vacation destinations in the US and perfect if you’re looking for summer vacation ideas.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • Upgrade at time of booking, subject to availability
  • Daily full breakfast for two 
  • $100 USD resort credit
  • Early check-in/Late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wifi

Diego_Travel_Hotel_Review-Montage_Palmetto_Bluff

4. Montage Palmetto Bluff, South Carolina

Just 30 minutes outside of Savannah, Georgia, you find yourself in this tranquil and picturesque setting at the Montage Palmetto Bluff in South Carolina.

Our favorite hotel for the best family vacation in South Carolina, the Montage Palmetto Bluff feels like a true escape and a step back in time with tree lined avenues and gas-lit laps on this 20,000 acre estate.

And with so much space, it’s no wonder that this resort is full of family friendly activities – tennis courts and lessons, golfing, bike rental, boating, shooting club, bowling alley, kids club, 3 different pools and a spa for the adults to enjoy too.

You can arrange a golf cart or bikes to move around the property,which has seven restaurants spread out over the whole resort area ranging from casual to formal dining which I suggest booking in advance of your stay. You can also take a boat tour on a guided day trip to Daufuskie Island and learn so much about the history and culture.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • $100+ resort credit
  • Daily breakfast credit
  • Upgrade at time of booking, subject to availability
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability

Rosewood Miramar Beach

5. Rosewood Miramar Beach, California

Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel might just be the number one option for best family beach vacations in the US. This beachfront hotel is the perfect combination of luxury and laid back beach style.

The Rosewood Miramar is located just 15 minutes from Santa Barbara. But being the only oceanfront property in Montecito, you feel the stress wash away in this calm, easygoing, beachfront setting.

With family-friendly beach yoga, falconry experiences, family movie nights, a range of accommodation types, six restaurants and the only 5-star Forbes spa in Santa Barbara, there’s fun for the whole family at this beachfront hotel.

The resort embraces outdoor living too, with kayak rental, boat charters, hiking excursions, surf lessons and the beach on your doorstep.

Whether you’re looking for active family vacation ideas in California or slower paced, all inclusive US beach resorts for families, the Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel managed both effortlessly.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • Complimentary one category upgrade upon arrival, based on availability
  • Daily USD30 breakfast credit for up to two people per bedroom
  • $125 Sense Spa credit per stay
  • Welcome note and amenity from the Managing Director on behalf of Diego Travel
  • Diego Travel Welcome Box for First-Time Clients

Four Seasons Orlando

6. Four Seasons Orlando, Florida

A family-favorite among our clients, whether it’s a weekend getaway for the family or a once-in-a-lifetime trip to this Florida destination, Orlando is one of the best family trips in the US.

I always say that not only is the Four Seasons Orlando the best family hotel in Orlando, it’s a destination in and of itself: your entire stay feels magical, for adults as well as the kids.

The non-stop entertainment for the kids goes above and beyond at Four Seasons Orlando, with complimentary kids camp available daily, a 5-acre water park, 18-hole putting course, four restaurants, three lounges and the Disney character breakfast – a must-do for kids.

Even the spa has a Bippity Boppity Boo boutique experience for girls looking for the princess experience without the wait in line at the Magic Kingdom.

The Four Seasons Orlando concierge can assist with park tickets, fast passes and any other park queries to make sure your trip runs smoothly from start to finish.

The Four Seasons Orlando is without a doubt, the best place to stay in Orlando for families.

When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
  • Exclusive Four Seasons Preferred Partner Rates (excluding character breakfast)
  • Daily full American breakfast for 2
  • $100 spa credit
  • Upgrade of one category at time of check-in, subject to availability
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • VIP welcome amenity
  • Diego Travel welcome box for first-time clients

Insider Tips at Montage Palmetto Bluff

6 Ideas for your next Family Vacations in the US

Hopefully our guide to the best family vacations in the US has given you plenty of inspiration for your next family trip. Whether you prefer a laid back beach vacation or an action-packed family-fun resort, here at Diego Travel we know family vacations are extra special and deserve to be perfect. 

If you’re still undecided, feel free to schedule a call with me, so that I can match you with an ideal destination that fits both your family and budget.


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United States Virgin Islands

US Virgin Islands

US Virgin Islands

A Destination Guide for Your Caribbean Vacation
MARIA DIEGO

The US Virgin Islands, made up of St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix, is a boater and diver’s paradise of many islands, beautiful beaches, and plenty of dive spots to explore. We were looking for a remote region to charter a private catamaran with crew to spend a week of bonding and adventure with our kids, and settled on the USVI as the perfect destination. Private yachts, sail boats, and catamarans are available throughout the US Virgin Islands and Diego Travel works with the best yacht broker for our clients’ needs.

Perfect For: Families | Destination Weddings | Honeymoon | Couples Groups | Multi-Generational Families | Scuba Divers | Snorkelers | Scuba Divers

Long Bay Marina-Charlotte Amalie

Getting to US Virgin Islands

Getting to USVI is perhaps one of its biggest draws, since there are so many direct flights into St. Thomas (STT) from major cities like Chicago, Dulles, Newark and Miami. From St. Thomas, it’s an easy boat ride to St. John, and a full day boat ride to St. Croix, so most people visiting St. Croix will take the direct flight from Miami. US Virgin Islands is extremely close to British Virgin Islands. Before Covid, visitors could visit the islands interchangeably pretty easily, but now the restrictions make it more difficult. For ease of flights, it’s sometimes better to fly into STT and take a boat over to British Virgin Islands, even though you will need to stop by boat to clear customs. When you utilize Diego Travel’s trip planning service, we handle all of the logistics of travel to the US Virgin Island and British Virgin Islands so you don’t have to worry about any of it.

USVI
  • 18.3411,-64.9328

    St Thomas

  • 18.3308,-64.7945

    St John

United States Virgin Islands Catamaran Charter

Catamaran Charter

YACHT AND CATAMARAN CHARTERS

The Caribbean just might be the Yacht Charter Capital of the World, and you will find many luxury boats, yachts and catamarans in the region. The problem is, where can you find one of these that fit your budget? I’ll let you in on a secret. The yacht charter with crew experience is more affordable than you think, especially when traveling with a group of family or friends. I have worked with one of the boating industry’s top yacht brokers for over a decade, and she has 30+ years in the industry. Together, at no additional cost to the client, we are able to pair Diego Travel clients to the best boat and crew at your budget. When I reached out to her for our personal vacation, we were considering two boats in our price range, and she told me one crew would be better than the other with our young kids. She was right! And whether you’re looking for a charter in Greece, Italy, or the Caribbean, she knows the boats and crew and directs me to the right choice once we have a discussion about you and what your needs are.

The US Virgin Islands are so popular for yacht charters because there are so many islands and protected bays for mooring at night, with not much distance or rough seas in between destinations. You can go for a full week or two without touching land, just exploring different waters, with each beach and bay being extremely unique. We spent our seven nights in Monde Bay, Little Lameshur Bay, Long Bay, Francis Bay, Caneel Bay, and finally Brewers Bay. The cool thing about our captain, who had 10 years experience, was that he knew to get us one bay ahead of the rest, so at each stop, due to our timing, we had each bay essentially to ourselves.

USVI Catamaran Charters

While we opted for a catamaran charter with crew, there are also bareboat catamaran and sailboat charters available (meaning less cost without crew). If you are the do-it-yourself type and want to man your own boat, you have this option available in the USVI. For those that want to learn how to sail, the USVI also affords a variety of options to get ASA certified during on your crewed charter.  Keep in mind that boat charters are regularly 7 nights.

  • Scuba Diving

    Scuba diving and snorkeling are the number 1 attraction of the US Virgin Islands, with so many reef dives, wreck dives, drift dives, and rocky islets that are home to a myriad of fish and sea life. Our 11-year-old daughter tried scuba diving for the first time, and on her second attempt stayed underwater for 25 minutes.

    The USVI is full of national wildlife reserves like Buck Island and the Virgin Islands National Park & Coral Reef National Monument. Because of the amount of protection surrounding the islands, the water is full of sea life, making the perfect paradise for both scuba divers and snorkelers.

  • Watersports USVI

  • It’s worthwhile to mention the amount of sea life we saw off our boat. From constant fish, sting rays and octopus, our favorite was swimming with the sea turtles, where there is a bay with hundreds of them. My 4- and 6-year-olds swam on their own as we patiently followed a little sea turtle as he would slowly surface for a breath every few minutes, where we’d get an up close look and then watch him plunge back to the sand. The fine of touching any turtle starts at $5,000, so this ensures these beautiful creatures can remain unharmed and explore freely in their natural habitat for years to come.

  • Watersports and Day charters

    For those who prefer to be landbased instead of chartering a yacht or catamaran, the US Virgin Islands offers plenty of oportunities to experience the natural beauty of these islands.

    There are a wide range of activities available directly from the beach like taking sailing classes on a small sail boat or a Hobie cat. The USVI is a great introduction to sailing for kids if they are interested in learning to sail. There are also many otions to go kayaking or stand up paddleboarding or even learning to windsurf or kiteboard

    Fishing charters offer an unique oportunity to fish the Puerto Rico Trench where you can find some of the best offshore fishing in the Caribbean, located only six miles from shore.

    Many operators offer snorkeling tours, day sailing catamaran trips and sunset sailing experiences. Private day charters are also available aboard both sail boats and powerboats.

  • USVI Bars

  • Shopping

    Charlotte Amalie is the main cruise ship port where the large cruise ships arrive and depart. In St. Thomas, you don’t pay sales tax, so it’s the perfect place to buy a luxury watch or jewelry. Charlotte Amalie is full of your more touristy shops that cater to the cruise ships, while St. John has some more boutique shopping with local shops that sell everything from board shorts and rash guards for men to swim suits and cover ups for women. In the USVI, you won’t wear or need much more than that, as even in the winter time, the evenings rarely get cold enough to require a sweater.

    On our week-long charter, we only stopped twice for shopping and to walk around, and my favorite spot was Mongoose Junction in Cruz Bay in St. John. This small shopping center has a few bars and restaurants, but my favorite shop was Lulee, which carries all my favorite brands and where I bought a replacement pair of my favorite Agolde denim cut-offs.

  • Rum Tasting

    While we truthfully did not explore the USVI by land that much, we had been in the past when visiting by cruise ship and were told of the many rum distilleries on both St. Thomas and St. John. And just as any good Caribbean island should offer, a good bar and opportunity to taste a dozen rums abounds in the US Virgin Islands.

    One of country music’s most famous singers, Kenny Chesney, has a home on Cinnamon Bay in the USVI and often sings about island life and its plentiful drinks. Two of our favorite spots are the Windmill Bar on St. John, perched on a hilltop in an old sugar mill with live music and stunning views, and for a more refined wine tasting experience, try Kati Ligo in St. John, a cozy wine bar.

  • St John Shopping

Ritz Carlton St Thomas Aerial View

Where to Stay in the USVI

The Ritz Carlton St Thomas

The Ritz Carlton St. Thomas

The Ritz Carlton St. Thomas is perfect for families, multi-generational families (we saw a ton of large family groups during Christmas week), and even great for couples during non-holiday travel times.  The hotel is located on a small bay with a somewhat short beach and two pools.  One pool was originally redesigned to be adult-only, but the sales director told me that families werent having it and that they eventually gave in and have kids welcome at both pools.  Having said that, families with young and noisy kids tend to gravitate to the pool located next to the winding water slide, a new addition from the renovation.  Right next to the water slide pool is a fantastic kids club, where both indoor and outdoor activities are completely complimentary for ages 5-12.  Cabanas incur an extra cost and are located around both pools.

 Aside from the pools and beach, you also have tennis courts and a huge brand new gym with state of the art equipment.  You have an amazing spa, and fun boutique, and four restaurants.  To really add to the experience, I highly recommend a private beach dinner, where theyll set your table up under a romantic sea grape tree that sits on the beach.  It is the perfect spot to celebrate an anniversary or have a proposal. 

Lets talk about Club level at this Ritz Carlton hotel.  If youre a Marriott or Ritz Carlton loyalist, I am sure you are aware of club level by now.  The club level rooms give access to a special club lounge for its guests.  In my opinion, at some properties, this added benefit is well worth it and at other properties, its not worth the price difference.  At Ritz Carlton St. Thomas, the Club level is definitely worth it.  Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served buffet style with a wine and coffee bar, all complimentary to Club level guests.  They also have their own outdoor terrace space, so its almost like having access to your own exclusive restaurant that is completely free.

The cost of meals at a resort like this can really add up, so we saw plenty of families eating all their meals in the Club lounge.  Finally, Diego Travel is a preferred partner to Marriott STARS program, which includes all Ritz Carltons, so even if youre Bonvoy Ambassador Elite, you will still get additional perks when booking your Marriott stays with Diego Travel.  The only time these perks dont apply is when youre booking your stay using points.  

Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following STARS Amenities:

  •  Welcome Amenity
  •  Complimentary Breakfast for 2 at Bleuwater Restaurant
  • $100 Hotel Credit
  • Complimentary Wi-FI
  • Priority Upgrade if Available
  • Priority Early Check-In/Late Check-Out
  • VIP Status with In-Person Warm Welcome
  • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

Diego Travel Recommends Ritz Carlton St. Thomas For: Families | Destination Weddings | Couples Groups | Multi-Generational Families Corporate Groups | Incentive Groups

Where To Eat in US Virgin Islands?

  • Two US Virgin Islands favorites:

    Lime Out A floating taco bar based in Coral Bay, St. John.

    Pizza Pi A small boat with a pizza oven offering delivery by dinghy based in Christmas Cove, Little St. James.  They make gluten-free pizza too! Started by a couple who left their corporate world behind and covered a boat into a large pizza oven/delivery restaurant.  Talk about chasing your dreams!

  • Lovango Cay

  • Our favorite day and dinner experience:

    Lovango Cay A beach and pool club with limited daily memberships starting at $100 per person, private cabana rentals, and waterfront dining based off Lovango Cay.

  • Our other favorite food experiences:

    Dave and Jerry’s  Fine dining in St. John that offers excellent steaks and a ton of food.  We outdid ourselves!

    Prime Fine dining in St. Thomas, would recommend for a final evening on the dock if youre chartering a yacht or catamaran.  

     ZoZos Waterfront dining in Caneel Bay, St. John and also a happy hour option with live music and a cute gift shop.

    Skinny Legs This is a very local hang in St. John serving up burgers and drinks.  The name says it all for appropriate dress attire.

A Few of My Favorite Things

USVI

Beaches and Bays

Don’t miss Turtle Bay and Cinnamon Beach on St. Johns. Even though there are more tourists here than other areas, it’s for good reason. It’s so neat to swim with so many sea turtles and a unique experience to the USVI. Cinnamon Beach is long and with soft, white sand, perfect for a long beach walk and located where you have many multi-million dollar villas that are available for rental. Diego Travel can assist you with these villa rentals too. Little Lamashur Bay was less crowded and we saw sea turtles and sting rays there too.

Water Sports

One of the best things about chartering a yacht or catamaran with crew, is the direct access to a lot of sea toys like tubing, stand up paddle boarding, eFoils (we saw tons of these), kite surfing and water skiing or wake boarding right off the back our catamaran. Our kids had so much fun doing all of these things, that you could never get bored. So between gourmet meals prepared by our chef, Erika, our captain, Tyler, would take us out for fun on the water in between. Although, I have to admit that sometimes I would let my husband take the kids while I stayed behind on the quiet boat to read a good book (and work remotely).

The People

The community of US Virgin Islands is a huge boating community who love the water and the easy way of life. Though after witnessing how hard our crew worked aboard the boat throughout our week stay, I realized that they work hard and likely play harder. The people are very friendly, easy-going, and work hard to provide excellent service when you charter a yacht or catamaran. They come from all over the world to work on boats in the Caribbean, and most of them are well-traveled and well-educated, spending part of the year working very hard and able to take time off in their off season to travel to other places. I learned a lot from our crew, a couple who has been married 5 years and in the yachting industry for 10, and hope to someday charter with them again.

If you’re interested in a chartering a yacht or catamaran in the US Virgin Islands, or book the Ritz Carlton St. Thomas, I would be happy to provide you my guidance and match you with the perfect boat + crew or hotel accommodation. You can email me here to inquire.

 

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Commodore Perry Estate

Hotel Review: Commodore Perry Estate, an Auberge Hotel

Hotel Review

Commodore Perry Estate

An Auberge Hotel
MARIA DIEGO

A historical mansion set in an idyllic neighborhood near downtown Austin, Texas, the Commodore Perry Estate was redesigned by internationally renowned interior designer Ken Fulk and is the epitome of old world charm met with an eccentric twist of modern glamour. 

Perfect For: Small groups of friends | Girls weekend getaway or bachelor/bachelorette parties | Romantic Getaways | Weddings | A Stopover for Multi- Caribbean Island Vacation

30.3006,-97.7229

Commodore Perry Estate

Location: A 10-acre estate set in the heart of Austin, Texas.

Getting There: Just 15 minutes from Austin- Bergstrom International Airport (AUS).

Commodore Perry Estate Vibe

Vibe: Even though you’re just minutes from all the action of downtown Austin, Texas, the Commodore Perry Estate makes you feel like the houseguest of a European royal’s country estate, with elegant finishes and first-class service, with just the right amount of eclectic charm that keeps it feeling “Austin weird.” Fun activities like tarot card readings and live retro record sessions under the moonlight keep the scene young and fresh.

History: Edgar “Commodore” Perry was a beloved Austin historical figure who amassed his fortune in the cotton industry in the early 1920s. While golfing at the next-door golf course, Perry spotted a piece of land and decided to build what would become a welcoming estate for he and his wife, Lutie, to welcome guests from near and far and place Austin on the map as one of the best places to live. As a newly reimagined urban retreat, this hotel hopes to restore the liveliness and glamour that Commodore Perry and his wife bestowed on it nearly a century ago.

Commodore Perry Estate History
Bar at the Commodore Perry Estate

Perfect For:  Commodore Perry Estate is perfect for that romantic weekend getaway to enjoy the music scene of Austin, but retreat back to luxury and feel away from it all. I would also recommend it for a girls weekend getaway or bachelor/bachelorette parties, as well as groups of couples. With 54 rooms, it’s not uncommon to have a buy-out for a wedding or glamorous corporate affair or incentive trip, and Diego Travel is happy to assist with helping to make your stay magical, no matter how small or large your group size might be. The Mansion is made up of just 5 suites, so if you’re traveling with a small group of couples, it would be the ideal setting for a truly unique and unforgettable stay.

Accomodations: 54 total rooms and suites with plans to add new residences and a spa in the future.

Commodore Perry Estate Bathroom

Commodore Perry Estate Cofee

Food & Beverage: The outdoor patio at the Mansion serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, and serves as a social hub for the Austin socialite scene. If you’re wanting more exclusivity, the Garden Nook, Solarium and the Loggia of the Garden Restaurant are for Members and overnight guests of Commodore Perry Estate only. Lutie’s restaurant recently opened and is a buzzy space in a jungle green setting that serves farm-to-table food and hand-crafted cocktails. Finding space is an issue, so reserve your table well in advance. Food and drinks can also be served poolside, or of course in in-room dining where you can partake in an honor bar, set up with your preferences upon request prior to your arrival.

Wellness: The property is lacking a spa, so if you’re looking for a spa retreat, this is not the right fit for you. However, they provide a weekly wellness class schedule including pilates, yoga and nearby hiking. The concierge will be happy to set up a treatment at the nearby Springs or trip to the Herb Bar, where you will find personalized herbal elixirs for mind, body and soul.

Commodore Perry Estate Wellness

Commodore Perry Estate Pool

Activities: The experience of Commodore Perry Estate is as much about what you aren’t doing as what you are. The goal is not to fill your time with activities but rather disconnect to relish in fine spirits, delicious food, and interesting conversation, all while sitting back in a velvet settee with funky jazz softly playing in the background. Just like Mr. and Mrs. Perry would have done.

What  Sets  It  Apart: Recently voted the #1 resort hotel in Texas on Travel + Leisure’s 2021 World’s Best List (link that here), it’s with good reason that the Commodore Perry Estate stands out in a state whose slogan is “Go big or go home.” The property is intimate and small but leaves a large and lasting impression.

Commodore Perry Estate
Commodore Perry Estate

How Much Does Commodore Perry Cost? Nightly rates start at $609 for mid-week stays in low season to upwards of $6,500 for Mr. and Mrs. Perry’s Suite, the nicest and largest of the Mansion Suites.

Diego Travel Loves: The decor! If you don’t know about Ken Fulk , look him up and be ready to fall in love. It is truly a treat to stay here.

Ken Fulk
Diego Travel Amenities Commodore Perry Estate

Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Daily Breakfast Credit for two guests per bedroom ($70 per day, per room)
  • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable,
    not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
  • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

Our preferred partnership with Auberge Resorts ensures that you will have priority upgrade and be flagged as a VIP for your stay. That’s something you won’t get booking online or with Amex Travel.

    Commodore Perry Insider Tips:

    There are only 2 rooms on property with bath tubs, so if you love a good soak, be sure to book your stay with Diego Travel so we get you into there right room. Also, there are no connecting rooms on property, so while this isn’t ideal for travel with young kids, a rollaway can be placed in certain rooms

    Commodore Perry Estate1

    Summary of Our Stay at Commodore Perry Estate:

    After time spent at both Miraval Austin and Lake Austin Spa Resort, I was ready to change it up and stay in the newly opened Commodore Perry Estate closer to the city center. The moment I arrived to the gravel driveway and was warmly greeted by the doorman, I knew I had come to the right place. The lobby is inviting with a soaring ceiling and hand-painted mural on the Mediterranean-inspired walls, which leads directly into a living room with cozy fireplace that’s inviting enough to say, “Come on in and stay awhile.” Perhaps with “y’all” at the end…I don’t know. We are in Texas.

    Commodore Perry Austin

    Aside from the extremely cool setting that will have your eyes glancing around each room to soak up all the details, there’s something intangibly special about the Estate. The property has procured local artisans to provide the details like the minibar snacks, the offerings on the liquor bar, and even a body oil left on your nightstand at the turndown service that will leave you dreaming in seconds. The scent, the textures, the combination of color – all of it adds to the mystique of Commodore Perry Estate and left me not wanting to leave.

    Commodore Perry Ken Fulk

    Shortly after check-in, I made my way down to the pool with a good book, where I sipped on a fancy cocktail that was topped with a fresh herb sprig plucked from the garden. There weren’t many others around, and everyone seemed to be basking in the glorious sound of silence around us, until the music started playing from the Garden Restaurant. A few chapters in and it was time to pull myself up from the yellow and white-striped lounge chair and change into something a little more fancy for a solo dinner on the patio. The music was just what you’d expect from one of the best destinations to enjoy live music. Divine. I was only sad not to be sharing it in the company of my husband or friends.

    Commodore Perry Estate Grounds

    Back at my room, I had one of the best night’s sleep in my life, and I love the red satin eye mask that was provided along with the body oil. I’m not a vampire, but I might have been one in my past life, because a solid black out in any hotel room definitely gains instant bonus points in my book.

    Breakfast brought more delicious food with a goat cheese yogurt on a bed of ice, topped with frozen fruit and grapes. Drizzed in local Austin honey. Yum! My mouth waters just thinking about it and I would return just for that breakfast. Even better enjoyed solo to the sound of silence. Sometimes a weekend sans my kids is just what I need. Does that make me a bad mom? Maybe. But I came home refreshed and with my batteries recharged, ready to take on the role of Super Mom and Master Travel Advisor at once.

    Commodore Perry Estate Austin Texas

    Since my stay, I’ve been happy to send clients for anniversary weekends, birthday celebrations, and a visit for no reason at all, and everyone has come away just as relaxed and content as I did. It’s safe to say that you will love it too, and I’d be happy to guide you through selecting the room that speaks to your soul and puts you right in the mood for the perfect Austin weekend.

    Let’s Get Planning!

    Getting to Austin Texas


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    Hotel Review-Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Hotel Review: Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Hotel Review

    Montage Palmetto Bluff

    A Luxury Resort IN SOUTH CAROLINA
    MARIA DIEGO

    Montage Palmetto Bluff is located 30 minutes outside of Savannah, Georgia in Bluffton, South Carolina. It is a private, exclusive resort destination that is the perfect vacation for the whole family in the most beautiful, picturesque setting. 

    Perfect For: Families | Multigenerational Travel | Romantic Getaways | Weddings

    Palmetto Bluff South Carolina

    32.2038,-80.8840

    Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Location: Palmetto Bluff, in Bluffton, South Carolina, 18 miles north of Savannah, Georgia.

    Getting ThereMontage Palmetto Bluffs closest airport is Savannah, Georgia, but you can also fly into Hilton Head, which are about a 35 minute drive to the property (airport codes HHH or HXD). 

    Tree at Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Vibe: Montage Palmetto Bluff is a picturesque resort set within a sprawling 20,000-acre development in Bluffton, South Carolina. The community is made up of tree-lined rows of 2- story brick houses with white picket fences and gas-lit lamp posts. It’s a step back in time to another era where you can fully disconnect and enjoy the natural surroundings of the South.

    History: The area of Palmetto Bluff is steeped in a rich history, with the original mansion that is now owned by Montage Palmetto Bluff belonging to the Wilson family in the 1920s. Nobody knows how, but the original mansion burned down in 1926, and there’s a record that Mrs. Wilson ran into the burning building to salvage her shoe collection, tossing the shoes out of the second-story window out to the grassy lawn below. The Wilson family pet cemetery can also still be found on property. The area of Palmetto Bluff used to be a hunting and fishing retreat up until the 1950s. Pat Conroy is a beloved writer of the area, and his memoir, The Water is Wide, tells the story of the area, if you’re interested in the history.

    Palmetto Bluff Vibe

    Accomodations: 200 resort accommodations with more private residences being added

    • La Samanna Rooms

    • Rooms at Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Lunch at Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Food & Beverage: Montage Palmetto Bluff currently has 7 restaurants that are quite spread out around the property, so it is helpful to reserve based on the activities you will be doing for that day. I also recommend a golf cart rental, to easily get around the area without having to rely on the transportation provided by the resort. The Canoe Club is a more formal option for dinner and one that I highly recommend booking well in advance. Octagon is the restaurant in the main inn, where you will likely eat most of your breakfast meals, particularly if they come included with your stay as they do when you book with Diego Travel..

    Wellness: Spa Montage provides a full service salon and spa that caters to the many wedding groups they have and offers a private pool, exclusive to guests of the spa. They also have a steam room and sauna located in the ladies’ and men’s locker rooms that you can enjoy before your relaxing treatments that use Valmont and Tata Harper skin care products.

    Spa at Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Clay Shooting Lessons At Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Things to Do at Palmetto Bluff: Montage Palmetto Bluff offers tennis, golf, biking, and boating, among other activities for grown ups and kids. Palmetto Bluff Shooting Club is located about 10-15 minutes from property is offers clay shooting and air rifle for kids. Families can also enjoy the several tree houses around property, the Paintbox kids club program, and the Montage Merit Badges that kids can receive as they complete each of the unique programs on property. The resort has 3 different pools that can be used exclusively by Montage Palmetto Bluff guests, thought Bluffton itself has others that can be used by homeowners.

    What  Sets  It  Apart: Montage Palmetto Bluff is your ideal destination for your group event such a wedding, corporate retreat or incentive trip. It really is its own township and offers versatile accommodations that would be a good fit for any group. Ever since Justin Bieber was married on property, it’s been in high-demand for destination weddings, for its picturesque and fairytale setting.

    Church at Montage Palmetto Bluff
    Palmetto Bluff Horses

    How Much Does Montage Palmetto Bluff Cost? How much does it cost? Nightly rates start around $495 in low season for a forest view King room in the main inn and go upwards of $4,000 for multi-bedroom residences.

    Diego Travel Loves: The ease and convenience of having everything right there. You really don’t need to leave the Bluff to explore outside; though we recommend chartering a boat (contact us to reserve yours!) to explore the local islands that can only be accessed by boat.

    Montage Palmetto Bluff Boat Charters
    Diego Travel Extras at Montage Palmetto Bluff

    Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

    • $100+ resort credit
    • Daily breakfast credit
    • Upgrade at time of booking, subject to availability
    • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability

      Montage Palmetto Bluff Insider Tips:

      You can do a guided day to Daufuskie Island and learn about the rich local history and culture, while enjoying lunch at a delicious local spot, or you can arrange an oyster roast on nearby Paige Island. When you book your stay with Diego Travel, we can include these experiences to make your stay truly unique and unforgettable.

      Insider Tips at Montage Palmetto Bluff

      Summary of Our Stay at HMontage Palmetto Bluff:

      I decided to plan my birthday weekend to Montage Palmetto Bluff at the end of August since it’s a destination that I book often, but had never experienced for myself. The flight schedule was perfect, so we were able to enjoy a long weekend without the kids missing any school. The immense live oak trees on the drive into the Bluff are breathtaking, and the rows of gas-lit iron lamp posts signal that you’re near arrival as you pull up to the recreation of the historical Wilson mansion. Everyone was friendly, and while we waited briefly to check-in, the kids ran back and forth on the expansive green lawn to get their pent-up energy out from the short flight.

      Montage Palmetto Bluff 2

      The first night we had dinner at Buffalo’s, aptly named for the buffalos that use to roam the property prior to it becoming a development. Service was friendly and the food looked delicious, but our plates were hit or miss in terms of taste. The atmosphere was lively, and you definitely need a dining reservation for every meal when visiting Montage Palmetto Bluff, especially because guests are welcome from both residences and off the Bluff. I recommend booking dinners at least a month out for best availability.

      Montage Palmetto Bluff Sunset

      Our creek view cottage was spacious – more space than we’re accustomed to when traveling with our 3 kids – since we were upgraded at time of booking, which is what you’ll also receive when booking your stay with Diego Travel. Because we didn’t have time to pick up our golf cart the previous night, we waited quite a bit of time for a ride to the tennis courts on our first morning, which made us a bit late for the kids’ tennis lessons. However, the resort was extremely apologetic and comped our tennis lessons. Had we known the lay of the land, we also could have walked, but I do recommend having the golf cart set up from arrival, as it’s much easier to get around property with the kids. If you’re traveling without kids, you can probably just have the bike rentals, which would be a fun way to get from each point.

      Tennis Lessons at Montage Palmetto Bluff

      After tennis, we enjoyed breakfast at Octagon’s, and then had time to visit the pool by the Canoe Club in the afternoon. We saw alligators in both the lagoon and over by the Canoe Club, so be careful with letting your little ones get too close!

      I wanted to experience as much as possible, so I signed up for activities in advance from shooting, to a boat charter, to the spa, and enjoyed all of them as my clients would. My main takeaway is that it takes a very long time to get from one point to another as everything is much more spread out than I had envisioned, so be sure to allow enough time between meals and activities. And also remember that you’re in the South, so the pace is slow!

      Aerial view of Montage Palmetto Bluff

      Our second night we had dinner at Cole’s, which is in the Moreland area where the evening kids club is located and the bowling alley. While the kids enjoyed that, we had dinner with our 4- year-old since kids have to be 5 to enjoy the kids club. Our Southern dinner was delicious, particularly my husband’s fried chicken plate. We highly recommend! At the end of the night, we caught the shuttle back to the main inn, where we met our older kids at the s’mores station where they were on their 2nd or 3rd gluten-free s’mores. They did not want to turn in!

      S’mores Station

      Montage Palmetto Bluff was a perfect long weekend to have some fun activities with the kids, with something for everyone. My clients who belong to country clubs or tennis and golf clubs love it because it offers world-class facilities to play all of these sports. While I don’t personally play tennis or golf, I appreciated the great lessons that my kids had, but we particularly loved the day out on the boat that we enjoyed with Captain Gio. He was a fantastic guide and shared stories from the area that we would never have experienced had we not done the boat charter. I would be thrilled to set up my clients with Gio to do some of these unique experiences to see the area from a different perspective.

      Palmetto Bluff Waterways

      When you plan your trip, reach out to us and we will take care of all the details while getting you all the added amenities, whether you’re planning a visit for your honeymoon or for your company retreat. We can assist with it all.

      Let’s Get Planning!

      Palmetto Bluff South Carolina


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      Palmetto Bluff vs Sea Island

      The Difference Between Montage Palmetto Bluff and The Cloister at Sea Island

      The Difference Between Montage Palmetto Bluff and The Cloister at Sea Island

      MARIA DIEGO

      A Diego Travel agency and Virtuoso client favorite domestic destination has always been both Montage Palmetto Bluff in South Carolina and The Cloister and The Lodge of Sea Island, Georgia – two luxury resorts that parallel in both style, size, and type of clientele that visit both resorts.  If you are undecided between which of these Virtuoso vacation properties might be right for you, we are here to point you in the right direction.  In addition to helping our clients navigate the differences between these two luxury resorts, as a proud affiliate of Departure Lounge, we also offer our clients many benefits in booking with Diego Travel at both hotels.

      • Resort Credit added to your stay
      • Daily complimentary breakfast (for 2 people per room)
      • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
      • Priority room upgrade when available
      • Personalized trip planning to make the most out of your vacation (when utilizing our trip planning service)
      • Custom Diego Travel welcome box with goodies for new clients who opt to utilize our trip planning service

      Both Montage Palmetto Bluff and Sea Island are the perfect destinations for a family vacation, a multi-generational vacation that includes grandparents, parents, kids, aunts, uncles, etc, a girlfriends spa getaway, a domestic honeymoon, or even to host your large corporate group or event.  So how do you know which property is right for you?  Well, that is what we are here for, to break down the two.

      Getting There

      Montage Palmetto Bluffs closest airport is Savannah, Georgia, but you can also fly into Hilton Head, which are about a 35 minute drive to the property (airport codes HHH or HXD).  To get to Sea Island, Georgia, you would fly into either Jacksonville, Florida or Savannah, Georgia, and will be about 45-55 minutes from Sea Island.  If you plan to fly private, there are FBOs very close to either property, BQK for Sea Island, which will put you at about a 5-10 minute drive.

      How to Get to Montage Palmetto Bluff and Sea Island

      • 32.208,-80.8843

        Montage Palmetto Bluff

      • 31.2002,-81.3332

        Sea Island, Georgia

        Sea Island, Georgia

      Why you should plan a trip to:

      Montage Palmetto Bluff Waterways

      Montage Palmetto Bluff

      • There are 200 guest accommodations/rooms at Montage Palmetto Bluff, along with residences that are part of the resorts rental program (they are privately owned, but fully serviced).
      • Rooms range from a Forest View King without Balcony (which you will never be in if you book your stay with Diego Travel, as you get upgrade at time of booking) in the Main Inn to 5-bedroom residences.
      • Montage Palmetto Bluff offers tennis, golf, biking, and boating, among other activities.
      • There are 8 dining experiences and 3 different pools.
      • Activities include cycling, horseback riding, hiking, boating, water and paddle sports, fly-fishing, bird-watching, sporting clays, carriage rides and archery.

      Sunset The Lodge at Sea Island

      Sea Island

      • Sea Island also has 200 guest room accommodations, plus many vacation home rentals.
      • Rooms range from River View King rooms in the Cloister to 4-5 Bedroom residences at The Lodge.  Privately-owned residences can be rented through the Sea Island Cottage Rental program, which you can find more information on my blog here.
      • Sea Island has something for everyone, with exclusive adults-only areas if you want to experience a romantic honeymoon, to accommodations for multi-generational families
      • The 65,000-square-foot Forbes Five Star Spa at Sea Island is far superior to the spa experience at Montage Palmetto Bluff, so if this is important to you, then opt for Sea Island.
      • Activities include diverse activities like tennis and squash, destination picnics, fitness classes, five miles of private beach, bike riding, 3 world-class golf courses and home to the PGA Tours RSM Classic, sporting clays, and sport shooting at the nearby Broadfield property, fishing, boating, water and paddle sports, along with many culinary experiences.

      What Is The Highlight at:

      Palmetto Bluff vs Sea Island

      Palmetto Bluff

      Montage Palmetto Bluff is situated along a winding wetlands in the picturesque town of Palmetto Bluff, a one-stop-shop for convenience for the whole family.  You dont need to leave the community throughout your entire stay, as they offer a variety of restaurants, biking, horseback riding, shooting, golfing, fishing and boating.  Though if you want to, youre a short drive to Savannah and Hilton Head.  The best part of our time at Montage Palmetto Bluff was getting out on the water by boat, and exploring the different islands.

      Palmetto Bluff vs Sea Island

      Sea Island

      Sea Island is an oceanfront front private island, unlike Palmetto Bluff which is located along a delta. To access Sea Island you must be a guest or home owner, which makes it a slightly more exclusive experience. Sea Island has a beautiful long beach and offers a broad range of activities including biking, golfing, shooting, paddleboarding, horseback riding, fishing and boating. In addition to several on property restaurants, there are many dining and shopping options at nearby St Simons island.

      Who Should Visit?

      Montage Palmetto Bluff Pool

      Palmetto Bluff

      Palmetto Bluff is a great destination for those wanting to immerse themselves in southern charm and enjoy winding waterways that frame this picturesque destination. Outdoor enthusiast can explore miles of bike and walking trails, go horseback riding, play tennis or explore miles of waterways by boat.

       Palmetto Bluff is ideal for large, traditional family gatherings, or a romantic escape for couples who are just looking to disconnect to reconnect.  We saw a bit of everything from couples, to bachelorette/girlfriends gatherings, to families with young children and grandparents.  Because they have accommodations for everyone, it makes it very easy.

      Sea Island

      Sea Island

      Sea Island offers miles of uncrowded beaches at the Beach Club, secluded hunting at Broadfield, world class golfing at the Lodge and old world charm and elegance at the Cloister.

      While youll find everyone from families with small children, to couples celebrating their anniversary, to newlyweds on their honeymoon, Sea Island has an accommodation that will work best for you.  If you choose to celebrate your honeymoon here, youll be joining 40,000 other couples who have done so (including my grandparents!).  I would never place honeymooners in the Beach Club, just like I would not likely place a family with small children in the rooms at the Lodge.  Its best to consult with me in order to select the right fit for you.

      Need Help Deciding Which One Is Right For You?

      We are always here to walk our clients through questions, itineraries, and custom trip planning. If you really cant decide which property youll enjoy more, then we say why not enjoy both?! We have planned trips for families to enjoy one property for 3-4 nights and then drive to the other property for 3-4 nights to experience the best of both worlds. You can easily spend a few days at each, but keep in mind that during peak seasons, youll want to book well in advance for getting your top choice of accommodations at both Sea Island and Montage Palmetto Bluff. You can schedule a call to answer any questions and start planning your next escape to Montage Palmetto Bluff or Sea Island. We cant wait to make your stay extra special!


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      Terranea Resort

      Hotel Review: Terranea Luxury Resort, Rancho Palos Verdes California

      Hotel Review

      Terranea Luxury Resort, Ranchos Palos Verdes California

      A luxury oceanfront resort that embodies the California lifestyle and is surrounded by the natural beauty of the Southern California coast
      MARIA DIEGO

      Immerse yourself in the natural beauty and laidback Californian lifestyle at this coastal resort, less than one hour from Downtown L.A. This Mediterranean inspired luxury hotel offers guests award-winning amenities, luxurious accommodation and a captivating range of activities and adventures for the whole family to enjoy across this 102-acre hidden gem in Southern California. 

      Perfect For: Families | Couples | Business Meetings | Team Builder Days | Outdoor and Nature Lovers | Sustainability-Focused Travelers | LA Residents wanting to escape the city

      • 33.7384,-118.3978

        Terranea Resort

      • 33.9417,-118.41

        LAX

      Location: Terranea is located in Rancho Palos Verdes on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, also known for the Rolling Hills Estates.

      Getting ThereTerranea can be reached in under one hour from L.A. and LAX, being situated 17 miles south of LAX  or 24 miles from Long Beach Airport.

      Terranea Palos Verdes Vibe

      Vibe: Terranea truly is one of the best-kept secrets on the Southern California coast. The resort effortlessly combines sophisticated relaxation with adventure experiences so you truly feel like you’ve escaped day-to-day life to experience something extraordinary. The resort embodies what they call ‘Terranealife’, an immersive Californian experience of adventure, relaxation, great food and incredible attention to detail across its amenities and accommodation. This really is a Mediterranean escape in the heart of the West Coast.

      Accomodations: Across the 102-acre resort, Terranea offers four accommodation options to suit a range of budgets, plus an exclusive villa option for an unparalleled luxury vacation experience.

      Terranea Bathrooms

      Guestrooms: These spacious rooms come with a private balcony offering views of the Pacific Ocean, Pool views or Garden views. Designed with relaxation in mind, all guestrooms come with one king-size bed or two double beds, walk-in showers, flatscreen TV and luxury bathroom amenities provided. With the two double beds option, these rooms can sleep up to 4.

      Suites: Every suite comes with a separate living room, a fully stocked pantry and a bar, all with sweeping ocean views. Ground floor suites open onto the beautifully manicured lawns. Covering 900-2,200sq ft, suites are the ideal option if you want your own private space to relax and unwind.

      Terranea Suites

      Bungalows: Designed to give you that home-away-from-home feeling, yet completely immersed in luxury, the bungalows can all be found along the ocean’s edge and boast upgraded amenities, four-poster beds, fireplaces, an outdoor firepit and they’re adults-only, providing the ultimate escape for couples to unwind and feel rejuvenated on the doorstep of the Pacific Ocean. Bungalows can sleep up to 6 adults.

      Casitas: Curating the subtle Mediterranean vibes of Terranea, these residential-style accommodations are perfect for family getaways, multi-generational family trips or groups. Casitas come with king beds, large kitchen and dining rooms, a private balcony or patio and sleep up to 8.

      Terranea Casitas

      Villas: For a totally secluded, exclusive experience, the villas at Terranea resort are the ultimate in individualized vacation experiences, with world-class amenities, and a completely private and secluded location on the resort. Villas come with up to three bedrooms, ensuite bathrooms, a private outdoor hot tub, spacious kitchen, dining and living areas, plus a large terrace and one or two-car garages.

      Food and Beverage: With an incredible nine dining options to choose from, there is something to suit everyone, every meal, every occasion or dietary requirement. Solviva embodies the resort’s focus on sustainability, with a range of dishes using locally sourced and sustainably grown produce.

      Mar’sel offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and is perfect for a romantic evening dinner, while the Catalina Kitchen and Bashi offer more modern, lively and authentic dishes. For something more casual, Nelson’s is a favorite with guests for the beautiful location on the cliffs above the ocean and the simple, surfside vibe. Sea Beans Cafe and the grill by the pool are great for light bites throughout the day.

      The Lobby Bar & Lounge is the perfect sophisticated and intimate way to end your night, with cozy fireside seating or al fresco spots with ocean views. Here you can enjoy craft cocktails and a range of wine and beers.

      Wellness: The Spa at Terranea embraces and captivates the energy of the resort’s location by the ocean and within nature. With a range of spa treatments offered by this multi-award-winning spa, you can’t go wrong with choosing a treatment here. 

      As part of the wellness offering, the resort fitness centre offers a fully equipped indoor gym and spa pool, plus activities for guests to enjoy including spin sessions, seaside yoga, seaside cycling and stretching. 

      Spa at Terranea

      Paddle boarding at Terranea

      Activities: Terranea is a real standout resort when it comes to the activities on offer and it would be impossible to recap them all here! Terranea activities are notable because there is so much to do to suit everyone, whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures, complete relaxation, family activities or kids experiences.

      The Links Golf Course is one of Terranea’s crowning jewels, being one of the country’s top-rated championship 9-hole golf courses, you can easily spend the afternoon on the course by the ocean.

      For those looking for a more active and adventurous getaway, let the resort help you book hiking excursions, horseback adventures, stand up paddleboarding, ocean kayaking or surfing lessons. There’s also a range of tour options available including guided ocean kayaking, whale watching tours or full- or half-day fishing excursions.

      Of course, Terranea is all about luxury and relaxation, so don’t miss the chance to book a private cabana and spend the day relaxing by one of the resort’s four pools. Or perhaps enjoy a spot of retail therapy in the resort’s exclusive selection of retail stores. Terranea is the opportunity to embrace the slower pace of life with a stroll along the beach, taking in the turquoise blue ocean and soaking in the sun on the property’s beach loungers.

      There’s a great selection for the kids too, from archery and falconry experiences to tide pool adventures and pony rides. There’s also a children’s discovery club throughout the week.

      What sets it apart: A huge factor that sets Terranea apart is its commitment and transparency towards sustainability. The resort is committed to protecting the landscape and nature in which it sits and is committed to minimizing its environmental footprint throughout the resort. The resort’s food waste recycling program supports their “20/20/20” goal, a pledge to reduce energy and water usage by 20% and send only 20% of its total waste to the landfill, all by the year 2020. 

      The resort donates unused toiletries to the Midnight Mission charity (nearly 300lbs in 1 month!). The resort also collaborates with Chefs to End Hunger to redistribute prepared food to local food agencies serving meals to those in need. 

      All this led to the resort being named the Platinum Adrian Award winner for Leader in Sustainable Tourism by National Geographic and HSMAI. The resort also earned the California Hotel & Lodging Association’s Award for Good Earthkeeping.

      Terranea Landscaping
      Terranea Bouganvillea

      How much does Terranea cost?

      There is a range of accommodation options to suit various budgets and desired vacation experiences. 

      Prices start from $500 per night for guestrooms and up to $2,700 per night for three-bedroom casitas.

      The resort also offers member prices for a reduced rate on their accommodation options as well as packages such as The Golf Links package to include two rounds of golf and two breakfasts with your stay.  

      Diego Travel Loves: There are some things in life that words can’t describe. The experience of Terranea is one of them. From the vast range of activities to the attention to detail in the accommodation and dining experiences, each vacation here is tailored to you.

      Terranea Paddleboarding
      Diego Travel Extras at Terranea

      Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel in 2021:

      • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
      • Daily breakfast for two guests per bedroom served in Catalina Kitchen or In-Room dining (up to $60 credit)
      • $100 USD Resort or Hotel credit, to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
      • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
      • Complimentary Wi-Fi
        • Coastal Escape: Enjoy a Southern California vacation at Terranea and save up to 15% off our Best Available Rate. Escape for a quick weekend getaway or an extended stay. There is plenty to do outdoors such as hiking, open-air painting by the sea, archery, stand up paddleboarding, and more. Enjoy adventures by land and sea, a round of golf at The Links, or any of our dining offerings. Book and stay through September 15, 2021; Subject to minimum night stay. Offer subject to availability. Not valid for group bookings of 10 rooms or more.
        • Book 3 Nights and get the 4th free! – Plan an incredible oceanfront getaway at Los Angeles’ hidden gem on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Enjoy plenty of time to discover, relax, and explore the unparalleled natural habitat of the Southern California coast. Book 3 nights and receive the 4th night free! If you book by September 6, 2021. Valid for stays May 26, 2021, until September 30, 2021. Promotion is subject to availability at the time of booking and may contain blackout dates. Not Valid for 10 or more rooms. Not valid for Ocean Front Rooms and Ocean Front Suites and Villas. Valid for consecutive days.
        • Stay More, Save More – Rediscover more summer, more savings, and more Terranea. Enjoy more time to experience all that Terranea has to offer on the Southern California coast. 
          • Stay 3 nights and receive 15% off 
          • Stay 4 nights and receive 25% off 
          • Stay 5 nights or more and receive 35% off 
          • Book by Sep 30th for travel through Dec 23, 2021.
          • Thursday-Friday arrivals will not be eligible for the 3-night stay offer. 

        * Excludes oceanfront rooms and oceanfront suites and all villas. All packages are subject to minimum night stay, blackout dates and availability. Not valid for group bookings of 10 rooms or more.

        Terranea Insider Tips:

        Don’t miss the opportunity to book an archery lesson during your stay at Terranea. Not only will  you find no better setting than the sandy cove overlooking the Pacific Ocean, but you will not find a better instructor that Terranea’s very own USA Olympic archery team medalist. 

        Olympic Archery Lessons at Terranea

        Summary of Our Stay at Terranea:

        After a week-long road trip down the Southern California coast, Terranea Resort was our final stop at the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Even though it is just 20 miles south of LAX, it might just be considered a hidden gem of California, with sweeping views across the Pacific Ocean. The waves crashing against the tall cliffs is mesmerizing, and the mist that hovers over the peninsula somehow reminded me of time spent in Ireland. I made this comment to Valerie, the sales director for Terranea during our site tour, and she said that the owners built it in a way that was actually inspired by the Amalfi coast. Okay, two different countries, but both with impressively tall cliffs and gorgeous ocean views. You get the picture.

        Terranea Beach

        This was a multi-generational trip for us, which has become increasingly popular during the pandemic and I think will continue to be a travel trend going forward. What does that mean? Grandparents, parents, kids, and maybe aunts, uncles and cousins joining in too. Truth be told, after a week in the car together, we all needed some extra space, and Terranea delivers just that. They have bungalows, casitas and villas, all with exterior entrances, kitchen, washer/dryer, and all the comforts of home. So whether you are staying over a weekend like we did, or a month, you could literally make yourself at home, comfortably and easily with very large groups.

        Terranea Slide

        We arrived in the late afternoon, and our 3-bedroom oceanside casita had a huge grassy area in front of our ground floor patio that overlooked the ocean. There were no steep edges, so the kids were able to run around and chase the hundreds of wild rabbits that made their home in the foxtails. While they played on the grass and sunset approached, I set up with my laptop (per usual) at the outdoor covered table and was able to work with the most breathtaking view. To me, our accommodation was the best on property, because we had privacy, amazing views, and that grassy area for the kids. And the beauty was that it could be converted into a 1 or 2 bedroom as well. Terranea delivers on flexibility.

        Terranea Rancho Palos Verdes

        ​For breakfast we walked down to Catalina Kitchen, one of their 7 restaurants on property, where we took advantage of our included breakfast which you’ll always receive when you book with Diego Travel. After breakfast, the kids bee-lined it to the main family pool, one of four pools, just in time for the sun to peak out from behind the clouds, so they did a few circuits down the water slide until it was time to head down to the beach where we had a private lesson set up with the resort’s professional archery coaches, Bob and his daughter, Brooklyn. It was this experience that really set this property apart for me as a travel advisor, and someone who has seen literally hundreds of luxury hotels and resorts. The setup is right in front of the ocean along these massive cliffs, and they have the whole area roped off for you to practice a really fun sport in the most amazing setting. And yes, you can set up a proposal after an archery lesson too. Lots of adults sign up and I highly recommend the activity for a fun date night. At any rate, it was the highlight of our stay, along with the hikes we took along the nature trails around the property.

        La Samanna Beach

        The property is quite massive with so many different room/villa categories, and also so many different activities and dining options to choose from. I highly recommend setting up a call to discuss which one would be right for you, and reserving your activities and dining in advance. I did not take this advice, and missed out on the opportunity to enjoy the spa while there because I didn’t reserve in advance. I was incredibly impressed with how beautiful the area was, and wish we had stayed a little longer to be able to participate in the activities like kayaking, visiting the natural tide pools, more extensive hiking up to the lighthouse, and star gazing. We will definitely be back! And if you plan to go, be sure to reach out to book your stay with Diego Travel to receive your exclusive offers that Terranea often has for our clients, and so that we can VIP you and add on those additional amenities like resort credit and complimentary daily breakfast.

        Design My Trip!

        Terranea Trails


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        Rosewood Miramar Beach

        Hotel Review: Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel, Montecito

        Hotel Review

        Rosewood Miramar Beach

        A luxury beachfront hotel with modern residential beach living in Montecito, on the Southern California Coast
        MARIA DIEGO

        Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel in Montecito is located on the oceanfront with views across the iconic California coastline. With 160 rooms, 26 beachfront units and exclusive residential suites, the Miramar Beach hotel combines easygoing Californian beachfront living with luxury style and attention to detail throughout.

        Perfect For: Small families | Honeymooners | Romantic Getaways | An escape from the city

        • 34.4204,-119.6302

          Rosewood Miramar

        • 34.4261,-119.843

          Santa Barbara Airport

        Rosewood Miramar Beach Location: Miramar Beach Hotel is located just eight minutes south of Downtown Santa Barbara.

        Getting to the Rosewood Miramar Beach:The resort itself is only 15 minutes from Santa Barbara Municipal Airport which has direct flights from major US hubs including LA, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago and Denver. It’s also a great option to include on a California Coast road trip if you plan to visit the area around Santa Barbara, it’s around a 2 hour drive from LA.

        Book Rosewood Miramar with Diego Travel

        Vibe: Miramar means ‘to behold the sea’ and the name truly does reflect this stylish coastal resort where there is so much attention to detail in every aspect of the decor, the amenities and the experiences available. Being the only truly oceanfront resort in Montecito, your arrival feels like a moment of calm washing over you. Away from the traffic, the city and the rush of daily life, the resort encompasses oceanfront living to give you a luxurious yet home-away-from-home feel.

        Accomodations: Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel boasts 160 rooms. The resort has 26 units on the beach, two beach house suites, and beach studios, as well as rooms and suites with ocean or garden views. The Hotel is choosing to limit their maximum occupancy to 70% for the rest of the year, so you can be sure your care is the top priority when you visit.

        With 124 rooms on the property, you can choose from rooms overlooking the ocean or the gardens. Beach house guest rooms and studios are located on the beachfront with spacious rooms and private patios decorated in a light-airy coastal style that’s perfect for a relaxing retreat. Bungalow guest rooms offer views of the beautifully manicured gardens and lawns.

        Lanai Guest Rooms are in the two-story Lanai House and have rooms of varying sizes for up to four guests. They also offer the choice of garden or mountain views.

        An alternative to Rooms is their studios, which are slightly bigger than the Beach House rooms and give you the option of an additional 3rd guest with beachfront views.

        Bungalows include the Bungalow Suites with a private courtyard, Garden Bungalow suites with private terraces and garden views, or Lanai Suites with large windows and private terraces. The bungalows all come with private entrances and offer you space and amenities beyond those of guestrooms and include luxurious and spacious parlors and fireplaces for up to four guests. The bungalows are particularly popular with honeymooners or for special anniversary trips.

        Located on the beachfront with uninterrupted ocean views and with just two Beach House Suites available, these oceanfront suites are hugely popular. At 960sq ft, with relaxed indoor and terrace decor and accommodating up to 4 guests, the suites are a way to make your stay truly special with the beach on your doorstep.

        The Ambassador Suite offers panoramic ocean views and is the largest accommodation option available at 1,885sq ft. The suite can accommodate up to 4 guests with living rooms, a dining area, a private kitchen, a king-size bed and a large private terrace overlooking the lawn and with full views of the ocean. Located on the second floor of the Manor House, you’re just five minutes walk from the beautiful Miramar beach.

        Rosewood Miramar Rooms Overview

        Rosewood Miramar Rooms

        Rosewood Miramar Bathroom

        Rosewood Miramar Bathroom

        Caruso’s Restaurant Montecito

        Food & Beverage: There’s no need to venture far thanks to the incredible six restaurants and food options at Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel. Caruso’s is Rosewood Miramar’s most gourmet option. Our meal on our first night was here and the food was beyond incredible. As was the ocean view dining at the restaurant.

        For something more casual, the Miramar Beach Bar at the property is great for cocktails and light bites throughout the day. There’s also the Cabana Bar which is perfect for poolside refreshments.

        The Manor Bar is the resort’s sophisticated evening option with dark wood-panel interiors, a formal bar and luxurious seating, creating a cozy evening atmosphere for drinks after dinner.

        There’s also something for the kids too, with the popular Scoop Shop right by the pool area!

        Wellness: Rosewood Miramar Beach is the only 5-star Forbes spa in Santa Barbara, so you’re guaranteed a luxurious retreat when you choose to stay here. In fact, most people do choose to stay for at least 3 nights to really soak in the rejuvenating, coastal calm of the resort. As well as the Sense Rosewood Spa, the resort wellness centre also offers a fitness studio, sunrise yoga and adult-only pools to relax and restore you on your trip.

        Rosewood Miramar Spa

        Rosewood Miramar Beach Activities

        Things to Do in Montecito:The Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel offers a range of family-friendly experiences such as family beach yoga, falconry experiences, family movie nights and the Explorer Club for kids.

        The resort offers countless activities and excursions for adults too which are perfect for romantic getaways and special occasions like tastings at the gourmet restaurant Caruso’s or sailing the Santa Barbara Coast on a private charter cruise. If you’re looking for something more active, the hotel also offers frequent pop-up events, hiking excursions and surf excursions which can be booked upon request during your stay.

        The resort retail experience is another amenity hand-selected by the hotel to bring luxury upscale brands to their guests. With regular pop-ups like the Dior Summer Collection, alongside boutiques like The Webster, shopping is part of the experience at Rosewood Miramar Beach.

        What  Sets  It  Apart: When we finally had the opportunity to visit this summer, I knew our stay in Montecito and at the Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel would be the highlight of our California coastal road trip. Developed by Caruso, the hotel is of course stunning, with elements throughout that show the time and attention to detail that’s given to all their properties.

        The hotel is also child-friendly and you’ll often find a lot of families staying for the weekend. Weekdays are more popular with couples for romantic getaways, honeymoons or anniversary trips.

        Everything about the Miramar Beach Hotel is personalized for the comfort of their guests. These are some of our favorite parts of the resort:

        • Forbes Five-Star Rosewood Spa
        • Scoop Shop ice cream and candies is a kids’ favorite of course!
        • Family-friendly pools next to the Scoop Shop
        • Adult-only pool with rentable cabanas
        • Lincoln House Cars (one yellow, one pink!) to take you anywhere you need to go in a three-mile radius of the hotel
        • Six restaurants and bars
        • Bocce Ball courts and shuffleboard
        • A coffee cart on the beach
        • Kayak and Hobie Cat rental from the beach club
        • Retail boutiques including Christian Dior and The Webster
        • A 24/7 guard to assist guests with crossing the train tracks which operates a train several times a day

        Rosewood Miramar Beach
        Rosewood Miramar Beach Vibe
        Rosewood

        How Much Does the Rosewood Miramar Cost? The cost varies depending on the accommodation option you choose. Prices start from $1,600  per night for garden view rooms. While an Ambassador Ocean View Suite starts at a nightly rate of $13,000.

        Diego Travel Loves:

        The wait for a luxury beachfront hotel of this calibre has been worth it to see the easy luxury that Rosewood Miramar creates for their guests. From the soft cream to light blue furnishings that emulate the ocean on your doorstep, to the variety of amenities for all ages and groups, Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel is effortless luxury. 

        Rosewood Miramar
        Beach at Rosewood Miramar Montecito

        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

        • Exclusive Rosewood Elite Amenities
        • Complimentary one category upgrade upon arrival, based on availability
        • Daily USD30 breakfast credit for up to two people per bedroom
        • $125 Sense Spa credit per stay
        • Welcome note and amenity from the Managing Director on behalf of Diego Travel
        • Diego Travel Welcome Box for First-Time Clients

        Rosewood Miramar Beach Insider Tips:

        You can request one of the Beach House Studios which are further from the restaurant. By booking with Diego Travel, we can choose the specific room you wish to be placed in for your trip.

        Hotel Bel-Air garden

        Summary of Our Stay at the Rosewood Miramar Beach in Montecito, California:

        When I heard that Rosewood Hotels opened the Rosewood Miramar Beach in the heart of Montecito in 2019, I was ecstatic because it would be the area’s first truly beachfront resort with rooms on the water.

        Rosewood Miramar Beach in Montecito California

        My husband and I had been visiting the area for years due to work obligations and family living in the area, so we couldn’t get there soon enough. Santa Barbara is one of my favorite destinations in the world, especially for it’s casual California surfer meets upscale hippy chic vibe, so I mapped out our itinerary from morning to night with activities like shopping, dining and time for the beach.  Pulling up to Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel feels like stepping into a European resort. The bellmen and valet greeted us and addressed us by name from the start. The sales director met me straight away along with two other colleagues and made us feel at home. We arrived prior to check-in time, so they had one of our rooms ready for us, so that the kids could immediately change into their swimsuits and head for the beach, while my mom and I ditched them to hit the shops. And speaking of shops, the hotel itself has a few of my favorites, including the pop-up shop by Christian Dior, which was absolutely stunning, a personal favorite – Brunello Cucinelli, Goop by the famous Gwyneth Paltrow, and The Webster, which also has a location in Miami Beach. Another on-property favorite is the James Perse store, which cannot be missed for travel basics like comfortable lounge pants and basic tees. However, I had been eyeing hitting my favorite series of stores by Wendy Foster that have locations in Santa Barbara, Montecito and Los Olivos. Speaking of Los Olivos, while we didn’t have time on this trip to spend some time in Santa Ynez Valley, I always suggest to my clients who love wine and horses to split their time between that region, just an hour north of Santa Barbara.  

        Dior Boutique Rosewood Miramar Beach

        After a day of shopping, and the kids has their fill of the pool and beach, we met for dinner at Caruso’s, the formal beachfront restaurant that offers a truly fine dining experience that really transports you to Europe.  The experience was impeccable, and the food was delicious…and if you’re in the right company, stop for drinks at the bar just before dinner.  Post-dinner, we were happy to let the kids run free on the sprawling grassy lawn while my husband and I leaned back in some of the white adirondack lawn chairs, people and star gazing while we talked.  While an intimate wedding was going on while we were on property, it really didn’t take away from our experience, as the property is so large that we wouldn’t have even noticed had we not walked by the dancing bride and groom and a roomful of infectious laughter and live music coming from the Manor Bar on our walk back to our bungalow.

        Caruso’s Rosewood Miramar Beach Montecito CA

        I would be remiss not to mention the experience of the service itself at Rosewood Miramar Beach.  Everyone addressed us by name, and the welcome amenities for myself and the kids went above and beyond. (No, I’m not spoiling the surprise, because when you book with Diego Travel, you’ll also get spoiled by these amenities). One evening, the bath tub wouldn’t fill so we determined there was something wrong with the stopper.  Within minutes, a man arrived and quickly replaced the bath tub stopper.

        Rosewood Miramar Beach Turndown Service

        The grounds are beautifully landscaped and have special touches throughout, which makes your stay there feel magical.  We really didn’t want to leave the property at all, and  spent very little time going out to eat at outdoor restaurants like Bouchon and Jeanette’s, and visited the Santa Barbara zoo – my favorite because it’s small enough to not be too tiring for the little kids, yet with beautiful views of the ocean, especially from the giraffes.

        Santa Barbara Zoo

        Some of the things we did not have time for, but I would have loved to plan, is the bespoke beach picnic that the hotel will set up for you on the beach.  I also would have loved to have time to charter a boat ride to sail along the Santa Barbara coast, but we ran out of time.

        Let’s go to Rosewood Miramar

        One of the highlights of the trip was visiting Montecito Country Mart in the Rosewood Miramar’s cute yellow vintage car – they have a pastel yellow, pink and blue one and are available to drive you to any location within Montecito on a first-come, first-serve basis.  My kids loved this experience!  They also love the bocce ball and shuffle board and kept themselves busy with that while I got in quick last-minute trip to the spa for a massage.  Hey, someone has to research!  The massage was phenomenal, and while it’s small, the areas are pristine and decorated in the perfect way that Rick Caruso appointed the rest of the resort.

        Let’s go to Rosewood Miramar

        Whether you’re planning a romantic weekend getaway, a longer summer vacation or a California coast road trip, the Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel is a great option for families, couples or special occasions. Our stay at Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel was truly special and we only wish we could have stayed longer – I highly recommend a minimum 3-night stay, but if you truly want to do it all in Santa Barbara and Montecito, you’ll need a little longer. Contact Diego Travel today so we can help you book your perfect Montecito vacation, and add Rosewood Elite amenities and the VIP touch to your stay.  

        Design My Trip!

        Hotel Bel-Air LA


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        Hotel Bel-Air

        Hotel Review: Hotel Bel-Air

        Hotel Review

        Hotel Bel-Air

        A Luxury Boutique Hotel and Hollywood Icon Tucked into the Bel-Air Foothills
        MARIA DIEGO

        Hotel Bel-Air is an iconic Hollywood boutique hotel made up of 103 rooms and suites, set on a 12-acre private oasis tucked in between the mega mansions and sprawling compounds of the Bel-Air elite. Famous actors, actresses and industry moguls find reprieve in the privacy of the hidden bungalows, each one with its own unique distribution and décor

        Perfect For: Small families | Honeymooners | Romantic Getaways | A Quiet Escape | Discrete Meetings

        • 34.0938,-118.449

          Hotel Bel-Air

        • 33.9417,-118.41

          Los Angeles International Airport

        Hotel Bel-Air Location: Bel-Air is located just west of Beverly Hills, just east of Brentwood, and entirely in the Santa Monica Mountains.

        Getting There: LAX, or Los Angeles International Airport, is a major hub and chances are if you‘ve traveled internationally, you’ve flown through this airport. Bel-Air is located about X miles from LAX, which can vary in time depending on the infamous Los Angeles traffic. My rule of thumb is to always allow an extra hour for every thirty minutes you expect to drive, as you never know when you’re going to come up against an unavoidable LA traffic jam.

        Hotel Bel-Air Entrance

        Vibe: The hustle of LA slips away the moment you turn onto the neighborhood streets entering into Hotel Bel-Air. As the valet greets you, a footbridge carries you into the most magical of gardens, with over 100 different types of plants and 4,000 trees on property. Naturally, the guests at Hotel Bel-Air speak in hushed voices, stroll slowly through the quiet property taking in the sounds of chirping birds, and discretely glance around to see who’s who around the pool and courtyard restaurant, Wolfgang Puck’s at Hotel Bel-Air. While the element of Hollywood glamour seeps from its veins, the expectation to respect the peace and privacy of others is the unwritten law.

        Accomodations: Hotel Bel-Air has 105 guest rooms, with 55 rooms and 48 suites, which can be configured between 1-6 bedrooms. When you book with Diego Travel, an independent affiliate of McCabe World Travel and member of Dorchester Collection Diamond Club, the entry level room would be a Deluxe with Patio, as our clients receive an automatic upgrade at the time of booking. Because every room has a unique configuration, it is best to speak with me about what you are looking for so that I can guide you to the best fit. The Hotel Bel-Air’s sales manager’s favorite room category is the Bel-Air Suite because you get a huge amount of value for the rate. I had the chance to tour most room categories, and also had a private tour of the Herb Garden Suite and the Swan Lake Suite. The Herb Garden Suite has a full kitchen, a spectacular living room with soaring and ornate wood-beamed ceilings, and a glamourous bedroom, walk-in closet/dressing room, and large marble bathroom perfectly suitable for prepping for the Oscars. The Swan Lake Suite was my favorite and would be my top pick for a honeymoon or romantic getaway. The suite is largely feminine with blush pink undertones throughout, a plush velvet sofa in the living room and the bedroom walls adorned with delicate butterflies, as if floating overhead as you sleep. The white marble bathroom has a floral mosaic motif on the walls. My favorite part of Swan Lake is the exterior courtyard and hot tub, which is very large and has pool loungers, sitting chairs and an outdoor dining table. I didn’t get to see the Grace Kelly Suite or the Presidential Suite, but those are other great options, all with the ability to connect to other rooms. It is important to note that many guests fall in love with a particular room number, since each one has a unique configuration, décor and setting. While they cannot guarantee a particular room number, they will certainly do their best to accommodate your request or get you into one most similar to your request. Using a travel advisor will absolutely help you get preferential treatment when it comes to getting your room request.

        Bathroom at Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal Resort

        Rooms at Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal Resort 2

        Rooms at Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal Resort 2

        Wolfgang Puck at the Hotel Bel-Air

        Food & Beverage: Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air offers modern California cuisine (think fresh farm to table) with a Mediterranean influence. The breakfast menu, which is included with your stay when you book with Diego Travel, includes a massive selection of fresh juices and health shots, apparently something that the Hollywood crowd subsist on. If you’re looking for something more hearty, their avocado toast was to die for. We ordered dinner to our suite one night, where we ate outdoors around the fireplace on our patio in total privacy. As our family is gluten-free, Hotel Bel-Air provided the yummiest gluten-free cookies we had tried in a long time.

        The Bar & Lounge offers a tucked-away spot that evokes the feeling of old Hollywood glamour mixed with the coziness of home.

        Wellness: The spa at Hotel Bel-Air is small and minimalist, and offers the basics in treatments such as facials, massages and manicures and pedicures. Due to Covid, the amenities like steam room/sauna were closed. While I didn’t have a treatment during our stay, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this hotel if you’re looking for a comprehensive spa treatment plan or spa retreat. However, if you’re looking for a treatment to reduce jet lag after jet-setting around the world, then Hotel Bel-Air spa offers the perfect antidote.

        Spa at the Bel-Air

        Bel-Air

        Things to Do in Bel-Air: If you’re old enough to remember the show Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, then you’ll probably understand what I’m talking about when envisioning what there is to do around the Hotel Bel-Air. You are within a 10-15 minute drive of Beverly Hill’s famous Rodeo Drive, but also the posh areas of Brentwood, Melrose, and the Hollywood Hills. You’re also a stone’s throw from UCLA, so if you’re planning on visiting campus, this hotel will be ideally located for you and your family. The area has some of the world’s best shopping, dining, and sight-seeing in the city, with great museums such as LACMA, The Getty and Griffith Observatory, to name a few.

        What  Sets  It  Apart: I’m not sure there is another property quite like the Hotel Bel-Air in all of the United States. Perhaps in Europe you’ll find similar properties, which brings me to my point of what sets it apart. Even though you’re in the middle of it all in one of the largest and most sprawling cities in the world, the Hotel Bel-Air transports you to a European dream with the foliage, the gliding swans, the trickling water, and the chirping birds. This quiet, relaxing oasis where you’re chances of spotting an A-lister are high, are what sets it apart.

        Rooms at Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal Resort
        Bel-Air Pool

        How Much Does Hotel Bel-Air Cost? Rates vary greatly depending on the room category. Entry level rooms can start as low as $695, whereas the Presidential Suite and Herb Garden Suite start at $4,500 for a nightly rate.

        Diego Travel Loves: Los Angeles gets a bad rap for being the city of hustle and a concrete jungle, but Hotel Bel-Air couldn’t be more opposite. It truly is a respite from the world outside of Bel-Air’s boundaries, so if what brings you to LA keeps you on the go, reserving your stay at Hotel Bel-Air will definitely disconnect you and get you ‘away from it all’ at the end of each day. I love the location because you’re perfectly situated between the beaches of Santa Monica, Malibu and Venice Beach, yet close to Brentwood, UCLA, and even downtown Los Angeles.

        What we love about the Bel-Air
        Extras you get booking with Diego Travel at Hotel Bel-Air

        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

        • Dorchester Collection Diamond Club VIP Status
        • Upgrade at time of booking, subject to availability
        • full breakfast for up to two people (excludes alcohol and caviar)
        • $100 hotel credit credit per stay for rooms and Jr Suites and daily hotel credit of $100.00 USD for suites, to be applied to the final bill
        • Welcome Amenity
        • Diego Travel Welcome Box for First-Time Clients
        • Early check-in/late check-out subject to availability
        • Complimentary Wi-Fi

        Hotel Bel-Air Insider Tips:

        There are no double queen or double rooms at Hotel Bel-Air. They have only king beds and twin bed configurations, with queen pull-out sofa beds in some rooms. In every room category, there are certain units that have slightly larger square footage or a preferred patio or room distribution. When you book with Diego Travel, you’ll get preferential access to these as well as getting your automatic upgrade at time of booking. Also, the main hotel pool used to be a horse ring, so the junior suites surrounding the pool are converted horse stables.

        Hotel Bel-Air garden

        Summary of Our Stay atHotel Bel-Air:

        On a recent trip to San Diego to visit family, we had to make a quick trip up to Los Angeles for a doctor’s appointment. I had always been intrigued by iconic hotel legends like the Hotel Bel-Air and the Beverly Hills Hotel, but had never visited either of them. The Dorchester Collection team was the most responsive and accommodating to all of my requests, which is always a good indication of the level of service you’ll receive once you’re on property.

        Hotel Bel-Air California

        Our family decided to turn the visit into a mini-vacation, so I was joined by my parents, husband and all three kids. The connecting Canyon suites we had were perfect, and rather than just a door connecting them, we had an entire stair well between the two, which meant there is total privacy, yet we’d still feel close enough had we only been traveling with the kids. Each patio had its own hot tub and fireplace, perfect for chilly California evenings.

        Hotel Bel-Air Pool

        Upon arrival, I was of course slammed with work, so I set up my remote office on the suite’s spacious desk/office area to work for 20 minutes while the rest went ahead to the restaurant for lunch. When I went to catch up to them, the thing that struck me most was the design of the restaurant! While some tables are front and center, the majority of them are booths, tucked back and divided by both perfect foliage and curtains. Let’s just say it took me awhile to find them at a tucked away table. Again, if you’re a well-known celebrity and just want to have a meal in peace, it’s immediately clear why they love this place.

        Bel-Air Lobby

        The property feels intimate and there isn’t much to do for kids. The gardens are large enough to run around and explore for a day or two, but if you’re looking for a family-friendly, kids-club style resort, this is not it. While our kids weren’t the only ones making a splash at the pool, I did feel quite conscious of other guests’ book-reading and quiet conversations going interrupted by my three kids. Oops! The good news is that we didn’t stay long on either day of our stay at the main pool because we enjoyed our ‘villas’ so much, we didn’t want to leave!

        Hotel Bel-Air

        When comparing this property to the Beverly Hills Hotel, which I will cover in another article, I would say that this is the lesser kid-friendly of the two, and truly perfect for adults looking for quiet, to be left alone, or to have that important business meeting. It was the perfect respite to the overcrowded LA streets and perfect ending to our days of doctor visits, walking and shopping, and eating out on the town.

        Bel -Air Plunge Pool

        If you have any questions about staying at the Hotel Bel-Air, I’d be happy to answer them or help you book your stay so that you get all the added value mentioned above. Plus, you might just love the experience of traveling celebrity-style with a VIP status, that you’ll never want to travel without Diego Travel again!

        Design My Trip!

        Hotel Bel-Air LA


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        Blackberry Mountain

        Hotel Review: Blackberry Mountain

        Hotel Review

        Blackberry Mountain

        A Wellness Retreat at a Luxury Mountain Resort
        MARIA DIEGO

        Blackberry Mountain, the sister property of the Tennessee resort, Blackberry Farm, is located in the Great Smoky Mountains just outside of Knoxville, Tennessee. This luxury American hotel is the perfect fusion of a wellness retreat, outdoor adventure hub, and gastronomic delight. Whether you’re visiting for a special celebration like an anniversary or honeymoon, enjoying a family vacation, or need a solo getaway to disconnect, this All-American boutique resort is a soon-to-be staple in travel. So dust off your hiking boots and pack your bags because now is the time to visit before its popularity spreads like wildfire. 

        Perfect For: Active couples | Fitness-oriented travelers | Adventure-seekers | Family vacation with kids young and old | Wellness retreat | Honeymoons

        • 35.7305,-83.8162

          Blackberry Mountain

          Blackberry Mountain is located less than 30 minutes from Knoxville, Tennessee and McGhee Tyson Airport.  Between Blackberry Mountain and Blackberry Farm, you’ll have about a 30-minute drive if you’re doing a split stay.  You can also fly into Nashville and take a 3-hour drive east.

        • 35.6955,-83.8488

          Blackberry Farm

          Blackberry  Farm is a 4,200  acre  estate located on  the  Great  Smoky  Mountains,  30  minutes  outside  of  Knoxville, Tennessee. 

        • 35.8096,-83.9966

          Mc Ghee Tyson Airport (TYS)

          Blackberry Farm is easy to get to with direct flights to Knoxville from more than 25 cities and a 25 minute drive fromMc Ghee Tyson Airport (TYS) airport.

        Blackberry Mountain Location: Blackberry Mountain is located less than 30 minutes from Knoxville, Tennessee and McGhee Tyson Airport.  Between Blackberry Mountain and Blackberry Farm, you’ll have about a 30-minute drive if you’re doing a split stay. You can also fly into Nashville and take a 3-hour drive east.

        Vibe: Blackberry Mountain is all about wellness activities, outdoor adventures, and holistic wellness.  While you could certainly visit this luxury Relais & Chateaux hotel just to eat well, visit the spa, and enjoy the mountain views, you’ll make the most out of your stay at Blackberry Mountain by taking advantage of its endless on-site activities.  Even though it is the ultimate in luxury travel, the vibe is casual with friendly service and a down-to-earth attitude with guests dressed the part for mountain hikes, not really dressed to impress.

        Accommodations: Blackberry Mountain consists of 23 cottages, 6 cabins, 12 two to five-bedroom homes, with an additional 14 tree houses being added by September 2021.

        Food  &  Beverage: Three Sisters, named for the Great Smoky Mountain’s three peaks and site of Blackberry Mountain, is the luxury resort’s main restaurant and open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  It is located in the main building of Blackberry Mountain, along with the reception, Nest spa and the main pool that overlook the vast mountain views.  Three Sisters’ most popular menu items are the avocado toast for breakfast, and the mouth-watering burger with the local Blackberry Farm cheese is the most popular lunch item.  The Firetower is located nearly 2,000 feet further up the mountain at Blackberry Mountain’s highest peak that overlooks the horizon and the town of Knoxville.  Menus change daily at both restaurants and are based on Tennessee’s seasonal ingredients.  During warmer months, you can also take a bag lunch or picnic down to The Valley, or pick up a quick drink or snack inside The Outfitter, Blackberry’s Mountain’s retail shop.

        Wellness: The focus of Blackberry Mountain is on wellness and in my opinion, it’s program far exceeds other wellness resorts I have visited. If you want to turn inward, the most recommended activity (trust me, I ask everyone!) was the soundbathing in the yoga loft.  You can attend lectures and workshops that include foundations of health, holistic nutrition, create calm, herbal tea blending, and movement workshops.  Creative presence classes like meditative watercolors, mandala stone painting, mindful clay sculpting, mala making, and guided journaling.  They also have a holistic doctor onsite that can reprogram your nervous system and provide acupuncture therapy.  Yoga classes range from Vinyasa, aerial, aromatherapy, Pranayama, hot flow yoga, and ropes wall yoga.  Convinced yet?  I want to go back!

        Activities:  There is something for everyone at Blackberry Mountain, from tennis and pickleball to hiking trails, indoor basketball and rock climbing, a yoga loft and a holistic studio called Embodiment Lab. One of your first stops at the property should be to The Outfitter located at The Hub, where you can pick up food and beverages to-go and map out your day with Blackberry Mountain’s concierge team. Blackberry Mountain’s newest addition is The Valley, where you’ll find a swimming pond with two water slides, the option for waterskiing, a family pool, and an arbor adventure course that will test your fear of heights and have you zip lining through the Great Smoky Mountain’s trees. Sadly, my fear of heights overcame me, but I happily snapped photos of my husband going through the course with both of my feet planted firmly on the ground. For the less adventurous, there is an art studio with pottery and painting classes, different workshops for the culinary arts and writing and of course, there is Camp Blackberry for the kids.

        What  Sets  It  Apart:  Blackberry Mountain is defined by the people and the level of service and warm hospitality that they offer.  You won’t find anything like it anywhere else, besides Blackberry Farm.


        How Much Does Blackberry Mountain Cost? It’s a common question, and a lot of people might be curious about the cost of Blackberry Mountain and Blackberry Farm.  First off, both properties are almost entirely all-inclusive (save for lunch at Blackberry Mountain, and alcoholic drinks and some activities at both properties).  Prices vary greatly depending on the time of year you plan to go, with October, Thanksgiving, and summer months being peak season.  The most economical time to go is a mid-week stay in early December, late January, or the month of February, with nightly rates starting at $695 plus taxes and fees per couple.

        Diego  Travel  Loves: The homes at Blackberry Mountain are a great value and an excellent option if you’re traveling with more than two people.  I have toured nearly all the homes and can point you in the right direction based on your interior design style and room configuration needs.  There are two 4-bedroom homes that sit side-by-side with great views, so if you’re traveling with a large group, these are often the preferred pick. Both 2-bedroom homes, Wild Crab Apple and Linden, actually have an additional 2-bunk (4 twins) room, which allows for two families to comfortably fit into these smaller homes.  If you’re looking for a bit more fun, book Outasite for its downstairs game room with a shuffle board and the only house with a hot tub.


        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

        • 5% off published rates
        • $50 spa credit
        • Upgrade at time of check-in, subject to availability
        • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability

        Blackberry MountainInsider Tips:

        • Goats Hill has the best sunset views and is a little-known spot that is popular for proposals.  As a Diego Travel client, the team at Blackberry Mountain can work with me to set up these private moments that will make your stay all the more special.  
        • Most of Blackberry Mountain’s morning wellness and fitness classes are included with your stay, so get up with the sunrise and take advantage!
        • Hike Cats Paw Ridge and you’ll be in for a surprise!  Allow for two hours to take this beautiful hike.
        • While we didn’t get a chance to do it, sign up for the sound bathing.  It was recommended to us by multiple staff members while we were there, so we’ll take their word for it and sign upnext time.

        Summary of Our Stay at Blackberry Mountain:

        Ever since my trip to Blackberry Farm last year, I have been dreaming of a visit to Blackberry Mountain.  My clients oftenask me to explain the difference between Blackberry Mountain and Blackberry Farm, so the only way to truly know how to answer this question was to experience it for myself.  Since Blackberry Mountain’s opening in February 2019, it has become increasingly popular with the Blackberry Farm fans, and as it turns out, a popular hot spot for celebrities looking for a private mountain retreat.  I knew we were off to a good start when our driver entertained us for the thirty-minute drive with stories of transporting celebrities accompanied with a deep and contagious laugh that would put anyone in a good mood, even after the longest of travel days.

        We arrived to Blackberry Mountain with an appetite, and were the only ones in Three Sisters restaurant, named for the three Great Smoky Mountain peaks and site of the resort.  At Blackberry Mountain, the only thing not included in your stay are the lunches, alcoholic beverages, spa treatments, and certain activities.  All the morning activities are included in your stay, so take advantage of this and sign up for your activities of choice prior to your arrival to ensure availability.  We signed up for the Stretch and Release: Hips class because I have chronic hip pain thanks to carrying around three babies for the last decade and a lot of sitting at my desk.  Our private class wasn’t intended to be so, but we got lucky and it allowed us to gain a lot of useful information from our knowledgeable instructor and learn about their holistic and complete health and wellness program.

        While a typical stay at Blackberry Mountain is meant to disconnect from your device and reconnect with your loved ones and nature, working while traveling is part of the deal for me, so we spent our first afternoon comfortable in our spacious yet cozy Thunderhead Cottage before heading up to the Firetowerrestaurant to catch the sunset and dinner.  The wind was biting, and there had been a somewhat rare snowfall prior to our arrival, so the stairwell was closed off to the tower, but we still enjoyed 360-degree views from the highest point, nearly 2,000 feet above the main area of Blackberry Mountain.  If you like a perfect sunset view and want a more remote and romantic lumberjack-cabin-in-the-woods vibe, then I would recommend the Watchman cabins.  

        The following day we explored the nature trails, ate delicious uninterrupted meals, stopped into The Hub where we chatted with staff about different things to do around the Blackberry Mountain property for those looking for high-energy activity and adventure-enthusiasts, but also those seeking a restorative, peaceful, and restful stay geared toward wellness and health.  Blackberry Mountain seems to marry these two orders seamlessly.  In the afternoon, we took some time in the spa, which felt like a year of Covid-angst and worry melted away with each strong stroke of a hand.  By the time we met each other back in the spa’s waiting area overlooking gorgeous mountain views, we felt like we’d finally disconnected and settled in and could have stayed for another week.

        Dinner on our final night was back at the Three Sisters, which does a masterful job of switching up the menu on a daily basis and making things fun and exciting each meal.  When the dessert menu came along and three options were gluten-free (unheard of in the GF world!), I just had to order all three.  And why not?  It’s included in the stay…so indulge we did, just confirming that the Relais and Chateaux status of Blackberry Farm and Blackberry Mountain is well-deserved.

        On our final morning we made the most of every moment and woke up with the sun, going for a short hike before breakfast and then taking the golf cart down to The Valley, the newly developed area of the resort offering a swimming pond in the summer with two slides, pickle ball and tennis ball, a swimming pool, and a brand new arbor course.  While I’ve always been afraid of heights, it had been awhile since I’d challenged this fear and though that this would be a great time to do so. The highest point of the course was only 40 feet, and the minimum age requirement is only 8-years-old to participate, so how hard could it be?  I found out once I got up to the first post, after having gone through a 15-minute training on safely harnessing and using the gear. As it turns out, a phobia only gets worse with age (who knew!?) and my phobia of heights is a real thing.  Our guide, Hall, was nice enough to lie to me and told me I was not the first person who had to back down at the last-minute.  Not only was he an expert naturalist, climber, and adventurer, he was a fantastic psychologist as well, who kindly assisted me down without crushing my confidence.


        Once my husband bravely completed the course, albeit winded and admitting how challenging it was, we had a full 15 minutes to spare so Hall pointed us toward a hidden waterfall, where we had just enough time to hike down and bask in its beauty.  As we stood there watching the beauty of the relentless flow of water, I couldn’t help but think about the next time we’d return.  Maybe in the summer months with our kids, when the mountains are green and summer activities change the whole experience.  Regardless of the time of year you go, it’ll be worth it to reach out to me to help you plan your trip, not just for the discounted rate and added amenities you’ll get with your stay, but for the insight we can now provide having experienced both properties.

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        Four Seasons Orlando

        Hotel Review: Four Seasons Orlando

        Hotel Review

        Four Seasons Orlando

        The best resort in Orlando
        MARIA DIEGO

        The Four Seasons Orlando is the best resort in Orlando and a destination in and of itself. When you stay in this luxury Orlando hotel, you may never want to leave to the Disney parks like Magic Kingdom. You’ll find the magic right there in the resort, whether you’re traveling for a family vacation or an adults-only getaway.

        The Four Seasons in Orlando offers the best luxury hotel stay with incredible amenities that make you feel like you’re truly visiting the Happiest Place on Earth! As a Four Seasons Preferred Partner, Diego Travel clients will enjoy additional amenities to their stay like added resort credit and complimentary breakfast.

        Perfect For: Family fun adventures | Multi-generational family trips | Weekend getaways | Even couples trips

        Four Seasons Orlando

        Location: In the heart of Orlando, Four Seasons Orlando is a 26-acre lakeside paradise located within a gated residential community and conveniently located close to Walt Disney World and the rest of the parks.

        28.3974,-81.5426

        Location: In the heart of Orlando, Four Seasons Orlando is a 26-acre lakeside paradise located within a gated residential community and conveniently located close to Walt Disney World and the rest of the parks.

        Little Palm Island 4

        Vibe: Four Seasons Orlando is a happy, welcoming luxury hotel with elegant finishings.  Whether you’re traveling as a couple, or with your family, there is a space within this large resort that will make you feel at ease.  Their adults-only pool, spa area and large gym, paired with their fine dining options are a great option if you’re traveling sans kids.  But the resort itself, particularly the 5-acre on-site waterpark, is a family-friendly paradise.

        Accommodations: 359 rooms and 68 suites ranging from the Golden Oak View Suite to the Royal Suite

        Food & Beverage: Four Seasons Orlando Resort has 4 restaurants and 3 lounges.  Capa is the 17th-floor rooftop steakhouse and bar.  PB&G is the lakefront and poolside bar and grill.  Plancha is at the golf clubhouse and the perfect Cuban American eatery.  Finally, Ravello is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and site of the Disney character breakfast that you’ll want to take advantage of if you’re traveling with the kiddos.

        Wellness: The spa has 18 treatment rooms to get a massage after a long day of walking at the parks.  My favorite part of the spa?  The fact that they offer the Bippity Boppity Boo boutique experience for your young daughters if they’re in need of the complete princess treatment, but you don’t want to wait in the lines at Magic Kingdom for it.


        Activities: An on-site 18-hole Tom Fazio-designed course will keep Dad happy while the kids are running around the 5-acre water park and Mom gets to rest poolside.  In addition to the 18-holes, you’ll have a 16-acre $2.5 million practice facility featuring undulating target greens, an 18-hole putting course, and more.  As mentioned, the on-site gym is huge and offers state-of-the-art fitness equipment. Best of all, the complimentary Kids Camp is available daily from 10 AM to 6 PM, keeping the kids entertained with a variety of indoor and outdoor activities and games.  You literally don’t need to leave this resort to go to the parks if you don’t want to!

        What Sets It Apart:  The facilities!  This property is, by far, the best resort option in Orlando.  Oftentimes, clients will ask me why such a big price difference compared to the other hotels in Orlando.  Once you stay here, and utilize all that it has to offer, you’ll realize that the price difference is worth it and the value is there.

         


        Diego Travel Loves: The Four Seasons Lead With Care safety protocols were the best I have seen for a hotel.  Upon arrival, our children were given their own Four Seasons backpack filled with treasures and a scavenger hunt map, that kept them entertained throughout their stay.  As a Preferred Partner of Four Seasons, the VIP welcome amenity our clients receive is over-the-top impressive!  And of course, the non-stop entertainment for the kids keeps them happy and never asking once to visit a theme park throughout our stay!

        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel: 

        • Exclusive Four Seasons Preferred Partner Rates (excluding character breakfast)

        • Daily full American breakfast for 2

        • $100 spa credit

        • Upgrade of one category at time of check-in, subject to availability

        • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability

        • VIP welcome amenity

        • Diego Travel welcome box for first-time clients

         

         

        Insider Tip: The Four Seasons Orlando concierge can assist with park tickets, fast passes and more. You can utilize these services free of charge to have your trip run smoothly and make sure you don’t miss out on anything you might need.  

        BOOK NOW

        Summary of Our Stay

        I planned a 2-night getaway to Four Seasons Orlando during a difficult time in our lives. After many months at home during the pandemic, my father-in-law was hospitalized with Covid for many weeks. While we were nervous about leaving Miami, there was not much we could do anyway, so we purchased travel insurance and hit the road for the Happiest Place on Earth (Ask me about insuring your trip! I recommend it every time). We needed some laughter and a place that would get our minds off the current situation, and our weekend escape did just that.

        While we had taken many family vacations to Orlando prior to this trip, we never wanted to splurge on the Four Seasons Orlando because the price tag is usually much higher than the other Orlando resorts. However, I can assure you that after our stay, the hefty price tag is justified, particularly if you don’t plan to visit parks all day, every day. The resort itself is so enjoyable, from its many restaurants to in-house entertainment like kids club and activities program, the water park with water slides and lazy river, and the golfing, that there’s really no need to leave the resort to have fun.

        Upon arrival, the lobby is equipped with body thermal scanners with signs reminding guests to maintain social distancing. There are also hand sanitizing stations throughout the resort, that just made us feel more assured. Our children were greeted with Four Seasons backpacks with their scavenger hunt maps inside, that would keep them busy throughout their stay. Upon arriving to our room, we were welcomed by three gigantic bags of candy for the kids, a Preferred Partner welcome amenity that is customized for each my clients.

        Long day at Disney

        One thing I love most about my job and working with our industry partners is being able to customize the welcome amenity for my clients, and I love Four Seasons properties because they’re always willing to make each arrival extra special. For our kids, there’s nothing better than their own bag of candy (no sharing!) and a child-size plush Four Seasons bathrobe. They changed into their swimsuits and bathrobes faster than we could say, “Mickey Mouse,” and we were down at the water park in a flash.

        Because of Covid, the hotel was kept at a maximum occupancy of 50% occupancy, so it felt almost empty and the kids must have gone down the slides a dozen times before we ordered a poolside dinner. The sunset over the water park was a beautiful mixture of fiery oranges and sorbet pinks, the perfect setting where I could finally relax while my kids were happily entertained.

        From the next morning’s Disney character breakfast, to enjoying the water park all day, to our youngest getting the princess royal treatment at the Four Seasons salon, it was overall just a really amazing weekend. We enjoyed a more formal dinner at Capa, overlooking the entire property and skyline, which was the icing on the cake of the sweetest family vacation that we so desperately needed. If you’re like me and don’t think that the words “Orlando” and “relaxing” can go together in the same sentence, then you should try staying at the Four Seasons Orlando on your next visit. It truly is a destination on its own and well worth the investment, especially when you book with us! Who doesn’t love getting the Preferred Partner VIP treatment throughout their stay at any of the Four Seasons?!

        Let’s Get Planning!

        Four Seasons Orlando

        Diego Travel LLC is an independent affiliate of Departure Lounge, a proud member of Virtuoso.

        © 2021 Diego Travel LLC

        Florida Seller of Travel #ST40923