Escape the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles for a soothing oasis away from the city. You won’t have to venture far to experience complete relaxation at Terranea, and its oceanfront location feels like a whole other world. Whether you’re in town on business or traveling with the family in tow, read on to learn more about this sprawling California resort.
What: While Los Angeles is no stranger to luxury hotels, head just outside the city along the coast in Rancho Palos Verdes and you’ll discover the lush Terranea resort. The expansive property feels like a Mediterranean oasis, complete with distinctive touches such as tiled floors, vaulted ceilings and outdoor pathways lined with fragrant jasmine. A stay at Terranea is all about a unique experience; the hotel prides itself on its eco-friendly pursuits, from its three saltwater pools and an on-site naturalist to a private beach cove preserved with its natural landscape. As a popular destination for families and business travelers alike, the 582-room resort boasts a variety of accommodations to choose from—whether you prefer an ocean-view guest room, a charming bungalow or even a spacious private home.
Where: It’s hard to believe this 102-acre resort is only 30 miles southwest of downtown Los Angeles. Located along the shores of the Pacific Ocean on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, Terranea provides an unforgettable sight for guests: The sun rises on one side of the property and sets on the other. The eco-conscious resort devotes much of its efforts to preserving the surrounding environment. In fact, the hotel takes up just one quarter of the 102 acres, meaning you can explore more than 75 acres of natural landscape. Carve out some time to walk the various hiking trails, including the Discovery Trail that’s part of the Palos Verdes Peninsula trail system. And don’t forget to take your camera—the bluffs afford views of the Pacific Ocean and Channel Islands, as well as whales, dolphins and sea lions that call the waters home.
When: Millions of years ago, the Palos Verdes Peninsula was connected to the nearby Channel Islands until the area shifted and the peninsula joined the mainland—you’ll still find rocks and plants exclusive to the islands and peninsula, including Catalina Island Desert Thorn and the Bright Green Dudleya, both designated as threatened or endangered by the California Native Plant Society. Fast-forward to 1954 when the famous Marineland theme park opened in the same spot as the present-day resort. After a long and successful run, the park closed, making room for Terranea to open in 2009. Of course, Southern California is great year-round, but to get that envious West Coast tan, plan your visit between July and October when you can take advantage of the three pools and linger by the fire pit as you watch the sun sink deep into the Pacific.
Why: You really can find everything at Terranea. A slew of dining options—including the cliff-top eatery Nelson’s and fine-dining restaurant mar’sel—means you can spend an entire trip exploring different cuisines, and a sundry shop that resembles a neighborhood market sells food items such as champagne and ice cream in case you’d rather retreat to your room. Hit the links at Terranea’s 9-hole, par-3 golf course, or opt for a free ride to Trump National Golf Club Los Angeles just down the road from the resort.
One of the best (and most innovative) aspects of Terranea is its dedicated family program. Head to Pointe Discovery, the activity center that houses essential gear for activities, and chat with the staff that lead experiences such as falconry or tide pooling. Book a plein air (open air) painting lesson to capture the mesmerizing California landscape, or sample fresh vegetables in the Chef’s Garden while you learn about the effects of food on your health. For those with a penchant for animal conservation, Terranea also provides a special opportunity to participate in a volunteer program that helps with the official whale count through the Point Vicente Interpretive Center.
Photos Courtesy of Terranea Resort