Desert residents seeking an idyllic, oceanfront escape need look no further than Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes.
Yes, this place is abuzz with international guests and LA weekenders alike – but rightfully so.
Just 120 miles from Palm Springs, the two-plus hour drive to the coast will find the Terranea traveler arriving at a 102-acre resort that proves well worthy of its lofty rep.
Offering some of SoCal's most detailed-oriented service (How many places call to ensure you received those extra towels?) while presenting a mellow, Mediterranean style milieu which tactfully balances weddings, family gatherings, business conferences and cooing couples – the resort should be on your escape itinerary.
The view from Hole No. 9 at The Links at Terranea.
Rare is the golf experience that can well-sate all strata of ball-striker.
The Links at Terranea is among those unique exceptions.
Offering the mirrored, magnificent Pacific views of the resort adjacent, the 9-hole, par-3 course is more than your neighborhood pitch-and-putt. A marriage of classic architectural elements and peninsula sightlines, The Links provides 1,239 yards of Todd Eckenrode-designed play, with strategy generally reserved for 18-hole championship courses.
Walking-only and presenting no hole longer than 173 yards (coupled with four holes at 123 yards or shorter), the dearth of distance is augmented by a host of large, waving greens, tough bunkers and testy fescue grasses.
Three holes with elevated tees highlight the play. On the 115-yard fifth, the ocean backdrop ideally frames the slight tee shot; with the prevailing wind at your back, be sure to study yardage succinctly.
Rounding home, the lengthy No. 8 plays toward the Pacific and requires concentration of the hole's right-to-left slope toward a massive green. On the 121-yard finisher aimed toward the deep blue, consideration of distance is a must, as your tee shot requires navigation over a small ravine and surrounding foliage.
Those ready for further swing study will want to inquire about The Links' impressive Golf Academy, offering specialized one-or-two day programs which combine on-course playing lessons, full video swing analysis and a player fitness evaluation using the Titleist Performance Institute program.
And players seeking to combine their Terranea play with added golf need look no further than the new Stay & Play partnership between the resort and nearby, aptly-lauded Trump National. Among the features is a "Two Nights & Two Rounds" package offering a resort stay with a round at each course.
Bashi presents a blend of excellent small plates to compliment a full dinner menu.
Eight on-site drink and dine options dot the property, with each offering its own distinct flavor and vibe.
Among the choices, the contemporary Asian offerings at Bashi present a blend of excellent small plates to compliment a full dinner menu. If ordering from the former, start your night with a can't-miss calamari.
At seaside Nelson's, the views (and, yes, there's a whale watching bell) mesh perfectly with a fun, casual menu. Weeknight "Blue Plate Specials" are among the popular options, while menu regulars such as Crabcake Sliders and the Lobster Roll Sandwich prove equally satisfying.
If your stay is over the weekend: Don't miss out on the Sunday Brunch at Catalina Kitchen, where an endless spread extends from a farmer's market and seafood display, to prime rib and sushi.
Terranea Resort's Discovery Pointe coordinates outdoor activities.
For a highly recommended start to your Terranea day, grab some coffee and a pastry from Sea Beans before enjoying a casual stroll or fitness jog along the on-site trails overlooking the Pacific.
Segue the site-seeing to some chill time by relaxing in either the family-driven main pool, taking in an on-site spa treatment or by laying back at the adult-only Cielo Point, with full bar and fire pit.
Activity-seekers can check out a variety of area experiences as coordinated by the resort's Pointe Discovery, including kayaking, fishing, whale watching, snorkeling and horseback riding.
Terranea Resort, 100 Terranea Way, Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., 310-265-2800, www.terranea.com