My husband and I tried to fit in several of our "dream" vacations before we had children. I shared a small look into one of those trips - to Italy - here. However, we never checked the box on my California dream vacation: coastal towns filled with gorgeous gardens and ocean vistas, sprawling wineries high up on beautiful mountain ranges, and let's face it, lots of good food and fine wine. Ok, I've fooled no one, any wine will do really. ;)
So, you can imagine my excitement when I learned that my husband was awarded the opportunity to spend several nights in Santa Barbara, CA, a quaint coastal town. My husband's company awarded their top salesman with a four night stay at The Four Seasons Biltmore resort. It was gorgeous! I suppose that is an upside to having a salesman husband: great perks when you exceed sales goal. Let's not talk about what happens if you fail to hit your goal.... ;)
A peak into the Four Season's resort lobby:
My husband claims he's one of those people that doesn't need a pool overlooking an ocean - he much prefers mountains and greenery. (Fyi, before I dragged him to Europe, the only place he EVER wanted to book trips was to the Caribbean so I sometimes wonder at the validity of this statement).
At this resort, you don't have to make the choice. Here is a view, from the water, of the land just beside our resort:
The resort is situated beside the ocean with the gorgeous Saint Ynez mountain range just behind it. When arriving to the resort, you are greeted by a red brick circle drive, gorgeous gardens, and calming water fountains:
Everywhere I looked, I saw black iron and lantern fixtures. I've contemplated a lantern fixture in our master bed and bath for a while now, and this might have been the inspiration I needed to push me to make the purchase:
This is the view heading to your room for a spa treatment. The spa was unbelievable: the service, rooms, and views were amazing (I asked ahead if I could take a few pictures):
Here is the ceiling in the women's lounge, I loved the weathered wood planks:
And here were a few pictures I took with my iPhone, my huge DSLR camera really didn't coordinate well with the robe ;) :
My room for the spa treatments was gorgeous! It looked out over the ocean and had a roaring fire going the entire time:
The buildings were all ivory with red tile roofs. I was a little obsessed with this particular building because of the green french doors, black iron Juliette balcony, and spiral staircase:
...a few nighttime views:
As guests of the resort, we had access to two pools: one on the resort grounds and one right across a small road with views overlooking the ocean:
We had the opportunity to have cocktails on this patio just before a formal dinner one night - organized by my husbands company:
I couldn't resist taking a picture of these birds chilling on the red tin roof:
...another view from the pool area:
Finally, we took two trips to State Street, a lively area full of great restaurants, shopping, wine tasting rooms, and much more:
This shop had an interesting concept: wine drinking combined with painting your own art. Why do I get the feeling I would walk away from the shop feeling like Picasso, only to wake up the next morning and wonder "what was I thinking?":
We had dinner at this lively sushi spot, Arigato. The salmon sashimi was "melt in your mouth" goodness:
If you like these pictures, stop back on by later this week, I will share more pictures from a wine tour in Santa Ynez and our stop in Napa Valley!
What is your idea of a dream vacation? Do you prefer land or sea?