Vino at every turn, a three-story spa retreat and your own private villa. If you can't relax and renew here, you've got serious decompression problems.
South Coast Winery Resort & Spa is easy, earthy, elegant and just the right balance of full-bodied relaxation. The resort, just an hour's drive from LA, OC and San Diego, is located in the heart of Temecula's wine country. And while you've probably done your fair share of gallivanting through the wineries, chances are you haven't gallivanted quite like this. A stay here is like sipping a fine wine versus downing your glass when the check comes.
The resort is quite unique, as it's the only winery in Temecula with private villas and a melt-your-worries-away spa.
The scenery and sprawling property is everything you'd conjure up about wine country: vast, rolling hills and vineyards in all directions, warm sun rays beaming, and endless open space. The main property, which is quite impressive in stature, houses the winery, the upscale Vineyard Rose restaurant (think a hint of Tuscany) and the gift shop. Charming floral hanging baskets, fields of budding grapes, inviting gazebos and vine-framed pergolas color the exterior.
It seems at every corner the resort invites you to pause and appreciate the view—and the moment.
A big factor in the relaxing nature of the resort is the tranquil villas—over 76 on site. They share no common walls and come with a fireplace, spa tub, a terrace tucked away in the vineyards and a welcoming bottle of wine. The villas make for more of a home-like setting versus a busy hotel with guests and workers bustling about.
A short walk from any of the villas is the resort pool and GrapeSeed Spa. And if you leave without visiting the Spa, well, you've missed half the experience. The three-story retreat has numerous treatment rooms upstairs and a lovely veranda overlooking the pool. The main floor has the steam room, sauna and private jacuzzis. And on the lower floor, you'll find the fitness center. The spa also hosts special Vino Vinyasa (Yoga + Wine) classes: sipping follows stretching. (You may suddenly like yoga.)
Treatments range from a Signature Massage or GrapeSeed Renewal Scrub to Champagne Facials or the always-tranquilizing Mani Pedi. And you'll find most treatments have ingredients with a nod to the vineyards. So picture it: you're wrapped in your cozy robe, semi-comatose after your treatment, sipping a glass of wine on the veranda overlooking the valley and you're ordering from the Spa Cuisine menu. Oh, and they invite you to nap.
After you call it a day at the spa, just saunter down to the heated saltwater pool or alfresco whirlpool and chill some more.
For wine aficionados, it's worth noting the South Coast Winery continues to garner praise with over 1600 awards and medals. The Tasting Room offers an Ultimate Wine Tour (includes the Behind-the-Scenes Walking Wine tour and the World of Wine and Food presentation) for $50 per person.
The resort also has golf and balloon ride packages. And there's always horseback riding. You could also take a stroll into Old Town Temecula, shop and have a bite at Public House restaurant perhaps (a cool gastro pub that uses local, seasonal and sustainable foods; they have some wild dishes).
So cheers to you in this new year to stressing less and enjoying more. South Coast Winery Resort & Spa is an undiscovered gem and fine drink of wine in the Temecula Valley that's ideal for all of us overly stressed city folk.
Debbie Lavdas is a Southern California freelance writer who likes red more than white, but can easily be talked into either. You can keep up with her and her many writings at DebbieintheOC.com.
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