A Squared: Newport Beach: The Resort at Pelican Hill

Friday, December 27, 2013

Newport Beach: The Resort at Pelican Hill

Sometimes my day job is really tough. For instance, when I have to leave 4 inches of snow to fly out to a five-star resort in Orange County for a Board meeting. It's a tough job, but somebody's got to do it.

Even better than escaping the frozen tundra of Chicago for sunny California were my digs for the trip. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the Resort at Pelican Hill. And it is and incredible place. This five-star resort in Newport Beach is by far, the most breathtaking hotel I have ever seen-- and certainly nicer than anywhere I will be staying on my own dime anytime soon!

Everything about this resort screamed luxury: They offer world class golf courses and spa services, the grounds are immaculate, the views are phenomenal, and the rooms-- or rather, bungalows (as-- were bigger and better than my apartment.

Just look at this place! I'm obsessed with the ceilings and that private patio. Had I been visiting for pleasure (and had it not been unseasonably chilly), I would have been leisurely sipping my coffee out here every morning.

And while I didn't have the time/appropriate weather to sip coffee out on the deck, it was awfully nice to come back to my bungalow and wind down by the fire.

Just as incredible as the resort is the food that I had the pleasure of dining on at Pelican Hill. All of the food-- from the onsite restaurants to resort catering to the freshly ground coffee in each bungalow was really top notch.

On our first night there we had dinner at Andrea, a high end Italian restaurant located right in the main building of the resort. It's all about traditional northern Italian fare served next to breathtaking views of the Pacific. It's my kind of place. We had some truly memorable dishes that night: a fresh burrata with arugula and tomatoes to start, amazing housemade gnocchi with shellfish, braised lamb loins, and a fabulous dessert.
Andrea on Urbanspoon

The Coliseum Pool & Grill is another great option for dining at the resort. This is one of their more casual offerings, although that still means a $24 salad. However, those salads are really good! The restaurant overlooks the pool, so it was a perfect place to enjoy a beet and goat cheese salad after a long flight in and an heirloom tomato salad with seared Ahi tuna while soaking up the last bit of sunshine before a flight back to Chicago. And that second salad especially... so good! Heirloom tomatoes, red onions, avocado, and burrata in a basil-grapefruit vinaigrette. I'm going to attempt to recreate it at home this summer.
Coliseum Pool & Grill on Urbanspoon

The resort was especially fun to see at this time of year. The holiday decor was really lovely. I am loving the big white blossoms in the garlands above. So beautiful!

And how about the candy tree below? It took resort chefs something like 180+ hours to create.

So, in closing I will leave you with this parting shot of dusk at Pelican Hill... sigh.

Are you ready to visit now?


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