Review of Omni La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad California

Main Entrance of Omni La Costa Resort & Spa, Carlsbad California

After a day on Southern California Freeways, it is nice to arrive at the Omni La Costa Resort & Spa in the hills of Carlsbad, California.  The darkness hides what I know are this resort's beautiful grounds.  I'm looking forward to a dip in the pool, a bite to eat, a drink at the bar, and a soft bed.  And the Omni delivers on all counts. 

Lobby area of the Omni La Costa Resort & Spa

The lobby is large and includes several seating areas and a large lounge with a double sided glass fireplace.  Check-in was fast and smooth.  A driver took me and my luggage to a room.  The property is a maze of smaller buildings separated by lovely lawns and trees. 

Living Room area of Suite in Omni La Costa Resort & Spa

 The living area of this large two room suite has a sofa bed, desk, large TV, and access to a narrow balcony.  Lighting is very good, and the heating & cooling system is quiet.  WiFi signal is a little weak in this location, but speed was acceptable.  Keurig coffee maker is provided.

Bedroom of suite at Omni La Costa

Not only were the mattress and pillows comfortable, but the sheets were nice and smooth.  The bedroom also had another large TV.  Bathrobes and slippers were provided.  The large closet was nice, with a section designed to hold very long women's dresses.   

Bathroom of suite at Omni La Costa

The bathroom amenities were "Omni Resorts" brand products.  It had a large two sink layout, and the big tub had a large sliding window that opened into the bedroom.  The separate shower had a nice shower head and plenty of room.  The toilet was behind a sliding pocket door.   

Morning sun in living area of suite at Omni La Costa

With the morning sun came a beautiful view of one of the two La Costa golf courses.  The room was well maintained and clean.  A larger/deeper balcony would be nice for lounging.  Most ground floor units have patios.

Grounds of Omni La Costa

Guest rooms are situated in several small Spanish styled buildings separated by well manicured lawns and trees.  It can be a long but beautiful walk to get back to the main resort buildings. A call to the front desk will bring you a cart & driver. 

Golf course Omni La Costa Resort & Spa, Carsbad CA

This Omni resort is home to not only great golf, but also large tennis facility and one of the best spas in the USA.  Ranked #1 by Spa Magazine in the USA while Travel & Leisure said it was the #4 spa in North America. 

Golfer on practice tee at Omni La Costa

Great golf always needs good weather, and the Southern California climate provides just that.  The Champions course was redesigned in 2012, and the Legends course was renovated and reopened in 2013.

Main Spa building at Omni La Costa

If you are not out on the golf course or playing some tennis, you might want to check out the large Spa facility.  This highly regarded operation has a variety of services for men and women. 

Adult pool at Omni La Costa Resort

Kids will not be found around the adults only pool, but will be found in the family pool with its sandy beach.  The large spa tubs around the adult pool are a romantic spot for a glass of wine under the stars. 

Children play area and pool at Omni La Costa Resort.

And talking about kids.... the Omni La Costa offers a great opportunity for kids to be kids while their parents are out on the golf course.  A large dedicated facility houses a variety of programs for children. 

Outdoor casual dinning at Omni La Costa Resort

A variety of dining options are available.  Indoor & outdoor, casual or fancy, as fancy as it can get in this laid back Southern California atmosphere.  A large market/coffee shop is located in the central shopping area next to the lobby.  It offers a variety of grab and go snacks and prepared dishes.  It also has a bunch of iPads available for guests to use while sipping a cup of coffee. 

Meeting room at Omni La Costa Resort & Spa Carlsbad CA

Many visitors to the Omni La Costa are not just here for the golf, tennis, or world class spa.  They are here to work.   They have a variety of meeting spaces and associated services.  It is also a great property for weddings of all sizes. 

Stairway at Omni La Costa Resort

Around every corner is a magical find, expressions of simple architectural details that turn an ordinary hotel into a beautiful resort.

Seating area around fountain at Omni La Costa Resort

The Omni La Costa Resort & Spa is a great Southern California destination for golf or tennis.  But it also works as a romantic getaway with someone special.  Or bring that hipster hat you have, heat up your laptop, and put a few finishing touches on your next Hollywood screen play.


Stateroom Review of the Historic Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach Harbor

The Queen Mary - Sign - Long Beach California

You may think you are at sea on the North Atlantic, but you are warm and safe in The Queen Mary Hotel in the shelter of Long Beach Harbor.  Or has a time machine shifted you back to the 1930's, surrounding you with brass, wood and Art Deco styling?  No time travel was required, but inside the Queen Mary Hotel you are experiencing what it would been like to cruise the high seas in the 30s, 40s and 50s aboard this beautiful historic ship.  

Bow of RMS Queen Mary in Long Beach California

The RMS Queen Mary sailed the seas from 1936 to 1967.  While at sea she transported queens, kings, celebrities, and even thousands of troops during World War II.  A good summary of her history can be found on the ship's website.  Today she is permanently moored  in Long Beach, California and contains a hotel, a variety of attractions, and several restaurants. 

Gangway that leads to The Queen Mary Hotel, Long Beach California

From a distance this ship is a sleek and beautiful sight, but up close you can see she was built to take the punishment of decades at sea, mostly crossing the unforgiving North Atlantic from London to New York.  At its Long Beach location, elevators bring guests up to the gangway that connects to the hotel deck. 

Part of the lobby of the Queen Mary Hotel

The lobby is open, decorated with beautiful artwork and Art Deco furniture and fixtures in alcoves like the one seen above.  Check-in was fast and straight forward.  Bell service is available.  Your room may come with discounts for various ship tours and attractions.  Access to the hotel portion of the ship is limited to guests.

Hallway leading to hotel staterooms / cabins.

The Queen Mary Hotel offers 346 original first-class rooms and nine suites on three decks.  No two cabins are alike.  Without the historic plaques and museum displays found in other areas of the ship, you can feel lost in time while on the hotel decks. 

Stateroom A 127 onboard The Queen Mary Hotel

Staterooms are large, when compared to a modern cruise ship.  The extensive use of wood and brass gives you no doubt that this room is pretty much like it was when first constructed in the 30s.  This is cabin A 127.  The bed was comfortable, and the room had plenty of drawers and limited hanging space.

Interior of Cabin in Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach CA.

The obvious modern amenities sit right next to old fixtures that have been around for decades.  The rooms are in pretty good shape, but they do show a little wear around the edges.  The wood finishes are kept in good repair. 

Ceiling moldings in cabin of Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach CA.

The original builders put great effort into making these homes at sea appear like a fine European hotel room.  Upscale cruisers of the time would have expected such detail in a a first-class cabin on one of world's finest cruise ships. 

Stateroom bath in Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach CA.

The bath is clean and basic.  It is interesting to see all the water controls for the bath tub.  Salt water was available when the ship was at sea, along with fresh water for bathing.  This was during a time when certain health benefits were thought to be found in soaking in a salt water bath.  The salt water is long gone, but The Queen Mary Hotel has worked hard to balance a historic experience with the modern expectations of today's travelers.

Cabin portholes in Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach CA.

Like right out of an old movie, you can unlatch the heavy metal hooks and open the portals and let the breezes of Long Beach Harbor into your cabin.  This is definitely very old school... 

View from port hole of a starboard cabin in Queen Mary Hotel.

This is the view from stateroom A 127.  From the starboard side of the ship you see The City Of Long Beach.  This is the view to ask for.   A rock seawall surrounds The Queen Mary and keeps your stay in the hotel a smooth one no matter how big the waves are! 

Queen Mary offers a perfect spot for weddings.

Once you are checked in take some time and wander around the ship.  They offer a variety of rooms and spaces that are good for business meetings, parties, and weddings.  On one of the aft decks is this gazebo.  

Entrance to Sir WInston's dinning room aboard the Queen Mary.

You have a variety of restaurant options on the ship, from casual to fine dining.  Sir Winston's is an expensive check, but is one of the better restaurants in Long Beach.  Suggest you order a desert souffle when you order your meal. 

One of the interior decks of Queen Mary Hotel has a tea room.

You can enjoy tea, anytime in the Queen Mary tea room.  

View of the City Of Long Beach from the deck of Queen Mary Hotel.

Take a walk along the various decks at sunset.  The City Of Long Beach skyline is beautiful, and a steady flow of small commercial and private boats bring the harbor alive after dark. 

Art Deco style staircase between decks on the Queen Mary.

Be prepared at any moment to turn a corner and once again feel you have been taken back in time.   

Window in lobby looks out at Long Beach Harbor.

A small lounge is located just off of the hotel lobby.  It was very quiet the night I visited, but they have replaced two of the steel bulkhead doors with glass plates, giving you a view of the city skyline.

Skyline view of Long Beach from a Queen Mary Hotel room.

 When it is time for bed, you might want to open your porthole window and let a little sea breeze into your stateroom.  Your dreams may take you back to scenes from the movie Titanic, but you can rest assured you will have a better ending at The Queen Mary Hotel.