Pulling out of the parking lot of the oceanfront Sanctuary Beach Resort in Monterey that first morning, I found running the Miata RF’s six-speed manual through the gears to be surprisingly therapeutic. I stopped to lower the top and let in all that gorgeous California sunshine, and that was all it took to turn my frown upside down
Nestled on a private beach between the Marina Dunes and hills of Carmel Valley, the Sanctuary Beach Resort has 60 rooms and suites. For a large party, guests can book an entire cottage and enjoy stunning views of the Pacific and the white sand coastline.
South of San Jose lies the scenic coastline of Monterey Bay. Sanctuary Beach Resort is the only pet-friendly beachfront accommodation in the region, and they welcome visiting canines with complimentary doggy treats.
After landing, we headed to The Sanctuary Beach Resort in Marina, a collection of two-suite buildings with patios overlooking sand dunes speckled with red, yellow, and green vegetation, where we slid down a dune to the ocean, letting the sea-glass-colored waves wash over our toes as sandpipers darted across the sand, skirting the water.
Escape to the sand dunes of the tiny, sleepy town of Marina, just north of Monterey, to The Sanctuary, a casual resort complete with soothing, in-house spa, four-plex cottages and firepits at sunset on the sand.
The “everything local” approach to cooking at Salt Wood in Monterey County translates to insane flavor in every dish, from ember-roasted squash to the famous “full tilt” chicken with biscuits. Lean in close and turn on the light for a close-up photo of the whole roasted fish of the day. It’s epic.
This friendly resort, tucked just off Highway 1 (California’s dream coastal drive), occupies a spectacular spot, overlooking a dramatically windswept protected beach. Though dated in parts, little beats watching the sun set over the Pacific from your private patio.
We drove out to Salt Wood Kitchen & Oysterette for dinner. Its modern take on coastal design is similar to the Getaway—like its high white wood walls, wood finishes, and gold accents—and its locally sourced menu speaks to the seaside location.
Elsewhere, similarly sly injections of Bay Area dining sensibilities have livened up otherwise comfortably set-in-their-ways locales. North of Monterey, in the hamlet of Marina, chef David Baron (formerly of San Francisco’s Atelier Crenn and Coi) has transformed a scuzzy-around-the-edges roadhouse into the seafood haven Salt Wood Kitchen and Oysterette.
The oceanfront Sanctuary Beach Resort is housed on 19 acres of Monterey Bay shoreline, part of the protected Marina Dunes Preserve. The hotel features 60 cottage guestrooms and suites, and offers panoramic sunset views, the serene soundtrack of the nearby surf, and the 800-square-foot spa, inspired by local land and ocean elements— both in terms of design and services.
Designed by New Orleans-based architecture firm Farouki Farouki, the new space draws inspiration from the rich scenery of the Pacific coast. Accessed via the main lodge of the resort, the space is punctuated with natural wooden accent beams, warm custom gold fixtures, and polished concrete floors. A color palette of sandy tones and sea blue hues instill a sense of tranquility.
Romance is in the air at this relaxing retreat, nestled on 19 acres of Monterey Bay real estate. The atmosphere is intimate and inviting. Cottages spill onto the majestic Marina Dunes. Start the day with a picnic basket delivered straight to your door.
This property's spa offers a custom 50-minute guided meditation service that leads you in selecting a personal mantra or phrase on which to focus. Each guest receives a Bose noise-canceling headset to help improve concentration during the treatment. The spa also features wellness services that promote stillness, as well as private yoga classes, guided nature walks and traditional services like massages, facials and body treatments.
Monterey is an ideal destination for a family-friendly birthday celebration, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium is a must. While in town, you’ll want to take up digs at the recently reinvented Sanctuary Beach Resort, a scenic enclave right on the beach dunes. Take our advice and order mimosas and room service for breakfast in bed or to your own private deck overlooking the Pacific.
Bonfires on the beach at sunset, retro-style beach cruisers, and group mixology lessons are all part of the program at Sanctuary Beach Resort. New to the resort is Salt Wood Kitchen & Oysterette, a seafood restaurant helmed by executive chef David Baron, who prides himself on sourcing locally.
A lifelong appreciation of Monterey yields a collection of favorite spots.