Chaminade Resort and Spa, Santa Cruz, Monterey Bay, California

"Monterey Bay views from Chaminade Resort"
Perched in the Santa Cruz Mountains, on a clear day, Chaminade Resort offers views of California’s Monterey Bay

Monterey Bay views

Having grown up in northern California, I’m always surprised when I discover an unfamiliar location. It’s like finding that one puzzle piece that adds to the completed picture. I experienced that delight as I turned off Highway 1 in Santa Cruz and drove along a tree-lined road to the end of Chaminade Lane. Formerly a Jesuit boy’s high school, named after Father William Joseph Chamninade, the school has since been transformed into a hotel and conference facility.

You’d never know this 300 acre property existed, tucked into the Santa Cruz Mountains. This 156 room resort is situated in what is known as the “Banana Belt,” meaning that it is located above the fog, with warm days and cool nights. Chaminade appears to be a lovely location for wedding receptions. My mother lives in nearby Carmel, and I have seen my share of brides exchanging vows, the beach shrouded in fog, as their wedding dresses flap in the wind.

"Chaminade 50-foot outdoor swimming pool"
Kids will love swimming in Chaminade’s 50-foot outdoor pool.

Family and pet-friendly Chaminade Resort

It’s often difficult to please all members of the family.  Chaminade does its part to appeal to young and old. With volleyball and tennis courts, a 50-foot outdoor swimming pool and three miles of hiking trails, outdoor enthusiasts will be content.

I saw several four-legged friends enjoying Chaminade Resort grounds. There is a $75 per night pet fee for small dogs. It is the resorts discretion if they accept well-behaved large dogs.

"Spa at Chaminade"
Make a day of it at Chaminade Spa in the Santa Cruz Mountains

Rejuvinate at Chaminade Spa

I stayed at Chaminade to try out the new spa menu. Try the cucumber mint sore hands & feet treatment or the signature 80 minute Chaminade massage with Aromatherapy, warm, polished bamboo used alongside traditional Swedish massage and ending with a neck and scalp massage. Heavenly.

Insider Tip: Spa check in time is 15 minutes prior to treatment, but if you want to give yourself a Zen spa day, save time for the steam room, sauna, whirpools and fitness center. The outdoor whirlpool is co-ed, so don’t forget your swimsuit!

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"Chaminade view of forest"
Ask for a forest view at Chaminade Resort & Spa

Chaminade forest view rooms

Having mentioned the Monterey Bay views, I should point out that the actual hotel rooms do not offer ocean views. Instead, some of the rooms look out onto the forest. My room, #605, ($179-199 Saturday in April) offered two queen beds with an outside patio with two chairs and a small table. Order the cheese plate and a bottle of local Monterey wine and enjoy your own oasis escape.

For a splurge, the Junior Suite comes with a king bed – request the forest view.

"Chaminade Resort Two Queen Forest View"
Chaminade Resort Room #605 with Forest View

Chaminade Resort fee

Be aware that Chaminade Resort & Spa charges a $20. daily resort fee that includes internet, housekeeping gratuity and the use of tennis raquets, basket balls, crouquet equipment and such.

There are two restaurants on property. The Linwood’s Bar & Grill offers both indoor and outdoor seating. The larger Sunset Restaurant features a morning breakfast buffet with omelette station and plenty of hot and cold food items.

My celebrity insider tip: Hollywood actor Gerard Butler stayed at Chaminade Resort during some of the Santa Cruz filming for the movie “Of Men and Mavericks.” For additional insider tips follow Luxury Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown on Twitter and follow Chaminade Resort & Spa  on Twitter  and like them on  Facebook.

If You Go:

Chaminade Resort & Spa (800) 283-6569 or (831) 475-5600

One Chaminade Lane

Santa Cruz, CA 95065

Article written by and photos courtesy of  Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown of What a Trip, Travels from Northern California. I was a guest of Chaminade Resort  and Spa.

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