A few weeks ago, my hubby surprised me with a birthday trip to Bernardus Lodge in Carmel Valley, CA. I had never been to Carmel Valley before and it is SO gorgeous. I keep thinking it would be such a perfect spot for a honeymoon or anniversary trip. :) Bernardus Lodge is on the the Monterey Peninsula and has been listed on the Conde Nast “Gold List” and Travel and Leisure’s “Top Hotels.” I can totally see why! One of the things that stands out as a bit different about them is when you arrive there is no front desk! YAY! They offer you a glass of wine and take you to your room. Once you are there in your room, then you officially sign in – how great is that? Then they bring you a cheese plate to enjoy with your wine. It was so perfect – especially when you’ve probably been driving a while to get there :)
Bernardus is known for their epicurean flair with 2 amazing restaurants. I was in foodie heaven! They also have a gorgeous spa, a bocce ball court (so fun especially playing with a glass of wine!) and a winery right there. It’s so beautiful that I felt like we were in Italy. They also do weddings here and I kept thinking it would be a perfect spot for a destination wedding, with the amazing food + gorgeous views – you don’t really need much else! I know I would love to be a guest at a wedding here. :) And I also have to say that everyone that worked here was seriously the nicest! From the valet team, to our waitstaff to Sue in sales who showed us around – such a plus!
During the day you can travel less than 2 miles down the road where there are a bunch of wineries that offer wine tasting. Lots of great chardonay’s and pinots here. There was also a great breakfast spot with the best huevos rancheros called Toast – yum! If you love hiking, Carmel Valley also has lots of great places to hike.
You could also check out the town of Carmel (I found this super cute gourmet spice shop where we made our own salt mix + a great cheese shop) or also take a trip over to Monterey – both so different from Carmel Valley, but equally as pretty.
Then why not drive back down the coast through Big Sur? It’s such a pretty drive! And what’s more romantic than a drive down the coast with your honey. :) Who wouldn’t love a honeymoon spent driving along the California coast and stopping in all the cute places along the way – right?
Hope that brings some inspiration for a honeymoon or anniversary trip! Did anyone go – or planning to go – to Carmel Valley for their honeymoon or take a trip driving along the coast? I’d love to hear about. :)
photos courtesy of Bernardus and green wedding shoes