From newly designed hotels to recently opened spas, these oceanside communities to our south offer the perfect mini road trips for the summer ahead.
Carmel offers countless charms this summer.
Carmel Mission Inn
This 165-room property recently underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation that includes a lavish patio and fire pits and new contemporary furnishings; the swimming pool area reminds guests of Palm Springs. Meanwhile, the new Shearwater Tavern merges California cuisine with Texan flair, thanks to chef Wayne Brooks, who hails from Austin. 3665 Rio Road, Carmel, 831.624.1841, carmelmissioninn.com
Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa
Exactly 560 redesigned guest rooms with white, cream and stone-hued interiors and reinvented public spaces bring the sizzle back to this posh hilltop hotel. New restaurant Sea Root dishes up coastal cuisine with Mediterranean swagger. 1 Golf Course Road, Monterey, 831.372.1234, hyatt.com
The renovated Hyatt Regency Monterey
Villa Mara Carmel
Located 100 yards from the water in the Carmel Point neighborhood, this newly imagined 16-room luxe property boasts a distinctly residential feel. After all, it sits alongside some of the area’s most revered private homes. Our pick: the 500-square-foot Jeffers Cottage (a nod to the famed poet Robinson Jeffers), a stand-alone structure featuring a separate bedroom, a private outdoor fire pit and soaking tub. 2408 Bay View Ave., Carmel, 831.624.6433, villamaracarmel.com
Portola Hotel & Spa
An $11.2 million transformation at this four-diamond, LEED-certified luxury hotel means that all 379 guest rooms have been glammed up with modern furnishings, wall and floor treatments, and teal and pumpkin accents with designs that salute its coastal and Hispanic roots. Newly added Jack’s Terrace features living green walls, fire pits and intimate seating zones, while the Spa on the Plaza boasts 11 treatment rooms and more than 40 signature massages, facials, wraps and more. 2 Portola Plaza, Monterey, 831.649.4511, plazahotel.com
The refurbished Villa Mara in Carmel Point
Dawson Cole Fine Art Gallery
Don’t miss revered sculptor Richard MacDonald’s work “Genesis,” a 76-inch bronze column of an embracing couple. Be awestruck by his works that capture details of the human form in motion. Corner of Lincoln and Sixth, Carmel-by-the-Sea, 831.624.8200, carmel.dawsoncolefineart.com
Monterey Museum of Art
This summer, Digital Mindscapes by artist Corinne Whitaker takes viewers on a journey of her digital paintings along with sculptures produced via 3D printer. 559 Pacific St., Monterey, 831.372.5477, montereyart.org
Zantman Art Galleries
New works arrive regularly at this gallery featuring contemporary works and fine art paintings. Popular artists include Alexander Sheversky and Mario Jung. San Carlos between Ocean and Seventh, Carmel-by-the-Sea, 831.432.7972, zantmangalleries.com
The intimate dining space at Carmel Mission Inn.
Housed in one of the historic adobes of Monterey, this restaurant and bar is getting rave reviews for its cocktails, innovative entrees and craft desserts. Dynamic flavors pop in dishes such as the seared black cod on a bed of lentils and the braised short rib with homemade barbecue sauce. 525 Polk St., Monterey, 831.920.1046, cellarestaurant.com
Fresh and delicately prepared oysters are part of the Coastal Kitchen menu.
This new gem overlooks the ocean inside the Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa. Guests will love the prix fixe, five-course menu that has impeccable service to match. Seasonal ingredients draw upon ocean bounty with exquisite plating. 400 Cannery Row, Monterey, 831.920.6710, montereyplazahotel.com
Toro is becoming the town’s favorite sushi haunt, featuring a 15-page wine and sake menu with sake origins listed by Japanese prefectures. Signature rolls include the seared Carmel roll that features tempura shrimp and avocado topped with spicy tuna mix. Dolores St. between Fifth and Sixth, Carmel-by-the-Sea, 831.574.3255, torosushicarmel.com
Coastal Kitchen also features an impressive prix fixe menu.
Sponsor an elephant and get a Zoom call with the handler at the Elephant Havens Orphanage in Botswana. This African boutique supports the elephant rescue sanctuary and local charities with an array of fair trade gift ware from co-ops in Africa. 200 Crossroads Blvd., Carmel, 831.250.7202, mopane.org
Shopping With Timi Boutique
Modern elegance is manifested in this chic boutique—exclusively for women—via the latest in leisurewear. San Carlos between Ocean and Seventh, Carmel, 831.250.6109
Summer’s casual looks can be found at Timi in Carmel.
This home goods purveyor presents a cornucopia of beautiful and practical decor items. Shoshin’s biggest claim to fame is its interior design service that can provide expertise for every room in the house. San Carlos between Fifth and Sixth Ave., Carmel, 831.877.6300, studioshoshin.com
You’ll find the store’s ethically made knitwear label, Tejido, plus curated original art, small-batch apothecary, handmade jewelry and wellness products. Mission St. between Fifth and Sixth, Carmel, 831.293.8243, tejidocollective.com
Mopane supports an elephant sanctuary and local charities.
VIN Wine Bar
Tucked within The Crossroads Carmel shopping village, VIN hosts meet-thewinemaker events while offering bottles from boutique vineyards throughout California and beyond. Wine concierges will handpick and ship recommendations upon request. 237 Crossroads Blvd., Carmel, 831.293.8715, vinbarcarmel.com
Shoshin in Carmel features exceptional home furnishings.
This Black-owned business provides an international slate of wines, sparkling wines, caviar and cheese platters for the perfect pairing. We love the live music on the patio. 26135 Carmel Rancho Blvd., Ste. B4, Carmel, 831.293.8349, winebankbar.com
This authentic speakeasy delivers Prohibition-era, barrel-aged cocktails, plus bar eats, music and dancing. To enter, divulge the secret password that’s revealed on its website under its charity page. 420 Tyler St., Monterey, 831.920.2518, savvybarinc.com
The Wine Bank showcases a range of vintages, including sparkling summer wines—don’t miss its live music on the patio.
This new wellness and medspa drops anchor at The Crossroads Carmel, where a white design evokes a pure, clean aesthetic. Botox injections, massages, facials and more are on tap. 118 Crossroads Blvd., Carmel, 831.800.3663, remedyspa.net
Skin and Body Method
With years of experience at the Four Seasons spa in Los Angeles, Jamilla Johnson decided to open her own space, featuring organic products and treatments. This summer, she recommends the signature oxygen facial designed to plump and nourish. 2 NW San Carlos St. and Seventh, Carmel, 831.224.6774, skinandbodymethod.com
The ocean-view terrace at the Vista Blue Spa in Monterey
Spa at Pebble Beach
Measuring 22,000 square feet, this megaspa at the Casa Palmero hotel has reopened with a salon, juice bar and boutique. Unique is the 24K gold facial and signature services that incorporate plants, herbs and minerals of the Monterey coast. 1518 Cypress Drive, Pebble Beach, 800.877.0597, pebblebeach.com
The Spa at Pebble Beach
Vista Blue Spa
The only spa in Monterey with an ocean-view terrace has been thoroughly renovated. We love the updated private spa suite with double soaking tubs, a fireplace, private deck, dual rain shower and heated floors. With nine treatment rooms, the spa has added a Himalayan salt room and a new menu that includes CBD wellness and warm-stone massages, plus new soaking bath experiences. 400 Cannery Row, Monterey, 831.920.6710, montereyplazahotel.com
Photography by: COURTESY OF SEE MONTEREY; COURTESY OF HYATT REGENCY MONTEREY; BY STEPHANIE RUSSO; COURTESY OF CARMEL MISSION INN; BY JOSEPH WEAVER; BY JOSEPH WEAVER; COURTESY OF TIMI; BY ISWANTO ARIF/UNSPLASH; COURTESY OF SHOSHIN; BY OLENA BOHOVYK/PEXELS; COURTESY OF VISTA BLUE SPA; BY SCOTT CAMPBELL