It’s Cinco de Mayo weekend (and the Kentucky Derby) and I am chomping at the bit for a margarita followed by a mint julep or two! Bloomspot.com had a fantastic deal for an Oceanview suite at Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, and on top of that Randy was given a generous giftcard from his company. Click! We were booked in for our first overnight without the baby.
Rancho Palos Verdes, or “PV”, is a rocky peninsula south of Redondo Beach. From 1954 to 1987 this stunning coast line was home to Marineland of the Pacific. This is where my Chicago-raised Mom saw the ocean for the first time (as a teenager).
When Marineland opened (one year before Disneyland), it was the world’s largest oceanarium. Aside from the Orca whales, Marineland was famous for it’s swim through reef. Tourists would enter the aquarium wearing just a snorkel mask and fins and swim through amongst the reef fishes and sharks. I don’t think this concept would fly in the states these days – or maybe for a price (and a long liability waiver).
In 1987, San Diego’s Seaworld bought Marineland. Seaworld moves the Orca whales from PV down to SD. One of the performing killer whales was named Corky, and Seaworld decided to change the name to Shamu. I had no idea that the most famous whale of my childhood went through a name change. Although Seaworld promised to keep Marineland open, they closed the park six weeks after the sale was finalized.
Marineland was left abandoned for 20 years! After several false starts development of Terranea began in 2007. The Los Angeles, resort opened in 2009.
Now back to the mint juleps and margaritas. Well, this dream was soon put on ice when I started packing. I quickly realized….
1. Claire is still nursing.
2. I can’t go more than 4 hours max without having her nurse, OR
3. I have to pump. No other option.
4. Breastmilk is in fact what they all say – liquid gold. So my dreams of multiple cocktails lounging poolside where soon interrupted by 15 minute pump sessions followed by pouring the tainted gold right down the sink. Ugh. This overnight getaway is turning into a logistics battle. Should we just bring Claire?
So the grandparents were already over-the-moon excited about babysitting Claire for the night. I quickly drafted up a new plan in my head.
1. Pack pump
2. Virgin margaritas poolside during the day (I did it for nine months anyway!)
3. Glass of wine with dinner
4. Bag up the liquid gold every four hours and refrigerate.
We left Pasadena at 9am and arrived to Terranea at 10. Reception greeted us each with a glass of champagne. Damn. Already a wrench in my logistics. I’m being way too neurotic. A glass of champagne and wine with dinner isn’t going to taint Claire’s supply. We took our champagne out on the balcony overlooking the ocean. June gloom settled in on us that weekend. It was freezing.
We cozied up by the fire. Room typically aren’t ready for check-in until 4pm, but ours was good to go by 11! Check out this view!
We’ve stayed here once before (when it was much warmer) and the ocean actually looks turquoise. Even though we are only an hour drive from home, and still in Los Angeles, it feels like we are at a luxury resort on the Mexican Riviera.
Randy and I spent the morning poolside (mostly in the hot tub). I ordered a virgin margarita (which ended up costing $15 – what!).
Late afternoon we met a few friends at Nelson’s to watch the Derby. Nelson’s is a casual sports bar/family-friendly restaurant with amazing sunsets.
Three minutes later the Derby was over.
After cleaning up and putting on something fancy (All I’ve been wearing for the past few months are yoga pants and hoodies). We walked down to Mar’sel, the french restaurant. We sat outside by one of the many firepits Terranea has on property. We saw a family roasting marshmellows and making S’Mores. I know were are on an adult getaway, but I couldn’t help visualize an older Claire doing the same in a few years.
After an amazing seafood dinner and dessert, I was welcomed back to the room with these….
The absolute BEST part of the weekend happened next. Nine hours later I woke up. Nine hours of un-interrupted sleep!!! Big time treat.
Sunday we spent the day having a a long brunch, followed by a hike down to the tidepools and a little more pool time. Last time we stayed here we played golf, but the sleeping and relaxing took priority this trip. After lunch we ordered hot coffee (and tea for me) and read our books by the fire for two hours. Another big treat. By 4:30pm we were both ready to get home to see Claire.
P.S. A gift for Claire. Seven bags and two bottles on ice.
And to top of a great getaway, Claire’s face as we walked through our door.