Last weekend, the Mr and I celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary with a little staycation at what I’ve considered one of the most iconic hotels in California, the Claremont hotel. The Claremont has been around since 1915 and it’s like a white beacon on the Oakland/Berkeley border. It’s always inspiring to see its bright, white facade in contrast to the lush green trees and hills it’s nestled in. Growing up I had always wanted to stay there, but until last weekend that dream hadn’t come true. Spending a couple of days there was the perfect way to celebrate our anniversary. And after seeing its amazing architectural details and decor, I knew it was going to be my next Designer Destination. Just check out that pool house and deck done in all white and black, could that be any more perfect?
A couple of weeks ago the Mr and I took a little weekend trip to Carmel, CA for our 7th Anniversary. How did 7 years go so fast? It doesn’t seem like that long ago I was planning our wedding.
This year we escaped for the weekend, while the girlie and little man stayed with their Mimi & Papa. First trip without kids, yay! Although I missed them, it was so nice sleeeeeping in!
|Left: De Tierra Vineyards Tasting Room | Right: Maxine Klaput Antiques|
Have you guys been to Carmel-by-the-Sea? It’s a quaint little Northern California coastal town near Monterey, Pebble Beach AND the Santa Lucia Highlands (wine country). I was so excited when I was offered a press tour to visit, such perfect timing.
We stayed at an adorable Danish-themed inn called the Hofsas House in the perfect location, right on the edge of town. It reminded me of Solvang, CA with it’s quaint, homey and Dutch-influenced decor. It was such a great place to stay because we were within walking distance of everything!
Here is a view of the hotel with its characteristic pink exterior, long balconies, dutch doors and ocean views from pretty much every room (the first image, above was the view from our room)!
There are so many great things to do in town, no driving necessary. Carmel is known for its art galleries, antiques, jewelry shops and more recently, wine – my kind of town! We did a ton of walking around, window shopping and eating with lots of wine tasting in-between. We also took part in the Wine Walk, where you can visit up to 14 different wine tasting rooms all within walking distance to each other. You can even buy wine walk passes at the Hofsas House for a discounted price.
We visited some amazing antique stores as well as browsed a ton of estate jewelry. I love vintage jewelry, it’s so full of character and history. We also tasted olive oil and cheese in addition to the wine!
|Left: Trio Carmel olive oil tasting | Right: Hildegunn Hawley my favorite rare antique store in town|
Have you guys heard of the Cheese Shop? This is always our first stop whenever we come into town. You walk in and immediately cheese samples of all sorts appear like magic 😉 And for some added bonus points: the Hofsas house welcomed us to the room with a nice bottle of wine and cheeses from the very same place!
We discovered the Carmel Belle completely by accident on our first day and went back everyday after. We even made a quick stop on our drive out for a yummy salad for the road!
|left: Carmel Belle | right: Caraccioli Cellars|
Speaking of tasty food, the first night we hopped in the car for a quick drive over to the Beach House in Pacific Grove. And yes, the food is just as amazing as the view!
The second night we walked to the Grill on Ocean Ave in Carmel, which was perfect after a day of wine tasting 😉 The atmosphere here was so friendly and boisterous which is always fun. I had their butternut squash ravioli which was delish! Oh and the sauce that come with the crab cake appetizer? So scrumptious.
We had a great weekend full of wine, food and relaxation. A perfect way to celebrate a wedding anniversary! And even though Carmel is only a 2 hour drive away from the San Francisco Bay Area, it really feels like you’re getting away from it all. A perfect weekend destination, in my book. It’s definitely in my top five favorite California places to visit! Have you guys been? What are your favorites shops, restaurants places to stay?