DESTINATION: Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay
DISTANCE FROM MARIN: 40 miles south
EVERY YEAR AROUND this time, Half Moon Bay is flooded with pumpkin hunters from around the Bay Area who are also looking for a great place to stay. With that in mind, we take a look at the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, which has been called a “slice of Scotland on the Northern California coast” by Forbes Travel Guide. While the place is best known for its two golf courses, sunset-serenading kilted bagpipe player and award-winning spa, the white sand beach below the property is a hidden gem — easily accessed and, depending on the tide, great for a scenic walk.
HIGHLIGHTS If superlatives are your thing, the resort is now home to the most expensive cigar in the world. This stellar stogie, made by Kaizad Hansotia, founder of Gurkha Cigars, in 1996, is infused with a full shot of 40-year-old Louis XIII Remy Martin. For just $2,000, you can take home a replica.
EATS For a feel-good meal of sustainable seafood and organic farm-to-table fare, book a table for two at the fine dining restaurant Navio. Hawaii-born and -trained chef Kevin Tanaka offers oysters from Point Reyes, hamachi from Honolulu and Alaskan halibut paired with bounty from nearby farms. This month he celebrates the golden gourd (aka pumpkin) in soups, ravioli fillings, curries and more.
DETAILS Good news for those just wanting to escape for the day: two of the biggest draws have joined forces for the $300 “Spa Golf Day” package, which includes a round of golf and an hour spa treatment with glass of champagne. Or enjoy the wintry weather with a “Fire and Wine” package, which includes a guest room with a fire pit on the terrace, s’more kit and bottle of select wine, all starting at $910 per night.