The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel is probably sitting on the best stretch of land along the Pacific. The Resort is atop a bluff that has panoramic views of the Ocean and at times, I’d forget we were still on land and not off to sea on a cruise ship.
We had the wonderful opportunity of having two adjoining rooms that both sat ocean front on the ground floor. Both rooms had their own patio with a private fire-pit! Each room also came with a cute s’mores kit for us to enjoy during our evenings (additional kits can be purchased from the front desk). Right past our patio was the infamous green lawn that added a great way for the kids to get out some energy, right off of our room. Everything about the rooms was so comfortable and clean and the entirely marble bathroom made us feel like royalty. If you’re not in a waterfront room, the rooms that face the pool and courtyard also have such a pretty ambiance around them, the whole property is a great haven.
The property has a fabulous restaurant called Raya. We had the pleasure of having breakfast here one morning, (you must try the breakfast, everything was insanely delicious but I would recommend not missing the Huevos Rancheros ). Not only was the food amazing, but the floor to ceiling windows overlooking the Pacific are jaw dropping. You can’t see any land beneath you from where you eat, perched on the top of the bluff. Just the birds flying by and the sea expanding as far as the eye can see. It’s definitely worth visiting for a meal, even if you don’t get to spend the night.
Around the property
The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel has a really convenient shuttle down to Salt Creek Beach or you can take a nice stroll down the cliff to get to the beach yourself. We were there on cooler days in October and we didn’t go down to the shore, but we spent a lot of time at the gorgeous pool and jacuzzi. While we were there a nice hotel employee brought the children over bottles of bubbles to play with; that’s just the kind of treatment you can expect at the Ritz-Carlton and why they’re known for their exceptional children’s program Ritz Kids.
Around the resort we visited the playground, played a little basketball, enjoyed some ping pong and most of all, we just enjoyed walking the trails around the property because it doesn’t get more enjoyable than that, really.
Now, the very best part of our stay was our experience with Eco-Adventures, the resorts special department that curates different nature activities to pull your family in to the assortment of ecosystems found throughout the local Southern California area. I can’t even begin to explain how tremendous of an experience it was to go on their Whale Experience.
We met our guide and naturalist in the Eco-Adventure center located right on the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel’s property and then we headed out together down to the Dana Point Marina and joined a whale watching cruise. We were excited, but we didn’t have very high hopes as we had been whale watching before and really didn’t get to see many whales. However this time, not only did we get to see a humpback whale we also glided alongside hundreds of common dolphins. It was the most tremendous experience we have ever had. If you’re staying at the resort, I recommend not missing out on this experience.
It was really special to be escorted by someone from the Ritz family, our very own private naturalist, along with the naturalist that worked with the whale watching tour, we had our own private source to ask questions if we had additional questions and that was so great as a family to have that one on one experience for our kids to take more in. The extra attention for our family was really a special experience and one we will all hold very dear far in to our years.
Truly, I can’t think of many memories that come as close to being as special as this one. We are all still pinching ourselves that we were able to experience this.
The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel is really something special, it is such a gorgeous property and there are so many nooks and crannies that separate it from the busy world bustling on the highway right outside the driveway. This was our last stay of the year and I can’t think of a better closing out to our year of travels.
We are forever grateful for the opportunity to partner with Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel and our couple nights here will always be cherished as some of the best of the bests.