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Resort suggestions for short weekend girls getaway - early June??

Resort suggestions for short weekend girls getaway - early June??

Apr 1st, 2009, 05:50 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2003
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Resort suggestions for short weekend girls getaway - early June??

Hi all,

I've searched this forum and other sites, but thought Fodorites might think of something I'm missing. My friend 'Pam' is a hard working mother of a 7 year old, and lately has been doing extra duty traveling to care for two out of town Grandmothers (different towns) and also chauffeuring around her recently widowed MIL. She's very selfless and occasionally calls me to see if there's anything she can do for me!

So, she deserves a weekend away, and the plan is to surprise her as a Birthday gift. Weekend choices (in order of preference are:
June 5-7
May 29 - 31(this is the weekend directly after Memorial Day)
Or, possibly June 12-14

My dilemma is that we have to leave Friday, probably after about 9AM and have to be home Sunday night. We'll fly from OKC. That gives us a Friday evening, and ONE full day Saturday, with Sunday basically being devoted to sleeping in, having a nice breakfast or lunch and returning home.

I've talked to her husband for some direction. He thought she'd like to lay by a pool or beach for part of the day, and then wander around/shop for the remaining time. Not necessarily in that order. I picture somewhere with lovely grounds and bar service at the pool.

As if I'm not asking enough, budget is a concern. I'd like to keep the room to under $200 or $250 a night. Oh, and the ability to go sans rental car is a plus, but not a deal breaker.

The following are off the table, mainly because she's been recently:
Miami (South Beach would have been perfect)
Las Vegas
Florida panhandle
San Francisco
Santa Fe
San Antonio

Here's what I'm considering:

First thought was La Jolla or Coronado, but June Gloom has me worried.

Scottsdale/Phoenix - Nice resorts for great prices, but it may be very hot. That said, we get quite a bit of 100+ degree weather here in OKC, so it wouldn't be a shock.

Laguna Beach - Sounds perfect, but June Gloom again.

Naples, FL - ?? Her most recent trip was to Florida, so it wouldn't seem as much of a treat, but still considering it.

Palm Springs - actually seems to run a bit hotter than Scottsdale, and flights into PSP are higher and more time consuming.

Charleston or Savannah - Flights seem to be very long and very expensive from OKC.

So....am I missing something? Anything with over an hour drive from the airport has basically been shelved, as has anything with more than one flight connection.

Am I worrying too much about June Gloom? Or the heat in Scottsdale? Am I overthinking this? (That last question was rhetorical!)

Thanks for any guidance!
H
phieaglefan is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 08:35 AM
  #2  
lvk
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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I don't believe that you are over-thinking it. I think you are being a thoughtful and cautious friend. I also think that your assumptions are spot on.

June Gloom is very real and can really hamper beach or pool vacations. It is generally only concentrated at the immediate coast, however. It usually burns off by noon, but rolls back in between 3-4pm. If you stay a few miles inland, you may not be affected. In Southern California, places like the Rancho Bernardo Inn, or Lawrence Welk Resort Villas in Escondido might meet your needs. They are between the foggy coast and the hot desert. You would fly into San Diego.

Even though Scottsdale will be hot in June, (All together now..... "It's a dryyyy heat" ) you usually can get some great deals at some very beautiful resorts. Who cares if it is 95+ if you are sitting beside the pool, getting misted and waited on, especially if you only paid about $200/night for a place that usually costs over $500? I just check Expedia, and the 5* Phoenician and the Four Seasons are both showing rates under $200 for the 1st weekend in June.
lvk is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 10:09 AM
  #3  
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Thanks lvk. I will check out the two resorts you mention in Escondido. Those are exactly the types of suggestions I'm looking for.

I agree about the value of the Scottsdale resorts. Kind of hard to pass up. I guess I feel like coming from Oklahoma, California will seem like more of a departure and 'sound' more escapist. But in reality, the shorter flights combined with the potential bargains probably make Scottsdale a smarter pick.

Thanks again for the suggestions... off to look them up now.

Oh, and I forgot to mention. Several destinations in Mexico are very quick trips, but 'Pam' doesn't have a passport, so that's out.

H
phieaglefan is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 12:10 PM
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Southwest Airlines has nonstop flights from OKC to Phoenix which gets you there in early in the day to get the most out of your weekend. There aren't many good non-stops from OKC so it's nice not having to change planes and waste your entire day traveling.

I think Phoenix/Scottsdale fits the bill for pool time plus shopping. And it's an easy trip for you, too.

Also, April's Conde Nast Traveler has an article highlighting the top 79 spas. Mi Amo at Enchantment in Sedona is the highest rated in AZ. Also rated is The Phoenician, Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain, Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa.
BeachGirl247 is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 12:40 PM
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http://www.laplayaresort.com/

It is north of downtown Naples by about 10 miles, but it has a few restaurants within walking distance. You can also take Superior Shuttle from the airport for about $50 total each way.

I haven't been to the resort, but the area and beach are lovely. Again, downtown Naples is a hike, but you could take a taxi down for a day of shopping.
kelliebellie is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 02:07 PM
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Calistoga,CA.Check out Indian Springs.
PamSF is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 02:28 PM
  #7  
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BeachGirl - yes you're correct about the lack of desirable non-stops from OKC. But I guess the good news is that being in the middle of the country puts both coasts within reach for quick trips. I don't think I have the April Conde Nast but I'll look for it. Sedona would actually be great, but it seems as though it's at least a 2 hour drive from the airport.

kelliebellie - I actually looked at the La Playa resort, and also another on the beach called Edgewater Beach Hotel. Thanks!

Pam, I thought about wine country but it's a bit further than I want to drive, plus I really didn't see any bargains out there for my time frame. If I could find the right property closer to one of the airports (STS is out of my price range!) I might consider it. Thanks for the suggestion though.

I smiled when I read Calistoga, though. A year and a half ago, I had reservations in Calistoga in early December (a bit cheaper then) when my dear Son up and decided to get married - the very weekend we were to go away! Needless to say, we cancelled. But it's on my someday list!

Thanks again!
H
phieaglefan is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 02:28 PM
  #8  
lvk
 
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In Scottsdale, you can also go carless if you choose either a downtown hotel, or a hotel adjacent to shopping malls, such as the Hyatt Gainey Ranch or the Marriott Desert Ridge.
lvk is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 04:33 PM
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phieaglefan- I would also vote for Scottsdale/Phoenix area. Lots of choices and many close to shopping. (Most hotel shuttles, I believe, will take you to a local mall. If not- just taxi over.)

I have siblings and a dear friend who all live in the area, so I am there often. Love it for renewing my spirits.

You're lucky you don't live in DFW area- SW cannot fly us directly to Phoenix. It really bites! I'd take advantage of that, for sure!

Good luck and have fun! You're a good friend!
sarge56 is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 06:17 PM
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Hi there - I live in LA by the beach. So yes - June gloom is real. That said - I'm not sure I would let it keep me away. It does burn off maybe 10:30-11a.

Manhattan Beach is a great small town about 15 mins from LAX. Take a look at Shade Hotel - www.shadehotel.com - very hip boutique hotel right - 2 blocks from the beach - prime location for shops, boutiques, restaurants. there is a fabulous path along the beach for walking or biking. has a great bar area and nice little roof top 'pool'. great spot to sit for the afternoon and have a cocktail. Not big enough for laps, but still a nice spot. It is a bit more than you may want to spend, but just a great hotel.

It's right next to a place called 'Trilogy Spa' which has great facilities. The masseur/masseuse's are really good. They also have excellent facials, a floatation bed (you have to try it).

For a quick weekend - it's a great spot. If you were so inclinded to explore the area - you could always head to the Getty Museum for the afternoon. Or see if anything is happening at the Hollywood Bowl. You would need a car for these those. If you go the Manhattan Beach route only, no car needed and easy in/out of the airport.

An alternative that is a bit more economic friendly.
The Sea View Inn - www.theseaviewinn.com - near the Il Porto section of Manhattan Beach - nice 'locals/beach' hotel. Low key. good location with a smaller set of shops, restaurants close by. 2 blocks from the beach and they will provide you a bike if desired. A lot of the surfers hang in this part of the beach. Also ~ 15-20 min walk to the MB pier and those shops.

Or if you prefer Santa Monica - you may want to try the Hotel California - www.hotelca.com. Great location near the SM pier and has a fun looking beach vibe. It sits in the midst of some really upscale hotels that are a bit more expensive such as the Viceroy (which is very cool / art deco), Shutters at the Beach (part of the Leading Hotels of the World chain). You can walk to the SM pier, third street promenade, a plethora of restaurants and shopping. A bit more of a tourist area, but a lot of fun if you've not been there before.

That said - I'd also vote for the Phoenician. Have heard fabulous things!

Have a great trip - you must be a fabulous friend!!!
hmileski is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 06:35 PM
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Shutters is very nice. OKC-LA isn't a bad flight from OKC but obviously is a longer travel day ( which translates to less time by the pool or beach ) so that plays a part in the decision.

Phoenix flight is so easy and hassel-free.
BeachGirl247 is offline  
Apr 1st, 2009, 07:12 PM
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I think Scottsdale is the best choice, though be careful if you go there as they have insane traffic cameras on the highway in close proximity to one another (meaning, if you speed you'll get more than one ticket since the cameras are seconds away from one another).

We stayed at the Four Seasons last Memorial Day, and while it was hot, it was fabulous with the pools, service, etc. You can get good deals (look at the promotions on their website). It was very restful and easy, and the area that the Four Seasons is in (next to nature trail) really feels like you're away from everything!
mah1980 is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 04:07 AM
  #13  
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Wow, thanks for everyone's thoughtful replies. Here are my pros and cons with the options so far:

Phoenix: Is it too much suburbia? Mall shopping would not be my first choice. I would much prefer 'shops' in a quaint area. Also the heat, but I think that would be okay.

On the flip side, There are some serious bargains to be had. There are some absolutely gorgeous 4 to 5 star properties in my price range. Also quick flights.

Southern California: There is actually one direct flight per day on United to LAX, and at really good times. It seems like there are more areas with the types of shopping I'm looking for. Plus, coming from landlocked Oklahoma, the ocean translates to vacation, at least for me (and alot of people here).

But....The weather. Even if it burns off, I think the average high on the coast is about 69 or 70 degrees. That doesn't sound like sit around the pool weather. And then there's that budget thing.

I wish I could ask Pam, but I think she'll love the surprise factor. Perhaps I'll call her Sister. I'm not so sure husbands always know all

Thanks again.
H
phieaglefan is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 04:43 AM
  #14  
 
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I know this will sound silly since it is definitely not beach spa, but what about Chicago? Have you guys been? It is a wonderful city with lots to see and do. Plus you wouldn't need a car at all.
kelliebellie is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 07:28 AM
  #15  
lvk
 
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Just had another thought. What about the Langham Huntington (formerly Ritz Carlton) in Pasadena? It is probably far enough inland to minimize the June Gloom. It is also close to shopping and dining in Old Pasadena, and nearby are some great museums (Huntington & Norton Simon).
lvk is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 12:48 PM
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For something totally different how about Montreal?
No beach but in June you cld sit out by the pool @ one of the nicer downtown hotels. Direct flights from OKC to YUL( Montreal). Short 20 minute cab ride to downtown Montreal.Great restaurants, Great shopping, museums, city tours. It's one of my favorite cities for a short getaway.
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 03:18 PM
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kellie - I appreciate the suggestion, and even considered Chicago briefly. If it were my trip, I'd do Chicago or New Orleans or Seattle. She's more apt to appreciate some tranquility. Also, I'm kind of a tyrant on those types of trips (says hubby) and I'm trying to avoid that. Hey, at least I know my faults!

lvk - I was at work and only briefly looked at the Langham Huntington. Wow. Very nice. And actually affordable if you do an advance purchase. I will do some more investigation with a glass of wine tonight. Thanks.

SA - Amelia Island has been on my 'list' for awhile. I hadn't considered it for this trip until now. The Ritz had wonderful rates (for a Ritz, anyway). Can you tell me a little about the 'lay of the land'? Is the island easily navigable without a car? Anyway, thanks for the suggestion.

OceanBreeze - sadly, Pam does not have a passport - yet. I've been bugging her for quite some time about it. Maybe for her 40th!

I feel like thank you isn't enough for the generous time you've spent responding. I truly appreciate it!

H
phieaglefan is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 04:26 PM
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Vegas has great room value now! Go dancing all night and then you really have a reason to sleep in or recover at the pool. Shop, have a nice meal - it's a good quick trip and a fun birthday with plenty of flights.
sheri_lp is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2009, 06:49 PM
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phi- You shouldn't worry about "urban sprawl" with Phoenix. It is so open on the outskirts that Scottsdale or other areas away from city center feel like the wide open spaces.

My brother lives in Fountain Hills and when I am laying at his pool, all I see are mountains, sky and cactus. (and an occasional coyote)

No matter where you go in LA, you are going to be near everything else. Just a thought.
sarge56 is offline  

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