Staycation Destination: Carlsbad

Carlsbad Lagoon | Photo by Marcie Taylor 2015

Carlsbad Lagoon | Photo by Marcie Taylor 2015

There’s more to Carlsbad than Legoland. Don’t get me wrong, Legoland is definitely a family favorite, but for this little weekend getaway, we wanted something else. Something low key and relaxing. Only an hour away from Huntington Beach, Carlsbad is an ideal staycation destination. Though it is a beach town like our Surf City, it has a different vibe.

San Diego Coastline with Pacific Ocean Waves

The Sheraton Carlsbad Resort and Spa was an ideal place to spend the night. It has comfy accommodations and is conveniently located to many points of interest, yes, including Legoland. But as I mentioned, we didn’t even visit the amusement park.

Before checking into the Sheraton, we had lunch at a hip new restaurant in Oceanside, Boulevard Chinese Kitchen.
photo 1

photo 2Then we headed to Carlsbad Lagoon for an afternoon spent kayaking. We always see the lagoon from the freeway but it was our first time there and it was splendid. The Carlsbad Lagoon is a privately owned watersports center, offering rentals for boats, wave runners, kayaks, stand up paddle boards and aqua cycles. There are decks available for picnics and parties. And they also have a wakeboard and water ski shop. Did I mention that the rates are quite affordable? Kayak rentals range from $15/hour (single) to$25/hour (double); wave runners range from $70/half an hour to $175/2 hours.

 

Carlsbad Lagoon | Photo by Marcie Taylor 2015

Next stop: our hotel!

The Sheraton Carlsbad Resort is located on Grand Pacific Drive off of Cannon Road in Carlsbad. Yup, it’s the same exit you’d take if you were headed to Legoland.

In our room, we were surprised to find cookies and oranges by our bedside. It’s the little things like this that make a difference in hospitality.

cookies

We had dinner at Twenty/20 Restaurant and the food was delicious. It was Happy Hour too, which they have 7 days a week!

twenty20 happyhour

The next day, we hit the gym as a family. This is a rare treat since back home we all have different schedules and my younger son is not allowed at the gym yet. I was told that all Starwood hotels are on a health kick.  Let me tell ya, this Sheraton was at the top of its game. The equipment was state-of-the-art and there were even practical guides for exercise for travelers, vacationers, business people etc. My husband and sons then proceeded to the pool, while I went to the Ocean Pearl Spa.

Sheraton Carlsbad Resort and Spa

 

The Ocean Pearl Spa was heavenly. I do not give compliments lightly. You see, I am kind of a spa junkie and I didn’t expect to experience what could be the best massage I’ve had to date at Ocean Pearl! I had the signature massage therapy, featuring a heated herbal poultice that is applied to the body. My massage therapist Mary has magic hands. It was like a relaxing massage and chiropractic adjustment in one session. I cannot wait to go back.

Ocean Pearl Spa Lobby and Concierge Desk

 

In the end, our weekend in Carlsbad, just an hour away from home, was exactly what we needed. We unplugged, unwound and spent time together as a family.