Places to Spoil your Loved One (and Yourself!) during this Month of Love!

San Luis Obispo County offers an abundant backdrop for romance. From its seaside bluffs, sprawling beaches, scenic mountain lookouts, wine country, tasty restaurants and Highway 1 access we are the place to pamper and be pampered this month of February.  Here are some ways to create your own romance:

1.Day Spa Getaway-

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Pick between a mineral springs soak and a luxuriously peaceful wooded environment or a coastal resort hideaway washed in relaxing hues of deep purple.  Sycamore Mineral Springs has been a recipient of the prestigious “Readers Choice” award by Spa Finder and the “Silver Sage” award by Spa Magazine and continues to be a county favorite.  Every treatment includes a 30 minute soak in one of their hillside hot tubs.  The Cliffs Resort has done a complete remodel of their spa with the opening of DiaFeliz Spa.  It is a gorgeous offering of modern touches, a relaxing lounge room, all washed in lighting in deep hues of purple.  Relaxation, pampering and recharging all are inevitable with a trip to either Central Coast spa.   More Information: https://www.sycamoresprings.com/avila-spa-retreat/  or https://www.diafelizspa.com/specials/

2. SoulMate Wine Picnic at Barton Family Wines-

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Take a trip into Paso Robles Wine Country for a wine picnic at Barton Family Wines.  Taste in their tasting room first, their outstanding collection of Grey Wolf and Barton Family Wines, then step outside to their charming patio and order from Barton’s Kitchen Window your lunch to enjoy at their numerous picnic tables overlooking the vineyards and sprawling wine country.  Enjoy a bottle of “SoulMate”, a perfectly fitting name to impress that loved one in your life.  Available in a Rose or a red blend.  Deliciously tantalizing and sure to make for a romantic afternoon.   More Information: http://www.bartonfamilywines.com/

3. Romantic Sunset Dinner at SeaVenture Restaurant–

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The location for many special occasions, first dates, and even engagements.  Where else can you get a more expansive view of Pismo Beach?  On a clear day to see the stretch of coastline past the Pismo Dunes to the South as the coast stretches off into the Pacific to the stunning display of sunsets in hues of orange, pinks and purples and the sun sets over the ocean to the West.   Enjoy a romantic sunset dinner with delectable cuisine and local wines as you soak in this panoramic view and make your other half  feel more than special!  More Information: https://www.seaventure.com/pismo-beach-dining/

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4. Share a Delectable Dessert at Apple Farm-

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What says romance more than chocolate and whipped cream!  Apple Farm Restaurant has a bakery case and dessert menu filled with an endless array of delectable sweet treats.  Whatever your fancy, chocolate, apples (of course!), cookies, pies, cakes, ice cream, they have an offering for every taste bud.  And a kiss is always that much sweeter after sharing a dessert together.  More information: https://www.applefarm.com/dining/bakery

5. Take a Classic Car Cruise up the Coast-

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Rent a classic Jag or bathtub Porsche or another fabulous classic car from Cars with Distinction and really impress.  Take a cruise up the coast in style, make sure to fit in a lot of stops along the way for photo shoots and views.  Stop for lunch at Ragged Point or one of the charming small eateries in Cambria.  What a fun way to spoil your loved one (and yourself!). More Information:  http://www.carswithdistinction.com/index.html

Top 5 New Year’s Resolutions to Complete in SLO County this Year

Ah, it’s that time again – a brand new year has begun and with it comes the promise of a fresh start. Resolutions can be daunting sometimes and most of the time people don’t keep them up past January, but we are thinking you will actually want to do these SLO County Resolutions in 2018. Happy New Year from Boutique Hotel Collection!

 

1. Get back to nature

SLO County is chock full of hiking trails and amazing beaches where you can relax and be one with nature. In SLO, we recommend a quick hike up to Terrace Hill Open Space where you will get an amazing view of the city and the surrounding areas. In Pismo Beach, go on a docent led hike at the Pismo Preserve. There are options available for everyone. At Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort, the Sycamore Crest Trail is a steep climb, but also features amazing panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean.

2. Be more adventurous

They say you should do at least one thing each year that scares you and here in SLO County, we have great ways to add a little adventure to your life. Learn a new skill in Avila Beach at Avila Beach Paddlesports. From kayaking to stand up paddleboarding, their friendly staff will help you get started. Speaking of watersports, Pismo Beach is the perfect place to learn how to surf and Sandbar Surf School is happy to get you started. We mentioned it before, but it is definitely worth another mention. Margarita Adventures features amazing zipline tours over vineyards and golden hills and is something you should definitely try on your next visit!

3. Eat more local cuisine

SLO County has become a foodie mecca with amazing farm fresh cuisine around every corner. One great way to sample what our area is has to offer is to go on a food tour. Taste of SLO offers a Walking Food Tour of downtown SLO with five food destinations and an option to include wine and/or beer flights. They are happy to accommodate all ages and all dietary needs. Young people to well-seasoned people, little humans in strollers, vegetarians and gluten free are all welcome here! Non-alcoholic tours are available with specialty mocktails to tease your taste buds.

4. Make Time for Family

SLO County is the perfect place to bring your kids to from our amazing beaches (which happen to be simply beautiful in the winter months) to fun activities like the SLO Children’s Museum and the SLO Botanical Gardens, this is the place to reconnect with your little loved ones this year.

5. Plan a romantic getaway

Reignite the romance with your significant other in SLO County this year. Staying at one of our Boutique Hotel Collection properties will set the mood for romance. Amorous excursions await including picnicking and wine tasting in SLO Wine Country, cozy walks on the beach in Avila or Pismo, mineral spring soaks and couples spa treatments and, of course, taking time to watch one of our famous California sunsets with the one you love.

 

Top 5 Bakeries to try on your next visit!

With the holidays upon us, baked goods are at a premium. We have lots of social occassions, but not a lot of time, and some of us were not born with the baking gene. Here is a quick guide to all of your baked good needs for the holidays, or any day for that matter! Whether you're looking for a plate of cookies for santa, a break in a busy day, or a fresh baked pie to bring home for dessert (and, maybe, pass off as their own), you can find it at any of these local stops. Here is a list of the Top 5 Bakeries to sample on your next visit....


1. Avila Valley Barn 

As a guest for a holiday meal, it is always helpful to know where to find a fresh baked pie or pastry, so you don't show up empty handed. Avila Valley Barn is that place. With fresh baked or frozen pies available, you can grab what you need and go! Avila Barn is not just a bakery, but a fruit & veggie stand, gift shop, ice cream parlor and farm stand. While you're there, pick up your Christmas tree and some presents, too!

2. Scout Coffee Co.

If you find yourself cruising the streets of San Luis in the midst of your holiday shopping, and you hit a wall, it might be time for a Bakery Break! Voted Best Coffee House in the New Times, they say "Stepping into Scout Coffee Co feels like a big hug..." what better place to regroup and refresh. Grab a cup of their own HoneyCo coffee and a warm housemade pastry, and you will be back on your feet, filling those stockings in no time!

3. Linn's

On the coast in Cambria, you will find Linn's. Started as a pick-yourself produce stand almost 50 years ago, it developed into an amazing pie and dessert shop, introducing the area to the (at that time) little know ollalieberry, which became the cornerstone of their pie business. Today, you can stop in for a slice of cake, a cream puff, eclair, or even a sundae, but they are still most widely known for their pies. Any host would be thrilled to receive a pie from Linn's to compliment their holiday dinner!

4. BlackHorse Espresso & Bakery

Found in various locations throughout San Luis Obispo, BlackHorse Espresso & Bakery, is a great place for a little afternoon pick me up and sweet treat! Serving Spearhead Coffee from Paso Robles, and freshly baked treats made in house, not only are these baked goods amazing, I love that they're local. And besides, even elves need a little jolt of espresso every once in a while. Be sure to ask about the story behind the name, Blackhorse...

5. Apple Farm

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Just off the highway in San Luis Obispo, you will find the bakery jackpot! At the Apple Farm, fresh baked pies, cookies, cheesecakes, and muffins abound. You will have no trouble filling a plate for santa (or filling a plate of Santas!) or finding the perfect end to a holiday meal. Stroll the grounds to get a real holiday feel, stop in the gift shop for a gift with a local flare, and be sure not to miss the bakery. Rumor has it you may even spot Santa Saturdays in December, so be sure to bring your camera!