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Travel: Weekend Escapes

Summer is officially upon us and it’s time to plan a trip! We’re showcasing three destinations you just have to visit from the Spring/Summer issue of Exquisite Weddings.

Whether you prefer a beach, mountain, or vineyard setting, these three getaways promise a fantastic weekend with your closest girlfriends to celebrate your upcoming rite of passage from single girl to married woman. And if you’re still deciding where to tie the knot, each of these retreats has its own allure as an elite destination wedding setting. Take our quiz to find out where you should be headed this summer…


You like to look your hotel room window see:
a. Sandy beaches and the horizon of the Pacific.
b. Vineyards spread out over rolling hills of grass.
c. Vast expanses of green trees over mountain tops.

When you travel your must-have vacation wear is:
a. A tiny bikini and a sarong.
b. Your favorite jeans and most stylish top.
c. Walking shoes, leggings and a sweater.

Your favorite out-of-town activity consists of:
a. Sun-bathing and sipping mojitos.
b. Tasting a variety of fine wines and eating cheese.
c. Hiking to a hidden lake and going for a dip.

The song drifting from your iPod when relaxing is:
a. Jack Johnson’s “Banana Pancakes.”
b. Micheal Buble’s “My Everything.”
c. Natasha Bedingfield’s “Pocketful of Sunshine.”

Three words that describe your perfect trip:
a. Calming, refreshing, laid-back.
b. Sophisticated, knowledgeable, robust.
c. Adventurous, cozy, remote.

The smell you most enjoy is:
a. Salty ocean breeze.
b. Fresh morning dew.
c. Pine and cedar trees.

Mostly A’s – Surf & Sand Resort, Laguna Beach, CA.
Mostly B’s – Carneros Inn, Napa Valley, CA.
Mostly C’s – Montage, Deer Valley, UT.

SURF & SAND RESORT, Laguna Beach

The Scene: Don’t be fooled by its somewhat unassuming façade; Surf & Sand is the hidden gem of Laguna Beach. When you’re sipping champagne on your balcony, high in the sky, above the edge of the sea, where crashing waves pound the coastline and a fiery orange disc sinks behind Catalina Island, you’ll understand why. The airy, sea breeze-infused rooms, whose décor pays homage to beach-cottage comfort with their sand tones, seashell touches, and white orchids, afford endless blue views of sea and sky. A $3 million dollar refresher has further elevated the elegance of this intimate 167-room hotel. Five hundred feet of beachfront sand, with pampering butler service, calls for relaxing afternoons under your striped umbrella. Poolside, lounge on the cozy cushions in your cabana and order a frothy cocktail. Read More>>

Destination Wedding Venue: Check out the Catalina Terrace that holds up to 180 people so you can say “I do” overlooking the blue Pacific. With the silhouette of Catalina Island as a backdrop and frolicking dolphins out front, this is Southern California at its quintessential best.


The Scene: This sprawling 27-acre resort represents the best of Napa Valley wine country with its barn-chic ambiance, charming cottages, scenic vistas and outstanding food and wine.  Pastures, apple orchards, flowering gardens and endless rows of twisting vines characterize this bucolic area—a scintillating viticultural playground for anyone who appreciates the complex notes of a California Cabernet, a chunk of aged cheese and tear of artisanal bread. Read More>>

Destination Wedding Venue: If a sun-kissed ceremony in a green-grassed apple orchard surrounded by a panorama of farmland, vineyards and mountains sounds inviting, Carneros can deliver the dream.


The Scene: Like a stately European château, the Montage Deer Valley sits regally above the quaint town of Park City. This sparkling new ski-in, ski-out über-lodge at Empire Pass is also a wondrous summer retreat for girlfriends seeking an alpine experience. Each luxe room feels cozy with its flickering fireplace, heated limestone bathroom floors, and plush bedding. But it’s the expansive views of the Wasatch Mountains that will take your breath away. As you start exploring this marble-filled Craftsman, you’ll find a dizzying array of compelling activities to do right on property. The mountain bike valets will style you out with elite bikes and guide you to the endless single-track trails that meander through endless groves of aspen trees. Or get a heart-thumping work out while hiking through fields of wildflowers, experiencing ever more stellar views, and a possible moose sighting.  Read More>>

Destination Wedding Venue: Montage Deer Valley’s Grand Lawn, in front of the hotel, affords dramatic panoramas of the valley and surrounding mountains—the ideal spot for a phenomenal wedding in a pristine forest setting.

Written by Ann Wycoff

Still looking for more weekend getaway ideas? San Diego Magazine has a great list here!

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