Save and Spend: Part 2

Mimi ON Mar 06, 2009 AT 7:03 pm

Take a Break

Take a Break

After all your hard saving and stringent cut backs it is time to reward yourself…how about taking a break? Have a look at our top holidaying tips.

BIG REWARD
So, now that you’ve figured out how to keep as much as $6300 in your purse or ‘murse’, look at what you can afford to do with the money. The truly sensible among you will put that money into a savings account or 401K. Just in case the tiny strand that’s holding the financial Sword of Damacles above your head should give way. But the point of those sacrifices was to allow you to ride out the misery of 2009, and come out of it smiling. Enrich your life with some memorable experiences, so you can weather the storm with a smile.

Spa Weekend
Think you can’t afford a luxury spa weekend? Think again. The Calistoga Ranch in Napa is definitely no Motel 6. If you hadn’t made a few sacrifices, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was out of your reach. Set in 157 acres of native Oak trees, in a private canyon in the Upper Napa Valley, The Calistoga Ranch is the ne plus ultra  of spa resorts. Natural, stone walls support hefty timber beams in a modern but warm and luxurious architectural composition that seamlessly blends indoor and outdoor spaces.

Calistoga Bathhouse Hot Tub

Calistoga Bathhouse Hot Tub

This is Napa after all, so it’s all about communing with nature, but there’s no roughing it here. The private restaurant makes the best possible use of Napa’s fine food and wine traditions, while the range of spa treatments on offer, (fancy a mud wrap, followed by a buttermilk bath?) might make you wonder “Do I deserve such riches?” Well, yes you do. Anyone who’s foregone caffeine for a year without bludgeoning a co-worker to death, has earned a luxury break like this. Your friends can warm their hands round another latte while you simmer in one of Calistoga’s bubbling outdoor spas. You’ll go back to work feeling refreshed and very fortunate. Call ahead and find out what packages they’re offering, and you could save up to twenty percent.
www.calistogaranch.com

La Valencia Hotel in La Jolla

La Valencia Hotel in La Jolla

Beach Break
Your commitment to virtue might not allow you to skip off to the Seychelles for two weeks, but we have plenty of great beach hotels here in Southern California. Cut out the hideous air travel, as well as the plane ticket, and treat yourself to a romantic getaway for two, or a rejuvenating rest for one, at La Valencia Hotel in La Jolla. This beautiful old hotel is a La Jolla landmark with its iconic mosaic tiled tower and pink stucco exterior, in the heart of La Jolla Village, and a stone’s throw from La Jolla Cove.  The charm continues inside with antique furnishings, and a wonderful restaurant, the Sky Room, perched on the 10th floor, with stunning ocean views. La Jolla itself is a charming village, with great dining and shopping, and those golden beaches are always at hand for daytime swims and sunset walks.

www.lavalencia.com

If you want some Big City treats with your beach break, there’s the sophistication of the Casa Del Mar, in Santa Monica. Truly a Grand Dame of a hotel, its seafront location is unrivalled. The sun setting behind the pier is best viewed from the hotel’s Verandah Lounge. Where you can enjoy a cocktail before a short walk to the bright lights of the city of Santa Monica. There are innumerable choices of restaurants and bars, great shopping, from 3rd St Promenade to Montana Avenue. Venice Beach is a mere hop away, with its eclectic shopping and entertainment. You could even rent a bike and cycle there along the boardwalk. After all that, you’ve earned a massage in the hotels newly renovated spa. All this for mowing your own lawn?
www.hotelcasadelmar.com

Big Apple Weekend

Nowhere in the US compares to New York for its mix of arts, culture, shopping and energy. The number of hotel

A room with a view
A room with a view

options available is staggering, and is limited only by your budget and where in Manhattan you really want to be for the action. Uptown for the galleries and museums maybe. Nearer downtown for the clubs, bars and youthful energy. The Hotel on Rivington, on the once gritty Lower East side of Manhattan, is perfectly placed for exploring downtowns shopping and nightlife. But looking at the rooms, and the stunning views they enjoy, you might just want to order room service and stay at the hotel. Walls of glass allow for eye-popping Big Apple vistas. It’s like staying in the opening sequence of Woody Allen’s ‘Manhattan’. Lie in the soaking tub, set your iPod to Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, and pop open some bubbly.
www.hotelonrivington.com

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