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Sneak Peek: Rancho Valencia

Exciting changes are about to debut at the new Rancho V


Rancho Valencia
5921 Valencia Circle
Rancho Santa Fe

On a recent hard hat tour of the hotel property in Rancho Santa Fe, I was very pleased by all the updates. While Rancho Valencia has always been an elegant place to sip cocktails around the fire, or to do the Four C’s on Thursdays (Croquet, Cocktails, Cheese and Charcuterie), the restaurant was actually a carpeted place that my grandma and her crew had long frequented for boozey brunches. Now, it has received more than one “hip” replacement. For one thing, there is a Damien Hirst piece hanging on the back wall, full of real butterfly wings. Hirst—he of the crystal-encrusted skulls—is not your average grandma’s artist.

The patio area has expanded and the bar is supercool. It is now called the Pony Room, and it will have 100 tequilas and regular wine tastings. There’s also the Sunrise Room (name pending) and a wine cellar, both great for private parties. That cellar doubles as a wine tasting room and opens up to a back patio. A ballroom next door has received a brilliant makeover and a neighboring bridal suite (for getting ready) features an actual salon chair and plush seating for idle bridesmaids.

The spa & fitness center is getting redone, bigtime. In fact, one long-term goal of Rancho Valencia is to be a world-class yoga destination. They’re working on a Pilates and spin center, too. And don’t forget the 18 plexiglass tennis courts.

Need to crash? Some of the casitas and suites are pimped out with things like heated toilet seats, organic Amala products, outdoor fireplaces, and Jacuzzis. My personal favorite is the three-bedroom hacienda, but that’s $5,000 a night, so it’s safe to say I will never be crashing there.

Next year, RV will be bottling their own olive oil, and they'll have six beehives so they can produce their own honey. They’ll also establish their own garden, although for now, they’re settling for Chino’s. ;)

Opens officially on October 19.

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