Pursuitist takes an exclusive look inside the luxurious Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel Resort in Dana Point, California. Located between Los Angeles and San Diego, discover why this surfside Orange County retreat has boasted AAA Five Diamond status for 30 consecutive years.

Luxury travel is elevated at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel Resort, which is perched atop a lush 150-foot bluff. Offering unforgettable views, this idyllic oceanfront escape truly honors its naturally beautiful surroundings. Courtesy of the property’s friendly and professional staff, guests feel at home in the casual yet refined atmosphere.

The premiere luxury vacation destination threw its doors open thirty years ago to become one of the best oceanfront resorts in Orange County. Take a look inside this stunning property:

Overview

The resort has undergone many changes over the years, with the most recent being a multi-year, multi-million dollar transformation that gives the property a fresh, contemporary look and re-imagined personality.

As we reached the crown jewel of the California Riviera, a stylish entrance befitting a resort ranked among the finest in the world welcomed us.

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The unique, resort-style hotel in the midst of the distinguished Dana Point neighborhood is home to 396 guestrooms (including 29 spacious suites and 367 guestrooms) which have been redesigned with décor that reflects the sparkle of the Pacific Ocean.

Suites and Rooms

The Ritz-Carlton Suite defines luxury living by offering 1,550 square feet of space to relax and enjoy. The suite also offers privileges like full use of the Ritz-Carlton Spa facilities, including preferred appointment times and VIP housekeeping services too.

However, every guestroom also glows luxury with the unique features and amenities that include plush, goose-down comforters and pillows, luxurious 400-count Egyptian cotton sheets, 42” LED flat-screen 1080p HDTV as well as DVD players. The full marble bathrooms are fitted with double sinks in most rooms. The patios of first floor oceanfront guestrooms feature outdoor fireplaces.

Dining

Located on the coast of Dana Point, The Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel offers an extraordinary selection of fine oceanfront restaurants, bars and cafés. Our favorite was Raya, as they have a fantastic kid’s menu along with the Pan-Latin Coastal cuisine. The Pacific Ocean sunset never disappoints.

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enoSTEAK welcomes for dinner with prime, grass-fed, pasture-raised beef, local organic and seasonal produce, artisanal cheeses, charcuterie and unique, fine wines.

We also indulged at the lovely 180blũ, which is a bluff top oceanfront dining lounge featuring panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean.

At 180blũ, we were treated to a perfect Southern California experience as we sipped on refreshing hand-crafted cocktails and nibbled from small plates from Raya. Nature too served us with a little slice of heaven on earth!

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Spa

Resting, relaxing and rejuvenation was a integral part of our stay. We indulged in the best luxury treatments inspired by the sea at one of the 12 luxurious treatment rooms at The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Laguna Niguel. Addressing the individual needs of each guest, all therapies are designed to nurture body and mind, enliven the spirit, and uncover nature’s beauty. Essential elements from the ocean bring life, well-being, and new beginnings with rich minerals, sea salt, algae and water. The Spa therapist also assists in creating your own skin care products at home.

Activities

When feeling too lazy to visit the ocean front, we splashed and relaxed in the water at the two outdoor swimming pools, including the family-friendly lagoon-style Dana Pool and two whirlpools. The recent makeover is evident in the form of enhanced gardens and grounds.

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Eco-Adventure Center

The new Eco-Adventure Center is a paradise for guests who are craving some action and adventure. Led by expert naturalists, adults, families and kids learn through immersive nature experiences, instilling deep appreciation and a respect for the environment. While kid’s programs are designed for children between the ages of 5 and 8, youth programs are meant to engage children between the ages of 9 and 16. We also braced ourselves to experience the biggest show on earth with a whale watching excursion and discovered why Dana Point is the Whale Capital of the West.

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Surfing And Recreation

We tried our hands at Stand-Up Paddle Boarding, which is a bit of surfing blended with kayaking. Before taking a leisurely paddle in the Dana Point Harbor or Laguna Beach, a private group instruction was given upon arrival. We were also enlightened about the abundant marine life of Southern California, as well as its spectacular coast line. This activity doesn’t require any previous paddling experience, except for getting used to wet feet. The SUP lesson included 2 hours of private instruction by a CPR/First Aid certified instructor and all equipment.

Other activities include surfing, body boarding, beach olympics, scavenger hunts and exploring the shore. Thrill seekers looking for an adrenaline rush can hit the waves for some fun in the sun!

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Ritz Kids

The hotel wows its youngest guests with an immersive and adventurous Ritz Kids resort experiences. As a parent of two lovely girls, I was glad to know that the hotel has rolled out a diverse collection of activities based on the four fundamental elements – water, land, environmental responsibility and culture. All activities are designed to inspire young ones of various age groups with everything from coral reefs and forests, to recycling and sustainability, storytelling, art and even food.

Ritz-Carlton Club

A dedicated Concierge attends to the individual needs of guests in a well-appointed, relaxed lounge environment at The Ritz-Carlton Club. It serves as an ideal place to conduct business, plan a family outing or simply unwind.

Meetings And Events

The luxurious property also raises the standard for celebrations, weddings, meeting and corporate events with award-winning facilities that pair ideal venues with impeccable service. Sign a deal or raise a toast to celebrate at 18 function rooms designed to accommodate groups from two to 900 guests, over 26,224 square feet of indoor conference and banquet space, along with nearly 54,000 square feet of outdoor space, graced with garden courtyards, pool terraces, and oceanfront lawns.

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The official badge for Pursuitist PlatinumBeing a pet friendly hotel, the guests include four legged friends too. However to respect the rest of the guests, pets are not allowed in the hotel’s restaurants, the Bar, the Fitness Center and Spa, the Pool Areas or The Ritz Carlton Club Level lounge.

At The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, settle into the gentle Southern California atmosphere and discover true relaxation and comfort. The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, California is a Pursuitist Platinum destination.

Also read: Explore The Best Things To Do In Laguna Beach.