The Terranea Resort is a sight to see. Set in the sprawling neighborhood of Palos Verdes, which is a sight in itself, Terranea is a beckon for those looking for a luxury getaway in a quiet part of Los Angeles.
My husband and I have drooled over the Terranea for some time now. As fate would have it, Jeff, my travel writing husband, scored an opportunity to stay at Terranea and write a story for Ford for their Pursuit of a Happy Commute campaign.
Could this be? Pinch me now! Of course we jumped at the chance to stay just a few nights at this jewel of a resort.
It is a common misconception that you must be a mega-millionare to afford to stay at luxury hotels. It is simply not true!
Luxury Hack #1– Use the Promos.
Terranea is celebrating their 5th Anniversary and they are doing it in style. Stay 5 nights and you get $500.00 in resort credit– use code 5YEAR online. Average room rates are around $365.00 a night, and this package is available for stays all the way until May 31, 2015. If you use your money wisely, the resort credit should cover a fair amount of your meals on property, and there are plenty of good restaurants to try.
I spoke with Kevin, who is simply the best concierge you will ever meet, about what I call the “luxury hotel underground deals.” There is always a secret deal at every hotel, you just need to figure out what it is. Look for Kevin when you enter Terranea and he can hook you up.
“Most people find out about the 5th anniversary deal when they check out, and of course it is too late then,” Kevin points out to me as he hands me yet another glass of champagne.
See that is the thing about promos. Hotels will not beg you to stay at their resort for less. You have to roll up your sleeves, put on your “Go-Go Gadget” gear and go find them.
Terranea also runs great specials in their off-season, particularly the month’s of January and February. It is a bit chillier in LA during those months, but I honestly think any month you come to the Terranea you are in for a treat!
I am sure you are still thinking, “Right, but how can I actually afford the 5 nights. Have you seen my bank account?”
Hack #2 Better Your Budget.
The two biggest budget expenses are usually your housing (rent/mortgage) and/or you car expenses (payment, gas, features). It is difficult to easily alter your housing costs, but you can work on that car cost category.
Who says you need to pay luxury prices to drive a luxury car?
Since Ford put on this little shindig, we were given a new 2015 Ford Fiesta to take out for a spin during our stay at Terranea. Ford has spent many years re-engineering their brand, and they are producing some head turning vehicles now thanks to their commitment to technology.
We buzzed down the 405- if you live in LA you can sense my sarcasm in that comment- in our jet black Fiesta. With navigation and bluetooth in tow, we were able to relax and experience Ford’s version of a Happy Commute.
Want to be one of the cool kids? Trade in your fancy BMW or Mercedes for an equally luxurious car with a less than luxurious price tag. With prices ranging from $13,000-$20,000 fully loaded, you are surely going to save some Benjamin’s with the Fiesta. The price tag is just the start. Then you figure in 36 MGP on the highway and you have successfully lowered your gas bill as a bonus.
The point is this- you don’t have to give up on your dreams to stay at luxury resorts like the Terranea. You just have to think differently about how you are spending your money. Really, it is that simple.
There are so many good places to eat at Terranea. Some of my favorites are Nelson’s and Sea Beans. Nelson’s has this California cool feel about it. It sits right on the water’s edge and features an outdoor dining experience to die for. Complete with picnic tables, fire pits and huge fireplaces, Nelson’s can charm just about anyone. Oh, and the food is good too!
Here are some of my favorite food pictures from the weekend.
Sea Beans is another gem on this property. Here you can pick up snacks and order breakfast and lunch. One delicious, and quite affordable, option was the Croissant with bacon, eggs and cheese. YUM!
Sea Beans also has this amazing pancake bar every Saturday and Sunday morning outdoors where you can get just about any kind of pancakes you wish for only $10.00. This is where you take the kids.
Saving money while dining at a luxury resort is not hard to do with a little strategy.
- Bring your own snacks for poolside munching
- Budget your dinners so you can afford a few meals on property and a few meals off property at a local, aka less expensive, restaurant
- Eat breakfast either off property or bring breakfast items you can make in the room
- Always stop and buy some wine, beer, sodas and water before you arrive. Those $15 drinks can add up fast
- Talk to the concierge about any secret dining specials
- Become best friend’s with Twitter and tweet the hotel you are staying at. Challenge them to find you ways to save money during your stay
Everyday Finance Rating: High-Five or Thumbs Down
Rooms: High-Five- I loved that the windows cranked open to catch the sea breeze
Food: High-Five (Nelson’s and Sea Beans), Thumbs Down (Catalina Kitchen)
Affordability: High-Five in off-season with the 5th Anniversary Promo