Press Trip to the Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa | Travel Essentials and Packing Tips with the Editor


Well, let me tell you that my press trip to the Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa could not have come at a better time. Let's just say I am in major need of some TLC and I couldn't imagine anywhere else I would rather get away from it all than the Rancho Valencia.

The Rancho Valencia has garnered a name for itself over the past twenty-five years and with good reason. I have not only heard rave reviews as a San Diego local but now as an "L.A." girl. During my role as the Public Relations and Special Events Director for Rolls Royce and Bentley Beverly Hills, I worked consistently on providing exceptional hospitality to our A-List clientele with this resort always being on the top of my radar. The Rancho Valencia is known for delivering luxury, impeccable service and creating an experience that will surpass any expectations, even with the highest of standards. I am beyond excited to experience the grounds for the first time myself.

Of course, in Rich Skinny Pretty fashion, I am giving you a few tips on what to pack when you are getting ready for your Southern California getaway. Let's be real, I am looking forward to styling looks just as much as I am for the equally-exciting matched itinerary. What's on the agenda? Croquet and champagne, tequila tasting with the food & beverage director, a media dinner in the private wine cave, tennis lessons, an afternoon at the spa and there is even more lined up for the week thanks to the resort's fabulous PR team. Wow, they sure know how to treat a gal! I am planning looks for each activity which means I must plan in advance. You're not really surprised, now are you?

I am completely and utterly in love with this luggage set by Dumore. Louise Linton's collection is delicious. It's roomy, chic and the forest green is absolute perfection.

The key with packing is to make the most out of your closet and maximize accessories. That means you must limit ladies! Yes, I know sometimes it's tough to know when enough is enough but it's just not realistic to pack your entire shoe wardrobe for four days. However, that means you need to be extra selective with what you bring because we all know you don't want to be on your vacay wishing you had brought those Marni stacked pumps with you.

Hand select the right shoes for each look. I will be honest, I personally like to bring at least five to eight pairs with me for a four day trip. Why? Between flats, sandals, tennis shoes for working out and a different pair of evening shoes potentially for each night...that roughly brings us to five to eight pairs. Alternating evening shoes is just one of those things that is hard to keep to a minimum since certain looks aren't complete without a closed toed pump while another is nothing without a strappy heel. Plus, with fall upon us, ankle booties are once again a signature of the season. In addition, keep in mind your color palette. We have options like black versus cream versus metallic, etc.

With that said, I typically only bring one or two over-sized statement necklaces. Go ahead and have a field day with your rings, earrings and bracelets. They don't consume a ton of space yet they can take a day look to night in one hot minute.

Bring along two or three outerwear choices. Kick up the basic white tee a notch or update a simple LBD.

I usually count on one primary day bag and one evening bag/clutch. Possibly two clutches depending on my color palette (and also depending on available room left in my suitcase!)

Thanks to Seka Boutique in Cardiff by the Sea, Cedros Soles on Cedros Avenue and Designer Vault (best selection of vintage Chanel, seriously) I have updated my closet with some killer pieces. Major score, I scooped up this blazer pictured above thanks to Designer Vault, ummm there are no words!

O.K., so in honor of the Rancho Valencia's 25th anniversary and as the BIG year continues, there is an incredible list of 25 reasons to stay at the resort.


May I just lead this list with the fact that these little treats were not included? I mean, really? They make the top of mine!

I heard there are margarita popsicles at the spa also know as "spasicles"...I will report back ladies and gentlemen. ;)

1. Rancho Valencia was honored with AAA’s Five Diamond recognition, their newest accolade.
2. Forbes Travel Guide selected the resort as one of the few Five-Star resorts in the world.
3. New cocktails. They just launched a bevy of new beverages at The Pony Room. And each one is worthy of a sip (or two, or three…).
4. Freshly squeezed orange juice at your door. Daily!
5. The daily promise of sunset skies dotted with hot air balloons.
6.The stunning seasonal produce in this city allows their team to create incredible dishes.
7. Morning yoga. Afternoon yoga. Candlelight yoga. All in a stunning yoga pavilion straight out of Bali. Count me in!
8. Three perfectly heated saline pools.
9. The staff is at the heart of this property, and it can be seen in each and every every detail.
10. Plush, Frette robes await. Aint no party like a robe party.
11. Patio perks! Each casita opens out to a lush, private patio. Some complete with fireplaces and Jacuzzis.
12. The bathtubs are delightfully ginormous.
13. Croquet and cocktails. They do them well. And they do them together.
14. The house made toffee. If it’s your birthday, Veladora just might treat you to a taste…just saying.
15. Weddings at Rancho Valencia sparkle. Quite literally. I'm a sucker for twinkly lights!
16. Warm, friendly staff married with exceptional Relais & Châteaux service.
17. The honey used throughout the resort comes from our very own beehives. And it’s exceptionally delicious. How fantastic is this?!
18. Adventure is the resort's middle name. Take to the trails on the 50 acre property, from the waterfall to the olive grove and beyond.
19. A day without sunshine is a rarity. It’s always summer in Rancho Santa Fe.
21. The tennis options are practically endless with 18 tennis courts and 10 professionals to choose from.
22. Robin White, Tennis Director and two-time US Open Champion.
23. Complimentary Callaway Clubs are at your service 24/7.
24. The property is sprinkled with fireplaces to cozy up to, from every casita to The Pony Room, Fountain Courtyard and beyond.
25. Take a spin in a Porsche from their collection (yes!).

And I'm sure after my stay I will have 25 more reasons...


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