BOOKING

Assessment: Alila Marea Seaside Resort Encinitas

Whereas the Alila Marea Seaside Resort Encinitas represents an awesome worth for Hyatt loyalists and presents many engaging facilities, my keep at this beachside resort will probably be my one and solely.

Alila Marea Seaside Resort Encinitas Assessment

I used to be very excited to do this resort, which opened in 2021 and is a part of a resort model that additionally consists of the very good Alila Ventana Massive Sur in California, a resort my spouse Heidi and I each love. Heidi gave me the right excuse to guide an evening right here: she had an appointment in Encinitas only a couple miles down the highway from the resort. We debated whether or not to make it a date evening or carry the children alongside, however determined to carry the children due to the pool and seaside location.

Reserving

This resort shouldn’t be low cost…a base room was operating $650 for our Friday evening keep. I might have used a confirmed suite improve to verify us into a collection, as my two kids can be coming alongside, however determined to roll my cube with a complimentary elite improve since we have been solely staying for one evening.

This resort is at the moment a Class 6 property within the World of Hyatt program, that means a free evening ranges from 21,000 (off-peak) to 29,000 (peak) factors per evening. On March 22, 2022, it can transfer to a Class 7, topping out at 35,000 factors per evening. Our keep, in February 2022, was throughout a normal interval, which value 25,000 factors per evening. We felt that was an awesome worth, contemplating it included $52 valet parking (with complimentary electrical charging).

As a Hyatt Globalist, my $50 resort payment was additionally waived and I acquired free breakfast for my total household.

Verify-In

We left Los Angeles after my son Augustine completed kindergarten for the day and arrived round 4:00pm. The resort is off of I-5, a few mile down the highway on the intersection of La Costa Avenue and US-101. The resort shouldn’t be secluded down a protracted driveway, however immediately off of the road.

A valet took my automobile and in addition gave me a declare ticket for our luggage within the trunk.

Inside, I used to be warmly greeted by a number named Kevin, who welcomed me to the property and rapidly checked me in. He additionally knowledgeable me I had been upgraded to a king mattress studio suite with a shoreline View and a hearth pit, which was going for $852/evening.

The foyer is small, with just a few chairs and the check-in desk, the place I used to be invited to take a seat all the way down to check-in. Our room, 135, was positioned on the primary degree (one flooring up from foyer) and down a protracted hallway. We observed the fitness center was positioned immediately throughout from our room. Extra on that in a bit…

Visitor Room

Despite the fact that we didn’t have a collection, the room was massive, with a really comfy mattress within the heart, a sofa in entrance of the mattress, one other sofa on the facet of the mattress, and a spherical desk with chairs within the nook.

The lavatory was big, with a full-size bathtub, walk-in bathe sufficiently big for a celebration, and even a separate “powder” space.

Toiletries have been from VOTARY and I actually appreciated the rosemary and chia scent (plus the distinctive toothpaste-like tubes).

Different toiletries like mouthwash and dental kits have been proactively offered:

However maybe the spotlight of the room was the beautiful terrace outdoors, which included a U-shaped sofa (additionally sufficiently big for a celebration) and a hearth pit. 

Whereas we might see the ocean from the room, we might additionally look over into our neighbors patio and our major view was of the car parking zone under.

After all the terrace was a little bit of a hazard for little Claire Marie, who likes to climb.

A few different issues I appreciated. There was a pleasant Nespresso espresso machine that we took full benefit of and I appreciated the cups within the room (not the Nespresso espresso cups, however the bigger espresso cups). Plus, there was a Fellow Stagg sizzling water kettle, the identical one now we have at residence.

Along with espresso, a number of tea was out there.

Water was in cans quite than bottles.

Aside from two cans of onerous seltzer made in close by San Diego, the fridge was empty.

Two robes have been within the closet and I did use one once we went swimming.

Total, I used to be actually happy with the room itself and grateful for the improve.

Health Middle

Immediately throughout from our room was the resort’s 24/7 health heart, which options a superb number of tools from TechnoGym in addition to drugs balls, kettle bells, and even a pair Peloton bikes.

My spouse and I loved a very good exercise…and so did one other visitor at 5:00am within the morning. We have been jolted awake by an incredible thud on the bottom. Seconds later we heard it once more. At first I had no concept what it was, then it dawned on me that some dude was heavy lifting in there.

That’s an actual drawback as a result of I couldn’t get again to sleep and two partitions and a hallway did little to maintain the noise out. It fortunately continued for less than 10 minutes, however the harm was carried out when it comes to my magnificence sleep.

Pool

The pool is on the small facet, additionally positioned on the primary flooring down the corridor from my room and the health heart, however the jacuzzi is massive. Children love swimming pools and Augustine was so excited to leap proper in. We ended up entering into that evening, once more within the morning, and as soon as extra within the afternoon earlier than we left.

 

I chucked on the image under: you may see a home immediately adjoining to the property. Are you able to think about having a luxurious resort pool constructed in your property line? 

Cabanas have been out there for hire whereas seating round a hearth pit or on seaside chairs might be claimed on a first-come, first-served foundation.

Seaside

Past the pool is a walkway straddling the property line together with an entry level to the seaside. Seashores are public in California, although I didn’t see many individuals availing themselves to the seaside throughout my keep.

Vaga Restaurant

Vaga Bar

I met an Award Skilled shopper for a gathering on the resort bar to debate his journey plans for the 12 months and we loved a pleasant chat whereas watching the sundown and sipping a cocktail. The bar grew to become very busy at 5:00pm.

Right here’s the total menu for the bar:

I ordered a Sunday Namaste, with gin, basil, fennel, lemon, and grapefruit however was disillusioned by it: I didn’t see or style the basil and it appeared to be garnished with dill quite than fennel.

Nonetheless, the sundown was stunning:

Dinner At Vaga

In a while, my household had dinner at Vega, which everybody I spoke to about this property raved about. The idea is attention-grabbing right here: a fusion between Mexican and Indian meals (a minimum of that was my take). The chef is Claudette Zepeda, a neighborhood.

Earlier than the dinner rush.

The dinner menu:

We ordered bread to begin in addition to some crispy roots and a mushroom & tuna tostada. Each appetizers have been unremarkable and I used to be notably sad wit the “crispy roots” which was predominantly potatoes. $16 for a small bowl of potatoes? Stunning presentation, although.

The tostada was tasty, however as soon as once more just a few bites for $20…I don’t thoughts splurging every now and then for a pleasant dinner, however it wasn’t worthwhile.

For our essential programs, the children break up a smoked half hen, Heidi ordered sea bass, and I ordered a lamb shank.

We actually loved the principle programs and the meals actually was distinctive. My lamb shank, for instance, had pasilla curry (a powerful Indian taste) with vaquita beans (a powerful Mexican taste). One balanced the opposite properly, making for a tasty juxtaposition of flavors. 

Heidi’s sea bass was additionally very tasty and the child’s smoked hen had a really wealthy taste with a pleasant candy potato slaw (and seemed extra like duck than hen). In contrast to the small appetizer parts, the parts have been very massive and filling.

This isn’t an idea I’d ever care to re-create at residence, however I appreciated the trouble and creativeness. It was a enjoyable dinner.

Breakfast At Vaga

We returned to Vega for breakfast round 8:30am and encountered no await a desk. 

The breakfast menu:

And right here’s my first main gripe concerning the property. 

It wasn’t the shortage of contemporary orange juice (although there’s no excuse for that both).

I ordered a cappuccino immediately and was informed that the espresso machine was damaged.

Hmm, okay…that occurs. Understanding there was a espresso store downstairs, I requested if they may ship one up from there.

Nope. Not doable.

“I’m sorry sir, we are able to’t do this.”

Oh, the poor little millennial didn’t get his espresso. Cue the violin the scale of a espresso tamper.

For those who’re even a semi-frequent reader of the weblog, you know the way necessary espresso is to me. It’s one of many small joys of life that is essential to my every day life.

And once I keep in a resort room that runs $852/evening, I consider I moderately anticipate a cappuccino or flat white with breakfast, particularly when it’s out there on the premises.

I needed to make do with black espresso, which wasn’t horrible…however actually not the identical.

Maybe I used to be influenced by the (lack of) espresso, however the one factor I actually loved from breakfast was the tres leches French Toast, which was completely topped with whipped cream, poached pears, and a cinnamon glaze.

We additionally ordered the shakshuka, which is mostly one among my favourite breakfast dishes, however I discovered tomatoes far too acidic and the herbs had a garam masala taste that overpowered all the pieces.

The youngsters ordered bacons and eggs a la carte and the fruit plate was very good.

We racked up a $126 invoice, however it was taken off utterly once we checked out. We have been by no means knowledgeable of the resort’s particular breakfast coverage, however apparently some Globalist members have been informed breakfast consists of one drink, one essential course, and one facet.

Espresso Field

I did make it to Espresso Field, which is hip little espresso retailers that sells biking apparel and tools as effectively. 

Bless her coronary heart, the younger barista had no concept the best way to steam milk not to mention create latte artwork. She was very nice and the espresso, from close by Lofty Espresso, was excellent.

So whereas my flat white—

and cappuccino—

lacked a creative flare, the very good espresso made up for it.

The great espresso right here made me much more disillusioned the Vaga workers couldn’t discover a approach to get me some espresso with breakfast.

The Pocket

There’s a small restaurant known as The Pocket adjoining to the pool that we didn’t eat at. It’s open every day from 12:00pm to five:00pm for meals, with drinks out there till 7:00pm. Menu right here.

Bike Rental

Free bike leases can be found (to be exact, are included within the resort payment) and Heidi rented one to go to her appointment. It reminded her of Germany and she or he liked biking down the gorgeous California coast.

Alila Spa

Okay, final level. One other gripe. Persist with me right here. 

You’ll be able to assessment the spa menu right here. Massages are costly. Look, I do know I’m low cost, however even when I used to be fabulously rich I’d not drop $200+ on a therapeutic massage. No method.

The resort has a pleasant sauna. Very nice. Day-after-day at residence I exploit the sauna (in my fitness center) and it’s a essential a part of my day. Right here, I requested to make use of it and was denied.

Okay, I don’t thoughts paying for it. How a few visitor move? 

Nope.

Why not? 

It’s too crowded. If you wish to use it, it’s a must to guide a remedy. 

So house isn’t actually the issue, I simply must guide a remedy?

Yep.

To be clear, the resort was very well mannered about it. We corresponded by way of textual content they usually have been gracious albeit agency of their denial:

I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience; Nonetheless, our spa solely permits those that have a remedy booked that day to make the most of the locker rooms and spa. Additionally it is almost utterly booked at this time. Please advise if there’s the rest we might do for you as we stay at your service. Thanks for you endurance with us.

I actually can’t fault the resort for being rude: they have been exceedingly skilled. Nonetheless, not gaining access to the sauna is a deal-breaker for me…I received’t return to the resort except I can pre-arrange entry.

CONCLUSION

There’s a lot to love about this resort and I hope you discovered my assessment useful in understanding the property and its facilities. Whereas a sauna or espresso might imply nothing to you, these two issues are essential to me, particularly once I keep at a resort that prices upwards of $600/evening for a base room and is on the cusp of changing into a Class 7 resort within the World of Hyatt program. 

I hope the resort will learn this assessment and take my constructive criticism to coronary heart. This isn’t a Hyatt Place or a Hampton Inn, it’s a luxurious resort. The resort does a lot proper—however it could possibly do even higher.

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