Travel & Hotels

Montage Laguna Beach

Mosaic Pool

Call it local-itis but my first exposure to the Montage brand was in Beverly Hills. I was thrilled when a dear friend was hired to handle sales for the property. My friend has excellent taste and the property is one of the best in the city. However, the original Montage resort is actually in Laguna Beach. The Beverly Hills property was the first location they started planning, but rights procurement took quite a while longer and the development of Laguna moved quickly and was ready to go. Thus spawned one of the great luxury hospitality brands of the west coast. Founder and CEO Alan Fuerstman whose vision of outstanding service, paired with casual elegance set in some of the most desirable locations in the western United States, is delivered by his team of outstanding service professionals. The staff members at Montage Laguna Beach are exceptionally good at what they do. From the moment you pull into valet you are greeted as an important guest and the authentic friendliness is off the charts. They all have a happy, positive, can-do/will-do attitude that sets the tone for a wonderful stay.

In addition to the warm, welcoming feeling delivered by the staff, the property is incredibly well built. It sits ocean-side on the south end of Laguna Beach, not too far from the center of town. The property is a former trailer park, and is now a stunning Craftsman-style resort with bunnies, beaches, five-star dining, and a spa and health program to improve all bodies. While it might have humble roots, the property now is first class. Dining, spa treatments, and beautiful rooms delight guests.

Executive Chef Craig Strong. Photo by: David Tosti

If you are going to plan a trip to the Montage, be sure to allow time in your schedule and room in your appetite for great dining. You’ll surely get to know the Lobby Lounge, as it’s the central meeting point for the entire hotel. The ocean-side, five-star restaurant is called Studio and it’s truly a special place offering exquisite cuisine. The restaurant has it’s own garden and manages to grow herbs and other greens. Off of the grand open kitchen sits a chef’s table that is perfect for being a part of the kitchen.

The best way to experience Studio is the tasting menu with wine pairings. Put yourself in the hands of the dining professionals including executive chef Craig Strong and sommelier Paul Coker. Each dish features creative uses of best-of-the-season ingredients such as Strawberry Gazpacho paired with Paco & Lola Albariño, Rías Baixas, Spain 2010. The dish takes a fun twist on a summer favorite with delightful results. Another tasting menu standout is the Seared Veal Tenderloin paired with Casa Lapostolle, BOROBO, Rapel and Casablanca Valleys, Chile 2005. The kitchen will also accommodate vegan and vegetarian guests.

The main restaurant for Montage is called The Loft. It’s where you would go to lunch or brunch or a fantastic dinner. In addition to creative cuisine, The Loft offers spirited cocktails mixed with the latest techniques and season’s best flavors. Standouts at The Loft include the wine list as selected by Sommellier Gary Sullivan and the shrimp cocktail — huge shrimp with zesty sauce.

If you love great hotels then put yourself in the hands of the consummate professionals at Montage Laguna Beach. From floor to ceiling, valet to General Manager, first course to dessert everything is perfect at Montage. We can’t wait to go back!

30801 Coast Highway, Laguna Beach, CA 92651  (949) 715-6000
www.montagelagunabeach.com

Studio Garden – Marigolds and Opal Basil. Photo by: Karyn Millet

Spa Montage is the perfect place to check in and focus on maintaining your health and wellness. The spa offers more than just massage and facials. The staff members at the spa are all exceptionally trained and also possess that Montage-level of customer service. They take a genuine interest in your personal health needs and customize your treatment to work with your specific goals. They know their way around the human body and offer treatments, wisdom and advice to their clientele. The following is advice from Lyndsey at Spa Montage.

Dry Body Brushing
Use quick, brisk strokes. Apply pressure that is comfortable for you and brush up, towards the heart. Once at chest, brush out towards the lymph. Do it daily before bathing and finish with a cold-water rinse. Body brushing stimulates and increases blood circulation and helps rid the body of toxins taking stress off the colon, kidneys and lungs. When used daily, dry body brushing is effective in reducing cellulite deposits.

Eating Right — Acid Versus Alkaline
The body tries to keep a balance of blood pH at 7.365 — a slightly alkaline pH. The body works to maintain this balance and it has to work harder when we live an acid lifestyle. Your body produces acid when you have stress, upset emotions and when the food you eat is acid-forming. One way to help your body is to eat foods that are alkaline-producing.

High Alkaline Foods
Asparagus, Onions, Vegetable Juices, Parsley, Raw Spinach, Broccoli, Garlic, Barley Grass, Lemons, Watermelon, Limes, Grapefruit, Mangoes, Papayas, Olive Oil, Herb Teas, Lemon Water, Stevia.

High Acid Foods
Blueberries, Cranberries, Prunes, Sweetened Fruit Juice, Wheat, White Bread, Pastries, Biscuits, Pasta, Beef, Pork, Shellfish, Cheese, Homogenized Milk, Ice Cream, Custard, Peanuts, Walnuts, Beer, Liquor, Soft Drinks, Artificial Sweeteners, Chocolate.

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