The holidays are coming and your nerves aren't quite ready for the bustling milieu of holidays past. You may have put on pants and gone out for dinner, but a full-fledged family gathering? That's a different animal. The past 20 months have you tired of your home and unaccustomed to other humans at the same time. Perhaps what you need is a pre-cation. A little "me time" or "us time" to soothe your soul and prepare you for the festivities to come.
Look no farther than Dream Inn, a swanky hotel on the beachfront of a sleepy oceanside town, to cradle your cares and put you at ease. Redesigned by Arcsine's modern miracle-workers, Dream Inn offers a retro surfer vibe that is chill, classy, clean, and calm. It was, in fact, the perfect home-away-from-home for a local friend of mine who needed to work from home away from home. All rooms include an ocean-facing patio or balcony, complimentary wifi, coffee and mini fridge, and a safe to lock up that laptop when you're not catching up on emails or booking holiday flights.
The 100-year-old wharf and carefree Santa Cruz boardwalk are just out the back door (no driving required), along with miles of sun-warmed beach. Spending time breathing and basking in the waves of the ocean is proven the soothe the body and calm the mind as your brain waves shift toward rest. The positive ions of ocean water quiet inner activity, evoking a restful state and even enhancing sleep. It's also just nice to look at, whether you're sitting on a blanket, standing on a paddle board, or staring down from the pier as the waves lap the pilings and the sea lions whimper.
Dream Inn sits on the site of Jack O’Neill’s first surf shop, which is where they get the name for their airy ocean-view eatery, the Jack O'Neill Restaurant. Enjoy all of the flavor and none of the fuss with locally-grown and sustainably-sourced meals comprised of fresh seasonal ingredients. Start off with killer cocktails that balance sweet, sour, and spirit to a tee—from a smokey Oaxacan mezcal Old Fashioned to a refreshing Sea Odyssey. Start with a seasonal soup or savory flatbread that showcases the local farmer's fare, including heirloom veggies, fresh herbs, and local cheeses. Then choose from a selection of entrees, such as duck breast with roasted root vegetables, baked ravioli in citrus and brown butter, grilled lamb chop, and of course, fresh seafood. Finish with a seasonal cheesecake or decadent pumpkin mousse.
Mornings are a breeze—literally— as you wake up to the sound of waves crashing on the shore. There's fresh Verve Coffee and locally-baked pastries in the lobby coffee or a large selection of breakfast items at Jack O'Neill. Whether you're working from home or totally off the clock, start the day with a stroll down the beach or a dip in the pool, rent a cruiser to ride along the boardwalk, or simply swing open the shades and spend a long morning in bed.
You may just find that you want to forego the holidays altogether and keep it calm and cozy in sunny Santa Cruz. If so, you're more than welcome as a long-time guest or frequent friend at Dream Inn.
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