Story and photos by Briana Westmacott.
What’s a hit for you when you are on vacation? Do you enjoy rest and relaxation, calm surroundings, good food and drink, activities, sports, swimming, games, the spa perhaps? It’s not often you go somewhere and have everything that you could want or need in one place. I must say, the Hyatt Regency Monterey has the bases covered and does the job at bringing it all home.
I knew the Hyatt had game right when we drove up to the facility. The grounds are beautiful, surrounded by 22 acres including the Pebble Beach owned Del Monte Golf Course. The resort boasts 550 rooms and is the largest on the Monterey Peninsula. It’s hard to compete with those stats. However, what got automatic points from me are the fresh rooms. You know right when you walk into the crisp, modern area that you’ve got a good ticket. One highlight of our suite was the rock shower with an overhead rain option. I’m always going to give bonus points for a fabulous shower.
Our room overlooked one of the Hyatt’s two swimming pools. This was just the beginning of the variety of sporting activities available during our stay. Besides the pool, the Hyatt offered table tennis, shuffleboard, foosball, a life-sized chess court, a racquet club for tennis, bicycles to take to the beach path, the golf course (of course), and a fitness center. Really, I felt like we scored. The beauty of all of this is that no matter what your game is, the Hyatt has it on site for you. After all our game playing, we headed to Knuckles Sports Bar and topped off our fun at the table that has it’s own tap (can’t beat being your own table tender!).
If your vacation strategy doesn’t involve sporty activities, the Hyatt has plenty more to offer. In the lobby, there is a wine tasting room for the local McIntyre Vineyard. We savored a round of tasting and bought a few bottles of the Pinot Noir to take home with us. They also sell s’more kits in the tasting room that you can use at the large outdoor fire pit. I suggest getting a bottle of wine and a s’more kit to take to the fireside. Of course, this is after you have dined at the restaurant on site, TusCA Ristorante. After our four-course meal at TusCA, along with the fire pit we were treated to live jazz music in the lounge. Well played by the Hyatt!
During the second night of our stay, we ventured over to the Hyatt’s sister property in the Carmel Highlands. We were motivated to visit the restaurant on that site, Pacific’s Edge. Dangling over the pristine Pacific coastline, the dining room offers quite the grand setting. I have found that good views typically do not guarantee delectable dishes, but Pacific’s Edge proved me wrong. My Yellowfin Tuna Tartare with Jalapeno-Lime Aioli was a scrumptious starter, followed by the Maine Dayboat Scallop with Dungeness Crab Whipped Potatoes that really had my mouth watering. Be sure to leave room for dessert, my Berry Shortcake with Blackberry-Cabernet Consomme was the perfect way to top off the meal. Don’t forget to linger and sample from the impressive wine list as well.
The final play for the Hyatt goes to the Accista Spa on site. I am a spa girl. It isn’t often that I skip the chance to spend time in these Zen havens. I took the opportunity to get my husband involved on this trip and booked a couples massage. We have never had a massage together before and it proved to be a positive experience. I reached total relaxation and realized my husband had too when I heard a slight snore coming from his side of the room. I always strive to be present and feel each moment of my service, but I think it was good for him to be soothed into a peaceful snooze. Bravo, Accista, you did a great job at providing us a sanctuary where we could truly unwind.
Whatever you like to have in your vacation lineup, from golf to grub, the Hyatt Monterey puts you in a position to do a little bit of everything, your playground being one of the most beautiful locations in California. One final tip, if you’re coming from Southern CA, take the Highway 1 drive along the Big Sur Coast. Those views will really knock it out of the park!