Getaway Blog

Classic Southern California Getaways

 As the dog days of summer count down, don’t miss what may be your Best Summer Vacation Getaway yet! From Los Angeles to San Diego, here are some of the most popular, and quintessential Southern California experiences that should be on your “Fun Bucket List.”

Los Angeles - Do you know of anyone that visits Los Angeles who doesn’t get a picture of either the iconic Hollywood sign, or of themselves by one of the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame? Check.  Universal Studios and Citywalk are so much fun and a great way to experience the essence of the movie scene in LA.  Madame Toussauds Wax Los Angeles, Hollywood, Jennifer LopezMuseum serves as home to many celebrity figures that bear an eery likeness to the real thing. Instagram op? Check.  LA also is a great option for sports fans wanting to take in an exciting game while traveling - whether it is an NBA basketball game or a professional baseball game, you can watch the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center, or the Dodgers at the world famous Dodger Stadium.  The Santa Monica Pier is also a great diversion,whether traveling with your family, or just friends. Venice Beach offers a world of people watching.  Whether you are into celebrity sightings, thrill rides, NBA or pro baseball, LA has it all, and then some.

Orange County – This region includes Anaheim, home of the famous home of Mickey Mouse…Disneyland Resort, and Disney’s California Adventure which remain to be twoDisneyland, Southern California, Anaheim, Mickey Mouse of the most popular SoCal attractions.  Newport Beach serves as home to the amazing Fashion Island Mall, and beautiful Balboa Island which is a gem, and a special place you can either drive, walk, bike, or take the Balboa Island Ferry to get to.  And then there is Laguna Beach, which is gorgeous seaside town that has evolved into a destination for art lovers that hosts world class artists, festivals and shops.  It is well known for the popular Pageant of the Masters, a one-of-a-kind theatrical “living art” performance every summer.

Then finally, San Diego, America’s Finest City, where one can plan a week’s vacation, and still not fit in all the amazing attractions and fun things to do.  From Legoland, to SeaWorld San Diego, to the world famous San Diego Zoo, San Diego is thriving withSan Diego Zoo, Pandas world renown attractions. In addition to these well known attractions, there are awesome things to experience at the USS Midway Museum and Balboa Park, aka “the Smithsonian of the West”.  And if you need to just relax or take in a round of golf, there are 70 miles of beautiful beaches for you to enjoy, and more than 90 golf courses to work on your golf game.  San Diego is truly a recreational paradise for all!

Southern California, no matter where you go, offers you sunny and moderate temperatures year round and a host of activities and attractions that will please every traveler to the region.

When you are considering your next trip for two, a family vacation consider making a trip to Southern California, and go to our California Getaway page to check out each of these cities to see all the amazing hotel getaway packages that will make for the perfect getaway. Classic Southern California Getaways are always in style. no matter what the occasion for your trip!

Shelter Island Family Vacation

What could be better than you and your family spending your summer vacation surrounded by the sparkling blue waters of San Diego’s Big Bay, on Shelter Island, San Shelter Island SummerDiego’s Marina Resort Oasis?  Shelter Island is a place where you and your family can become sailors for a day, on an exciting boat excursion.  Or you can experience the fun of a family bike ride along the harbor and maybe catch some seals sunning themselves, or feed the ducks and seagulls who love to reside in such a beautiful coastal environment.  For some added thrills, enjoy a sportfishing excursion and catch a host of Pacific fish like Yellowtail, Albacore, Halibut, Dorado and Calico Bass.  Or, plan your Big Bay Vacation around a fantastic summer concert at Humphrey’s Concerts by the Bay, which attracts nationally known comedians and musicians.  There are so many things to do on Shelter Island, you may not want to leave your hotel or the Island!

There are four very distinctive and unique hotels on Shelter Island for your family getaway.  The Bay Club Hotel and Marina which features unforgettable waterfront views; Kona Kai Resort, Spa and Marina, which is beautifully located at the very tip of Shelter Island; Humphrey’s Half Moon Inn & Suites, a tropical-island style hotel; and Island Palms Hotel & Marina, which features stunning views of San Diego Bay and their very own private mega Humphreys Outdoor Concertsyacht marina.
If you do want to experience some of San Diego’s finest attractions during your stay, Shelter Island is only minutes away from San Diego’s most popular attractions like SeaWorld, Old Town State Park, Seaport Village, the Downtown Gaslamp Quarter and the world famous San Diego Zoo.  There are so many iconic and popular attractions in San Diego to experience that the only problem you may have, is deciding what to do during your vacation.
The 4 premier hotels on Shelter Island are ready to welcome you and your family for your own Big Bay Vacation. Book your San Diego trip today at the Kona Kai Resort, Spa & MarinaIsland Palms Hotel & MarinaThe Bay Club Hotel & Marina or Humphreys Half Moon Inn & Suites.

Top 5 Cinco de Mayo Getaways

Cinco de Mayo celebrations commemorate the victory of the Mexican militia over the French army at The Battle Of Puebla in 1862. This celebration includes eating, drinking and dancing all things Mexican and is right around the corner.  Widely celebrated in the USA due to the large hispanic population, this Fifth Day of the month of May has caught on throughout the United States and many of us mistakenly believe this day to be Mexican Independence Day (actually the 16th of September.) The North American “Fiesta” includes sombrero-clad Mariachi (men and women) playing guitars, trumpets and other instruments to accompany Baile Folkloric dancers. These beautiful “Damas” or ladies play their castañets dressed in colorful regional dresses native to the region they represented in Mexico. Red, white and green are the highlighted festival colors which commemorate the National Flag of Mexico. Some of the culinary delights include tamales, empañadas, tacos, savory and sweet candies. Of course no fiesta is complete without tequila,  ice-cold cervezas and Margaritas. ¡Vamanos! Let’s Go!

We thought we would highlight five of the best places for a Cinco de Mayo Getaway in the USA!  Here are a few great getaway packages for each city.

San Diego, California

Old Town San Diego, known as the “Birthplace of California” will host the 30th Annual Old Town Cinco de Mayo Fiesta in Old Town State Historic Park along San Diego Avenue. This vibrant and free festival features multiple stages featuring live music, Mexican dancers, musicians, entertainment and family-friendly activities. The Bazaar del Mundo Shops in Old Town will showcase authentic and handcrafted specialty goods, Mexican food, folklore and fun. So many great places to stay and choose from in our  San Diego Getaway Packages for a fiesta weekend in San Diego!

Los Angeles, California

Fiesta Broadway 2013 kicks off the Cinco de Mayo celebration on Sunday, April 28th at Grand Park in Los Angeles. The festival is touted to be the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration amongst the latino population in the United States. Over 500,000 festival-goers enjoy a huge exhibit of Latino-inspired entertainment, food stalls, craft exhibits and more. Pick your favorite Los Angeles Getaway package and come join the fun in LA!

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago celebrates Cinco de Mayo by hosting a community celebration in the Little Village neighborhood which features traditional mexican food, live music, arts & crafts and activities for kids and families. Bring your family to this fun Little Village Cinco de Mayo Celebration. In addition to this festival, many of Chicago’s well known and popular restaurants will also celebrate the holiday and offer their own celebrations, specials and fun for the occasion. The Windy City options are fantastic – check out our Chicago Getaway Packages.

Portland, Oregon

Voted 2012’s Ovation Award for Best Cultural and Heritage Festival in the State of Oregon, Portland’s Annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta is presented by the Portland Guadalajara Sister City Association. This event attracts over 300,000 visitors and a significant part of the celebration lies around the city’s connection as a sister city to Guadalajara, Mexico. The festival’s agenda includes a traditional Mariachi Mass, Fire Dancers, a carnival, live butterfly exhibit, flash mob as well as an artisan’s village where unique art and handcrafted specialty goods will be displayed. The acclaimed Heathman Hotel has some incredible Portland Getaway Packages to choose from!

Denver, Colorado

Denver serves as home to a significant Hispanic population and with it, comes one of the largest Cinco de Mayo celebrations in the United States. Musicians, dancers, mariachi bands and a family-friendly carnival are the highlights of this vibrant and exciting festival. Tantalizing culinary delights will be served throughout the festival, along with an annual green chili cook-off that will take place between local restaurants. Over 450,000 attendees are expected at this music-centric event. Great Denver Getaway Packages are offered at the Oxford Hotel right in downtown Denver!


San Diego Summer Getaways

Who says summer has to come to an end? San Diego is famous for its endless summer with its sunny, temperate weather year round. Whichever way you are looking to relax, San Diego’s distinct neighborhoods have so many fun holiday options to choose from. Check out some of the more popular districts including Old Town, Gaslamp, Carlsbad/Encinitas, Mission Valley, and Shelter Island. No matter which favorite neighborhood you pick, Getaway Packages has the perfect Endless Summer holiday package for you.

See San Diego Getaway: Town and Country Resort Hotel, San Diego

The Town and Country hotel has long been a landmark for tourism since its doors opened in the early 1950s. The tropical landscape and friendly staff provide a truly memorable experience. The award-winning resort is centrally located in the heart of San Diego and ideal for sightseeing. Balboa Park, Old Town, Downtown, and the beach are all minutes away!

Package Includes:
  • One night stay at the Town and Country Resort Hotel
  • Breakfast buffet
  • Reduced parking
  • 2 adult tickets to the Old Town Trolley
  • Value-pack with discounts to the spa, outlets and San Diego attractions.

Legoland Hopper Package: Hilton Garden Inn, Carlsbad 

Pack up the car and travel up the San Diego coast to Carlsbad. Carlsbad is home to kid-friendly entertainment park, Legoland. The park is every Lego builders dream and is packed full of rides and attractions for guests of all ages. Explore Minliand USA and travel the country.  Visit Las Vegas, New Orleans, New York and Washington, DC, to name a few.  And don’t forget to pack your bathing suits because the water park is now open!

Package Includes:
  • Deluxe Accommodations
  • Two Adults & two Children two-day Legoland Hopper Tickets (Admissions to Legoland Park and Sealife Aquarium)
  • Daily breakfast for 2 adults and 2 children
  • Complimentary transportation to and from Legoland

San Diego Balance Girls Getaway Package: Manchester Grand Hyatt, San Diego

Get your friends together for a memorable girls getaway weekend. The Manchester Grand   Hyatt in Downtown San Diego is just steps away from the vibrant Gaslamp District. After a day power shopping, all the girls will be ready for a little rest and relaxation. Plan a recovery day of pampering at the resort’s spa.

Package Includes:
  • Two 60 minute massages for the price of one

Drive To Hawaii Package: Shelter Island, San Diego

Experience San Diego and Hawaii in the same vacation when you book one of our Drive to Hawaii vacation packages. Skip the long flight and the jet lag, while still enjoying an island holiday. Shelter Island offers a variety of water sports and summer activities. Starting at just $139, select from four resorts on Shelter Island as your vacation designation. Fridays during the summer, the Kona Kai Resort celebrates the Polynesian culture with authentic, beachside luaus.

Participating Hotels :

Stay and Play Golf Getaway Package: Best Western PLUS Hacienda Hotel Old Town, San Diego

Experience the history and Mexican culture of San Diego in Historic Old Town. As you explore you will find dozens of restaurants and shops. The nearby trolley station allows you to travel easily throughout San Diego without the hassle of parking.

The Stay and Play Golf Getaway Package features one of the most beautiful golf courses in San Diego county. Salt Creek Golf Club is a links style course with a tranquil setting. It’s located adjacent to a State Wildlife preserve and at the foothills of Mt. Miguel.

Package Includes:
  • Hotel Accommodations with your choice of 1 or 2 Beds
  • Breakfast for 2 at Acapulco Restaurant
  • Green Fees for 2 with Cart at Salt Creek Golf Club
  • Bucket of Range Balls
  • Transportation for 2 to the Golf Course

You can have an endless summer in San Diego, but these vacation packages will be coming to an end soon. Book a vacation today!

4th of July Vacation Deal

Summer is finally here and the 4th of July is right around the corner. Spend Independence day with your family in San Diego. Jam packed full of theme parks, beaches, and spectacular fireworks displays, San Diego is the perfect place for you and your family.

Cool Rate Package: Best Western Hacienda in San Diego, CA.

Don’t let the 4th of July being on a Wednesday put a damper on your vacation plans. This year the Best Western Hacienda is offering a ‘Star Spangled, Cool Rate.”  From July 1-5th you and your family  can stay at the Best Western Hacienda, for a cool $129 a night! With this unbeatable rate, you can enjoy more fun filled activities with your family.

Cool Rate Package includes:
  • Beautiful guest accommodations
  • Full American breakfast for two
  • Discounted parking (50% off)

Located in the heart of Historic Old Town, as a guest, you will truly experience San Diego’s history. As you explore Old Town, you will revisit the history San Diego as you stroll through Heritage Park. If you’re feeling hungary, taste the flavor of San Diego’s Mexican cuisine in any of the dozes of restaurants, all within walking distance. Feeling adventurous? Take your family on a ghost tour of the Whaley House, which is said to be one of California’s most haunted places. As the sun sets on the 4th of July, hop on the trolley and catch Independence Day fireworks.

Fireworks Shows in San Diego
  • Big Bay Boom: Port of San Diego. This 12th annual fireworks spectacular is sure to impress. Fireworks are displayed on four barges in the San Diego Bay. The show starts at 9pm.
  • Into The Blue: Sea World San Diego.  Spend the day at Sea World San Diego and end your night with a beautiful fireworks show from inside the park. The soundtrack of this fireworks presentation features the beautiful orchestral music of Sea World’s Shamu Show, Blue Horizon. The show starts at 9:30pm
  • Mission Bay Yacht Club. Catch the 28th annual fireworks show hosted by the Mission Bay Yacht Club. The show starts at 9pm.
Don’t let this unbelievable deal pass you by. Book now!

San Diego Girls’ Getaway

San Diego, California, for a girlfriend getaway? Sign us up! We adore the thought of spending few days in one of the most beautiful cities in the United States with exquisite sunny weather, gorgeous beaches, oodles of shopping, historical sites and attractions. In fact, San Diego’s Old Town (“The Birthplace of California”) is one of our favorite places to sightsee, and its Best Western Plus Hacienda Hotel has a fun package for a bunch of gal pals to enjoy.

With this Girls Getaway Package you can enjoy:

  • Deluxe accommodations
  • Welcome margarita
  • Full American Breakfast each morning
  • Late check-out

The Best Western Plus Hacienda Hotel also offers romance, “bed and breakfast” and a clever “park and cruise” packages, where guests get accommodations before or after any cruise departing from the nearby San Diego Cruise Terminal, as well as round-trip transportation to the departure port and $6/day parking for their cars. Such a deal!

This pretty property has an Old Spanish Mission style that fits right in with historic Old Town; grounds feature lush landscaping, colorful mosaic tile and pretty courtyards. Perched on a hill, the hotel offers view of the coast and the city skyline. It makes a fabulous home base for exploring the entire San Diego area, including Balboa Park, Cabrillo National Monument, the Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego Zoo, Sea World and the Wild Animal Park.

The Vacation Gals are fans of San Diego, whether its for a girls getaway, romantic escape or family trip. They cover all sorts of travel — plus travel tips and travel gear — at

Last Minute Memorial Day Trip

Haven’t yet found that perfect vacation package for Memorial Day weekend to mark the start of the summer travel season? These last-minute trip ideas will ensure the long weekend is a memorial one at some of the hottest summer destinations in the U.S.

Yes, anything is possible. At least it is when you want to avoid taking an expensive flight to Hawaii for an island getaway. Nestled along the San Diego Bay in forever-sunny San Diego, Shelter Island is the closest you’ll get to a tropical oasis without leaving the mainland. This island enclave includes four waterfront hotels, swaying palm trees, San Diego’s most popular outdoor venue, authentic summer Polynesian luau, grassy knolls, and supreme marina and downtown views. The island-wide Drive to Hawaii packages start at $119 at each hotel and include:

  • The Bay Club Hotel & Marina – 2 night stay in a water-view room, 2 welcome tropical drinks in the lounge, welcome basket, full breakfast for 2, complimentary hotel parking
  • Humphreys Half Moon Inn & Suites – 2 nights of deluxe accommodations, welcome cocktails/beverage, tropical flowers, deluxe Luau Platter served Bayside, poolside or in your room, and 2 hours of a complimentary bike rental.
  • Best Western Island Palms Hotel & Marina – 2 nights of waterfront view accommodations, breakfast for 2 each day, welcome cocktails and appetizer, upgrade to a water front view suite with a $185 rate.
  • Kona Kai Resort Spa and Marina 2 nights of waterfront accommodations, welcome Mai Tai, Hawaiian fruit basket, a Happy Hour Pupu Plate, Guest Passport Savings Card, and a 20 percent local restaurant discounts.

San Diego's Hawaiian Isle

Stay at the iconic property that crowns San Diego’s historical center, at the Old Town State Historic Park. The Spanish-style Best Western Plus Hacienda Old Town sits along Old Town’s tallest hillside with unmatched views of the city. Their Get The Jump On Your San Diego Summer package includes:

  • Deluxe accommodations
  • Breakfast for 2
  • $25 Gas Card
  • Late check-out (3pm)
  • Bring your pet along for $20

Pet Friendly in Old Town

For the granddaddy of all Memorial Day vacations, you must stay at the granddaddy of all resorts – the Gaylord Resorts and Convention Centers. Famous for their ‘everything in one place’ approach to hospitality, you’ll find attractions, restaurants, shopping, entertainment, all under the same roof as your hotel room. At each of their four upscale resorts near Nashville, Orlando, Dallas, and Washington DC, Gaylord Hotels is offering a not-to-be-missed Memorial Day Weekend deal. Save 20 percent on rates from $179, plus receive a free atrium upgrade. Offer only valid for travel May 27-30.

 Family Getaway Packages

The Memorial Day weekend also marks the end of National Pet Friendly Month, so make sure your vacation includes your four-legged child, without the added cost. Kimpton Hotels have always felt warm and fuzzy for furry guests and have a special HosPETality Unleashed program, that includes treats, bowls, beds and toys. Other pet perks include:

  • A ‘pet psychic’ at Hotel Monaco Portland who visits monthly during their hosted wine hour.
    • Doggie bed turn down service for pets at Hotel Vintage Park in Seattle. Room service also leaves pup “sculptures” made from towels on owners’ beds during turn down.
    • “Hers and Furs Pet-icures” (side-by-side human and pet manicure) at The Muse Hotel in New York City.
Pet Friendly Hotels
National Pet Friendly Month

Martin Luther King Weekend Packages

What’s that I see in the distance? A three-day weekend celebrating Martin Luther King Day! Make it a memorable one with an escape or a mini-vacation for the entire family.  In case your travel budget needs some inspiration and assistance, here are our top picks for fun times in California that holiday weekend:

Town and County Resort, San Diego, CA
Want to see more and do more with the long weekend? Town and County Resort has it covered when you book their See San Diego Package. It comes with a 2-night stay, breakfast buffet for two, discounted parking and they’ll throw in the hottest tour ticket in town –  2 adult passes for the Old Town Trolley Tour

Ride aboard these vintage trolley cars to San Diego’s biggest attractions and neighborhoods, including Coronado, Old Town, downtown San Diego, Gaslamp Quarter, and Balboa Park. This hop-on, hop-off tour wouldn’t be complete without their animated guides who’ll deliver funny quips and interesting historical tidbits at every corner.

Town and Country Resort

Old Town Trolley

Palm Mountain Resort, Palm Springs, CA

Bring family fun to a new level when you take them on a surreal experience on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, the world’s largest rotating tramcar. This exciting ride will take you up 2.5 miles to San Jacinto Mountain State Park and Wilderness Area – that’s at an elevation of 8,516 feet! The journey – and the spectacular views that come with it – are all included with the Aerial Tramway Package at the Palm Mountain Resort, a fantastic find in this desert oasis. This package also includes a courtyard room and FREE continental breakfast at Ruby’s Diner for two adults and two children.

Palm Mountain Resort


Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Plaza Suites, Santa Clara, CA
Mo’ money, mo’ mystery. That will be your family chant when you book this value-packed package at the Plaza Suites. Fresh from  renovations, this property features two-room suites (did someone say ‘privacy’?) and comes with FREE cooked-to-order breakfast for the entire family (let someone else do the dishes for once). Starting at only $119, the Winchester Mystery House Package comes with a 1-night stay in a two-room suite, 2 adult Winchester Mystery House tickets (you can buy discount tix for the kids at the front desk), FREE breakfast and FREE evening cocktails.

If the mention of the spooky house that has stairs that ’lead to nowhere’ doesn’t get your children deliriously excited, then we don’t know what will.

Plaza Suites

Winchester Mystery House


How do you plan on celebrating this important holiday? Leave us a comment and let us know!

Labor Day Deals and Steals

Labor Day is fast approaching and many of us are still looking for that perfect getaway…. we have found some great deals especially if you want to stay the night of Labor Day and miss the traffic home. The Chaminade Resort and Spa in Santa Cruz is offering ‎50% off on Labor Day …plus breakfast for two! Stay two nights Labor Day weekend and get 50% off Labor Day….including breakfast for two. Call 800.283.6569 to book your Labor Day Weekend getaway.

The Plaza Suites Hotel in Santa Clara is also offering a great family package to Great America over Labor Day. They usually throw a great barbecue over the weekend as well around their beautiful pool so you can relax after a day at the park.

In San Diego, do not miss The Mission Valley Resort. Located freeway close to all the attractions including Sea World, Old Town and the beaches, call or book their Labor Day special rate of $85 per night. This includes complimentary parking and wi-fi.

Weekend Rate in Old Town San Diego

The Best Western Hacienda Hotel in Old Town San Diego just announced a new weekend rate of $69. This offer is valid on weekends through March and has certain restrictions. Why stay home when you can enjoy beautiful weather, Old Town sites and sounds, a plethora of Old Town dining and history and spectacular views at this famous San Diego, California attraction?