Hotel at a Glance: Lakehouse Hotel and Resort
Fresh off a multimillion-dollar renovation and a name change, Lakehouse Hotel and Resort is right on the edge of Lake San Marcos, a picturesque setting that begs to be explored. From the resort, guests can take paddleboats or kayaks out on the lake (a one-hour rental is included with this Getaway), or just sit in colorful lounge chairs and fish. A complimentary shuttle can take you all around the property, where you can also play championship golf on a Harry Rainville–designed course or take a private tennis lesson.
- Relaxation in many forms: Two pool decks have jacuzzis, lounging hammocks, and fire pits.
- Onsite dining at The Grill offers golf-course views, macadamia-crusted mahi-mahi, and skirt steak that has marinated for 36 hours. You get 20% off with this Groupon.
- Natural spa treatments include seaweed mud masks and invigorating body wraps infused with milk and honey.
- Enjoy the view from recently revamped guest rooms, which overlook the pool.
- Hot tip: The hotel holds a cocktail hour with complimentary drinks on Friday nights and a s'mores night on Saturday.
San Marcos, California: Historical, Quiet Town with Popular Breweries
San Marcos is less than an hour from downtown San Diego, making it a quick day trip from such family-friendly attractions as Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo, home to thousands of animals, including rare giant pandas.
Though it's close to San Diego, San Marcos is a relatively quiet college town (home to California State University and the University of St. Augustine) situated in a valley surrounded by rolling green hills. For dinner, be sure to browse Old California Restaurant Row, which is lined with more than a dozen old-fashioned saloons and restaurants that serve Thai, Indian, teppanyaki-style Japanese cuisine. Restaurant Row also hosts a weekly farmers' market and a seasonal hot-rod car show. Guests can also visit popular breweries, such as Stone Brewing Co., which offers tours as well as a variety of beers to sample at the bistro.