Intimate Catalina Island Hotel
Located just over 20 miles off the coast of Southern California, Catalina Island is known as “the romance island” for its peaceful, honeymoon-ready atmosphere and natural beauty. Couples head here to enjoy the mountains, tucked-away coves, and ocean vistas. Hotel St. Lauren stands amid these calming sights on a parcel of land just steps from a host of water-based activities on Avalon Bay.
Up in the intimate guest rooms, Victorian accents and rosewood furnishings make for a romantic setting. Head to the patio on the sixth floor to soak up the California sunshine as you take in sweeping views of lush, green hills and the Pacific Ocean.
It might be tempting to just sit back and drink in the scenery, but not far from Hotel St. Lauren, you can explore the shore by renting a kayak or scuba gear. Avalon’s Green Pier is a good spot to go fishing, and the nearby boutiques on Crescent Avenue provide plenty of shopping opportunities.
Catalina Island is accessible via ferry, but for those who’d like to arrive in style, Groupon is offering a concurrent deal for round-trip transportation aboard the Catalina Flyer. Departing from Newport Beach, the boat features sun decks, two full-service cocktail lounges, and plenty of viewing windows. Click here for more information.
Catalina Island, California: Desert Foliage and Secluded Coves in the Pacific Ocean
Santa Catalina Island—usually shortened to Catalina Island—lies just 22 miles southwest of Los Angeles, but it’s a world away from the crowded metropolis. The island’s unpopulated interior is home to a vast array of desert foliage and wildlife, and its many secluded coves are nice places to soak up rays or snorkel among starfish, sea urchins, and bright-orange garibaldi.
Much of Catalina Island is accessible only by hiking and biking trails, but you can see many of its indigenous plants in town at the Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden. The memorial, which was constructed with blue flagstone rock from the harbor and hand-painted tiles from Catalina Pottery, is just a short drive or half-hour walk from Avalon, the island’s only major city. Take the all-levels Garden to Sky hike from here for spectacular views of the ocean.