People often do things in hotels that they would never do in their own homes, such as sleep soundly, watch Marley & Me, or let the kids drink as much shampoo as they want. Let loose with today's Groupon: for $299, you get a two-night stay and vacation package for two at the Historic Hermosa Hotel & Catalina Cottages, located in Avalon on Santa Catalina Island (up to a $677 total value). Trips must be booked within the next two months. The package includes the following:
- Two roundtrip tickets on the Catalina Flyer from the Balboa Pavilion in Newport Beach (up to a $68 value each)
- Two night-stay for two in a standard room or cottage at the Historic Hermosa Hotel & Catalina Cottages (up to a $347 value, including tax)
- Snorkeling tour for two with Snorkeling Catalina or half-day bike rental option for two (up to a $170 value)
- Two tickets to the Catalina Island Museum (up to a $5 value each)
- Two tickets to the Wrigley Memorial & Botanical Gardens (up to a $7 value each)
A haven for generations of island beachcombers since opening its doors in 1896, the Historic Hermosa Hotel & Catalina Cottages offers accommodations near the inviting eddies of Avalon Bay. Wayfarers depart the mainland aboard the Catalina Flyer, the object of longing stares from merfolk as they commute to their undersea jobs in kelp factories. Drop anchor in one of Hermosa's standard rooms or cottages, each festooned with a private bathroom, one or two beds, and a cable TV that chirps out updates from the landlocked broadcasters. Guests can head out to explore the beachfront or cruise the lobby's free WiFi to keep up with sports scores, sports news, and the horoscopes of sports stars.
Beyond the cozy confines of the Hermosa Hotel, islesplorers can plunge into the clear waters of Lover's Cove for one hour of guided snorkeling followed by a second hour of unchaperoned diving for duos to frolic at their own pace and engage fish in bubbly conversations. Or, two-wheeling enthusiasts can spend a half-day coasting through the island to take in the sights. Touring tandems can uncover the island's history at the Catalina Island Museum and stroll through the botanical garden, where more than 25 acres overwhelm eyes with an array of rare and endangered plants.
Historic Hermosa Hotel & Catalina Cottages
Since opening in 1896, Historic Hermosa Hotel & Catalina Cottages has welcomed weary travelers strolling along the ocean while maintaining a commitment to simplicity and nostalgic charm. The main building hosts three levels of Victorian bay windows and balconies, which overlook the island's far-off mountains and tempt patrons to paint sweeping landscapes or blackmail the sun with pictures of it rising late. Villa archways and burnt-sienna steps lead guests upwards to three levels of studio-style cottages shaded by the blossoming limbs of overhanging trees. After settling into cable- and WiFi-equipped rooms, visitors follow the pied-puttering of golf carts to museums, gardens, and local attractions throughout the bayside resort town. The knowledgeable hotel staff organizes adventures such as zipline tours, bike rentals, and snorkeling tours, which allow guests to brush up on languages rarely used when speaking to aquarium-dwelling fish.