Los Angeles – It is not too often that our ESCAPESEEKER film team secures an assignment that doesn’t require a long flight, or no flight at all.  It is even more unordinary for our next stop not to require a passport.  That’s right.  No Passport?  No Problem!  We’re going to experience what many in Los Angeles–especially Hollywood–have discovered.  A mere 1 hour and 20 minutes drive (even in traffic) and they can escape to one of the most picturesque resort town in California:  Laguna Beach.  Being a Southern California beach girl, I would even argue that it is THE MOST picturesque town in all of California.  Just ask the artists, painters, and writers who  have made it their permanent residence, and they’ll tell you, “it is an art-inspiring place to live”…a tradition that began in the 1920’s when landscape artists began to arrive, and still continues to this day. 

You may ask, where exactly do these Hollywood escapees stay when they retreat to Laguna Beach?  Of course, you’re right in assuming that they’re probably the type that treasure their privacy.  Well, let’s end the suspense now–especially since it is included in the title heading above:  MONTAGE LAGUNA BEACH!

I first discovered Montage Laguna Beach, a Resort and Spa, back in 2007 when I was assigned by ESCAPE MAGAZINE to review the luxury resort.  Lucky for me, ESCAPE MAGAZINE only assigned me the 5-star variety!  The high end magazine was particularly interested in why/how it had become such a popular retreat amongst Hollywood A-listers…especially since many of its own readership are well-healed, high-profile individuals who also appreciate being incognito.  So I arrived prepared and  determined to find out!

In preparing for our filming assignment, I dug up my 2007 review and the memories just came rushing back. Frankly, I need to share this experience with you so you’ll understand why we’ve elected to return…this time  to capture it in moving pictures  (as in high-def cinematography).   It’s interesting isn’t it?  We often travel thousands and thousands of miles to find the perfect escape…without realizing that sometimes it is just right down the road!

Oh by the way, I’ve visited the Montage Laguna Beach again recently…just to make sure it was exactly as I remembered.  And, guess the answer?  Almost.  STUDIO, its award-winning restaurant, now has a new award-winning chef.  Now, I’m even more eager to try it out…you know how it is with us travel writers…we love doing comparative studies.

Why not see for yourself why so many guests return, and why even the locals call Montage Laguna Beach a “self-contained work of art.”


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