February 11, 2013 |
Ever heard of China Peak Mountain Resort in the Sierra? Well, it depends on how old you are and how long you've been skiing. The resort opened in 1958 , changed its name to Sierra Summit in 1982 and reverted to China Peak two years ago when new owners took over. Whatever the name, it's an out-of-the-way small resort in Lakeshore, Calif., about 70 miles north of Fresno between Yosemite and Sequoia-Kings Canyon national parks. Southern Californians can take advantage of a midweek package that's good through mid-March: $89 a night for a room at the inn plus a free lift ticket.
February 10, 2013 |
Consumers continue to get dinged and, worse, surprised by "resort" fees that often aren't quoted upfront in the hotel booking process. This one lump-sum fee often covers such items as phone calls, bottled water, Internet access, access to the pool or spa or other services that guests may or may not use. In September, two On the Spot columns dealt with those fees. When I contacted three consumer advocates who were active about the issue, they had just received a reply to a letter of complaint that they had sent to the Federal Trade Commission.
February 4, 2013 |
Scottsdale, Ariz., is the land of vast desert resorts, a place to unwind in winter under fair skies. It's also an area where many of Major League Baseball's spring training games are played. Montelucia Resort & Spa in Scottsdale offers a package that gives baseball fans (and anyone else) a fourth night free for a three-night stay. The deal: Prices aren't cheap at this luxury resort with almost 300 rooms and within driving distance of the 10 Cactus League baseball stadiums.
January 29, 2013 |
Anyone taking the kids to Disneyland this spring should consider this Travelzoo hotel offer within walking distance of the Anaheim theme park. A room for four costs $119 for a night or $219 for two nights - and that includes free parking and breakfast. The deal: The Travelzoo deal really suits families with kids who don't want to spend a fortune on a hotel room but do want to stay close to the park. It's good at the Anabella Hotel (1030 W. Katella Ave.), which is within walking distance of Disneyland.
January 24, 2013 |
Vail Cascade Resort & Spa in Vail, Colo., is offering deep discounts on rooms this spring for a two-night stay. The ski-in ski-out hotel takes up to 60% off room rates, which could be a good deal for those still planning their spring break. The deal: Spring on Sale rates require a two-night stay at the hotel. Use the code "vcspring1" when making a reservation online or by phone. When: The sale is good through Jan. 31 for stays Feb. 24 to April 13. Tested: I checked online and found some of the discounted rooms a bit more than the promised 60% off. I found availability for a midweek rate Feb. 25-27 for a room with a king- or two queen-sized beds for $169 a night plus tax (instead of the published $459 a night)
December 9, 2012
THE BEST WAY TO MAMMOTH LAKES From LAX, Alaska has one nonstop flight daily (through April 14) to Mammoth Yosemite Airport. Restricted round-trip fares begin at $236. Beginning Dec. 20, United offers nonstop service from Orange County; restricted round-trip fares begin at $230. The drive to Mammoth from Los Angeles is about 300 miles, mostly on U.S. 395. WHERE TO STAY Westin Monache Resort Mammoth, 50 Hillside Drive, Mammoth Lakes; (760) 934-0400, http://www.westinmammoth.com . Some 230 rooms (all with kitchenettes)
November 25, 2012
Cabazon Outlets, 48750 Seminole Drive, Cabazon; (951) 922-3000, http://www.cabazonoutlets.com . About 15 stores and a few snack spots. Desert Hills Premium Outlets, 48400 Seminole Drive, Cabazon; (951) 849-6641, http://www.premiumoutlets.com . About 130 retailers, including Gucci, Coach and Prada. Cabazon Dinosaurs, 50770 Seminole Drive, Cabazon; (951) 922-0076, http://www.cabazondinosaurs.com . Entrance to Robotic Dinosaur Exhibit and T-Rex Museum is $7.95 for adults, $6.95 for kids, but you can stand beneath the two big concrete dinosaurs for free.
November 13, 2012 |
La Quinta Resort & Club turned into Bedford Falls? That's the idea behind the 1926 resort's holiday decorations inspired by the movie "It's a Wonderful Life. " After Thanksgiving, the Palm Springs-area hotel will have decorations in place and offer free screenings of the movie, a chance to roast chestnuts -- and a special room rate for California residents. The deal: The California Residents Rate at the resort with a PGA West golf course starts at $135 a night plus tax and requires a two-night stay.
October 17, 2012 |
Maybe I should take my tax preparer to Palm Springs for the weekend. Not because my tax preparer needs the rest, but because the way things are going, consumers like me will soon need an expert just to understand who's really charging us what. I'm talking about resort fees and hotel taxes. Those are issues in plenty of lodgings beyond Palm Springs, especially in Arizona. But Palm Springs is where I happened to be a week ago. I'd booked a room at the Saguaro Hotel in Palm Springs, a colorful revival of a former Holiday Inn on East Palm Canyon Drive.
October 7, 2012
Irish eyes truly smiling After reading Andrew McCarthy's article ["Optimism Is in the Air," Sept. 30], I was most pleasantly depressed. Having just been to Ireland in June, it snared my heart, and I long to return. The photos chosen provided the perfect contrast of present and past, and let nobody suggest these were doctored: It truly is that green. An entire series could be devoted to this wonderful country, whose inhabitants sing when they speak, and whose actual songs are as evocative as the country itself.