By Debbie Hall

Sandy beaches, natural beauty and fun just south of the border

The Casablanca Restaurant offers unique flavors and exquisitely colorful dishesRosarito Beach is a coastal resort city in the Mexican state of Baja California located approximately 30 miles south of San Diego. Baja’s Gold Coast, the 60 scenic miles that stretch from just south of San Diego to Ensenada, offers some of the best recreational activities. Relax with some fishing. Explore the beach in an ATV or ride a horse alongside the water at sunset. Jump into a volleyball pick-up game, swim, surf, parasail or build sand castles.

Golf is a main attraction in Baja with two championship clubs located on Baja´s Gold Coast. Bajamar, located just north of Ensenada boasts of 27 holes of Scottish-style links that play around and over the beautiful Pacific. The crashing waves and volcanic rock will demand the utmost in concentration from even the best golfer.

Real Del Mar, located on the northern part of the Gold Coast, offers canyon-style golf throughout rolling hills all the while enjoying the natural beauty of the Pacific Ocean and Coronado Islands. The par 72 championship course boasts 6,400 yards of pristine course with six lakes and is a challenge for players of all levels.

For surfing, Baja California is a unique piece of geography. Heavy winter swells travel from northwest to southeast daily along the entire Pacific coast of the Baja Peninsula. With the exception of Hawaii and San Francisco, the waves at Islas Todos Santos off the coast of Ensenada are said to be the biggest in the winter Pacific and the swells at Baja Malibu and Calafia are renowned for their consistency.

Having a day at the spa at the Casa Playa Spa completes a relaxing vacationThe great annual grey whale migration is one of the most extraordinary migrations. Their journey begins in the Arctic, and they travel a distance of over 6,200 miles to reach the southern Baja California lagoons to perform their reproduction cycle and nurse their calves. They bear their calves every other year, alternating each year between mating and birthing. In Rosarito, whale watching is one of the activities that bring visitors closer to nature.

Located just northeast of Ensenada, Guadalupe Valley offers great wine tasting. The Baja California Wine Country is blessed with some of the most ideal Mediterranean climate for grape growing. The Valley is home to about 18 wineries that range from to small organic winery, La Casa de Dona Lupe, to L.A. Cetto, one of the most renowned and oldest wineries in Mexico. L.A.Cetto is an important winery in the Mexican industry; having achieved a total of 132 international awards in excellence from countries such as France, Italy, Spain, England, Canada and the United States.

Almost a million lobsters are served in the Rosarito coastal area each year. “Puerto Nuevo-style” is now a world-famous synonym for the exquisite lobster offered in the local restaurants. Rosarito is justly famous as a gourmet’s paradise since it offers more than 85 quality restaurants that can satisfy just about any taste or craving.

Baja´s Gold Coast is becoming a mecca for artists and art lovers. In the last few years there has been a virtual explosion of galleries offering art in northern Baja. Many artists have galleries in town or in their homes. Many others also work behind fruit stands, have day jobs as cooks, own bed and breakfast inns, sell real estate or operate the town’s classiest accommodations. Great art is everywhere and going gallery hopping is becoming one the most popular things for people to do in Rosarito.

Relax in the lounge area with a cocktail, great atmosphere and a live pianistAs for a place to stay while vacationing, Rosarito Beach Hotel is a Baja spa resort located in what was once part of the family mansion. Opened as a lodge more than 80 years ago, the 500-room, full-service resort remains one of the most popular destination for the city’s more than 1 million visitors a year offering old world grandeur, world-class restaurants, entertainment, lodging options and activities. Its Casa Playa Spa is dedicated to pampering and nurturing hotel guests in an atmosphere of elegance and serenity.

“We are blessed with a coast line of white sandy beaches and inland areas of natural beauty. Our goal is to enhance the resources of Rosarito Beach, both for our residents and the visitors who enjoy our wonderful city,” said Hugo Torres Chabert, president and manager of the Rosarito Beach Hotel.

The Casablanca Restaurant is located near the beach bringing the flavors of colorful, balanced and exquisite dishes. Visitors can also order unique cocktails and tapas in the restaurant’s lounge with a breathtaking view of the ocean. A traditional Mexican buffet at a folkloric ballet show is offered in the Salon Mexicano. The different wines can also be enjoyed at the Rosarito Beach Hotel where once a month they host a wine tasting and dinner at Chabert’s restaurant featuring many of the local wineries.

One of three pools to choose from at Rosarito Beach HotelHaving a day at the spa at the Casa Playa Spa completes a relaxing vacation. When it originally opened in 1925, the Rosarito Beach Hotel was considered a vacation and health destination because the sea swept air was both preservative and restorative. Early visitors appreciated the therapeutic effects of saltwater bathing and fresh ocean air. People were also drawn to the soul satisfying aesthetics the seascape provided. The hotel’s oceanfront location gave early visitors the chance to enjoy one of nature’s most inherently beautiful landscapes: sun, sand and the sea.

Casa Playa Spa has put together a variety of body services that can help achieve smooth and nourished skin. Natural products are used from the sea and earth. They are specially combined to restore and improve the condition of the skin as well as to detoxify and rehydrate creating an all-over body glow. The staff consists of registered and highly trained massage therapists. They are educated on how to effectively relax muscles, increase circulation and improve joint mobility using light and deep tissue techniques.

With beautiful weather, great service, breathtaking views and so many activities, Rosarito Beach is the perfect getaway. For more information on Rosarito Beach Hotel, visit rosaritobeachhotel.com or call 1.866.ROSARITO (76727486). To learn more about Rosarito Beach, visit rosarito.org.

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