Wednesday, March 4, 2015

refuge spa & the 17-mile drive

 while in carmel last weekend, we promised
 ourselves to slow down and relax. . . and
we succeeded! between wandering in
town & enjoying the beach + our hotel,
we had a great set up. but when we woke
up saturday to a pretty rainstorm, we knew
just where to head :: refuge day spa.
we started off a cozy rainy morning with
breakfast at our hotel before heading straight
to refuge spa. it is in carmel valley and it's
absolutely gorgeous and lovely. it's 
everything a spa should be: secluded,
welcoming, warm, and incredibly nice.
we opted to do the refuge thermal cycle, which gets you
into the spa for only $44. this price includes full use of
all spa facilities all day, and it's not just your regular spa.
you are in the middle of the most beautiful nature, and the
thermal cycle is so worth it. basically we got the fluffiest
robes, changed, entered the refuge (no talking! :) and
began the cycle. you can see the steps listed above on
the water bottle, but we loved this process of heating up
in the steam room // sauna, cooling down in the ice cold
plunge pools, (set to the temperature of the atlantic & pacific
oceans...) and then going to the zero gravity chairs to relax
& enjoy the grounds before doing the cycle a few more times.
it was cleansing, relaxing, and we left feeling amazing!
while we were in the spa for a few hours, the rain
subsided and gave way to beautiful blue skies.
we had no choice but to do the famous 17-mile drive
 -- one of the most enjoyable experiences on earth.
the views and scenery along here are well worth
the $10 to get into the 17-mile drive ^^
we had many stops along the drive, as it should be!
on our many stops, the boys went exploring
every time. they always keep things lively!

after the most perfect drive we ended in the tiny town
of pacific grove and explored lover's point at sunset.
^^ always love adventures with this crew!
we got caught in the rain at the end of our exploring,
so we ducked in the car and made our way to
tarpy's road house for a fun (and warm) dinner
by the fireplaces and gorgeous setting on the
grounds. between the tenderloin special, wedge
salad, and halibut dish we left happy and satisfied.
this restaurant is in monterey, so it was a perfect 
location to be able to eat after our driving! 

what a beautiful, relaxing day in one of the best areas on
 earth. between the rejuvenation of the spa and the
unreal natural beauty on the drive, 
this day was good for the soul. 

also see :: our time in town, our carmel hotel,
and exploring the monterey bay aquarium.



  1. That drive looks just glorious! Looks like you all had such a wonderful time. I've never been to a spa, but it sounds absolutely blissful.

    Miranda xxx

    1. it is blissful! there are lots of good less expensive spas we like to go to -- like massage schools, or places like this where you can pay just to enter with no massage! that makes it more doable! :)

  2. I love the 17-mile drive and that spa looks amazing! As usual...great post. Random question-do you grab random ppl to take your group photos or do you have a sturdy portable tripod that you could recommend?

    1. hi! we always ask random people ... haha i'm never embarrassed to ask! but, we do want to get a good tripod soon for some travels. i'll let you know what we find!

  3. Replies
    1. it was one of the best places i've been to! such a treat.

  4. Love these shots- what a gorgeous place and a relaxing spa! I need one of those weekends...

    Le Stylo Rouge

  5. i have been wanting to try out the refuge spa for a little while now. good to hear it lives up to the hype!

  6. I haven't made it by your blog in a while as I made some changes blog changes and now I don't see my feed as often as I did before. I see your life is just as fabulous and adventurous as I remember! Great post!

    1. you're so sweet! can't wait to see your blog changes!

  7. Heading back to Carmel soon. Love your suggestions!

    1. so fun! i'm making a new little guide to it with all of our recent faves! send me yours once you visit!

  8. Oh my gosh. That spa looks like a dream. I'm craving it desperately as I've been stuck in single-digit temperatures for months now!

  9. Tarpy's Road House looks so darling and charming. I can't believe how relaxing the refuge spa looked. You got the best weather for the 17 mile drive!


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