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The Ranch at Laguna Beach

31106 S. Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA 92651
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The Ranch at Laguna Beach

Why we love it: poised where the sea and canyon meet, this iconic luxury hotel, spa and golf course sprawl over an 87-acre parklike setting

- Everything from bocce to meditation classes and birdwatching 101
- The lobby preserves historic memorabilia with some pieces dating back to the original 1871 homestead
- A mellow nine-hole course and country club, tucked into dramatic canyons, that hosts barefoot tournaments

The review: The swanky “Ranch at LB,” as it’s known, builds on the success of a 1950 golf course carved into the lush walls of Aliso and Wood Canyons. Now a National Geographic Unique Lodge of the World, it captures the essence of Laguna Beach, marrying the land and sea.

Accommodations range from spacious rooms to creekside suites and even a two-bedroom, 1,600-square-foot treehouse. A beachy palette prevails, punctuated by dark wood and leather pieces evoking a Mission Revival feel. Ranch amenities include the golf course — still going strong! — and the Sycamore Spa by Hudson, which pampers guests with everything from jade roller massages to French green clay facials. A complimentary shuttle runs down to the beach and the ranch has extensive activities ranging from poolside yoga to gardening classes and Junior Explorers summer program.

Among its three restaurants, Harvest shines the brightest, diving deep into the area’s terroir and history of organic farming, brewing and oenology. Expect dishes like fig and prosciutto flatbread and espresso-braised short ribs with ancho-chili BBQ sauce.

Renowned as a wedding hotspot, the Ranch hosted one of the world’s most stylish weddings in 2017, when Dolce & Gabbana muse Bianca Balti married her long-term partner Matthew McRae. The Ranch at LB can accommodate up to 350 guests on the fairways, but has other more intimate venues including a Girl Scout camp active from the 1920s to the 1950s.