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Island Hotel Newport Beach Review – The New Look of the Classic Newport Beach Destination

By Stephan Martin

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A vacation can take you across the country or it can be as close as your backyard. Providing a setting that would entice both groups takes a special setting, and that defines the breathtaking Newport Beach. The Island Hotel historically has been the hotel when it comes to staying in Newport Beach, and the fact that they have made recent renovations to enhance your stay is further proof that this is the hotel to enjoy all that is Southern California.

Newport Beach has garnered a reputation that is fitting of the “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,” and while we all can’t find it within our budget to live there, a visit certainly is an experience worthwhile and will give you a taste of this glamorous city. The Island Hotel has created the perfect landing spot, making it close enough that you can enjoy not only Newport Beach, but many venues up and down the coast as well. The Market Place is a refreshing alternative from traditional room service for customers to pick up everything from a quick cup of coffee to a juice to more substantial meals. Chef David Man is Executive Chef of Island Hotel, he oversees all culinary operations, including the hotel’s signature banquet and outside catering services and was instrumental in deciding which food items to feature.

Island Club Lounge

The rooms at Island Hotel are all breathtaking and one look at the view and you will see that is no overstatement. The rooms allow you the choice of Newport Harbor, Newport Back Bay or Pacific Ocean views. The most trying part of your trip will be choosing your room and the view. The design is such that you really can’t go wrong with whatever room you book, from the guest room for that quick last minute weekend getaway, up to the great corner room that allows for an extra guest with a sleeper sofa or the Pacific suite that offers two step-out balconies and an 860 square foot living space. Finally for that big event, which the Island Hotel is perfect for, you can choose from the flats, Catalina & Governor’s Suites that range from 1,305 to 1,470 square feet. You might never want to leave this suite as it offers a full-size living and dining area with service pantry and two step-out balconies to go with a panoramic coastal or Newport Back Bay view.

Island Hotel Spa

While you are deciding what to choose from when it comes to view and size, you will find that all the amenities in every room are the same. From the bed that is so comfy you will likely oversleep to the plasma televisions with the Bose® audio system that makes you feel like you are in a theater or arena, you will find these are all rooms you will fall in love with. Once you slide that key in and open the door, the view will take your breath away and everything else becomes secondary.

The Island Hotel has all of the luxuries that one would want in a hotel and then some! You can start with the namesake setting of the heated outdoor pool and whirlpool spa, which is secluded and surrounded by palm trees so you literally feel as if you are on an island. A secluded and truly tranquil setting, if you are looking for a place to relax and get away from the world, this spot was made for you. If you are looking to unwind even more, The Spa at Island Hotel offers a full menu of treatments ranging from the standard massage, to facials and body treatments and some amazing signature treatments that take your experience to another level.

While exercise might not be at the top of your list when you visit Newport Beach, it is a great way to experience the beauty of this locale. If you are a golfer you can’t turn down a round of golf at the nearby Pelican Hill Golf Club®. The Pelican Hill Golf Club features two championship ocean-view courses designed by Tom Fazio. Beyond providing you with one of the most stunning views of any golf course in the world, you are also treated to the complete golfers experience with forecaddies, a 44,000 square-foot clubhouse and a full-service practice facility. If you are not a golfer, take in the scenic Newport Beach area with a jog. The Concierge desk provides jogging maps that take you through nearby neighborhoods, beaches and parklands. Finally if you don’t want to leave the Island Hotel and you are looking to burn off some of those calories you are enjoying while on vacation, or you want keep up your poolside appearance, you can get a workout in at the beautifully equipped fitness center.

Island Hotel recently added the Island Club and this is a must add-on to your stay as it might just be your favorite hangout spot during your stay. For $50 per night, up to two people, this 20th floor private guest lounge provides not only a beautiful setting with floor-to-ceiling views that allow you to really enjoy the beauty of Newport Beach, but provides you a setting to enjoy watching a sports event on the big televisions if you have a group bigger than your room will accommodate. It’s also a perfect workspace with large tables, including an iMac workstation for you. In addition you will find fruit, juice and cereal at breakfast and snacks throughout the day and beer and wine during the evening. With Fashion Island across the street, who could turn down the complimentary personal shopping services provided? The Club Ambassador that greets you as make your way into the Island Club can take of any and all needs that you have during your stay.

Oak Grill Terrace

When you add together all the Island Hotel has to offer, along with the centralized Newport Beach location, this not only is the perfect vacation destination, but it also is a meeting and event spot that will be hard to beat, and will leave whoever you design and event around with a memorable experience. You likely can’t tell from the outside, but the Island Hotel has an 8,710 square-foot ballroom, the largest in Newport Beach, that can seat up to 600 guests. Island Hotel can break the ballroom into smaller rooms and also has smaller meeting suites on property. And, to make sure you group doesn’t have to worry about lunch or dinner, they have a catering team onsite led by Executive Chef David Man, who oversees all culinary operations, including the hotel’s signature banquet and outside catering services, menu development, special programs, restaurant staffing and supervision. While this is a great spot for anyone across the United States, it makes the perfect location for groups from Los Angeles. A short drive to a destination that gives you an entirely different feel while avoiding all of those large travel costs if you were to leave the state. Of course, with the stunning setting that the Island Hotel provides, along with its spaciousness, this makes for quite a memorable wedding setting as well.

Oak Grill Interior

Whether you are staying at the Island Hotel, just visiting Newport Beach for the day, or you live nearby, the recent addition of the Oak Grill has made this a dining destination just as much as a vacation hotspot. The Oak Grill has a definite Newport Beach feel to it, with the modern and upscale setting inside, while the large patio provides a beautiful and open view with the lowered walls surrounding the restaurant. Pairing the fresh beach air and the relaxed setting makes for the best outdoor dining experience in Newport Beach. Oak Grill Chef Marc Johnson has put together a menu that matches the beauty of this renovated restaurant spot inside of the Island Hotel. Chef Marc goes far beyond the typical menu that you might find at any other hotel as he takes a creative and seasonal approach to his cooking style. The real highlight of the menu are the season fish dishes that are prepared to perfection, from trout to salmon and Chilean Sea Bass; the work that Chef Marc puts into procuring the highest quality ingredients, and then allowing those ingredients to shine in each of his dishes is evident.

Roasted Chilean Sea Bass from Oak Grill

Wild Mushroom Truffle Flatbread

Oak Grill Chef Marc Johnson

While Newport Beach has plenty of things to keep you busy, the nightlife up to this point has been lacking and is certainly not always up to the standard you might expect from such a location. The Island Hotel created the Aqua Lounge to cater not only to guests of the hotel, but also as a destination for locals. The Aqua Lounge was created with a more intimate setting than a typical nightclub, while still providing a resident DJ and an upbeat setting. The highlights would have to be the cocktail setting and the fun setting that also opens up into the patio. The setting certainly is not for everyone, if you are looking for a party atmosphere this would be for you; if you are looking for a more intimate and quiet cocktail, I would recommend the Oak Grill.

It doesn’t matter if you are nearby, far away, making it a once-in-a-lifetime visit or it is a yearly appointment in your calendar book, Newport Beach is a city that epitomizes a vacation lifestyle. If you want to bask in this scenic west coast setting, the Island Hotel makes sure that you get to take it all in while making you feel pampered, just like a vacation is meant to.

For more information visit Island Hotel

Published on Dec 09, 2014

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