Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Luxurious Lodging and More (Anniversary Trip, Part 3 of 3)

On Sunday night, we arrived at a modern luxurious hideaway in the green forests of the Oregon coast -- the Salishan Spa and Golf Resort in Gleneden Beach.

For two nights, we stayed in a premier room, which had the most magnificent high ceiling, balcony with wood rocking chairs overlooking the forest, stone fireplace, modern bathroom with real orchids and a bathtub with water jets, plush chairs and sofa sleeper, and a big king bed. We even got a welcome basket.

Based on my mom's recommendation, we went to a campy local fave called Mo's, which is known for its clam chowder and was right on the waterfront. It was cheap, fresh, and yummy, and the service was fast and friendly. Actually, at no time during our Oregon stay did we experience bad service or bad food, no matter how much or how little we paid. Oregon hospitality was warm and genuine and the quality of ingredients impressive across the board.

After dining on clam chowder, garlic cheese bread, shrimp salad, a crab melt, and grilled parmesan sole, we returned to the Salishan and explored the premises. First, we admired the lodge's extensive wine collection. We also walked past one of many outdoor freestanding firepits.

The hotel pool was impressive with cool modern lighting, and the fitness center was state-of-the-art.

The game room was sweet. It included air hockey and the latest Dance Dance Revolution, along with a few other good arcade games. It also had three huge plasmas connected to an Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii.

After scouting the grounds, we went back to our colossal room and enjoyed lounging by the crackling fire.

Mr. Monkey arose bright and early on Monday to go golfing. It was drizzling, but that didn't stop him from having a great time. He befriended three retirees, and they played as a foursome. Old people just love Mr. Monkey. Mr. Monkey was not only appreciative of the good company, but it was incredibly satisfying to have three witnesses to a particularly good shot he made. Mr. Monkey ended up with an 82 (par was 72). Pretty good for playing a new course.

I slept awhile longer before going to the spa for my Salishan Signature Body Treatment, which included a body scrub with aromatic sea salts, mineral salts, and essential oils followed by a hydrating body wrap with anti-aging agents. It was fan-freakin'-tastic. I fell asleep (as usual) during the wrap, and my entire body was smooth as a baby's butt afterward.

The Monkeys reconvened for lunch in nearby Depoe Bay at a small restaurant called Tidal Raves, which one of Mr. Monkey's new gray-haired golfing pals had recommended. The food and service were excellent (again), and the views of the ocean were pretty spectacular. You'll have to take my word for it, though, because I was in a blissful post-spa daze and forgot to document said views and our smoked salmon chowder, shrimp salad (it seems that all side salads on the Oregon coast are shrimp salads), grilled tiger shrimp, and crab cakes.

Our ingesting of seafood immediately preceded our viewing of seafood at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in nearby Newport (which is nothing like our Newport down in SoCal). We saw lots of underwater creatures, but our favorites were definitely the crabs (some of which made a meal of an unfortunate dead tankmate) and adorable otters. Nothing beats cannibalistic crabs and frolicking otters. In strikingly different ways, these animals had the highest entertainment value at the aquarium hands down. Actually, the best was when we watched the otters eat crabs -- a true melding of our two favorites. Ha!

By the time we finished the aquarium, it was time to eat again. What a life! Being somewhat lazy Monkeys, we decided to try one of the hotel restaurants, and we weren't sorry one bit. Everything at the Salishan is awesome, including the food. I had grilled rock fish, while Mr. Monkey had another bowl of clam chowder and a full slab of baby back ribs coupled with fries. It was all rather drool-worthy. The best part of dinner, however, was our DIY dessert, which utilized one of the lodge's many outdoor freestanding firepits!

S'mores were followed by s'more lounging by our room's own toasty fire.

Tuesday began very similarly to Monday. Mr. Monkey went golfing again with his senior citizen buddies. It was drier on Tuesday, and the golfing quartet had another fun round. Meanwhile, I returned to the spa for a purifying deep-cleansing facial and scalp, shoulder, and arm massage.


Mr. Monkey and I then had a tasty bite together at the golf grill (hot gourmet deli sandwiches and a field greens salad with candied pecans and crumbled bleu cheese, to be exact), and we both returned to the spa. While Mr. Monkey got a deep tissue massage, I relaxed and read some magazines.

The spa was fairly deserted for about a half hour, during which I snapped a few photos. The Salishan spa is really quite something. It's not the actual services that are amazing (although, yes, they are indeed top-notch), but it's the serenity of the premises and the outdoor surroundings that really bring you peace.

The room in which you wait to be called for your appointment is named The Hearth. It has full-length wall-to-wall windows that span from floor to ceiling and overlook the Siletz Bay. There is (surprise) a hearth in the middle of a number of comfortable lodge chairs.

Four reclinable lounge chairs face the marsh, which hosts numerous birds during low tide. The spa provides binoculars for viewing wildlife while you sip herbal tea or lemon ice water and munch on organic trail mix. Naturally, Mr. Monkey took advantage of the binoculars. He spotted lots of ducks and a couple of herons.

Sadly, after Mr. Monkey's massage, it was time to bid dear Salishan adieu. To say we felt like crying is not much of an exaggeration.

We drove back to Portland and boarded the plane back home. The one bright spot on the plane (which brought us literally closer and closer to dreaded work) was that we could finally see Mt. Hood above the clouds!

It was with heavy hearts that we trudged into work this morning. This little four-day excursion was the only quasi-vacation for the Monkeys in 2007. Boo! It was a fun-filled and relaxing four days, though. We certainly made the most of it.

Mr. Monkey is already planning a real vacation for 2008. And I mean real. It will be on par with our Kenya/Tanzania and Galapagos trips. It will be another one of our young-people-with-no-kids adventures.

Gotta love it.


  1. wow. just wow. your room was HUGE! sounds like this place is really something else! otters are the best -- too darn cute for words. the spa sounds heavenly and i'm totally drooling at all the food you guys ate. yum! oh, and i love couple adventures with no kids -- we're planning on several more years of those. good times indeed!

  2. what an awesome way to finish off your trip. the spa sounds amaaaazing as does the food, of course.

    jealous of your adventures-without-kids vacations. hopefully we can force ourselves to take more of those soon, too.

  3. You are living the life of true DINKs. DINK = Double Income, No Kids. Only to live in my opinion. Enjoy and congrats on a great trip! It's giving me ideas of extended weekend getaways.

  4. I'm sad the review is over, I can only imagine how hard it must have been to leave!

  5. Wow, the spa sounds sooo good right now. I'm definitely adding Oregon to our list of places to visit.

  6. that looks like the most fabulous place, ever. and i LOVE the DIY dessert! great photos. i've already forwarded the link to the hotel to the hub, just in case ;) he absolutely loves places like that.

  7. * sigh * It almost relaxing just to read about it and see the pictures. Awesome room, awesome sounding food, and awesome anniversary/vacation trip. So, so happy you guys completely enjoyed it all.

  8. That vacation sounds like a dream. I love the aquarium pics (especially the otters) and everything sounds so delish and relaxing and heavenly.

  9. LOVE it all. So happy you had fun. The otters made my day!

    Please tell me where you are planning your next trip. So I can drool.

  10. Wow! That place is incredible! I love how huge the room was and the DIY desserts! Ah...2 days of spa treatments :) Heavenly! Sounds like you had an wonderful anniversary trip! Also sounds like the year 2 celebration will be a bit grander :)

  11. Good lawd its hard to keep up with you! Glad you had an awesome trip, you most certainly deserve it! I <3 Mr. Monkey for always smiling at the camera for blog shots too! ;)

  12. Mr. Monkey is a friggen Hoot! I love the dance like a crab picture.


    "It will be another one of our young-people-with-no-kids adventures." sounds like absolute heaven to me!!

    Very cool!

  13. Oh wow!!! What a gorgeous place! So adding this to my list! :)

  14. We went up to the Pacific Northwest for our honeymoon last month and loved it. It was nice to revisit through your blog. :)

  15. we experienced the same thing - excellent food everywhere we went.

    i was really impressed. and i am a pig :)

    love that old peeps dig on mr. monkey. i have the same draw. think it means we are old souls ;)


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