Tag Archives: Newport Beach

Lucky 13 California beaches

Sun, surf and sand with your dog

We’ll have fun fun fun with our furry friends begging for a vacation at the beach. Your favorite canine will love going surfing, swimming, fetching, sniffing, sunning and digging in the sand at all of these dog-friendly beaches.

1. Newport Beach

Miles of surfer and puppy friendly sand! What furshionista would not want to walk on a leash on this expansive sandy beach, surrounded by millionaire homes? Cici thinks it is a great place to sunbathe, relax and dream. And after hours, have a bonfire with your best friend, listening to the waves crashing and munch on s’mores while telling woof woof stories.


2. Torrance Beach 

Rat Beach is a little known beach near Redondo Beach in Palos Verdes Estates. Doggies can run off leash on soft sand for a mile and a half.    



3.   Huntington Beach

Pooches can catch a wave, shoot a curl, hang four paws and practice their best moves at doggie surf camp for Surf City’s annual Surf Dog event. Three days of doggone fun for everyone.


4. Laguna Beach

Romping and rolling on leash is allowed during the non-tourist season from September to June and before 9 a.m. and after 6 p.m. during the rest of the year. But there are still fun shops, art to paw at, doggie parks to chase other dogs in, music and dance festivals and skateboarding for pooches with imagination and energy to spare.


5. Carmel

Soak up the sun and surf at one of the dog-friendliest beaches on the planet. Canines run wild and free (one of the few leash-free beaches in California) along the sand for miles. Fodor’s and others have named Carmel the pet friendliest city in the USA for good reason. Otherwise known as doggie heaven. White sand, blue skies and waves, who could woof for anything more?


6. Pebble Beach

After enjoying the surf and sand, canines in the know and their hoomans can watch the sunset, listen to bagpipes, and eat tasty gourmet treats on the patio fire pit area of the Inn at Spanish Bay at Pebble Beach.


7. Pacific Grove

Asilomar Coastal Trail is where friendly furry four-leggeds sniff and explore, along Sunset Drive. There is a wooden boardwalk and bridge and lots of off leash fun to be had at Spanish Bay Beach, right after the State Beach.


8. Mendocino

Speaking of dog friendly coastal paradises, where else but Mendo can a dog do everything (and more) of what a dog’s gotta do? Van Damme State Beach and Noyo Beach are the hippiest and happiest places for pooches. Where else on earth can canines paddle a canoe, go kayaking, tiptoe through the tulips for free at the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, get a few licks of an ice cream cone (also free), go shopping, dining and camping, all within a few miles?


9. San Diego

Dog beach baby is where the nouveau ripe and famous go for a little R&R (rough and rambunctious), zoomies. This is the best melting spot for hot dogs of all sizes, shapes, colors, and breeds.


10. Morro Bay

North of the Rock, at North Point Beach, canines can frolic off leash on a two-mile stretch of sand. At the Morro Bay Visitors Center (which keeps changing location), Cici had a selfie taken with a surf board.


Beach baby bungalows

11. Pismo Beach

Four paws in the sand. Do not wish to work on your tan or hate the feel of the pebbles beneath your paws? Take your hooman out for a sunset stroll along the pier. Roam the bluffs above Shell Beach at Dinosaur Caves Park.



12. Bodega Bay

Schoolhouse Beach, Goat Rock Beach and the other state beaches are a dog’s best bet for sun and surf. Some of the campgrounds are dog friendly and others are not. The freshest fish and chips on the planet can be had at the Boat House where furry pals can party on the patio.


 13. Dillon Beach

Marin county’s off leash private beach allows hoomans to call their dogs who play nice and friendly with others from the tide line to the water.

 Dillon Beach Resort – Beach

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Fourth of July bucket list

Chocolate and pet friendly meals to Put on your bucket list

Some of the yummiest meals and specific foods I’ve ever eaten that you might want to devour over the Fourth of July this year or next r another time… and some of the places are even pet friendly… if I do not indicate a specific dish, it means ALL of the food is good, so try whatever appeals to you, it is all good, heave ho.

A vegan meal at Ravens, Stanford Inn, Mendocino, CA

A meal at The Farmhouse, Sonoma, CA


Eggs MacBenedict, Chocolate Extravagance, MacCallum House, Mendocino, CA

Apple pancakes, Strawberry Creek Inn, Idyllwild, CA

Ole’s Swedish Hot cakes, Little River Inn, Little River, CA

Greek pasta, chicken caesar salad, Dametra cafe, Carmel, CA

Chocolate Cocoa Lounge (Feb. 14), The Island hotel, Newport Beach, CA


Chocolate for Breakfast, Oak Knoll Inn, Napa, CA

Hot chocolate, Silly Rabbit Chocolate, Ashland OR

Robin’s restaurant, Cambria, CA

Chocolate cake, Gnome, Idyllwild, CA

Fish n chips, The Boathouse, Bodega Bay, CA

Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 10.49.21 AM

Calamari, Abalonetti Seafood, Fisherman’s Wharf, Monterey, CAfis

Calamari, fish n chips, Tognazzini’s Dockside Restaurant, Morro Bay, CA

Authentic Pad Thai from Thailand

NY pizza, pretzel, knish (street food)

German pretzel, spaetzle at Englischer Gartens in Munich, and a meal at the Kunstlerhaus

Masala dosa, southern India and meals

Gyro or a Souvlaki and shake at the Mad Greek diner, Baker, CA

Turkey Fat burgers or original with eggs and fries, Los Angeles

Chinese meal from NY or SF Chinatown

Pick your own fruit at Gilcrease Orchards, Las Vegas, NV

fish n chips and stuffed potatoes, London and the midlands

Patty melt, and doggie menu, Park bench cafe, Huntington Beach, CA

Mama’s Fish House, Maui, HI

French toast, Roughley Manor, 29 Palms, CA

world”s largest chocolate fountain, Jean Philippe’s chocolates, Bellagio, las vegas, nv

Omelette, Bagel sandwich, Bagel Cafe, Summerlin, Las Vegas, NV

Chicken and Rice, Mi Casa Too, Carson City, NV

Raw vegan food, Living Light Cafe, Fort Bragg, CA

Breakfast buffet, Top of the Riverfront, Millennium Hotel, St. Louis, MO

BBQ chicken, St. Louis, MO and Kansas City, MO

Turkey burger and fries, Sequoia Drive-in, Sebastopol, CA

other views:






and some yummy pet menus at various hotels


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July 4th in southern California

Families who seek an uncrowded beach vacation destination catch a wave, attend surf camp, bike for miles, picnic, and more !


Near to the Los Angeles airport, LAX, and close to beach cities such as  Redondo, Manhattan, Huntington and Newport Beach, the city of Torrance has some interesting places to visit for dog owners and their pooches.


There is a little-known Southern California beach that offers a quiet, easy-going ambiance at Torrance Beach.  Simply take the I-110 to Torrance Boulevard west which ends at the ocean, or exit from the I-405 at Hawthorne Boulevard south and then go west on Torrance Boulevard.


This stunning, soft sand, 1.5-mile beach is framed by the hills of Palos Verdes just south of Redondo Beach.  It’s a unique coastal setting with a small town charm and a variety of hotels just two miles east.  Back in the 1950s there was a well-known beach club in Torrance which attracted many Hollywood celebrities looking to get away from it all.  Today, Torrance is the ideal family destination with its low-key, casual ambiance — and close proximity to top sights and attractions for families who also want to do Disneyland and Universal Studios.


Torrance Beach offers a significant amount of parking, plenty of restrooms, lifeguards are on duty all summer long, and a 22-mile paved and lit beach path which heads up to Santa Monica that is perfect for walking or cycling. Vacationers can also channel their inner Californian and learn to surf with a half or full-day “Perfect Day Surf Camp” at cpsurfshop.com.  Locals also recommend the “killer” breakfast burrito or milkshakes at Surfside Grill which is right on the beach (a rarity in Southern California) and offers an unmatched view.


Teach your Dog To Surf



Doggies start practicing their best for the various surf dog events (September in Surf City)


The very end of Rat Beach is off Paseo de la Playa, in Torrance.  Torrance touches the ocean at that point, between South Redondo Beach & Malaga Cove in Palos Verdes Estates.  Rat Beach is not crowded ever, presumably because it’s kinda hidden, and also because you have to walk in, you can’t drive all the way to the end.  There’s a path at the very end of the cove that leads up to Malaga Cove School, on whose grounds the 4th of July picnic is held every year.

Hotel accommodations are easy to come by — and often much less expensive than elsewhere in Southern California. Travelers can find hotels from budget to deluxe represented by all of the major brands  including  pet-friendly accommodations, complimentary breakfast and Internet access, and more.  Rates range from from $79 to $249 based upon availability.

For additional information or to book a room, travelers can visit www.discovertorrance.com,  send an e-mail to info@discovertorrance.com.  The Discover Torrance office is located at 3400 Torrance Boulevard, Suite 100, Torrance, CA  90503.


Pet friendly hotels include Holiday Inn, Residence Inn, Ramada Inn and others



El Segundo Dog Park. About 60×300 foot lots of trees south side of LAX. Between Imperial Avenue and Imperial Highway at Sheldon Street. From the east take 105 Freeway, go west to the end onto Imperial Highway. go to the first light and turn left then around 2 short bends until going west again along Imperial Avenue, which parallels Imperial Highway a few blocks. You will be driving parallel to it on the right side. Sounds complicated but not once you are there.


Redondo Beach dog park



Escondido Canyon

Turn right at Winding Way East, and park in the signed parking lot (27200 Winding Way). Here’s a map of Escondido Canyon Park. Follow the paved road on foot for approximately 1 mile to the Escondido Canyon trailhead on your left, and take it all the way to the waterfall. The trail is open sunrise to sunset; parking is limited, so get there early. Dog-friendly!

Dogs race

The annual Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals takes place at the Los Alamitos Race Course in July. The dog event is a 50-yard dash for Dachshunds with winning speeds around 6-7 seconds. Only 98 dogs are selected to compete in a total of 12 trials with winner, or wiener, of each trial advancing to the Wienerschnitzel Wiener National at Los Alamitos Final. There’s no fee to enter


Pet stores

Fireworks and boat parades are fun festivities that take place every July 4th in nearby Newport Beach.  Depending how well your dogs do with noises and crowds, you may or may not want to watch. But you might be able to find a spot not too close for the dogs but close enough to see what is going on for the humans.



California’s largest and one of the nation’s most well established Patriotic boat parades, Newport Harbor’s 4th of July Boat parade. The boat parade sees over 100+ vessels cruise through the harbor of Newport Beach, CA
When: Wed, 4th of July, 2012, 1 pm – 4 pm
Where: Newport Harbor/Balboa Island
Price: Free!

American Legion Yacht Club
The parade will form at 1230 off Collins Island (see Parade Map enclosed). The Harbor Patrol Fire Boat, followed by the VIP Boat, will lead the parade. The parade will begin promptly at 1300 (1:00 pm).

Fireworks and boat parades are fun festivities that may or may not be appropriate for pooches, depending on how well they do with noises and crowds.



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fun trips for you and the pooch for the New Year

Looking for fun and adventure with your pooch for the New Year?  Here are a few ideas.

The public is invited to bring their real Christmas trees to Perfect Christmas Tree Farm on January 7th, 2012. Regardless of where the tree was purchased, farmer John Curtis calls on everyone to recycle their  real Christmas trees at Perfect Christmas Tree Farm. He chips real  trees, no matter what size and makes mulch for the new growing season.

Activities begin at 9:00 AM and go until 3:00 PM on Saturday, January 
7, 2012, only. This is a ONE DAY event.


Even if you cannot make it to this event in New Jersey, perhaps there is a LOCAL event like this in your area. Google, call your local tree farms, media, and find out if you can bring your pooch.

Bring your dog on a leash to the Perfect Christmas Tree Farm, a dog friendly farm. There is a display setup to take pictures with your dog and other loved ones, for Valentines Day. Give the chickens some feed as you pass their coop. A hay wagon is going out for rides around the farm, weather permitting.

The tree chipper accepts any real Christmas tree, clean of metal, tinsel, plastic and ornaments, and turns it into useable garden mulch.

“Nothing is wasted in nature”, says farmer John Curtis. “People think we rent this chipper to collect the mulch. We encourage people to take the mulch. Put two inches around your trees, shrubs, herbs and vegetables, you have less weeding to do. Plants are preparing for
spring. So should we. Spring is here in less than three months.” He offers everyone to take as much mulch as is needed.

If you have a tree or not, no matter  where you purchased your tree, go to the Mulchfest to share a  winter’s day with neighbors, enjoy free refreshments in a warm historic setting, children’s entertainment and healthy outdoor fun, throughout the day.

Activities start 9 AM with a ceremony honoring the Earth. Christmas trees are then loaded into a chipper. Trees start their return to the earth as nourishing mulch and compost. Mulchfest honors Perfect Christmas Tree Farm’s commitment to local farming, historic
preservation and enriching the earth.

There is no charge for the Mulchfest and attendees are encouraged to take mulch back to their home, to nourish the Earth where they live. Bags are provided.

Now, for the more adventurous and fit among you, an interesting trip to teach your dog new tricks… dogsledding and skiing !!!

Muddy Paw Sled Dog Kennel is not your “typical” dogsled touring kennel. Rather, we are home to 130 rescue and second chance dogs andoffer dogsledding trips and pet dog/owner packages to support a non profit sled dog rescue, history and education center, giving second chance sled dogs a home and a job for life. The rescue is strictly no kill.

Pair an inn-stay at a local pet friendly lodging partner such as the Mahoosuc Inn in Milan, NH or the Applebrook Inn in Jefferson, NH with a ski-jor or dogsled clinic with your own pooch. All necessary gear is provided for the guests’ active pup to learn to be a sled dog.

“Over the years we noticed that people travelled to our region with their pet but then they got here and “Fido” had nothing to do. In an effort to solve that problem, these two packages were created:

Ski-Joring with one of our experienced dogs to teach our guests’ pups the ropes or running with a small team is all part of the vacation. Often guests start with Ski-joring on day one and move to the dogsledding clinic on day two during their stay in our area.

Many guests comment that they’ve always wanted to start their dogs in pulling activities and give them a job for physical and mental stimulation. They leave their vacation understanding the gear and training necessary. We are happy to provide email support as they try it on their on at home when they get back (for free of course).

The kennel offers these tours to support the rescue and second chance huskies that call Muddy Paw home. The profits from tours go to the new non profit sled dog rescue, history & education center and the guests appreciate helping a great cause while having the “experience of a lifetime” with their own pet and guides that love dogs just as much as they do!

Ski-Joring is when one or more dogs is attached to a person wearing supportive hip belt via bungee (to absorb shock), non-stretchy tug-lines and an x-back style harness). The person wears cross country skis and works in tandem with their dog to zip along on our groomed trails. Sometimes dog booties are utilized, depending on trail conditions. Moderate physical ability is required for this activity for both the dog and the participant … it is wonderful excercise for both!

Here is a link to the equipment we use:  http://nooksackracing.com/skijoring.html Previous experience cross country skiing is ideal, but certainly not a must, beginners are welcome, we love to teach them how to work with their dogs… we find owners of northern/active working breeds especially see problem behaviors disappear once their dogs are more active and thus physically and mentally stimulated.

For our less adventurous or less physically active guests, they can utilize the ski-jor equipment minus the skis and allow them to learn to work with their dog cani-cross style, which means “dog assisted” hiking or snowshoeing.

Here is a link to ski-joring info  : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skijoring

If you personally have an active dog, any winter “joring” activity is sure to be a hit!    These activities are wonderful for many large, working type dogs such as Pointers, Hounds, Labs, Goldens, All Northern Breeds, Mixes, Cattle Dogs, etc.

Muddy Paw Sled Dog Kennel & Raft NH www.dogslednh.com & www.raftnh.com


Now for those on the west coast…

You could snowshoe at Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, and Fido wants to go too.   At Lake of the Woods, there are plenty of trails and room for your dog to run.   Or travel up Hwy 140 to Crystalwood Lodge, where you can take a morning canoe ride on Upper Klamath Lake and before you leave the area, be sure and visit with Liz Parrish and her sled dog team.

Here are some places to consider to stay:

Best Western Klamath Inn,4061 South 6th Street, Klamath Falls, OR. 97603  Phone: 1.800.937.8376 or 1.541.882.1200. Website: www.bestwestern.com  Pet fee: $10 per pet/night

Quality Inn, 100 Main Street, Klamath Falls, OR. 97601 Phone: 1.800.424.6423 or 541.882.4666 Website: www.klamathfallsqualityinn.com  Pet fee: $10 per pet/night

Crystalwood Lodge, 38625 Westside Rd., Klamath Falls, OR. 97603 Phone: 541.381.2322 Website: www.crystalwoodlodge.com  Well-behaved animals: Free

Econo Lodge, 75 Main St., Klamath Falls, OR. 97601 Phone: 541.884.7735 Website: www.econolodge.com Pet fee: $10 per pet/night

Shilo Inn Suites & Hotel, 2500 Almond St., Klamath Falls, OR. 97601 Phone: 541.885.7980 Website: www.shiloinns.com  Pet fee: $25 per room, dogs only

Days Inn,3612 South 6th St., Klamath Falls, OR. 97603 Phone: 541.882.8864 Website: www.daysinn.com  Pet fee: Free

Cimmarron Inn, 3060 South 6th St., Klamath Falls, OR. 97603 Phone: 541.882.4601 Website: www.cimmaroninnklamathfalls.com  Pet fee: $25 per dog, good for 1-7 day stay

Microtel Inn & Suite, 2716 Dakota Ct., Klamath Falls, OR. 97603 Phone: 541.273.0206 Website: www.microtelinn.com  Pet fee: $35 non-refundable for length of stay

Oregon Motel 8 & RV Park, 5225 N. Hwy 97, Klamath Falls, OR. 97601 Phone : 541.883.3431 Website: www.oregonmotel8rvpark.com  Pet fee: $10 per pet/night for motel and $2 pet pet/night RV park

Collier Memorial Park, 46000 Hwy. 97 N., Chiloquin, OR. 97624 Phone: 1.800.0551.6949 or 541.783.2471 Pet fee: Free. Must be kept on a leash no longer than 6 ft. long and cleaned up after.

And of course Fido will want a day at the spa before that long drive home.  Be sure to check out-Hot Paws Spa & Boutique, 1035 Main Street, Klamath Falls, OR. 97601 Phone 541.273.1883   www.hotpawspetspa.com  More info at www.discoverklamath.com

For those who prefer sunshine and beaches…

Named one of the “#2 U.S. Destination for Holiday Lights” by Yahoo! Travel and USA Today in 2011, Newport Beach, California is a get-away to the stars and one of the world’s premier vacation destinations for people of all walks of life…and their pets.  With mild Mediterranean weather and sunshine, Newport Beach is Dog-Friendly. From large Huskies to tiny Chihuahuas, every dog imaginable is welcomed in what many describe as the Canine Coast.

With pet-friendly accommodations, stores, beaches and parks, Newport Beach is the ideal destination for a winter weekend getaway with your pet Fido, Fifi, Bolt or Lassie. Take your pooch surfing !

Located on Southern California’s Pacific coastline between Los Angeles and San Diego, Newport Beach offers pet-owners an array of impressive accommodation choices for the perfect overnight stay with their dog(s).

Our favorite is

The Island Hotel Newport Beach
Pets up to 45-50 pounds allowed (usually). Non-refundable deposit is $100.

690 Newport Center Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660 (949) 759-0808.


Newport Beach famous for its ocean-view outdoor shopping prominades, and nothing is better than strolling around with your four-legged companion as humans are not the only ones who can fill shopping bags to their brims. In Newport Beach, there are stores that are “Dog Friendly” and then there are stores with Dogitude…

 Barney’s Barkery

322 Marine Avenue, Newport Beach, CA‎ – (949) 675-0364‎
Dedicated to pampering pets.

2113 Newport Coast Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92657 – Phone (949) 640-6072

Showcases dog and cat nutrition and specialty products.

Fashion Island   
401 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660 – Phone (949) 721 – 2000

As Orange County’s premier open-air retail center, Fashion Island boasts nearly 200 specialty shops, world-class department stores and a vast array of restaurants and cafes, in a sophisticated yet relaxed dog-friendly atmosphere that is distinctively Southern California.

Three particularly dog-friendly restaurants include:

Francoli Gourmet Emporium

 Red Robin

Café Beau Solei


Fashion Island, 865 Newport Center Drive, Newport Beach, CA‎ 92660 – Phone (949) 717-6888‎ 

Features an impressive selection of  designer-dog-bowls, collars-leads-harnesses and dog  furniture

 Newport Coast Shopping Center
21103-21173 Newport Coast Drive Newport Beach, CA 92657

With beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean, this shopping destination features five dog-friendly restaurant choices: Pasta Commodore, Kingyo Sushi, First Class Pizza, Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill & Mustard Delicatessan.

 Three Dog Bakery
924 Avocado Avenue, Newport Beach, CA 92660 – Phone (949) 760-3647‎
Three Dog Bakery provides cookies and snacks for dogs as well as some boutique items. The well-behaved, leashed dog is always welcome.


When it comes to pooches and their owners looking for a little fun in the sun, Newport Beach has the perfect assortment of beaches and attractions. From a stroll, run or Frisbee game on a beautiful beach to a cruise on Newport Harbor, there are lots to do for dogs and their owners.

Crystal Cove State Park & Historic District
Although dogs cannot be on the beaches or backcountry, they are allowed on the paved pathway above the beach. The historic district below features 46 vintage cottages that are clustered in a quaint village setting.

 Balboa Island Ferry
The historic auto ferry welcomes well-behaved dogs of all kinds (in the car or outside on a leash) for the 3-minute trip across the harbor) 


 McFadden Square
The popular gathering spot for visitors, beachgoers, plus dogs and their owners, is at the base of the Newport Pier is the site of the original Dory Fishing Fleet and the original wharf dating back to 1875. A 2,000 pound bronze sculpture by artist Hank Kaminsky commemorating the centennial of Newport Beach is the centerpiece of the square.

Newport Beach
Dogs are allowed on this popular beach before 9:00a.m. and after 5:00p.m.

About Newport Beach, California

Sitting along nine miles of spectacular California coastline between Los Angeles and San Diego, Newport Beach is a stunning seaside community famous for its breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, long stretches of warm clean beaches and year-round Mediterranean climate. With a sparkling three-mile harbor surrounded by gorgeous homes and yachts of every stripe, waterfront restaurants and chic shops bustling with activity, Newport Beach defines the California dream. For more information about Visit Newport Beach and for a free Newport Beach Visitor’s Guide, go to http://www.VisitNewportBeach.com/ or call (800) 94-COAST.

Become a Facebook fan at   http://www.facebook.com/visitnewportbeach


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Most Romantic Inns in California


we don’t know about those inns above but what we do know about is the most romantic AND pet friendly AND eco friendly inns in California.  Fabulous gourmet food AND the Best chocolate yummies, too. So here’s our list of those.

Not an inn but a fantastic venue:

1. Island Hotel in Newport Beach IslandHotel.com (Kai Pua Ritual for Two at the Island Spa, exemplary service and romantic dinners in the Palm Terrace Restaurant and Lounge, where couples can woo one another with champagne and chocolate desserts in the unique Cocoa Lounge)

2. MacCallum House, Mendocino  maccallumhouse.com (hot tub under the stars, fabulous wedding venue and phenomenal food) American Historic Inns, Inc. (AHI), publisher of more than 2.7 million guidebooks and parent company to iLoveInns.com, an award-winning Website, named MacHouse #1 of their 2009 Top 10 Romantic Inns. iloveinns.com/2009Top10RomanticInns.htm









3. Bardessono’s in Yountville

4. Strawberry Creek Inn, Idyllwild strawberrycreekinn.com (mountain heaven, eco friendly wedding venue and not pet friendly, their Bunkhouse is though)

5. Oak Knoll Inn, Napa

Not pet friendly but go for the chocolate!


5.  Greenwood Pier Inn & Cafe, Elk greenwoodpierinn.com (spectacular views, lovely wedding venue and intimate setting)

7. Little River Inn, Little River littleriverinn.com (amazing ocean views on the patios for two, hot tub for two inside the room and fireplace plus relaxing spa treatments)

8. Blue Whale Inn, Cambria bluewhaleinn.com (honeymooners delight, across from the ocean, lots of amenities and delicious breakfast, cookies and chocolates, sweets for you and your sweetie)

9. Casa Cody, Inn, Palm Springs (beautifully decorated, intimate wedding venue and quiet accommodations in the heart of Palm Springs)

10.  Highland Ranch could be a fun place to enjoy relaxation and romance. If you stay at the ranch Friday night, you will receive 3 nights for the price of 2! Enjoy a menu of romantic meals fresh flowers and complimentary Scharffenberger chocolate and champagne. Go for a romantic horseback ride to a beautiful vista and then cozy up together next to the fireplace in your cabin. Dogs will enjoy the warmth of the fireplace, too. Plus, they offer one FREE massage per couple. Email: stay@highlandranch.com

Be sure to bring some of your own chocolate goodies to dip into for a deliciously intimate experience of your own making.


Crater Lake Company’s Chocolate Truffle Body Polish with the aroma of pure chocolate.  Made with organic and fair-trade cocoa and pure white cane sugar, this decadently divine body  scrub protects the skin from environmental factors that can age and ultimately dull the skin.   $22 at craterlakecompany.com.



DaBomb Yummy Soaps: Fraiche specializes in bath bomb swizzles and goat’s milk soaps, Rich Dark Chocolate soap is a special treat under $8.00. Three pak with rose, cherryliciious and rich dark Chocolate soaps. More info at: http://www.myfraiche.com 20% off by using coupon code fraiche20


Chocolate Dreamz Valentines Gift (the yummiest smelling) consists of 4 oz. Chocolate Dreamz Scrubz and matching scented 2 oz. Oilz by Scrubz.  Handmade in small batches.  Jars are recyclable, bags and scoops reusable.  Use only the finest food grade and organic oils in base. Scents are created using the highest standard essential and fragrance oils.  scrubzbodyscrub.com


And when you’re in the mood for a chocoholic snack:

Distinct Flavors to Make you Drool

Caramel Sprinkled With Grey Salt, Espresso, Cognac, Rose, Jasmine, Cinnamon/Cayenne, Shitake Mushroom, and more



Chocolate Dufflets Crackle, Tumbles, and Morsels are created from entirely natural ingredients. The Crackle is a twist on the classic Florentine that encases toasted nuts within sheaths of layered Belgian dark chocolate. Visit www.duffletsweets.com

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romantic gifts guide for you

Pamper, splurge, and indulge is the name of the game on Valentine’s Day. For that some enchanted evening feeling for all of you busy pet parents, here is a menu of Eco-friendly Valentine ideas.

Everyone deserves lots of love on Valentine’s Day (and every day) so here is a romantic gift guide you can show your sweetie. These gifts have all been k9 approved from Cici and I for you.

1.  Gorgeous Cosmetic Bag Bar None… You are an on the go type of gal who travels with your pooch to posh and not so posh places, right. To the dog park, bank, shopping, work, errands, to a pet friendly city, to visit your friends, family, loved ones, here and there and everywhere. Maybe you wear a lot of make-up or a little bit, like me, but your sweetie should do you right with this incredibly elegant soft cosmetic bag. Now get this. It not only is beautiful but it comes with a replaceable liner so that it stays fresh and clean. No more messy goo, flakes, dust and junk at the bottom of the bag. And this posh bag is also eco-friendly. Vemayca.com is the place to go get one.  It is almost too nice to use, but so convenient. And Veronica touts Eating Your Own Dog Food

2.  Say “I love you” every day with silk pillowcases and blankets on the bed. Silk blankets start at $299 (website is www.manitosilk.com)

Or a “magical” glow in the dark pillowcase like the one below.  Go to http://www.comfycozy.com $16.95

3.  Who doesn’t enjoy a Spaw day?  Joy of Spa (www.joyofspa.com) offers Instant Gift Certificates. Gifts are personalized and start at $25. The gift certificate is sent to the recipient by e-mail, or printed and sent to the recipient by the purchaser. Joy of Spa certificates  are redeemable at any of its 3,000+ partners, all of which are local, independently-operated spas and salons, across the country. Plus, gift certificates never expire, a bonus.

The Joy of Spa sister site, Spa Emergency (www.spaemergency.com), targets men shopping for a last minute gift or who have forgotten your special occasion. This is an easy way for guys to purchase personalized gifts for the women in their lives, and directs them to the Joy of Spa Instant Gift Certificates. No more stress, no more worry or panic.

4.  Fashion First Aid: You walk everywhere and your feet get tired. Footzyrolls are a rollable, foldable ballet flat that can make your life easier.  Rock n Red Soles are available for V-day, as well as the True Red Snake Skin shoe and candy-striped removable bow model. This gift comes with cute pink packaging. Prices range for $20-$30 depending on the style.

Footzyrolls come in handy when:

-The pain from heels is too much

-You need a quick, comfortable shoe while traveling

-You are running late to work from the dog park and need to get to the office quickly

-Your feet are tired from standing in heels all day and you want to change into a comfortable shoe to wear

Go to : www.footzyrolls.com

Relax away !

5.  DaBomb Yummy Soaps: Fraiche specializes in bath bomb swizzles and goat’s milk soaps, Rich Dark Chocolate soap is a special treat under $8.00. Three pak with rose, cherryliciious and rich dark Chocolate soaps. More info at: http://www.myfraiche.com 20% off by using coupon code fraiche20

Chocolate Dreamz Valentines Gift (the yummiest smelling) consists of 4 oz. Chocolate Dreamz Scrubz and matching scented 2 oz. Oilz by Scrubz.  Handmade in small batches.  Jars are recyclable, bags and scoops reusable.  Use only the finest food grade and organic oils in base. Scents are created using the highest standard essential and fragrance oils.  scrubzbodyscrub.com

6. After your massage and spa bath towel off with a Turk towel robe. The Turkish Towel Company sells 100% Turkish towels and bathrobes.  Check out the website at  http://www.turktowel.com

7.  Chocolate Dufflets Crackle, Tumbles, and Morsels are created from entirely natural ingredients. The Crackle is a twist on the classic Florentine that encases toasted nuts within sheaths of layered Belgian dark chocolate. Visit www.duffletsweets.com

8. Why not whisk you away for a weekend to Napa valley in northern California. It’s ok to leave the pooch behind, shhhh for a romantic weekend or you can bring your furry friend and stay at a luxurious pet friendly spa inn like Bardessono’s in Yountville. For the month of February, Ehlers Estate has partnered with one of Napa Valley’s premier Chocolatier’s, Woodhouse Chocolates, to offer a special chocolate and wine pairing.  The charming Ehlers Estate (www.EhlersEsate.com) is located in St. Helena.

Examples of pairings include:

2007 EHLERS ESTATE CABERNET FRANC PAIRED with Woodhouse’s THAI GINGER CHOCOLATE, dark chocolate ganache infused with coconut and lemon grass surrounding a piece of crystallized ginger’ covered in dark chocolate.

2006 EHLERS ESTATE ST. HELENA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 1886 with Woodhouse’s HONEY CHOCOLATE, a milk chocolate ganache whipped with honey butter in a dark chocolate shell dusted with gold.

Ehlers Estate wines are produced using estate grapes and organic and biodynamic farming methods.  Wine and Chocolate tasting sweethearts will receive a small and sweet take-away gift as well as barrel tasting and tour of the Ehlers Estate Vineyards and grounds. The cost is $50 per person and reservations are required in advance.

9.  If southern California sun and beach is what you crave, you must visit the acclaimed AAA Five Diamond luxury Island hotel in Newport Beach. Toll Free: 866-554-4620.


When: Available February 4 through February 26

What: Experience a luxurious 60-minute spa treatment at the award-winning Spa at Island Hotel, followed by a decadent sweet finale at Palm Terrace Restaurant’s Cocoa Lounge. Choice of: Swedish Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, Aromatherapy Massage, Pregnancy Massage, Deep Cleansing Facial, Gentlemen’s Fact Therapy, Aromatherapy Facial, Honey Hibiscus Hydrating Facial, OC Facial Drench, or Organic Carrot Vitamin Facial.

Price: $130.00, including the Cocoa Lounge Dessert Buffet (tax and gratuities not included). To book an appointment or arrange to give as a Valentine’s Day gift, please call (949-759-0808).


When: February 4 through February 26: Tuesday to Saturday, 6:00 to 10:00 pm

What: Back by popular demand, Palm Terrace’s Cocoa Lounge Dessert Buffet will be serving up chocolate decadence.

Why: Executive Pastry Chef Michael Owens will offer scrumptious creations that include Banana Chocolate Mousse Cake, White Chocolate Strawberry Shortcake, Triple Chocolate Cupcakes, Double Chocolate Fudge S’mores, Manjari Obsession in Chocolate Cups, plus lollipops, peanut caramels, port chocolates and coconut almond bars, and much more – served among displays of chocolate statues and chocolate velour.
Price: $18 per person, tax and gratuities not included.

Insider Tip: Order a two- or more-course dinner at Palm Terrace Restaurant in February, Tuesday through Saturday, and receive complimentary entrance into the heavenly Cocoa Lounge.

For all of you Single gals

Why not have a gal’s night out or weekend? Or have a PJ party, gossip, share makeup tips, spa, eat fun food. Pamper, splurge and enjoy your freedom !

Infinite Love Flower Elixir, Mist, & Serum
Hand-collected flower elixirs that enhance unconditional love through acupuncture meridians … Made by Lotus Wei Elixir cost is 29.00, Mist & Serum cost is 35.00
Taken internally, designed to magnify unconditional love with the secret power of flower essences.
Put five drops of this elixir under your tongue five times throughout the day. Feel a difference in and around you within minutes.

Only the Finest Sweets For You, Sweetie … Distinct Flavors to Make you Drool

Caramel Sprinkled With Grey Salt, Espresso, Cognac, Rose, Jasmine, Cinnamon/Cayenne, Shitake Mushroom, and more


Also, grab this fun book and read it.

Never Kiss a Frog – A Girl’s Guide to Creatures from the Dating Swamp by Marilyn Anderson is a fun take on fairy tales. Frogs don’t turn into princes—men don’t change—no matter how tenderly they’re handled.  Some are adept at hiding their reptilian views while others seem oblivious to their inner slime. Even an astute, Sex-and-The-City type of gal can be fooled. That’s why every lady hoping for a princely mate needs Never Kiss a Frog.


Last but not least, if you want to get your guy a cool gift, consider one of these:

C’mon baby light his fire… romantic and classy gifts for men.

All Natural Non-Toxic Soy Massage Candles made with Soy/Shea Butter and Essential Oils can be used for a massage. Soy Candles are non-toxic, burn cleaner, burn 50 to 60 % longer than paraffin, do not produce black soot, do not contain animal fat, contain 100% cotton wick, are made with Shea Butter, no artificial fragrance.  For more info, http://positivethoughtbrand.com/ $22.00

Light up those candles with:

Bugatti 3 Chrome Satin / Chrome Polished Traditional Flame Lighter $150
A Swiss made lighter a sleek design is not only appealing to the eye, but it also makes for the perfect pocket fit.  In a word: extraordinary.

Colibri “The Don” Black Matte Quantum Torch Flame Cigar Lighter $100
From the built-in cigar cutter to the wind-resistant blue torch flame, The Don has everything you could hope for in a lighter.  Plus, the optional personalized engraving is a perfect extra touch to let him know exactly how you feel.

Xikar “Executive” Torch Flame Lighter $35
This lighter is sleek, attractive and durable.  The button is conveniently located on the side of the lighter, keeping your finger safely distant from the powerful flame when it ignites.

Davidoff “Giant” Cigar Matches $3
Use the perfect match to light your fire.

Love Potion #9

Looking for something special for that sophisticated fella this Valentine’s Day?  How about Love Potion #9? Love Potion #9® is a 60-proof, incredibly smooth, no grain alcohol (30% pure sugarcane alcohol) ‘distilled spirits specialty’ with a blend of 20 exotic tropical fruit flavors, including mango, peach, chocolate, vanilla, pear, apple, cherry, almond and many others.  More info can be found at http://www.lovepo9.com


Filed under aromatherapy, California, chocolate, chocolate travel, dark chocolate, eco friendly/green, girlfriend getaways, love, organic, passion, Valentine's Day, wine country, women travel

Top 20 Pet Friendly Inns in California with Dogitude

You may recall that back in March we created a list of the top Pet Friendly Inns with Dogitude in California… well, we have to add a few and change the list… and please do go on and read about our travels to California dog beaches at bodega, carmel, half moon bay, huntington, mendocino, newport, san diego, and so much more!

we have some exciting new developments traveling along the K9 highway… to be announced soon…

Visit each Website for Very Important Pet packages. Bring your best
friend with you and you will always have a paw-fect time.


five bones, Superb Exemplary brimming with Dogitude
four bones, Excellent service, lots of Dogitude
three bones, Average accommodations, amenities and Dogitude
two bones, Less than Average, little Dogitude
one bone, lacking Dogitude. fur washing

Top 20 Pet Friendly Inns in California with Dogitude

Visit each Website for Very Important Pet packages. Bring your best
friend with you and you will always have a paw-fect time.

1. Rosewood Sandhill, Menlo Park
This magnificent property is owned by Stanford University. Every single staff member we met made a big fuss over Cici and the customer service was unmatched / simply superb. Pet amenities include a lush dog bed (that they gave us to take home), treats, bowls and dog bone mat.

1. The Island Hotel, Newport Beach
http://IslandHotel.com (exemplary service, large grassy area, delicious handcrafted bones and pet amenities including in the Spa)

2. Stanford Inn, Mendocino
http://stanfordinn.com (extremely dog and animal friendly, including dining with Fido indoor lobby, delicious sweet potato treats and gourmet vegan cuisine)

3. 3 Peaks Resort, South Lake Tahoe
http://www.lake-tahoe-california-hotels.com/lake-tahoe-coupons-deals.php (organic treats in a doggie jar in the lobby), dogs are welcome to be in the lobby and by the swimming pool plus there is lots of grass, trees, bushes all over the property and various types of suites and motel log cabin-like rooms at various price ranges, all clean, fresh and nice furnished

4. Hotel Solamar, San Diego
http://www.hotelsolamar.com/ (excellent concierge and staff customer service, dog bed, dog bowls and treats)

5. Casa Carolina, Sebastopol
Casa Carolina is 5 minutes from wineries and 5 minutes from downtown, so you can enjoy all of the shops and restaurants, the location is in the Russian River Wine Country, too. The innkeepers, Lila, Josh and Trevor are very friendly and helpful. There is a wonderful home away from home atmosphere that is very rare. Plus, there is Olive, Cici’s dog pal.

6. Luxe Hotel Sunset
http://www.luxehotelsunsetblvd.com/ This pet-friendly hotel is just 12 miles from LAX Airport. There are 160 spacious upscale and modern non-smoking guest rooms and suites and a Doggy and Me package, guest and their dog both receive an in room massage. There are 12 pet friendly suites and they are all on the upper floor for access to the grassy area plus a doggie menu.

7. Hilton Waterfront Beach Resort, Huntington Beach
waterfrontresort.com (gorgeous ocean views and dog beach sponsors)

8. Seafoam Lodge, Little River
www.seafoamlodge.com on site boxer dog (Lucy) who loves to play with other dogs…and they deliver breakfast to your door every morning (hot muffins, cool orange juice)

The Andiron and Seafoam Lodge, Little River
The Andiron is a very dog and eco friendly property, refurbished in FUN ways, perfect for girlfriend getaways, romantic weekends, and/or a peaceful and quiet relaxing beach vacation…

9. Casa Cody Inn, Palm Springs
this is the ONLY pet friendly inn that I HIGHLY recommend in Palm Springs, in the heart of downtown … inn has four huge grassy courtyards for dogs to sniff around and explore, when the cats are sleeping, that is, there are three cats in residence, big mama, biscuit and marmalade… four paws up !

10. Harmony Ridge Lodge, Nevada City
fabulous forest, spacious suites, on site dog, as well as great homemade dog and human treats and cookies, the food is wonderfully yummy, too…

11. Blue Whale Inn, Cambria
bluewhaleinn.com (dog lovers delight, across from the ocean, scrumptious dog treats in doggie jar in dining area), dog bed, dog bowls and toy

12. Union Hill Inn, Sonora
treats, treats and more treats, from steak to ground beef and more… need I say anything else? cici loved the special treatment…

13. Beazley House, Napa
lovely suites, on site dogs, wonderful cookies and treats for humans and dogs, beautiful gardens, as well as pet friendly staff…

14. Fleur de Lac, Lake Arrowhead
www.fleurdelac.com quaint inn with five cozy suites and very pet friendly staff…

15. Rancho Caymus, Rutherford
location, location, location, and wonderful pet friendly staff…

16. Cambria Pines Lodge, Cambria
gorgeous gardens, lovely forest in back, with deer, grass, great place to walk the dog… and doggies can eat outside with humans…

17. Highland Ranch, Philo
a 3-4-5 doggie day/night experience, plus horses, cats and other critters, and three meals a day, an awesome getaway resort, with pool, lots of green grass and trees to explore, roam and canine party…

18. Svensgaard Inn and Hofsas House, Carmel
Svensgaard Inn has a grassy courtyard and pet amenities galore including the barking treat jar in the lobby.

Hofsas House http://www.hofsashouse.com/ is a Bavarian-style, four-story house built on a hill with ocean views. There are 38 rooms, 19 are pet friendly. Dogs are allowed by the pool with their owner. An inn with a sense of what Bavarians call Gemutlichkeit.

19. Surf Motel & Gardens, Fort Bragg and the Andiron Seaside Inn
http://www.surfmotelfortbragg.com, in my humble opinion, this is the pet friendliest motel in the area with beautiful gardens, a great location and a pet fun run on the property.

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Filed under dog friendly, dog travel, dogs, luxury travel, Mendocino, pet friendly lodging