Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort

  • 48123 Highway One, Big Sur, USA
  • 59 Rooms

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Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort

  • 48123 Highway One, Big Sur, USA
  • 59 Rooms

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Verified guests have rated this hotel out of a possible score of 20

Big Sur is the jewel of the California coast, one of the most spectacular places in North America, and Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort is Big Sur’s original luxury resort, founded by writer Lawrence A. Spector, using profits from the film Easy Rider. Clearly it doesn’t get much more California than that.

Fortunately this is the eminently dignified and respectable face of California, a sort of middle ground, as far from New Age hippie excess as it is from the glitz and materialism of Hollywood. Ventana is clearly a high-luxury resort, specializing in escapism and what is often called ‘pampering’— but Big Sur is the star here, the main event the hallucinatory view of the Pacific a thousand feet below.

A less restrained, less confident resort would feature gleaming, monumental buildings, and would probably pave over the redwoods to construct a grand looping driveway. Here we find a hotel at peace with its surroundings, very much a part of the Big Sur landscape—the hotel itself comprises some ten or more low wooden structures, hidden around the sprawling 243-acre grounds and connected by winding pathways.

But the genius of this place is that beneath its humble surface it delivers all the material comforts of those proud and decadent resorts—from the wood-burning fireplaces, Jacuzzis and high ceilings of the guest suites to the public spaces like the pools, the Japanese bathhouse, and the Allegria Spa, offering a selection of treatments so comprehensive as to set the head spinning. And the food, of course, is exquisite as well, the Sur House restaurant serving Mediterranean-inflected cuisine against the backdrop of the Pacific and the wide blue sky.

Make no mistake: this is the same Big Sur where Henry Miller lived, where Kerouac slept on the beach and Dylan came to study—and it’s also where the likes of Steve McQueen and Ali MacGraw, as well as generations of successors, have come for Hollywood-quality luxury without the paparazzi in tow. As such, it’s like nowhere else in California—and as such, it’s not to be missed.

Please note: Children under the age of 18 are not permitted.

How to get there:
Ventana is approximately one hour by car from Monterey Peninsula Airport and three hours from San Francisco.

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Facilities & services

  • Free wi-fi
  • Free parking
  • Off street parking
  • Valet parking
  • Bar
  • Room service
  • Restaurant
  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • Indoor swimming pool
  • Spa
  • Spa treatments (on request)
  • Sauna
  • Jacuzzi
  • Yoga
  • Gym
  • 100% non-smoking hotel
  • Concierge
  • 24 hour front desk
  • Air conditioning
  • Game room
  • Garden
  • Library
  • Lounge
  • Luggage storage
  • Pet Friendly
  • Pets allowed (charges apply)
  • Shopping area nearby
  • Parking
  • Swimming pool
  • Adults only


Restaurants near the hotel