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Summertime Luxury Awaits At The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe

TravelPulse logo TravelPulse 7/8/2018 Chelsea Davis

Lake Tahoe, California isn't just a winter wonderland for adrenaline junkies and snow bunnies looking for world-class slopes with killer views. The California heat transforms this destination into the ultimate summer retreat where air exudes the fresh smell of pine with a hint of barbecue and every outdoor activity is at your fingertips.

Most people don’t even realize that The Biggest Little City in the World is just 45 minutes outside of Tahoe, while boutique—or kitschy, depending on your taste—shopping and incredible, made-right-before-your-eyes fudge is just six miles from Northshore in the historic town of Truckee.

The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers guests luxury accommodations, summer activities and private lakeside access. © Travalliancemedia Owned Media (Staff Photo) The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers guests luxury accommodations, summer activities and private lakeside access.

I grew up going to Tahoe as a kid, but because none of my family knew how to ski or snowboard at the time, we would often make the three-and-a-half-hour drive from San Francisco during the summer months. However, there’s no better place to immerse oneself in nature, regardless of season.

That said, unless you’re planning on camping under the stars, let’s talk about where to stay to have yourself a luxe mountain escape. My number one pick? The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe—the first and only AAA Five Diamond resort nestled mid-mountain at Northstar California Resort.

This upscale resort features 170 guest rooms and 23 private Ritz-Carlton Residences, with each offering a delightfully cozy fireplace. Depending on where you’re staying, the views range from gorgeous, pine covered mountains to the Northstar slopes. For those lucky enough to be in one of the club level guestrooms and suites, you also have access to the relaxing Club Lounge which comes with a concierge, breakfast, bites, drinks and desserts, as well as sprawling mountain views.

Here are just a few of the reasons to choose The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe as your home base:

The Ritz-Carlton Spa

This 17,000 square foot spa is truly a magical forest escape that emphasizes its mountain surroundings in everything from its Lake Tahoe-inspired treatments to its rustic, warm tree-themed décor.

It boasts 17 treatment rooms and offers experiences that include the indulgent 90-minute Journey Through the Forest which features a full body exfoliation, private soaking tub and full body massage with essential oils native to the area.

Guests are also invited to enjoy the wet spa with a whirlpool, sauna and eucalyptus steam room, and a heated spa lap pool overlooking the mountains.

The Lake Club

One of the most exclusive perks for guests? Access to the Lake Club which gives you the option of spending the day at an exceptionally well-designed property where no matter if you’re inside or out, you can admire the surreal panoramic views of the lake, along with the snowcapped mountains in the distance.

The Lake House is complete with an indoor gathering area and bar, a ground-floor dining terrace with plush seating, an upper-level dining deck, a grassy lawn outfitted with lounge chairs and umbrellas, private beach and a whole bunch of summer activities and water sports to choose from.

Stand-up paddle boarding and kayaking are both complimentary, and if you’re feeling more adventurous, you can rent wave runners, go water skiing, parasailing or wake surfing. Also offered are formula yacht, sailing and fishing charters.

Another bonus? From 11 a.m–3 p.m. chefs are cooking up a storm ensuring you have everything you need to stay happy and full on the lake. One of my favorite moments was stuffing my face with a perfectly grilled cheeseburger on the dock and washing it down with a berry mimosa. Yes, beer, wine and cocktails are included! Oh, and did I mention the complimentary shuttles from the resort?

Dining

The Ritz-Carlton offers five spots to eat and imbibe: Manzanita, Backyard Bar & BBQ, Café Blue, The Living Room and the Highlands Bar.

The main dining restaurant is Manzanita, which brings together seasonal ingredients and unique flavor profiles in an extensive menu full of thoughtful, innovative cuisine. Some of my favorite dinner dishes include the starters Japanese hiramasa and elk meatballs, and for the main courses you can’t go wrong with the Colorado rack of lamb, the filet mignon, Mary’s roasted chicken or the clam bake. It’s also open for breakfast, brunch and lunch.

And for a fun dining experience, whether après skiing in the winter or poolside in the summer, take a seat at Backyard Bar & BBQ for “blues, brews and bbq”. The menu features barbeque specialties such as St. Louis smoked ribs, brisket and pulled pork sandwiches cooked with an on-site smoker. Also offered are wood-fired oven-baked pizzas, burgers and bratwurst along with local craft beers and cocktails.

Don’t miss out on the resort’s signature experience—Marshmology—which is as awesome as it sounds. Offered nighty at the fire pit, guests of all ages are invited to join the resident Marshmologist to make s’mores with the resort’s house-made marshmallows, which come in fun flavors like blackberry and lemon.

Nature

If you’re a fan of hiking, the Lake Tahoe area boasts trails that range from chill strolls to epic undertakings that’ll have you pushing your boundaries in pursuit of the most breathtaking views around.

At Eagle Falls trailhead you’re surrounded by the type of rugged landscape that would seem to require a whole day’s hike to reach. With hundred-year-old pine trees and the energy of the gushing waterfalls not too far off from the start of the hike—it’s a fairly easy-to-navigate excursion, where you can reward your efforts with a dip in the cooling waters of Eagle Lake.

Another recent favorite of mine? Hiking at Mount Rose summit, the second highest peak in the Lake Tahoe basin. While some may want to make the entire roundtrip hike (it’s over ten miles!), two and a half miles in, you’ll find yourself at the picturesque, rushing Galena Falls. Alpine meadows filled with wildflowers, lush emerald green pines and wildlife (how cute are chipmunks?) make this hike a must.

As for beachgoers? Adventurous beach bums can tan on—or jump off of—Sand Harbor’s enormous, impressive boulders or go right for a swim in the pristine blue waters of Lake Tahoe with an unreal mountain backdrop.

Lastly, if you’re based in the bay area, you’re in luck. The Ritz-Carlton recently partnered with Blackbird Air, the Bay Area’s premier technology-driven airline delivering a private flight experience. So what does that mean? Guests coming from Palo Alto and Sausalito can travel directly to the Lake Club via seaplane in under an hour. How cool is that?

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