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“Gorgeous!”

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The Resort at Pelican Hill
Ranked #5 of 17 Hotels in Newport Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
52 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Gorgeous!”
Reviewed 5 March 2014

Although it was cool and rainy, it didn't dampen a trip to this spectacular resort. Recently, I was lucky enough to stay at this resort during a business conference. Everything about it was as good as it gets. The staff was friendly and helpful. The property was gorgeous from every angle, overlooking the golf course, straight out to the ocean. The room was comfortable and featured a nice balcony with an unobstructed view of the ocean. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GirlJustWants2Travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (400)
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Arlington, VA
Level Contributor
125 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 March 2014

My in-laws recommended this resort so not sure what to expect. We were upgraded to fabulous 4 bedroom villa, not that we needed all this space. But would be perfect for a family. We had a lovely butler who was always available by text which was nice. Villas a bit far from main resort but easy walk to main resort. Ask how to walk the fast back way. Also you can walk to golf shop, 20 min. but wonderful walk.

Small issues with a beautiful property in a beautiful part of the world. We arrived starving from an early morning east coast flight. Went straight villa restaurant by pool, I explained I was famished so ordered the gazpacho, explaining to bring right away. Thinking how long could cold soup take. After numerous asks, it took good 20min. Started trip on bad note.

For dinner we ate at Allegra which is suppose to be one of the nicest restaurants on property. It was good but nothing exceptional. Best thing was our very attentive server. I wish we would have eaten at the Grill at Golf Course, which I did for lunch and was exceptional with a much better vibe.

Spa: Nice, had a fabulous massage, but it would be nice to have some fruit around in bowls. Place felt sterile, just few almonds in bowl. I had a blow dry and hair cut in an awful dark room, you could hardly see yourself in mirror as too high. (I am tall so shorter person would really be out of luck) I asked my stylist about this and she said its a problem but a whole design team must approve any change) Kinda weird to have a dark salon where guest unable to see themselves.

Pool:
I sat at the round pool with friends one day and it was pretty slow, we had good service. Once things got busy the one server could not handle things and they had taken her helper away to set up for private event. Numerous suits walking around but not pitching in. What makes a great resort as a opposed to a good resort is when team works together and no one is above any job.

We had breakfast each morning by the round pool and were very pleased with service and selection. I couldn't get enough of the fresh California produce.

Golf
We played both course and they were fabulous. If you only have time for one course make sure to play south course partially along ocean. We had 2 great caddies Eddie and Jessie. I also had a lesson for an hour from the pro which was perfect to tweak my game. My second round was much better than first. On our first round we were paired with a member who could not have been more gracious.

All in all nice resort. Bit monochromatic for me, they could mix place up a little bit. Kinda reminds me a a ritz. Also, it's very popular with conventions. Feel of place can change depending on group.

Biggest concern being in sunny California was not sure if this resort does recycle. Depending on who you ask you get a different answer. Also they drive you around in these nice Mercedes but they idle them at all times which is crazy. Our butler came in to get us and left car running. She said they are told to as to not waste time. Being from a state that is not great towards environment I look to California as hope for the country. Hope Pelican Bay leads the way.

Room Tip: Ask for a view and easy walk to main property.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Arlington30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Allentown, New Jersey
Level Contributor
45 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 March 2014

Great location with gorgeous views and accessible to so many great beaches and locations. Visited Laguna, Newport Beach and other quaint areas. Started the trip as business extended to personal and it was a great experience on both fronts. Even made new friends by the gorgeous infinity pool! Rooms were beautifully equipped and they were willing to accommodate any needs. Can't wait to go back with the kids.

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank luv2travel654
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mercer Island, Washington
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 February 2014

This is among the best resorts to stay at in the world. The rooms, golf, food and over the top amazing service made this memorable. The staff at the Irvine Co. owned property are well trained and if I could give them six stars -- I would.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mislums
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Naples
Level Contributor
66 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 February 2014

This was our second trip to Pelican Hill. This resort is first class all the way around. The service and accommodations were outstanding. The golf on both the South and North courses was exceptional. The conditions were great and the views are probably the best we have ever had, including golf trips we have taken to the mountains and in Hawaii.

Room Tip: The room prices will vary greatly depending on the views you want and the type of accommodations (e...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank John L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2014

I booked our stay through American Express Platinum Travel. We arrived with happy anticipation of a lovely stay. That feeling only lasted until we reached the front desk. We were met there by Carly, whose professional goal, it seems, is to make one feel like a number or "just another sheep in the herd". She recited her spiel about check-in being at 4:00 etc. No mention of our reservation being with Platinum Travel Services until I asked if they could honor the early check-in which is one of the benefits. No mention of any of the other benefits of our AMEX reservation either. I wondered if she was even familiar with the program.

When I mentioned that, in addition, we were members of the Resort's own Exclusive Privelege Program she had no idea what that meant, or it meant nothing to her. In fact, no one seemed to know anything about the program which is supposed to include a complimentary room upgrade if available (as with AMEX) and discounts at the resort. We were informed that they had no idea what type of room would be available and that we were "in the queue".

TWO hours later, after politely inquiring a few times as to the status of our room (and getting the runaround) we were finally informed that our room was available. She said that, unfortunately, an upgrade was impossible (we also know that the resort was only at 73% occupancy) but that she had made an effort to get us an "ocean view room". Which was no effort on her part because THAT WAS WHAT WE RESERVED and were paying for. Neither she, nor the front desk supervisor really seemed to notice or care about us personally. Neither welcomed us, apologized for the wait, or offered so much as a glass of water.

When we finally got into our room, exhausted after a long day of traveling, imagine our dismay at our "ocean view" room actually being a room where the main view was the rooftops of rooms below us and the road. Sure, you could see the ocean if you squinted into the distance and then it was about an inch worth at best.

At that point, we had had it. I contacted Platinum Travel and they had to get on the phone with the resort to try to make it right. We were ultimately given another room with a nicer view.
We travel the world regularly and prefer to stay at hotels in the Fine Hotels and Resorts program. We are accustomed to a much higher level of service than we have received at this property thus far.

This is our first night of a four-night stay. I will reserve judgment about our overall experience until the end, however I must say that the resort gets a failing grade for first impressions.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Southerngal2222
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PelicanHillResort, Manager at The Resort at Pelican Hill, responded to this review, 21 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to share your in-depth feedback about your experience. I would like to extend my sincerest apologies for the experience you encountered. It is our mission and responsibility to provide exceptional service and memorable experiences for each and every guest who chooses to visit our resort. Please know that I have personally discussed your feedback with our managing director and followed up directly with our front office staff so we may continue to improve our service levels throughout the resort.

Please note that our front office manager has tried to reach you several times and left messages, hoping to have the opportunity to connect before your departure. I would also like to take the time to speak with you directly to discuss your feedback in more detail. I will provide you with my contact details separately in a private message, so you may contact me directly at your convenience. Once again, I apologize that your experience was less than perfect, and I look forward to speaking with you so that we can make exceptional improvements during the remainder of your stay.


Kind Regards,

David Phillips
Director of Rooms
The Resort at Pelican Hill
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tustin, California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2014

We have stayed at Pelican before and had a wonderful time, which is what led to me picking the resort to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. I opted to "upgrade" to a 2 bedroom villa for the 3 nights figuring it would be nice and comfortable for our family of four. We arrived at the resort around 3:30 p.m. on Friday. Guaranteed Check in is at 4 p.m. As we are waiting to check in I hear the couple ahead of us is upgraded to a 3 bedroom ocean view villa. I think "great", since I'm an Irvine Company "Customer Privilege" member I also qualify for an ocean view upgrade - so I'm feeling good! I step to the desk to check in, the front desk girl confirms our reservation in a "garden view" villa. I hand her my "customer privilege" card and request the upgrade. She informs me that there is no availability - they are 100% sold out - so she can't honor my upgrade request. I am disappointed, but understanding. She informs me that the Villa is not yet ready, and she will come find us when it is.

45 minutes later we are still waiting for our Villa. I inquire again . . . . she says its "in final inspection". I ask about the "guaranteed 4 p.m. check in policy" since it is now 4:45 p.m. She apologizes and tells me that there are "engineering issues" with our villa. Specifically the T.V. doesn't work and there's a problem with the shower. I've watched multiple people check in at this point and all of their villas are ready, but we've been waiting almost an hour. Then the next guy to walk up and check in is cheerfully told that they've upgraded him to an ocean view villa! What? I thought they were sold out? So, now I've not only had to wait more than an hour to check in, I've not been offered the upgrade that as an Irvine Company Customer I've been promised, and I'm being given a "broken" villa?

Around 5 p.m. they FINALLY escort us to Villa 505. We get in the room - T.v. still doesn't work, wine fridge in the kitchen doesn't operate either - whatever, I'm just glad to finally be able to relax. That night we discover that both sinks in the master bath will not drain. Funny how housekeeping didn't notice this when they cleaned the sinks? Saturday they FINALLY fix the T.v. and sinks at 6 p.m., but my brother in law notices the thick dust on top of all the lamp shades and the cushions on the couches actually "puff" dust when you sit on them. Is this the reject villa that never gets used or properly maintained/cleaned?

Our dinner experiences at the on-site restaurants are divine. Service at the pools is great! By check out on Monday, I've forgotten about the disappointing start to our weekend. Until we leave for home. We pull our car out of the Villa garage where it's been parked for 3 nights. (We utilized the resort shuttles for the entire weekend and didn't need to use the car.) I get in the car and notice something strange on the seat. It appears to be a rodent poop, but I think "that can't be, its been in a locked garage with locked doors and windows". So we drive home. Once at home I give a closer inspection and find, to my horror, that there is rat poop throughout the car! under all the seats, on the rear seats - from front to back! There was no food in my car and the interior was clean - so I'm baffled why they decided to hold a rat party in my car - but they did!

I had to spend $100 on an interior detail the next day just so I could feel comfortable in my car again! I understand that critters live around the area, but you would think the resort would put traps or something in the garages, or around the property to prevent this from happening. If I worked for Forbes, or any of the other award companies they certainly wouldn't have gotten a 5 star rating after my experience!

I will definitely never stay in the Villa's again - it was not an upgraded experience and having to wait 15 - 20 minutes to get a ride to the main part of the resort was a real pain!

Room Tip: Stay in the bungalows instead of the villas, unless you are looking for a more "removed" e...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Lori C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PelicanHillResort, Manager at The Resort at Pelican Hill, responded to this review, 20 February 2014
Lori,

I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback. While I’m please to read that you enjoyed dinning at our restaurants, I regret that your experience fell short of the Five-Star standards you expect and we aim to deliver. Please know that what you encountered is the exception, and not the rule.

Based upon your detailed comments, I have personally addressed your concerns with regards to the check-in process, maintenance and housekeeping. Pelican Hill leaders review and consider each guest’s comments carefully, so that we may continue to heighten the overall guest experience.

I apologize for the unfortunate disappointment you experienced and would like to hear more about your perspective. I will provide you with my contact details separately in a private message, so you may contact me directly at your convenience.

Kind Regards,

David Phillips
Director of Rooms
The Resort at Pelican Hill
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Resort at Pelican Hill

Property: The Resort at Pelican Hill
Address: 22701 Pelican Hill Road South, Newport Beach, CA 92657-2008
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > Orange County > Newport Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Newport Beach
#2 Romantic Hotel in Newport Beach
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Newport Beach
#4 Luxury Hotel in Newport Beach
#4 Spa Hotel in Newport Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Resort at Pelican Hill 5*
Number of rooms: 332
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set on 504 acres by the Pacific Ocean in Newport Beach, The Resort at Pelican Hill(R) features: 128 two-, three- and four-bedroom villas with magnificent coastal views and an unparalleled array of appointments, immersing guests in the absolute finest of everything; 204 luxuriously appointed bungalow guest rooms and suites with private terraces; a rejuvenating Five-Star spa with a menu of the world's most celebrated therapies; world-class restaurants, including Andrea serving authentic Northern Italian cuisine; an iconic "Coliseum Pool," one of the largest circular pools anywhere with tiered decks and luxurious cabanas; and Pelican Hill Golf Club with 36 dramatic holes by Tom Fazio, nearly all with ocean panoramas. A Five-Star, Five-Diamond destination, Pelican Hill has earned acclaim as the 2012 Grand Resort selected by Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report; as Conde Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards Top Southern California Resort (2013 & 2012), Top U.S. Resort (2011), Top-Rated Golf Resort Worldwide (2012) and Top-Rated California Resort Spa (2012); in Travel + Leisure's "Top 100" World's Best Hotels (2011 Readers' Poll), and with two courses ranked among Golf Digest's America's 100 Greatest Public Golf Courses (2011). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pelican Hill Hotel Newport Beach
Hotel At Pelican Hill
At Pelican Hill Hotel

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