Thank you to Pechanga Casino & Resort in the Temecula Wine Country for inviting me, along with a group of foodies, bloggers & fun people, to experience their resort and all its renovated glory.
Upfront disclosure – All experiences were comped. Except the booze. Which is probably a wise thing when it comes to me. #ILikeMyWine
But of COURSE, all the opinionated opinions expressed are my very own.
How to get there:
Google Maps told me it’s a quick-ish drive from the San Diego Airport – door to door. It’s a SUPER easy commute and a beautiful drive. Depending on what you set up, Pechanga will pick you up and get you there easily.
When you first approach Pechanga, it definitely seems like a large sprawling place but don’t let the exterior fool you. There are so many lovely spots to explore without it feeling overwhelmingly gargantuan. The views facing the mountains are absolutely stunning. The property has been seriously overhauled and they weren’t kidding. $285 million expansion. That’s a big number. It looks like the money was well spent.
The newly and majorly expanded Pechanga Resort Casino offers all the amenities and then some of a Las Vegas casino, without the traffic or overload of sensory input. In March, the resort wrapped up a $300 million expansion. Visitors will find a casino larger than any of its Nevada neighbors; a stand-alone two level day spa that incorporates Native American healing and botanicals into all of its treatments, serves spa breakfast & lunch, also provides free yoga and boot camp classes & a full hair and nail salon; a 4.5-acre pool complex with 4 pools, 3 hot tubs, a family pool with waterslides, dozens of stocked cabanas; 1,090 luxury rooms & suites; 20 restaurants and bars; A-list entertainment (Cirque, Donny & Marie, Terry Fator and more); and a championship 18-hole golf course.
When you’re at Pechanga, you don’t really need to leave, and you don’t need a car if you want to check out the winery scene of the Temecula Valley. Yup, that sums it up
My Truth Moments:
The Casino was one of the things that interested me the least but is one of their biggest draws. I can see why! However, full disclosure, I only went into the casino to tinkle. Not in the casino, in the bathroom. 😉 It’s not my thing but what I truly appreciate is that you can stay at Pechanga and get your Vegas fix, if needed, without feeling like you are at a Casino.
To be honest, the room I was in had the least impressive view which made me get my arse out of the room and down to the hidden gem that few actually explore or find. If you take the elevator to the 4th level, you’ll find this amazing xeriscape garden with quiet spots that overlook the pool area. It’s a fun way to access the pool area if you want to be stealthy. Back to the room though, the bed is super comfy. And the bathroom though…great job on the design! A separate WC (aka: toilet room) and a huuuuge shower with a great rain showerhead. Well played, Pechanga.
We had a chance to tour the spot where people frequently get hitched. It's quite the lovely spot, right next to the meeting area, and easily accessible from the hotel. The Bride & Groom suites were so adorbs – cute little suites where the wedding parties can chill with their respective gangs of bridesmaids & groomsmen. Located right across from each other, it seems like an easy way to have a wedding with out too much fuss, the whole “getting in the car & wrinkling the dress thing” or even the possibility that someone can easily make an escape (Just kidding, thinking of Sex & The City where Big backs out and “Runaway Bride” where she bolts on the horse – none of that here – just quick jaunt out to the aisle). But seriously, for realsies, the lovely garden area is secluded enough that you don’t feel on display but close enough to grab a drink quickly after the ceremony.