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“Great Views, Nice Beds, interesting guests & slow 3 star service.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Resort at Pelican Hill

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The Resort at Pelican Hill
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   22701 Pelican Hill Road South, Newport Beach, CA 92657   |  
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Ranked #4 of 17 Hotels in Newport Beach
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great Views, Nice Beds, interesting guests & slow 3 star service.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2009

We stayed for several days in the Villas. The person we booked with was great but learned he was not there any longer and the attention that he would have given was absent. It's a beautiful place and there wer famous sports figures and stars at the pool but I talked to a few and they said they would not be coming back. They could tell that the staff was fawning all over them which they did not like and the regulars (like me and my group) were basically ignored. Turn down service was missed on two of our days. Just not what you'd expect for the price.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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946 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
San Diego
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2009

I had been to the property a half a dozen times or so before getting the time away to stay the night (was there for dinners, parties, etc). We recently had that chance to stay, and had a very mixed experience. The resort itself is fabulous, the grounds, rooms, etc., sensational. But, the service level is severely lacking. The staff is clearly quite green, and time and again, the details are missed. Checks are not brought, food orders go unfulfilled, etc. We witnessed other guests having a similar time and expressing their frustration quite clearly to the staff. They just don't have it down. For Hilton at $175 a night, the service is fine, but not here at $700 a night for the most modest accomodations. At this price point, almost every other option excels past what Pelican Hill has to offer. It should also be noted, the place is a ghostown and so an energy is clearly missing.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
214 helpful votes 214 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2009

This is without a doubt, a beautiful hotel. The rooms are magnificent, beautiful and comfortable. This is where they shine. They've anticipated almost every need possible with their amenities. We stayed in a bungalow and it was the equivalent of a junior suite, with a couch, chair, desk (with free internet), and a very comfortable bed. The bathroom opens up to the room over the very deep soaking bathtub and lets in the air conditioning as well as the sunlight. There is a dual vanity in the bathroom, as well as drawers to put your things in. Plus, the bedroom had a lot of drawer space. The room has vaulted wood ceilings and it smells like a new model home every time you walk in. The plasma t.v. is large and has a very good picture, though it does not tilt toward the bed, so watching from there is difficult. The patio alone is the size of a room. It's space comfortably holds two lounge chairs and a table with two chairs for outdoor drinking or dining. The room also has a coffee pot and grinder, as well as a toaster under the cabinets next to the fireplace. It is quite conceiveable that one may not ever want or need to leave the room.

The pool, called "The Collesium Pool", is breathtaking. It is enormous and beautiful, overlooking the hills sloping down to the ocean. If only they had put as much thought into where people would find chairs when it is crowded. A third of the pool is its edge on a hill, so no chairs are there. So much space is taken up by the decor, that it leaves few chairs in the space alloted. It is especially crowded on weekends. The bungalows above the pool go for three hundred dollars a day. We found that a bit excessive. Pool service is good though and the staff is friendly. The food and drinks were also quite good.

There is a funny phenomonon here. The staff has been trained to use a lot of superlatives when speaking with you. For example, whenever you ask for something, they'll usually reply: "perfect!". Other words they used almost always to reply with were: "beautiful!", "fantastic!", "spectacular!", "excellent!" and "outstanding!" When the waiter delivered the dressing for my salad he said "here is the gorgeous dressing for your salad". It was just a beige vinegarette in a metal container so I couldn't help but chuckle and finally ask why the staff uses these "over the top" expressions all the time. He said that they've been trained to be incredibly enthusiastic about the hotel and its experience. Okay, fair enough. Honestly, it never bothered us, it was just a little amusing. We liked that they were enthusiastic.

The food here, both at The Pelican Hill Grill and at Andrea's was good but not great. In fact, at times, we found it a little uninspired when we compared it with other restaurants we would call great. Also, the waiter took the liberty of filling out our comment card for us. According to the writing in the card we had "a delightful experience". Well, we did, but would rather have put it in our own words and had the opportunity to do so. Still, the service was consistent and friendly and if you don't expect "fantastic" or "perfect", you'll really enjoy yourself. The views are spectacular and the wine list is a good one.

The spa, like the food, appears to excel but falls just a little short. The spa area is really lovely and has nice amenities but the masseuses, in our experience were a little green and again good but not great.

I should note that in addition to the rooms, the service here is above and beyond what one would expect. They really work hard and do a great job. This hotel has so much potential. I think that if just a few things are more closely examined and altered, (like the lack of space at the pool), this just may become our new favorite getaway. All in all, it was a lovely experience.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2009

As soon as we drove up to the villa gates, we knew we were going to have a fun time checking out this place. My husband, three kids and my parents stayed in a 3-bedroom villa. We originally reserved a two-bedroom, but we were gladly upgraded. The staff welcomed us with a plate of gourmet meats, cheese and bread.

The villas have a garage with a washer and dryer in it. The villa is spacious and gorgeous. The kitchen is nice with top of the line appliances. The staff stocked the fridge with complimentary water, milk and beer. The patio itself is wide and has patio furniture so you can enjoy the view of the golf course and Pacific Ocean. It was clear enough to see Catalina Island during our visit. The staff is very helpful. One of the terrific service features is the shuttle from the room to almost any place on the resort. One call to the butler, and a shuttle appeared within five minutes.

We only stayed for one day. We checked out the golf course, practice range, Camp Pelican (kids area), and beautiful pools. I definitely wanted to stay one more day. Wireless internet is slow. I know, I know. What am I doing at a resort with a laptop in the first place?

My husband and I ate at the Coliseum Grill. The food was okay and overpriced. The dining area is nice with views of the ocean.

We'll return to Pelican Hill Resort but during the off-season when rates are lower. Even off-season rates are high. I guess you have to pay the big bucks to experience this much luxury.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Woodbridge, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2009

We have just returned from a 2 week vacation at Pelican Hill and there is only one word to describe it - "exceptional". We have staeyed at some of the world's top hotels and golf resorts and if you are looking for a golfing break with good restaurants onsite and exceptional service look no further.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2009

This new resort is top notch with no detailed overlooked. The bungalows and villas are gorgeous. The pool is breathtaking, the spa fantastic, the golf was amazing, the food was delecious, and the service was incredible!

  • Liked — the beautiful accomadations, the pool, the service, the spa, the golf
  • Disliked — it is not right on the beach
  • Stayed June 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Additional Information about The Resort at Pelican Hill

Address: 22701 Pelican Hill Road South, Newport Beach, CA 92657
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Orange County > Newport Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Newport Beach
#1 Business Hotel in Newport Beach
#2 Luxury Hotel in Newport Beach
#2 Romantic Hotel in Newport Beach
#3 On the Beach 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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