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Hot spots

Visit any one of these destinations, and you'll be back as soon as you can – provided you can beat the line to get in.

By Caitlin Adams and Amanda Keeley-ThurmanPublished: November 01, 2008 09:14 AM

The Resort at Pelican Hill

By Caitlin Adams

If Orange County’s famous coastline doesn't have enough to recommend it as a world-class vacation destination, this month will secure its place among the global capitals of luxurious getaways. Nov. 26 marks the opening of the Resort at Pelican Hill, an expansive and exceptional landmark in style. Four years in the making, the Resort is being presented as the best in class and elegance, with attention devoted to even the finest details.

Rob Elliott, Irvine Co.’s group senior vice president of urban planning and design, told OC METRO in February that part of the Resort’s elegance can be attributed to a holistic cross-integration design plan, which brought designers together to develop the site design, grading, landscaping, paving and architecture “as one complete composition.”

Still not convinced? Do the math: 504 acres, 36 holes of golf, three and one-half miles of coastline, 128 luxury villas, 204 private bungalows, three pools, five restaurants and cafés. And let's not forget the indulgent 23,000-square-foot Spa at Pelican Hill, a state-of-the-art fitness center with innumerable customized packages, treatments, programs, clinics and amenities to make every stay an impeccable experience.

22701 Pelican Hill Road South, Newport Coast

Javier’s in the Crystal Cove Promenade

By Amanda Keeley-Thurman

in the Crystal Cove Promenade is just the place for great home-style Mexican food, all with a fabulous atmosphere. The panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean and chic ambiance makes Javier’s the place to see and be seen.

Visit on a Sunday, and you may have to wait two hours for a seat. But it’s well worth the wait. The cuisine is muy delicioso and features dishes like Lomo Azteca, medallions of tender pork loin baked in a chipotle cream sauce, flavored with onions.

For those who enjoy a cocktail with dinner or prefer a liquid dessert, Javier’s features the largest selection of tequilas in Orange County. Your margaritas are guaranteed to be muy bueno.

7832 E. Pacific Coast Hwy., Newport Beach

Upscale Bowling

By: Amanda Keeley-Thurman

Bowling just isn’t what it used to be. Upscale bowling alleys like 300 Anaheim, Strike Orange County and Lucky Strike are revolutionizing the game. The harsh lighting, dull colors and greasy food offered at traditional old-school bowling alleys have made way for glow-in-the-dark lines, full-service restaurants serving high-end cuisine and state-of-the-art audiovisual system. Bowling has moved from catering to grandpa’s bowling league to hosting all-night parties.


300 Anaheim serves up tasty dishes like Blackened Lamb Chops and lavish desserts like Crème Brûlée, while Strike caters to all ages with its cosmic arcade and giant video wall. Lucky Strike keeps it chic with a strict dress code and showcases artwork from established and up-and-coming artists on its floor-to-ceiling video screens.

But only one question remains: Have the shoes changed?

Photos from left to right: 300 Anaheim, Lucky Strike and Strike O.C. (bottom)

Strike Orange County
The District at Tustin Legacy
2405 Park Ave., Tustin

300 Anaheim
Anaheim GardenWalk
321 W. Katella Ave., Anaheim

Lucky Strike
20 City Blvd. West #G2, Orange

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