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my weekend at the park hyatt aviara for the kia classic

Kia Classic '15 cars

Two of my all-time favorite cars.

For the past three years, we’ve been lucky enough to get a new Kia to test drive up to the Park Hyatt Aviara for a weekend at the Kia Classic LPGA tournament.

I will write about this year’s model — the 2016 Kia Sorento — separately because, well, you know how much I love the Sorento. But I want to tell you about the Park Hyatt Aviara and the Kia Classic so you can start making plans to come next year.

The Park Hyatt Aviara is gorgeous. It’s lush and tropical and totally luxurious.

Park Hyatt Aviara view

Michael was busy so Sara, who just happened to have come home that day, volunteered to spend the night with me. What a dedicated daughter I have! We had a fun dinner with our Kia friends at Union Kitchen in Encinitas (you have to try the sweet potato ravioli) and then settled into our comfy room – which was so comfy, we slept until almost 9 a.m. That is unheard of for me.

I was scheduled for an 11 a.m. massage but was definitely not going to miss the breakfast buffet so we got dressed fast and headed down to California Bistro.

You see, the hotel is only 20 minutes from our house so we’ve enjoyed many special meals there over the years, including a couple of outstanding Thanksgiving buffets. We love the food at Aviara!

New on the breakfast menu, at least to us, were these amazing pretzels which go surprisingly well with scrambled eggs and bacon. Who needs boring old toast when these are available?


We took a couple for the road and Sara went out to the pool while I made my way to the spa for one of the best massages I’ve ever had. My therapist, Angela, smoothed out so many knots in my neck, back and shoulders, I hope she’s on vacation now because I’m sure she was cursing me by the end. She told me I could use a session just dedicated to my feet — yes! yes! Dear Park Hyatt Aviara, let’s discuss.

After a steam, sauna and shower, I somehow made it out to Sara, who was lounging happily at the adults-only pool. We ordered salads and pina coladas for lunch and talked for hours, making up for lost time together. It was truly a highlight of a fantastic weekend. Then I spent the rest of the afternoon like this:

Kia Classic cabana

While I was napping, Michael was picking up my dear friend, Sherry, who was visiting California from New York and who was joining us for dinner at Argyle Steakhouse, Aviara’s mouthwatering restaurant overlooking the golf course. One of our favorite things about Argyle is that they give you a basketful of popovers with your meal instead of plain old rolls. These babies are light and airy and, oh, so delicious. Last year, the waiter even packed up an extra box for us to bring back to our room! This year, Kia publicist extraordinaire, Emily Grannis, and I started planning our own popover popoff. Stay tuned because this promises to be epic.

popoversI can’t even tell you how good our dinner was. If you visit San Diego, do yourself a favor and have a meal here because it is a real treat.

On Sunday, I took Sherry to watch the Kia Classic. We got to see the players practice, and it was fun to watch Pink Panther Paula Creamer.

Kia Classic Paula Creamer

We had the best time even though Sherry knows nothing about golf and the little I know is because Michael LOVES golf and was once Club champion of La Costa. Honestly, it’s hard not to have an amazing time when you get to watch the tournament from here:

Kia Classic skyboxAnd, yes, thanks to Kia, I had the proper credentials.

Kia Classic credentialsWe got to see The Michelle Wie, who just happens to be a Kia ambassador,

Michelle Wie and caddy

we used the fancy Portapotty (have you ever seen private stalls with wooden doors in one before?!),

Kia Classic portapotty

we admired the view

Kia Classic view

and took an obligatory selfie.

Kia Classic Lois and Sherry

We obeyed when we were asked to chill out

Kia Classic chill out

and so did this caddy. Ha ha!

Kia Classic caddy

We enjoyed filet mignon for lunch and a relaxing afternoon watching top-notch golf.

It was another great weekend, and I can’t wait for next year. Meanwhile, look at this photo I took of our next car (!), the K900, in the water. Doesn’t it look like it’s straight from a magazine?!

Kia Classic K900It’s just further proof that pictures come out best when you have a deep love for the subject.



  1. What an extraordinarily amazing weekend you had. It all sounds so Utopian and I’m glad you got to spend time with Sara and Sherry. P.S. I think I ate at that restaurant in Encinitas. I took at look at it and it looks familiar. Guess I’ll have to come back to SD to make sure!

  2. I don’t know much about golf either, but that sounds like an awesome time with some good food! How did you get to test drive the Kia for the weekend? That’s pretty cool!

  3. What a beautiful place and you always write about the best food. Here in Philly we make breakfast sandwiches with pretzels, so yummy. Great pictures!

  4. Oh, I love that little outdoor napping bed/tent with copious amounts of pillows. Ahhhh. Look like a great venue.

  5. Hmm. For me, it’s the nap site AND those damn pretzels. Both look great!

  6. I want to take a nap on that lounge! Isn’t spending time with your daughter just the best?

  7. I love San Diego! I will be there for a conference this summer so I am going to check out the hotel. Those pretzels looked amazing.

  8. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    I love San Diego We went there the past 2 years, but decided to skip it this year – and that makes me a little sad.

  9. Wow, what an awesome trip! Great place to stay, good food, fun event and a great car!

  10. This post hits close to home- I used to live in Carlsbad. I miss it SO much. SO MUCH.

  11. I swear I think we need to move out west. You always look like you guys have the most amazing and fun places to go to! I always enjoy these posts!

  12. IT is amazing the many places our cars can take us. Looks like you had a blast.

  13. Oh my goodness! This looked like an absolute splendid time! All the lush greenery and good food!

  14. Sounds like you had a fun filled weekend! Thanks for sharing

  15. How wonderful wa your weekend. I’m jealous i’ve never had a massage and would love one. oh and pass me one of those pretzels.

  16. What a fun adventure and would never think to serve pretzels with breakfast but hey why not

  17. This looks like a lovely getaway! Those pretzels look wonderful too!

  18. You are so lucky to get to test a new Kia model every year. I like the SUV looking model from the Picture. It seems you had such an amazing Weekend

  19. I like the K900 in the water. And filet mignon for lunch or dinner. Looks like a GREAT weekend – you know I’ve always wanted to test drive a car for a weekend. Lots of sun and fun!

  20. Looked like a super fun event all around. I’ve never even sat in a Kia! I need to get on that! San Diego is so much fun and we’d love to go back!

  21. That event sounds really cool! The weather was amazing too!

  22. Those pretzels and food look amazing! What a great event!

  23. What a wonderful time it looks like you’ve had!! I bookmarked the post to remember the restaurant!

  24. The weather and sites look amazing. What a fun event!

  25. That looks like a really great event. The pretzels have my mouth watering!

  26. Your photos from the Kia Skybox are stunning but I kept scrolling back up to that pretzel. How in the world do you make food look (and sound) so spectacular?

  27. It looks like you had a relaxing and indulgent weekend…and only 20 minutes from home?! I really enjoyed the way you put the events of your trip together with your photos to tell the story, very cute. I am a recent fan of KIA autos, but not so much a fan of golf, and it looks like they treated you well.

  28. Wow it sounds like such an amazing time. And the pictures came out great.

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