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Bellanca Hotel Is a Breath of Fresh Air in Avalon

Jill Weinlein

The newest hotel in the Mediterranean-style city of Avalon, is the Bellanca Hotel. One of Eat, Drink, Sleep Hospitality Group's newest acquisitions, they renovated the former Portifino Hotel into a hip and relaxing property, featuring 40 rooms, some with harbor and Pacific Ocean views. 

Jill Weinlein

The easiest way to get to Catalina, the most populated of the Channel Islands, is by the Catalina Express ferry boats. They are cruising from the ports of Long Beach and San Pedro, and taking extra safety precautions during the global pandemic, based on the guidance of the County of Los Angeles, CDC and other local health departments. 

Masks or face coverings are required to completely cover passengers' mouth and nose when entering the cruise terminal, waiting to board the boat, and while cruising on the vessel. The crew reminds passengers often throughout the little over one hour cruise.

Jill Weinlein

Once in Avalon, face covering and masks are also required in public areas. The island has only had a handful of Covid-19 cases since February. The first case was traced to a passenger from one of the large cruise ships that visited the island in the beginning of 2020. Cruise ships are no longer visiting the port of Avalon, so the infection rate has remained low and the island wants to keep it that way.

Rick Weinlein

The light wood and white tiled lobby is modern and hip, with a large bar shaking up Catalina style cocktails to take up to the rooftop terrace overlooking Avalon Harbor. Relax in a white wicker style chair, under a white umbrella, while taking in the relaxing resort vibe. 

Jill Weinlein

Spacious new guest rooms are decorated with marine blue and green accent colors. The cloud-like comfortable mattress is under a serene cloud design on one of the walls.

The new modern bathroom offers a extra large tiled shower, vanity and separate commode area. Sliding glass doors lead out to a balcony with chairs and a table. There is a view from three of the four new rooms.

Jill Weinlein

The new onsite restaurant, the naughty FOX offers a open-air dining patio and innovative menu from Executive Chef Russell Hayden. Known for his creative fare at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs, Hayden brought two of his chefs from the desert to the sea to prepare beach favorites. Popular menu items include ahi poke nachos, lobster sushi rolls, grill fish tacos and a cioppino filled with treasures from the sea. Guests can order cocktails, beer and a bottle of wine from the onsite bar, as well as a charcuterie board to enjoy outdoors during the day and at sunset.

Jill Weinlein

The hotel offers complimentary beach cruisers for guests to take a spin up to the The Wrigley Memorial and Botanical Garden, Lovers Cove, Pebbly Beach and Descanso Beach. Each bike has a basket to hold beach towels and water bottles for a fun adventure.

Jill Weinlein

Catalina Island is a year-round destination offering pleasant temperatures year round with the average daily temperature in the mid-60s. During the summer Avalon warms up a little more and is an ideal California get away from crowds of Covid-weary people seeking a change of scenery and pace.

Jill Weinlein

Los Angeles based Jill Weinlein covers travel, food and lifestyle destinations for multiple newspapers, magazines and websites. Her areas of expertise include, luxury travel, culinary reviews, cruising and family travel destinations. Born in Los Angeles, Jill studied Communications and Theatre Arts at UCLA. She has a a Dine and Travel blog - www.dineandtravel.me and she writes a weekly restaur...(Read More)

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