San Francisco's Half Moon Bay Area Dazzles with The Ritz Carlton

ritz carlton half moon bay

Photos Credit: The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay

Everything grand is nearby San Francisco. Napa Valley, the epicenter of some of the world’s most beloved wineries, is just an hour from the city. Placid Lake Tahoe with its stunning slopes is about three hours away. The unofficial global headquarters of innovation, Silicon Valley, is but a short drive from downtown San Francisco. And about 45 minutes from the city, down the pristine Highway 1, are the massive redwoods and rugged coastline that further instill San Francisco’s enviable location. Along the jagged coastline in the sleepy town of Half Moon Bay is The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, the only ocean front property in the Bay region. Like its sister property in Laguna Niguel, this Ritz-Carlton is perched on an epic coastal bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Both properties’ views are so stunning, in fact, that each have live camera feeds on large high definition screens at the reception desk. I recently visited the The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay after a week of work in the Bay area and was swept away by the stunning setting and timeless service of the Ritz Carlton brand.

ritz carlton half moon bay

The exterior style of the property, inspired by seaside lodges of the 19th century featuring beige Shingle Style architecture, is welcoming, as are the 261 guestrooms and Guest House Rooms which were renovated just last year. Hallways and rooms splashed in calming grey and blue hues complement the stark white finishes, from the marbled bathrooms (a signature design of many Ritz Carlton properties) to the lined-in paneled walls. Sconces with cut stone glass and plush carpets patterned after kelp leaves add richness to the hallways.

ritz carlton half moon bay

Perhaps the most serene spot of the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay is its spa, a 16,000 square foot ocean inspired oasis located on the beach access floor of the property. The resort fee covers use of the spa’s facilities, and I couldn’t help making a visit a daily ritual to make use of the dry and wet saunas and massive Roman mineral bath hot tub. Fifteen treatment rooms accommodate a comprehensive assortment of treatments ranging from the energy flow focused Cranio-Sacral scalp massage to the Hot Herbal Poultice, a massage laced with anti-inflammation turmeric, camphor, and lemongrass herbs. The Ritz-Carlton Signature Custom Massage, the treatment I enjoyed, is certainly best for those seeking custom attention to tension-filled areas.

ritz carlton half moon bay

Following early afternoons of spa-going, I found Navio, Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay’s signature seafood restaurant, to be equally satisfying. The restaurant has a thoughtful nautical theme of deep blues and rich wood reminiscent of a ship’s hull and serves an ocean focused menu that includes an elegant Mediterranean Branzino, huge Cape Cod diver scallops, and a sensational lobster bisque. The smoked local sturgeon is an excellent starter, as well as the egg spaghetti Saffron Chitarra embedded with succulent local Dungeness crab bits. Xavier Salomon, a fifth-generation restaurateur and only second in The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company to earn the title Maître Cuisinier de France (French Master Chef), is behind Navio’s well edited menu as well as the rest of the property’s culinary venues, The Conservatory and Ocean Terrace. I dined twice on brisk afternoons at the Ocean Terrace, savoring rich sandwiches and hearty salads with the sea breeze whisking by. Salomon has been at the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay since 2001, and the restaurants’ quality arecertainly a testament to his leadership.

A short drive from San Francisco affords a luxurious and leisurely escape at the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, another outstanding Ritz-Carlton property.

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Katherine Bond

Katherine Sutton Bond is a freelance travel and luxury item writer for She's traveled the world and sampled some of the leading hotels and destinations of the globe. She often covers luxury events and technology. ...(Read More)

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