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Pool and golf course overlooking the ocean at Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club
Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club

The 6 Best All-Inclusive Resorts in California

SmarterTravel

There’s a lot to be said for the convenience of an all-inclusive vacation package. Paying for everything up front eliminates the potential for shock when the bill arrives at checkout time (something that families and other budget-conscious travelers will greatly appreciate). Choosing an all-inclusive resort in a place like California takes care of another common source of worry and one that has ruined many a vacation: bad weather. California has, for the most part, reliably blue skies throughout the majority of the year.

While it’s difficult to find many true all-inclusive resorts in the U.S. that compare to the type found in the Caribbean and Mexico, there are plenty of package deals that offer half board or at least make it possible to string together a complimentary breakfast with resort credits to cover additional meals. So, if you’re on the hunt for a fuss-free getaway to the Golden State, these all-inclusive package offers are some of California’s best. 

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Alila Ventana Big Sur, Big Sur

Common room with fire in stone hearth at Alila Ventana Big Sur
Alila Ventana Big Sur

It’s easy to see why California’s Big Sur has inspired some of America’s most celebrated artists and writers. And though room rates have certainly increased since Big Sur’s beatnik heyday, those craggy coastal views remain the same. See for yourself at Hyatt’s upscale Alila Ventana Big Sur, an adults-only resort perched on the cliffs between California’s famed Highway One and the Pacific. Alila Ventana is one of the few true all-inclusives in California, as room reservations cover all meals and snacks, including in-room dining, poolside, or at the guests-only restaurant, the Sur House. Also included in the price are activities like guided hikes, yoga, Tai Chi, group meditations, and even your own chauffeur to cart you to and from town or anywhere else within a three-mile radius. 

Guests can choose between forest or ocean view rooms with extras like wood-burning fireplaces, hot tubs, outdoor showers, and other amenities to help make for a cozy stay. Basic king rooms start at $625 and go up. 

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Post Ranch Inn, Big Sur

Patio overlooking a cliff and the ocean at Post Ranch Inn
Post Ranch Inn Big Sur

If your number one vacation objective is rest and relaxation—with an emphasis on rest—the Post Ranch Inn’s current Sleep Package will be right up your alley. The Big Sur resort has teamed up with sleep specialist Dr. Michael Breus to design a guest program aimed at improving sleep quality through diet, herbal supplements, spa treatments, and more. Also included in the deal is dinner at the Sierra Mar, the property’s on-site restaurant, along with complimentary breakfast. In their waking hours, guests can take advantage of activities like yoga, meditation, sound baths, and—for an additional fee—falconry. Also reserved for guests is a fleet of Lexuses for quick jaunts around the area.

Visitors can add the sleep package to any stay of two nights or longer for an additional $1,350 and $1,000 more for additional guests in the same room. 

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Brisas del Mar, Inn at the Beach, Santa Barbara

View of the Brisa del Mar, Inn at the Beach with palm leaves in the foreground in Santa Barbara, California
Brisas del Mar, Inn at the Beach

Enjoy a wine-tasting weekend in Santa Barbara at the beachfront Brisas del Mar, Inn at the Beach. The intimate 39-room property offers a Wine Lovers Package which includes a guided tasting-tour of three Santa Ynez Valley wineries complete with a catered picnic lunch. Guests also receive complimentary bicycle rentals for cruising the beach. 

Even without the special package offer, all guest reservations include a deluxe continental breakfast, afternoon happy hour with locally produced wines and cheeses, and milk and cookies before bed. The wine package starts at $192 per night in winter and must be booked for a minimum of two nights. 

Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club, Dana Point

Aerial view of a courtyard at the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club
Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club

Located in Orange County’s exclusive Dana Point, the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort and Club offers guests some of California’s best whale watching and one of the few private beach clubs in the southern half of the state. Guests can make use of beach club equipment such as paddleboards, boogie boards, and surfboards, while golfers may instead opt for the beachfront fairways of Monarch Beach Golf Links.  

Currently, travelers can book the Welcome to Waldorf package which comes with $150 in resort credit to put towards meals or other hotel services, late check-out, and 15,000 Hilton Honors Points for every night of your stay. Rooms for this package start at $572 per night for winter. Another offer currently up for grabs, the Bed & Breakfast package includes an $80 daily credit for breakfast, either in-room or at one of the many restaurants on the property. This package starts at $669 per night for winter stays. 

Carneros Resort and Spa, Napa

Woman walking on a pool deck next to a pool and a line of pool chairs with a vineyard in the background at the Carneros Resort and Spa
Carneros Resort and Spa

The cutesy clusters of cottages that make up Carneros Resort and Spa are the absolute antithesis to the mega-resort style accommodations so prevalent in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Cottages are roomy and include private outdoor space, fireplaces, outdoor showers and tubs, on-demand wine, dedicated concierge services, and other frills. Full-sized vacation homes are also scattered throughout the resort village, ideal for big families or larger gatherings. There are a number of package stays to choose from such as the Arrive Early & Stay Late deal. That’ll get you a daily breakfast for two along with early check-in and late check-out, plus a room upgrade. As you might have guessed, wine-on-demand and concierge service doesn’t come cheap, with this package starting at $1,200.

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The Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel, Dana Point

Aerial view of the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel and adjacent coastline
The Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel

Spend a weekend or more at the upscale Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel beachfront resort and reconnect with loved ones. The resort’s Reconnect package includes daily breakfast for two guests in-room or at either of its two restaurants and a generous daily resort credit to put towards lunch, dinner, or other services. Just how much you receive in resort credit depends on the room type you book: Guestrooms earn $100 resort credit per day, Club Level rooms receive $200 in resort credit per day, and Suites receive $300 in daily resort credit. 

Also included in the package is a 45-minute photo shoot with the Ritz-Carlton photo concierge. This package starts at $699 per night and is valid for winter travel. 

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