A trip to remember: Exotic, yet they never left California

For their honeymoon in 1997, Bruce Holmes and Barbara Steinberg took a classic California road trip that included skiing at Mammoth Mountain and kayaking off Catalina Island.

By: Barbara Steinberg  (this story appeared in the Sacramento Bee)


Our April 1997 honeymoon was a trip to remember: a 1,300-mile driving tour of California in our 1973 MGB-GT.

A scenic drive to the eastern Sierra was a perfect beginning. We have a small home south of Mammoth, and while my new spouse skied, I decompressed from my wedding high.



We left Mammoth and headed to Palm Springs. Our private villa and pool at La Mancha Resort was lavish. A trip on the aerial tram took us from 95-degree desert heat to the top of Mount San Jacinto and snow. Our desert visit included the Living Desert museum, strolling along Palm Canyon Drive and outstanding margaritas at Blue Coyote.

From Palm Springs we headed toward Long Beach. First, we stopped at Glen Ivy Hot Springs Spa in Corona, better known as "Club Mud," and spent several hours floating, lounging and being slathered with red clay.



Back on the road, we motored into Long Beach and the luxuries of the Queen Mary Hotel. Our one-night stay in the Winston Churchill Suite was an adventure in time travel. Wandering the many decks and corridors, we never saw the ship's many ghosts, but you could feel their presence. That evening, we enjoyed fantastic food at Mum's on Pine Avenue and were treated to a honeymoon dessert.



The next day found us on Catalina Island and a suite at Hotel Metropole overlooking the harbor. Kayaking, a boat tour of kelp forests, a trip to Two Harbors, lunch at Runway Café at the Airport in the Sky, buffalo sightings and drinks along Crescent Avenue made this island journey truly exotic.



Back on the mainland, we found a happy berth at the Pierpont Inn in Ventura. Our English cottage was a perfect honeymoon hideaway. We strolled miles of beaches, dined on the waterfront and watched the sunset from historic Ventura Pier.

Our land-and-sea adventure was near an end and our little MGB-GT got tired. She broke down on Interstate 5, where my talented husband rebuilt the fuel pump and got us safely on our way. We never left California, but it felt like a world tour.



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