A number of nearby spas and resorts cater to a weary populace desperately in need of a getaway but worried about air travel just be aware that freedom comes at a cost

If ever there's a time when a getaway is needed, it's now. But with the fear of air travel unlikely to dissipate anytime soon, the destination of choice might not be Mexico or Hawaii. As an alternative, the Business Journal has checked in with five spas and resorts within driving distance. The silver lining: landing a last-minute reservation should be easier given all the cancellations. The resorts are pricey (starting at several hundred dollars per person or couple), but packages can reduce the cost. And given the travel slowdown these past several weeks, a number of resorts are lowering their prices. Best to check around for the best rate.

La Costa Resort and Spa
Carlsbad, San Diego County
(800) 854-5000
Getting There:

Less than two hours south on the 5 Freeway.

The Buzz:

This is the place to go if your idea of relaxing is whacking away at a golf or tennis ball. The 400-acre resort, built in 1965, features two golf courses that host a PGA tournament and 21 tennis courts, with grass, clay and hard court surfaces. You can wrap yourself in exotic herbs at the spa or relax in Roman pools. The resort has an extensive daily program for kids 5 to 12 years old that extends into the evening on Fridays and Saturdays. If you really want to treat the kids, the resort even has a package that includes tickets to the nearby Legoland amusement park. Given its location in north San Diego County, you are also a short drive from the San Diego Wild Animal Park and Zoo, as well as Sea World.

Four Seasons Biltmore Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara County
(805) 969-2261
Getting There:

Ninety minutes north on the 101 Freeway.

The Buzz:

Yes, the hotel has tennis courts, and there are golf packages connected with three separate courses nearby. There's also a full service spa and what the hotel boasts as the only Four Diamond restaurant in Santa Barbara. So you're going to be pampered at this first-class hotel, whose 19 acres touch the Pacific. But the prime attraction here is the hotel's proximity to Santa Barbara, a great weekend get-away in itself. Revisit the mission. Check out the arts and crafts show. Shop. Go whale watching in the Channel, or try a little deep sea fishing. This also is harvest time at the 50 plus vineyards in the nearby Santa Ynez Valley. Go yourself, or take advantage of the hotel's winery package, which includes a chauffeur driven tour, lunch and no worries about who's the designated driver.


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