Glamping in Big Sur: Alila Ventana Review
I had been wanting to stay at this Ventana Glamping spot for years and we finally made it happen. Let me tell you, it did not disappoint! I think we never did it because I always thought it would be overpriced and whenever I went on the website I couldn’t figure it out. Maybe you will have better luck. I can be pretty computer illiterate sometimes which is funny considering I have a blog. I digress, It was 100% worth the drive up and the stay and I highly recommend staying here. It’s a great place to spend the night if you are driving through Highway 1 and need a place to rest. You get that outdoor camping vibe without having to really rough it and don’t have to pay the pricey rates of an actual hotel. Big Sur can be super expensive but I think this was a good mix of both worlds (cheap/free camping or high end hotel) especially since this spot is HYATT owned… it was definitely well taken care of. John and I really took it as a relaxing retreat kind of trip and spent a lot of time at our campsite playing board games, drinking wine and enjoying the wilderness.
When you see these photos it looks like we’re remote and away from everyone (which can be scary to some , but let me assure you there were other glamping tents around us . If you look to the right of the photo with the car above you can see how close one of the other tents were. We could talk to our neighbors if we wanted to, but everyone mostly kept to themselves. This campsite is also surrounded by higher mountains and it’s situated among the mountains so that made it feel EXTRA safe. I tend to get scared at night in the woods (I watch too many horror movies), but I felt jut fine walking around this campsite at night. It was really peaceful. Below you can see what the inside of our tent looked like.
What to expect:
- The tents come complete with heated beds (you can control the temperature on each side), blankets, towels, lanterns and side table little bench at end of bed to place bags and keep them off the floor.
- The bathroom is NOT in the tent of course since it’s a glamping tent but only walking distance away (ours was only a few feet away) are clean trailer bathrooms. They also have nicer normal restrooms with showers and heated floors but it is a longer walk (or car ride) away depending on where your tent is located.
- There is a sink at the tent complete with cold and hot potable water. There is also a mirror here so you can do basic things like wash your hands and brush your teeth in the AM. We also used the hot water for tea in the mornings and nights.
- The space outside has a fire pit, picnic table, chairs and a propane fire pit as well on the tiny deck so you can cozy up without worrying about smoke (which I really enjoyed).
- It’s also dog friendly which is always a plus!
- HEADS UP! One thing that I really didn’t like was that guests of the glamping sights are not allowed to use Ventana’s restaurant or swimming pool which was a surprise for me when we arrived. Only hotel room guests can book at the restaurant.This is the new Covid protocol. Luckily there are plenty of places to grab a bite right outside of Ventana so we weren’t starving. You can also pick up food to cook over the grill right outside at the small markets.
- I had no problem with the WIFI during my whole stay but take note that most of Big Sur is hard on reception outside of your own campsites or restaurants.
Where to book:
I would suggest calling or emailing directly because the website was confusing and always showed dates were booked when they weren’t. That was my experience. You can shoot them an email at email@example.com and check out the website here. Upon arrival we didn’t really have to come in contact with anyone. A key code was given to us to use at the front gate and a map was provided to show us how to get to our site.
All in all highly recommend this spot! We went in Spring time (early May) which was absolutely ideal weather-wise. Big Sur can get super cold so winter months may be a lot less pleasurable. Hope you enjoyed and if you have questions about my stay feel free to send a DM to @frankvinyl on IG.
For more information on Big Sur and Highway 1 check out my post “Highway 1 Roadtrip Guide“.