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Pacific City's Headlands Lodge A Unique Take on Oregon Coast Pampering

Published 05/21/2019 at 4:53 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Pacific City's Headlands Lodge A Unique Take on Oregon Coast Pampering

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(Pacific City, Oregon) – Along the Three Capes Tour, on the part of the north Oregon coast that includes Oceanside, Netarts, Pacific City and – you guessed it – three headlands, there is a lot that’s unique here. The towns are tiny and laidback beyond belief, even on high-density weekends. The beaches and sights are rugged, craggy, intricate and multi-layered, with a host of discoveries and hidden wonders tucked away along this 20-mile stretch.

At its southern end sits somewhat bustling Pacific City, where artful, striking architecture and the upscale meet the crazed chaos of nature, mixing together in seamless ways that can surprise, even jump out at you. A kind of luxury tourism whiplash can occur: “Wow,” you say to yourself, “I didn’t know you could do that.”

Headlands Lodge and Spa is one of those epiphanies, a unique hybrid of vacation rental and upscale hotel. It started years ago with the Cottages at Kiwanda, a buzz-inducing set of oceanfront rental condos if there ever was one, then expanding in recent years to include the hotel, Meridian Restaurant and Bar, and the Tidepools Spa. Now, 33 rooms and 18 upscale cottages fill this stately structure to the brim with ambiance, with everything oceanfront: the eats, the rooms and the spa.

Portland musician Pilar French latched onto it immediately when it opened up, having been a regular at the neighboring Inn at Cape Kiwanda for years before that. With two adorable dogs in tow, she’s a regular at both spots and the rest of Pacific City's numerous features, both untamed and manmade.

“The views, the charm, the food in the restaurant,” French said. “The workout center is top tier with the latest technology. They have a yoga instructor.”

Therein lies one of Headlands’ numerous delightful novelties. The Tidepools Spa has a wide variety of features and means of pampering. You’re in the great outdoors in the exterior hot tub, soaking in the sound of the surf. Sometimes their schedule includes tai-chi or beach yoga, or maybe even bike rides, hikes or surf lessons.

All the rooms open up to the grandeur and spectacle of Cape Kiwanda and its ancient sentinel, Haystack Rock. Inside, marble, polished wood, vibrant details and carpeting accentuate the whitish walls. These ocean-facing windows make for mounds of light. Or at night, let your eyes get used to the dark and a whole new world appears. Few things are more mesmerizing – and certainly romance-inducing – than waves crashing under starlight, or even in the foggy haze of a nocturnal Oregon coast.

Luxury is the bottom line here, all of it with a slight nod to coastal rustic. Plush seats by the fireplace, furnishings that ooze the concept of finery, down to even cast-iron tubs to soak your beach-weary bones sit within modern bathrooms that feel like a spa. Other details pop up that may not seem like they matter until you use them, like racks for your surfboards or bikes.

Top-notch concierge service is the icing on the cake. They leave little wanted for the guest, and will even stock your kitchen with groceries while you’re out.

Other intriguing and even unusual features come in handy, especially for those new to the Oregon coast. Adventure coaches can be brought on for hiking, kayaking, biking, surfing or other explorations of the wild world around Pacific City.

French has taken advantage of similar arrangements nearby, digging deep into what this part of the Three Capes Tour has to offer.

“It’s fun paddle boarding and kayaking on the Nestucca at Nestucca Adventures,” French said.

Back to the civilized part, the relatively new Meridian Restaurant and Bar takes upscale and rustic to dizzying heights. Massive windows facing the beach allow expansive views of the horizon, while overhead, exposed wooden beams dial up the atmosphere. Much of what they do here is locally sourced, and it too is among French’s favorite aspects of Headlands Lodge and Spa. Then, there are times she prefers the more at-sea-level atmosphere of Pelican Brewery nearby.

“Oh and it's next to one of the best pubs in Oregon,” she said. “Big bonus! Beer on the patio. Also, I give shout outs to the restaurants off the beaten path: The Delicate Palate Bistro and Twist Wine.”

There are accessible rooms for those with mobility issues, which don’t shirk on the luxury. Grab bars are at the commode and in the shower, while the latter has a roll-in option with a shower seat.

For dogs – much like the Inn at Cape Kiwanda - the place is a paradise. Plush doggie bedding, water dishes that are handmade, and top quality dog treats are the rule.

“One of my favorite things about the Inn, the Headlands (cottages or lodge) is that they are pet friendly,” French said. “I don’t go to the beach without the pups.”

Yet there are rooms with no pets allowed for those with more sensitive systems.

The two accommodation styles vary somewhat: one, two or three bedrooms for the hotel, while the cottages have two or three bedrooms and can be like small palaces. Some clock in at 1350 square feet. 33000 Cape Kiwanda Drive, Pacific City, Oregon. 888-965-7001. See link for more photos, features. -- Lodgings in Pacific City - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours







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