Maury Kalen and Paula Stark first moved into the luxury Villas at Pelican Hill® shortly after it openedo to be close to their goddaughter who lives in the area.
As busy attorneys from Toronto, the couple quickly discovered the long list of lifestyle amenities the luxury long-term accommodations at the Resort had to offer, and have returned every year since, staying for about four months at a time.
“I’m 69 and my wife is 65, but we live here like we are in our 40s,” Kalen said. “We are very fortunate. Pelican Hill has allowed us to extend our love of being active.”
Beyond sustaining their dynamic lifestyle, which for this couple is filled with golf, running on the beach, getting massages at the Spa and dining at the best restaurants in The OC and L.A., Kalen said Pelican Hill feels like home.
“It’s basically a home away from home,” he said. “We have a great space at the Villas: They are well-designed and well-furnished, the service is amazing and the location can’t be beat. And it’s so much easier than owning our own home.”
The couple just returned from a ski trip to Aspen, Colorado and head north to Los Angeles about once a week to dine out. “There’s no end to where you can go and it’s easy to get anywhere from here.”
Kalen said that although he and Stark didn’t set out to meet people, they have developed a network of friends in the area. “We met some really nice people at the golf courses who we have befriended. We go out to dinner. We feel like we are the locals when we are here.”
Like Kalen and his wife, many of the residents were drawn to the Villas as an option to other long-term living accommodations. Some stay for job relocations or are in transition; others want to escape the cold or the heat. Some just needed a temporary place to call home for a variety of reasons. But once they experienced the luxurious lifestyle, most decided to stay as long and as often as they could.
“We run the Villas as an ultra-luxury resort,” said Nikolay Tevekeliyski, general manager of the Villas. “It’s truly the ultimate living experience on every level.”
Residents of the two, three and four-bedroom Villas enjoy complimentary services and amenities like 24-hour concierge and exclusive access to a beautiful ocean-view pool with cabanas at the Villa Clubhouse. They can also arrange for additional amenities such as twice-daily housekeeping, butler, laundry and turndown services. Villa residents can conveniently dine at any of the Resort restaurants or may opt to eat in their Villa kitchen, fully equipped with a Sub Zero refrigerator and Wolf appliances.
“It’s true luxury. A lot of people just don’t know this is available.” Tom Andrews
Tom Andrews, a wealth manager who has been living at the Villas with his wife and three children for the last six months for both business and pleasure, said Pelican Hill® was the only place that met all of their needs and wants.
“The joke is, we say, it’s our own private oasis. When we walk into the clubhouse, the staff already knows what we want,” he said. “And it’s the beauty of the area. The sunsets are unreal. You can’t beat the office view.”
Andrews, who first stayed at the Villas when the Resort opened to escape winters in his home state of Utah, also believes it’s a value.
“I couldn’t buy a home in the area for the price and for all the services,” he said. “I don’t worry about maintenance, or getting it cleaned, and if I have guests, they take great care of them. The butlers will run up and get something when I’m cooking or help with the laundry.”
Two Christmases ago, Andrews said the Villa staff decorated his place, did his shopping and even wrapped all the presents for him during a holiday gathering of family members at the Resort. They also have arranged visits to Disneyland for his kids and drove the family down to the beach and back.
“It’s true luxury,” he said. “A lot of people just don’t know this is available.”
Andrews, whose three business partners were also staying at the Resort, said he has enjoyed meeting other guests and discovered the networking potential. “It’s now become a springboard for business,” he said.
“I love to share the happiness with people. everyone loves coming here.” Harriet Whittlin
Harriet Whittlin, an 86-year-old widow from the East Coast, has spent three months a year for the last five years at the Villas to escape the heat of her primary residence in Rancho Mirage.
“It was an instant love affair,” she said about her first visit to Pelican Hill in 2010. “You are in the lap of luxury.”
Whittlin loves to “hang out by the pool,” revels in the ocean view, enjoys all the Resort restaurants and others in nearby Newport Beach and Laguna Beach, and looks forward to daily visits from her housekeepers and butler. But her favorite time at the Villas is hosting her family and friends there.
“I love to share the happiness with people. Everyone loves coming here. I had a catered party there last year. It was the tops,” said Whittlin, who has three grown daughters and two grandchildren. “The Resort did it all. They made the Villa shining with candles, and the way they set up the hors d’oeuvres and cocktail party was just perfect. The staff was so well-trained.”
Whittlin especially loves the warmth and friendliness of the staff. “They make you feel very at home. And they say, ‘Mrs. Whittlin, how are you today?’ Everyone likes to be recognized in life. And the service is just divine.”
“Pelican Hill welcomed us…and they made us feel at home.” Lori Jackson
Another Villa guest, Lori Jackson, said her family’s unexpected stay at the Villas helped turn a stressful catastrophe into a fun adventure. “We were dealt a lemon, but the Resort is helping us turn it into lemonade,” said Jackson, who moved her family into the Villas in January with her husband, Jeff, and four children after their Ladera Ranch home flooded from a water leak.
As the family scrambled to find temporary housing, she called Pelican Hill,® which helped them move into a four-bedroom Villa within just a day.
“It’s very difficult to find the right place for our needs,” said Jackson, who was in the middle of starting a new business. “It had to be turnkey and near our work and large enough so we weren’t all on top of each other.”
Not only was Jackson thrilled with the “white-glove” service and convenience, but loved having a two-car garage, a washer and dryer, restaurants with great kids menus and a clubhouse and pool where her children, ages 4, 6, 8 and 10, could hang out.
“Pelican Hill welcomed us,” she said. “It’s been an exciting experience. And they made it feel like home.”
For more information regarding a Luxury Extended Stay at Pelican Hill, or to set up a preview of our two, three or four-bedroom Villas, please contact the Villa Sales Team at 866.535.7102 or firstname.lastname@example.org.