Allegretto Vineyard Resort, Paso Robles, California

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Peace and quiet. Healthy food options. Fitness activities. Spa treatments. Opportunities for mindful moments. These are a few of the wellness travel elements available at Allegretto Vineyard Resort, the newest member of the California-based Ayres Hotels family, the brand’s first resort, and the first of the collection to house a spa.

Surrounded by rolling vineyards in the wine region of Paso Robles a 4-hour drive from Los Angeles, the Allegretto opened last September on a 20-acres estate just a 30-minute walk from Paso Robles’ downtown core.

Credit: https://www.allegrettovineyardresort.com

Inspired and crafted with joy,’ a loose translation of the musical term ‘allegretto’ is one of the cornerstones upon which the sprawling, luxury resort has been built. Music is a theme and so is art. There are hundreds of individual works of art including paintings, sculptures and object d’art from around the world adorning the vaulted halls plus the indoor and outdoor public spaces.

One of the biggest draws at this new resort is Cello. The resort’s all-day dining room and bar hosts almost as many locals as it does in-house guests. Since the resort opened, Cello has become somewhat of a meeting place for the residents of Paso Robles.

The architecture and décor is heavily influenced by the grand Tuscan-style Italian villas and resorts, and incorporates plenty of spaces for quiet, mindful moments. A spacious courtyard (photo above) with sculptures and lounge chairs around outdoor fire pits, plus private poolside cabanas below the hillside vineyard (photo below), sofas grouped around indoor fireplaces, and a labyrinth (opening soon) are just a few of the spaces allowing guests to enjoy a bit of peaceful and reflective “time-out.”

Under the direction of renowned chef Eric Olson, who has worked in 22 countries around the world, the menu offers an eclectic mix of international dishes.

It also offers plenty for the healthy-minded, and while there are no designated light, vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free side menus, Chef Olson and his culinary team are happy to be ‘on demand.’ For instance, I ordered the signature black bean burger offered with an artisanal bun, but I asked for a vegan bun instead and received an immediate ‘can do’ response from the kitchen staff.

During my visit there was also a energy-boosting Spirulina (blue-green algae rich in nutrients) Smoothie available. Of course, the menu reflects the season and dishes are liberally accented with local produce and products as well as ingredients foraged – on both land and sea – by the chef’s own hand. Drop in at the right time and you might even find freshly harvested local seaweed being offered. The chef says the marine plant is featured two to three days out of every month.

The fact that the Paso Robles region is also home to natural hot springs is another reason for the wellness-minded to visit this lesser-known wine region of California.

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