Saturday, August 21, 2010

Resort At The Golden Gate

Cavallo Point Lodge at the Golden GateThe Golden Gate has long been the most famous landmark of the city of San Francisco. And for good reason: the sight of the bridge as it catches the sunlight with the sights of the Bay and the city behind is indeed a sight to behold. And there isn't a better way to appreciate this iconic bridge and its pretty surroundings than Cavallo Point. A new resort that is set right on the hillside on the Sausalito end of the bridge.

Cavallo Point is built at the site of a historic US Army post, Fort Baker. Restored historic building that were once officers quarters are combined with contemporary lodges into a set of luxurious living spaces vacationing couples and families. Cavallo Point is also home to the Michelin starred restaurant, Murray Circle.

Cavallo Point Lodge
Cavallo Point LodgeThe Golden Gate national parks adjoining the resort provides ample trekking, hiking and biking opportunities for those who enjoy outdoor activities. There is an interest hike that takes you right under the imposing Golden Gate bridge. For those who would rather relax indoors, the rooms are fantastic with real fireplaces and the spa has a variety of options to choose from including such exotica as acupuncture treatments (if your idea of a vacation is sticking needles into yourself!).

Cavallo Point Lodge
Cavallo Point Lodge
Cavallo Point Lodge
Cavallo Point Lodge
Cavallo Point LodgeDuring the two days I spent here, I was locked up with other colleagues in intense day-long meetings. However, the early mornings and late evening views were fantastic. The open grounds and the soaring hillside behind makes this the perfect spot for a weekend vacation.

Cavallo Point LodgeMurray Circle was elegant yet comfortable and accented with beautifully restored tin ceilings, fine art photography and toasty fireplaces. You can choose to soak up the sun on the historic porch with sweeping views of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge. Led by executive chef Joseph Humphrey, this restaurant focuses on Bay Area cuisine and showcases the bounty of local farms, ranches and culinary artisans. Prior to Murray Circle, Chef Joseph Humphrey was the chef at The Restaurant at Meadowood in Napa Valley which garnered two Michelin Stars. He has also worked at some other restaurants I frequent such as One Market and Fifth Floor.

Murray Circle RestaurantWe began with a Sweet Pea Gazpacho with serrano chile and citrus ice. I love cold soups and this one provided the right start. The slivers of tangy ice brought a soothing tingle on the palate.

Sweet Pea Gazpacho at Murray CircleNext came the Young Lettuces, a salad mixed with fruits, vegetables and herbs in a delightful medley.

Young Lettuces at Murray CircleThe main course of Grass Fed Beef brought the dining experience to its crescendo. This dish was wonderfully put together with the soft, tender meat combined nicely with twice baked potato souffle, carrots in 'soil', wood roasted maitake mushrooms and horseradish.

Grass Fed Beef at Murray CircleDessert was a caramel creme brulee with white chocolate semifreddo and chicory ice-cream. Unfortunately, the pictures I took don't do justice to the food we ate that night. Hopefully, I will be back again, this time for a short vacation instead of business.

Cream Brulee at Murray CircleWe continued late into the night and were the last out of the restaurant. With so much wine flowing, conversation had turned pretty wild. The cool breeze was refreshing and nice as we walked back to our rooms with the city lights blinking in the distance, a starry sky overhead, and the majestic bridge looming ahead of us.

Farley Bar at Cavallo PointInteresting trivia: the Cavallo Point area is also the location of Starfleet Headquarters in the Star Trek world.

PS: List of Bay Area Michelin Star restaurants here.


Lakshmi said...

looks like an ideal resort to relax rather than have meetings..During my last US trip, I hardly spent a few days in Bay area, but it was quite memorable

Shantanu said...

@Lakshmi: Hi Lakshmi! Good to see you here. I have noticed you have become quite a professional photographer...the pics on your blog are quite stunning.