Have you ever wished that you could walk through a door and be transported into a magical world? Where you can just push pause on the world, stresses, and responsibilities in your life and enjoy quality time with your significant other. Well, I made this a reality, by visiting a little haven called Castle Wood Cottages in the city of Big Bear Lake, California, United States.
This time around the earth, my partner swept me away to spend a weekend at Castle Wood Cottages to celebrate my birthday. This trip was mainly for the purpose of pleasure but since pleasure is my business, It worked out in my favor. I enjoyed myself so much I thought it made sense to share this couples getaway and when I mean couples getaway… it is for couples only, no kids, no family, no huge group parties -maximum room capacity: 2. A perfect getaway for any couple who would like the romanticized essence of living in a fairytale book and your role is now a Disney Princess or Prince once you walk into your choice of cottage.
Romantic Themed Cottages
This fun little getaway is comprised of unique individualized cottages that are themed from an enchanted forest with fairies, a cave of wonders to Cleopatra’s romantic escapades. With 11 different themed experiences to choose from, it’s hard to be able to follow their tagline, “Live your Fairytale” and just pick one! Once you drive up to Castle Wood, you will find an extremely fun sign that is so inviting, along with a cute faux wishing well. You will find the office easily accessible in the front, with staff that was very welcoming and waiting in the office from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. (*times may have changed.).
Before I get into the experience, let me rewind to the process of booking the reservation. Keep in mind, I didn’t make the reservation since it was a present from my partner. But, while I was “window shopping” this lodging, I will say that their website does not do this place justice.
Their website is a bit outdated. Their dates of availability are hit or miss since they book up pretty fast. So, don’t get discouraged, and I highly recommend you plan ahead. Their peak season is during the holidays (1 week before Christmas and 1 week after New Year’s Day).
In case you want to make your stay a tad bit more romantic, they have a few services available:
- Turn Down Service – Silk rose petals sprinkled on the bed, a long stem silk rose on the pillow, and candles arranged around Jacuzzi – $25.00
- Gift basket filled with bath and food items (Includes Turn Down Service) Large $100.00 Extra Large $125.00
- Fresh chocolate-dipped strawberries (1 dozen) – $45.00
- In-room Massage Service also available.
“CastleWood Cottages” “Room Setups” accessed March 25, 2020,
The Turn-down Service was a nice touch and if you might want to surprise your partner.
Additional add-ons but we did bring along some midnight snacks and drinks. We also made sure to remember to plan some adventures nearby. Especially, when we arrived it was already snowing and we planned for some snow adventures. When we drove up, everything was a sight to see, snow was around and it made their outside common area beautiful.
After looking over all the options, it was such a hard decision to make since each of the cottages had a little something different. But, my partner gave me the choice of narrowing it down to two cottages, The Enchanted Forest and the Castle Garden. We were a little wishy-washy but I thought it was fitting to get the Castle Garden cottage, to be a princess for a day after all.
From the outside, this gem is like a tardis, small on the outside but “bigger-on-the-inside”. The moment the door opened, I wish I had a video of my reaction. I felt like those kids that got surprised with a trip to Disneyland and it would’ve been all slow-mo’d with me smiling like a cheese-ball. When you walk in, it was such a sight to see, with lights twinkling along the faux tree where a white wooden swing hung and foliage to my right. To the left, stood a knight in a suit of shining armor standing guard right above the custom-built jacuzzi with a prestigious lion as the tub’s spout.
While looking up, you’re able to see the lofted bedroom area with a white balcony adorned with faux foliage and flowers wrapping along the wooden railing. To the right is an amazing stonewall staircase that will lead you upstairs. But, that same staircase not only has fun castle-like aesthetics, if you look up this turret, you’ll also notice the figures of a king and queen overlooking the cottage.
When you wander up the spiral stairs, past the gargoyle guarding the bedroom, you will find ruby red carpeting in the surprisingly spacious bedroom area. Fit for royalty, the sleeping area has a 4 four-post queen-size bed that has natural lighting beaming in through the stained glass windows.
Our visit came during a splendid time where it was snowing outside and we were able to take advantage of the extravagant stone fireplace. My partner and I laid out a blanket and had a picnic in front of the cozy fire. Which I highly recommend! We brought along some drinks and a small charcuterie plate to enjoy while talking and proceeded to play some fun adult games.
Nearby was a small table that had a fabulous dragon figurine, which I absolutely wanted to take home with me since I love LOVE love dragons, Merlin and all that jazz. Next to the dragon figurine was a book. I had no idea what I was opening up, only to find out that it was actually a guest log book. It was dated with stories of romantic rendezvous of actual guests who have stayed in this wondrous place. This book was really special and made my heart melt. Anniversaries and love languages being expressed. Until I got to the page where someone said, “I jizzed in the hot tub” hahaha. Which it’s obvious any time there is a couples getaway, you know that will end up happening. Good thing we are in the “Covid-19” era, where the main necessities are to clean essential places like that.
On the first level, right when you walk in to the left is that same custom-built jacuzzi that i’m sure many have had fun romps in the water. My partner opted in for the turndown service which had red candles placed around the jacuzzi. It was large enough for the two of us and we set up our Ipad nearby to watch a movie and the following day we just jammed out to music while hanging out in the jacuzzi. We recommend you bring along a speaker to play some tunes on.
Next to the stair case going down to the lower level, is the waterfall moat that is lit up by a blue light that sets the mood. (Make sure to not leave the moat’s waterfall on too long or else water will splash all over the place.) When you think they’ve already outdone themselves with all the other sights in this small space, you will walk over a mini wooden bridge into the dining room area. Where weapons are adorned on the walls and you can sit across from your partner having dinner at a ginormous table and beautifully crafted chairs. You have the necessities like a mini-fridge, microwave, sink, and Keurig coffee machine. It had a wonderfully eerie feeling but you can always open the velvet drapes to let the sun shine in.
The bathroom is found downstairs, just in case you’d like to wash your sins away in their rock shower.
There are so many details that I’m sure I’m missing something out. But, as I sat on the Love Swing and looked at the painted murals, I sat in awe of everything around me. From the light switch panels, the knight’s shields above the faux foliage to the Glass display next to the staircase, and the twinkling lights in the tree branches hanging above my head.
It had Wifi and there was a TV upstairs, but I found that this place was a perfect place to reset and escape from the stresses of the world and focus on your partner.
If you are a smoker or love to have your morning cup of coffee outdoors, there is a private gazebo extended off to the right of the deck.
Nearby are some great dining options. But just make sure you look ahead before your stomach starts grumbling since hours are limited since you are in a smaller town. I recommend grabbing some morning bites or mid-day coffee at the Copper Q and possibly taking a walk along the lake. At night you can get some dinner at Fuji Restaurant which is within walking distance if you’re wanting a bit of Sake and don’t want to drive. There is also, Peppercorn Grille if you’re wanting a bit of surf n’ turf action. But, if you need to pick up some random essentials like liquor, candy, and some munchies, the all-in-one stop is L & H Liquor store. We also visited the nearby grocery store to get necessities that are microwavable. If you don’t feel like trekking out into the world, you can always order Doordash. We were able to snag some late-night burgers from Fire Rock Burgers and Brews this way as well. 😀
Nearby attractions, tourist activities, etc.
Depending on the time of year, there are a few outdoor activities you can partake in. In the spring, you can rent a bike and visit the Alpine Pedal Path Trail and have a picnic at the tables along the way. The view is great and you get a good look at the lake. (***Update: My partner and I came back here to take engagement photos. 🥰)
You can also check out Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain, this place is open year round. They have the Mineshaft coaster, a Water Slide, the Alpine Slide (which is Southern California’s only authentic bobsled experience), Soaring Eagle Ride and Go Karts. But, what we ended up partaking in during the wintertime was their Snow Play area that had Tubing.
There is also the Big Bear Alpine Zoo, that you can have a nice little stroll and you can take a look at some of their amazing animals there like the snow leopard, grey wolves, amongst other beautiful animals to see.
It should be noted that this hidden gem is nestled away in the quaint little part of town nearby the Village of Big Bear Lake, up in the San Bernardino Mountains. Since I am a southern California Native, this only made sense to have a mini stay-cation so close by. But, if you do decide to travel here, the nearest airport is the Ontario Airport which is an hour and some change away (depending on traffic). You will be driving up into the mountains and depending on the time of year, the weather may require you to use tire chains. There is free parking available on the property.
I found the entire experience wonderful. It was like being able to stay in the quarters of a hybrid of the set of Merlin and being a fairy tale princess at Disneyland. My boyfriend made the experience so relaxing and 100% romantic!