California Dreaming in the Lincoln Nautilus

 The Lincoln Nautilus

The Lincoln Nautilus

 The Lincoln Nautilus

The Lincoln Nautilus

 The set up for dinner on the first night.

The set up for dinner on the first night.

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Dara and I are truly lucky to attend the events and trips that we’re taken on and this one with our friends at Lincoln was an adventure we’ve always wanted to make. Lincoln is about to launch the Nautilus and we were lucky enough to head out to Santa Barbara California to give it a test drive. We hopped onto a flight to LAX where we’d catch our connecting flight to beautiful Santa Barbara, a 2 hour drive north of Los Angeles. Once we touched down we were greeted with a quick drive in the Lincoln Navigator to our hotel for the next two nights, the Belmond El Encanto, perched up in the hills of Santa Barbara it had the most spectacular views.

After arriving at the Belmond we made our way to our room to wash up for dinner with our friends from Lincoln. Dinner was set outside in the garden under twinkling lights with the Lincoln Nautilus lit up in the background, it was absolutely spectacular. After consuming a delicious meal we made our way to back into the main building of the Belmond for some Whisky tasting and billiards trick shots. Unfortunately I wasn’t feeling great (ended up being sick the entire trip) so I missed most of the entertainment.

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On day two we woke up and ate breakfast on the patio overlooking the bay. It was absolutely gorgeous. We packed our backpacks as we knew we had a full day and finally got our hands on the Lincoln Nautilus. We picked the Rhapsody Blue Nautilus Reserve with the cappuccino interior. It looked spectacular against the California scenery. Our first stop was Ojai which is a small city in Ventura county surrounded by beautiful mountains. I got to drive and boy was it a luxurious ride, it was only an hour but I was wishing it was a little bit longer, with front seat heating, cooling and massage seats Dara and I were truly spoiled. We also got to try the Lane-Keeping System which uses a camera mounted behind the windshield to detect whether you’re straying outside of the lines. It was some seriously impressive technology. We made our way to the Porch gallery for lunch where we met a local artist and experienced her latest works. After that we were off to the Santa Barbara Marina but first we used the 360 camera to back out the parking lot and see everything around us, it uses 4 cameras to create a birds eye view of the vehicle like you’ve got your own personal drone watching you from above. We left Ojai and were on our way back to Santa Barbara to participate in a sailing regatta. We met our captain and he showed us the ropes… literally. I was made captain because of the prior boating knowledge I had, we each had jobs to do on board learning to tack and in the end win the race. We had a total of 3 races against the other boats and won all three! After our time sent on the water it was time to fill our bellies.

We made our way to Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach for amazing view, and excellent sunset and and amazing meal. I chose the Seafood Pasta and it was absolutely delicious, there was so much seafood in the dish that I couldn’t even finish it. It was a whirlwind of a trip this time with us only getting one full day with our friends from Lincoln but we had an absolute blast. We are so lucky to have such great colleagues in this industry.

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The next morning we had a quick breakfast at the Belmond and then made our way down the coast. The plan was to drive from Santa Barbara down to Santa Monica and make some stops along the way (including In N Out). The total drive is roughly 2 hours but we stopped in Ventura, Oxnard (for the burgers) and then Malibu. If you haven’t done the drive along Highway 1 I would absolutely recommend it. The views are absolutely stunning and every corner looks like a post card from paradise. We didn’t want the coastline to end but sadly the drive came to a close as we approached Santa Monica. We checked into our hotel dropped off our bags and went to explore Santa Monica. I really didn’t expect Santa Monica to be as touristy as it was, the pier was very cool to see but Dara and I just aren’t that into crowds.

The next day, our last day, we woke up early and rode our bikes to Eggslut for some breakfast. I had the Bacon and Egg sandwich and Dara had Sausage and Egg. It was good but really wasn't worth the crazy line. We explored Venice for the morning then made our way back to the hotel to go for a drive and check out LA. First stop was to grab some tacos. We went to Trejo's Tacos and Throughly enjoyed the meal. Next stop was the Hollywood sign which is easy to see from a far but hard to get to up close unless you're hiking. We then drove around West Hollywood before deciding on heading back to the hotel to take our bikes back to Venice for a couple drinks.

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After cleaning up we went out for dinner at The Misfit Bar. It was absolutely packed but I had the best Beef Dip sliders ever. They came on hawaiian buns and were amazing, i’m still thinking about them (it was too dark to get a quality pic). We went out for a night cap and finished our night by riding around Santa Monica on a Lime scooter. We had seen them all over the place and finally at 11pm at night I downloaded the app and we were off on our maiden voyage. These things are fast! we could only find a single scooter so we actually had the two of us on one scooter, what a blast. We can’t wait to go back and explore the rest of California. Thanks so much Lincoln Canada for helping us visit somewhere we’ve always wanted to go!