The shuttle driver picked us up punctually at our RV site. “Where would you like to go,” he said. “The golf course? Casino? Restaurants? Spa? Gym? Comedy Club? Convention Center? Have you been to Old Town Temecula, yet? Or toured the wineries?” So many choices.
Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, California, the largest resort casino combination in the state, is giving Las Vegas and Napa a run for their money. Cliché intended. The Pechanga Casino offers 1000 more slots than the largest Vegas casino. The presentation is subtle. No glitz.
The Pechanga Tribe maintains its connection with the land. Set midst the ranchland and rolling hillsides of the Temecula Valley, the resort and casino buildings blend with the landscape.
The 18-hole golf course, Journey, is one of the top 20 courses in California. The fairways and putting greens creatively weave around sacred live oak trees. Indigenous flowers, plants, and cultural artifacts provide reason to take extra time between swings. If distracted for too long, GPS equipped golf carts with pin positioning and golf pro tips bring the game back into the moment.
We can confirm that Pachanga supports talented, creative chefs.
Chef Jerome O’Reggio created his menu at Journey’s End, the 19th hole of the golf course, with golfers in mind. He also caters to the breakfast, brunch, and lunch crowds.
Shrimp Cocktail is served with not only red cocktail sauce but pickled cactus cucumber jicama slaw. Chef Jerome’s style is simple dishes with standout flavors, dishes that catch the eye the moment they touch the table.
Cream of butternut squash soup is topped with potato hay.
A Tenderloin Salad is sliced beef tenderloin over baby arugula, grilled red onion, and tomato, topped with bleu cheese crumbles and a drizzle of white balsamic vinaigrette.
We were pleased to know that the perfect mini portions of moist carroty carrot cake with real cream cheese icing were also available at some of the other 20+food venues at Pechanga.
An in-house bakery guarantees that when we were ready for more carrot cake with a late night coffee, it would be available.
Our dining experience within the casino complex was another adventure – new Old World food. At Paisano’s Italian, Chef Francesco di Caudo brings modern Italian cuisine to Pechanga.
Chef Francesco offered us a personalized menu. In true Italian style, he treated us, his customers, like family. After asking a few questions about our likes and dislikes, he prepared his choice of dishes for us to sample and share.
Guancia Di Manzo. Braised beef cheeks in dark chocolate with potato puree and matsuki pickled mushrooms. Every bite embraced both bitter and sweet.
Orata Al Cartoccio. A folded parcel of bass-like fish steamed with oranges, olives, fennel, clams, saffron, and white wine.
We sampled. We sipped. As Chef Francesco served each plate, he explained his ingredients. As plates were removed, he lingered to hear our opinions.
White picket fences at the Pechanga RV Park create a homey atmosphere. The park is well run. The staff is polite, helpful, and friendly.
With wifi, heated pool, spas, cabanas, clean laundry, outdoor areas with grills and indoor rooms with kitchens for potlucks, and dog walks, every RVing need is met. There is a gas station and car wash on the property. RV park guests have free use of the golf course practice area, discounted green fees, and access to the pool, exercise room, and spa at the resort. Manicures, pedicures, and massages are just minutes away. With the shuttle service there is no need to drive.
Pechanga Resort and Casino has a unique advantage over other casinos with its location in Southern California wine country, where the sun shines almost every day. The Temecula Valley offers a Mediterranean climate that is perfect for growing grapes.
Most of the 30 wineries are small and family-owned.
The wine experience is special for everyone – from the winemaker to the wine appreciator.
The Old Town of Temecula is within minutes of Pechanga.
Old Town is a vibrant frontier setting with 21st century tastes, warm and fuzzy with its spice store, olive oil shop, board walk, theater, art, and restaurants.
With the combination of resort facilities, casino, golf course, RV park, Old Town Temecula, and Temecula wine country, Pechanga Resort and Casino is definitely a destination.
Their mission statement is “to create extraordinary experiences moment by moment in an unmatched setting.”
Pechanga Resort and Casino does just that. Very well.