CLOSED: Let It Snow Returns to Four Seasons Westlake Village [2016 Giveaway]

Let It Snow, the special holiday event at the Four Seasons Westlake Village, is back for its fifth season and better than ever.
Let It Snow night

Southern Californians enjoy “snow” at the Four Seasons

Check into a wonderland at the far end of the Four Seasons Lobby. When you step outside the big glass doors you and your children will encounter:

  • Snoopy and Charlie Brown greeting you and high fiving and happily posing for photos
  • Santa waiting for you in his little house, with Rudolph outside bouncing around
  • A holiday train which might take you past the Grinch
  • Twinkly lights everywhere
  • Hot chocolate with mini-marshmallows
  • S’mores by the fire pit
  • Snow every 15 minutes!
  • Ice skating for young and young-at-heart ⛸
  • A food-for-purchase snack bar including pizza and popcorn
  • A cookie-decorating room with Mrs. Claus

We have brought our boys to this event a few times now, and even as they are getting older, they still enjoy it. Their favorite is the ice skating, even though it’s faux-ice. I would say a close second, for my older son, is the cookie-decorating activity. He is starting to master it! My own favorite is the snow itself. Okay, yes, it’s faux snow, but the way it flurries around amid the twinkling lights at the already stunning Four Seasons makes the moment truly wondrous, and the fact that it happens every fifteen minutes means that as soon as it’s over, you can expect it to happen again soon.

Let It Snow cookies

Decorating cookies with Mrs. Claus. She said he should get an internship at the North Pole.

Your pass gets you access to all of these activities, and a discount on dinner in Mercato Restaurant inside. What’s not to love? You can only get this experience if you are an overnight guest at the Four Seasons, or if you managed to score some tickets during the recent Conejo Deals purchasing window, OR if you are the lucky winner of a four-pack of tickets that I’m giving away here in this post! (Read to end.)

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Holiday train

If You Go

I have a few tips for you if you go. First, this event is just perfect for little kids, or bigger kids who still have a love of whimsy, crafts, Santa, magic, snow, or even just the Four Seasons itself, which can definitely be a thing among children. I mean, have you seen it there? The grounds alone are worth a visit. Let It Snow is placed outside on the terrace in the back of the hotel, and you have to walk down the grand staircase toward the waterfall to get to the ice skating area. It’s a truly breathtaking sight, and you’d never know this place exists so close to the busy 101 freeway or the hustle and bustle of Lindero Canyon Blvd. My 9-year-old sighed wistfully as we entered the doors that were held open for us by a cheerful doorman, “I miss this place,” he said. “When are we going to stay overnight?”

(This is funny because we live basically right around the corner.)

Let It Snow skating

Seating: during the rest of the year, the terrace is known as The Lookout, an outdoor bar seating area. For Let It Snow, they have moved the seating out of the way so you can walk around easily, but if you want to sit, the couches and fire pits have been moved to the lawn. Just follow the sign and pathway to the little holiday train depot and you’ll see them arranged on the grass. If your kids like to skate, that’s a good time for you to sit and rest too.

let it snow sign

Another tip: the line to get in to see Santa Claus can back up, so if you can come with more than one adult who can wrangle smaller children, that would be ideal. But Rudolph and other characters are around to entertain while you wait. And it’s worth it:

Let It Snow bombshell mommy

This adorable family is not mine. Abigail Blank of Bombshell Mommy was kind enough to let me show you hers because we missed our photo op. She is a local writer I have followed on Instagram for a while for her great pics and thoughtful words. Check her out.

These are the best family photos I could come up with this year. My husband, Stewart, was there but declined to be photographed.

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Let It Snow has become one of our favorite local holiday traditions. Once we’ve been to the Four Seasons, had our cocoa, danced around in the snow, and decorated cookies, it truly feels like the season has begun. Happy holidays!

Let It Snow
Four Seasons Westlake Village
2 Dole Dr
Westlake Village, CA 91362

Giveaway – Let It Snow Tickets!

I’m giving away four tickets to Let It Snow at the Four Seasons Westlake Village. Remaining dates are December 9, 10, 16, and 17. The event runs from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM. (Kids 2 and under are free to enter so you don’t need a pass for them.) To enter, leave a comment here by 11:59 PM on Thursday, December 8, with your favorite local holiday tradition, like where to see great holiday lights, etc. One comment per person please. Additional entry available (each) if you “like” Agoura Hills Mom on Facebook or follow on Instagram. (Just leave a note in your comment with your Facebook name and/or Insta handle to qualify). Winner will be chosen at random from qualifying entries. Winner will be notified via email on Friday morning, December 9. Tickets will be held under the name given at the concierge desk at the hotel.

My family attended Let It Snow as guests of the Four Seasons. All opinions are my own.

Some Awesome New Things: The Habit, Sunday Cats, and Vellabox Candles

New Things That Are Awesome!

vellabox candles

Vellabox Candles and Gifts

My family and I tried some new things recently and three of them were awesome enough to share with you here. Picture me curled up on the love seat with a tasty burger in one hand, an organic freezer pop in the other, enjoying the light from a flickering candle. (That’s not at all how it happened, but it’s the way I would like you to imagine me.)

The Habit’s Golden Chicken Sandwich

habit golden chicken sandwich

The Habit is a fast casual burger restaurant on Canwood between McDonald’s and Trader Joe’s. I have been there a few times since it opened a few years ago when the mood has hit me. It’s a little bit more newsworthy now because a new location will be opening at Thousand Oaks and Westlake Blvd, which means I’ll have two Habits to choose from when the mood strikes again.

habit agoura hills

The Habit announced its limited-time Golden Chicken Sandwich ($6.25) on October 5. It’s the first fried chicken sandwich the restaurant has offered, and this one comes “hand-dipped into house-made seasoned flour and buttermilk, fried to perfection and topped with a new spicy red pepper sauce.” Since I don’t like spicy things, I made my food taste-tester (my husband) sample this one. He liked it but would not give me any more details. So there you go.

habit agoura hills interior

I rate this entry awesome because The Habit is nicer than a fast food burger joint, serves up the food quickly, and prepares their “charburger” with a relishy sauce that gives it some extra flavor. Plus, they have soft serve ice cream for dessert.

The Habit Burger
29145 Canwood Street
Agoura Hills, CA 91301
(818) 707-7300

Sunday Cats Freezer Pops

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Sunday Cats has nothing to do with cats, as a matter of fact. But when a box of the freezer pops came in the mail, my kids ripped it open and immediately assumed these organic freezer pops (the company calls them “freezies”) were treats for the cat. Sigh. I mean, the box did come with little cat-themed scissors…

boy with sunday cats

I did not pay him to pose like this.

Sunday Cats makes “the first organic and natural version of the pop! Real fruit juice, whole food electrolytes (perfect for those little soccer players), NO sugar, NO artificial flavors, and NO preservatives. Vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free.”

pineapple sunday cats

They come in watermelon, strawberry, and pineapple. Strawberry is super sweet, like a power-punch of very ripe actual berries. Watermelon is my favorite – refreshing but not too sweet. Pineapple actually tastes like real pineapple. Because it is.

I’m actually lucky I got to try one myself. The kids pretty much devoured these all by themselves.

Sunday Cats Freezer Pops
Order online. Box of 6, including shipping: $11.29

Vellabox

vellabox october

So, I still haven’t tried any of the subscription boxes of things and stuff that I keep seeing in my Facebook and Instagram feeds. Clothes, books, crafts, cooking supplies…meh. I just haven’t been interested. But then I read the description of Vellabox. It’s candles, you guys! I love candles! I mean I really love candles. This subscription service sends you candles! “We source the highest quality candles hand-poured by American artisans and combine them with a bonus lifestyle gift and a unique packaging style to create a memorable unboxing experience each and every month.”

And what an unboxing it was. I actually let my son open this one because to be honest, I had forgotten I agreed to review this thing, and so I didn’t recognize the name of the company. He didn’t do too much damage, and he really enjoyed opening the beautifully-wrapped candles. And then I enjoyed smelling them. For a long time.

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This box is the Vivere October box with a fall theme, complete with pumpkin spice granola bar. The big candle filled my house with a crisp apple-cinnamon scent and made everyone think I was baking something. Psych! I think a Vellabox subscription would make an excellent host/hostess gift for that family member whose home you’re crashing in for the holidays.

Vellabox Candle Subscriptions
Order online. $10-$30 per month plus shipping

I received complimentary samples from each company. All opinions are my own.

Wellness Kitchen’s Wine Wednesdays

Wait, did you say “Wine Wednesday?”

You did?

Okay, I’m listening.

gingerbread cake wine

The Wellness Kitchen, located in the Four Seasons Westlake Village as part of the California Health and Longevity Institute, hosts cooking classes and demonstrations that are open to the public or in their packages for spa and hotel guests. They have added Wine Wednesdays, special evenings of wine pairings with food and emceed by experts in the worlds of wine and fine cuisine. Wine Wednesdays are relaxing 2-hour events where you’ll sit in a comfy chair and have delicious food and wine brought right to you in a planned out presentation all while learning about the wines and the recipes the chef makes for you right before your eyes.

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This experience only costs $65 per person! That’s less than you’d pay for dinner and wine at many local restaurants, and let’s be honest, nothing really compares to the luxurious surroundings and top notch customer service of the Four Seasons, amirite?

wine wednesdays birthday

I went to a recent Wine Wednesday event with my pal Julie along for the ride because a) I like her and b) it was her birthday. We attended the Meditrina wine pairing evening. Nicole Mparmperis of Heather Mercer Imports led us through each pairing of a delicious Italian wine while Wellness Kitchen’s Director of Nutrition Paulette Lambert spoke to us about the food we were eating: how it was prepared, tips for getting our pasta just right (hint: leave about a cup of the pasta water in the pot after you drain it), and background about where the fresh produce was grown.

wine wednesdays class

We had warm mushroom salad with a Pinot Grigio, pasta with greens and vegetarian sausage paired with a Cabernet Franc, and the amazing gingerbread cake (above) with a spumante. But the main event was this delicious roasted halibut paired with a wine called Falanghina that Mparmperis said is actually sold locally at Wade’s Wines for less than $20 per bottle!

wine wednesdays halibut

Each dish was light but satisfying and its wine partner was perfect. The other diners in our session were there on mom’s nights out, or date night, or celebrating birthdays, too. Everyone was rapt at attention when Lambert or Mparmperis were speaking but there was plenty of time for conversation and catching up. The overall experience was informative, tasty, and simply delightful.

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The next Wine Wednesday is coming up on November 16 featuring Navarro Wines. Call to make a reservation – the class I attended was full!

Wine Wednesdays at the Wellness Kitchen
Four Seasons Westlake Village
Two Dole Drive
Westlake Village, CA 91362
(818) 575-3000