Casino_7020Zip on over to Catalina Island on the Catalina Express from Long Beach. If you are luck, the Captain will slow the ship down as he announces a school of porpoises zipping in front of the boat. Looking out the windows, one can view a multitude of these beautiful mammals leaping into the air and playing near the wake of the  ship.

Once on the island, walk or catch  a ride to the Descanso Beach Activity Center to experience a thrilling Zip line adventure.  It’s the only zip line court in Los Angeles and Orange County that features five separate zips with a 440-feet drop.

After a twenty-minute lesson on how to “zip,”  guests receive a helmet and harness before boarding a van for a short ride up 500 feet above sea level to Hog’s Back. It’s at the entrance of the Island’s Interior gate. This is the first of six wooden platforms on the course.

I volunteered to be the first “zipper” in my group. Looking out at 4,000 feet of steel cables, my hands started to sweat. With the    encouragement from my fellow “zippers,” I took a running jump off the platform and soared in the air. I was told I might reach speeds as high as 45 miles an hour zipping if I put my legs in a horizontal position. I soared from one platform to the next with my eyes open, taking in the ocean views. As I continued to relax a bit, it was quite fun. I now know what birds see while soaring above the Island’s canyons and mountain range.

The longest zip is 1,045 lineal feet. Eventually I zipped down to where we started. The entire adventure takes about 2 hours.

The course was designed by Canopy Tours of New Hampshire. Discovery Tours and the Santa Catalina Island Company operate the tours daily. For reservations, visit

For additional information about Catalina Island go to

I am so excited that Bucket List Publications published my article about Catalina’s Zip Line Adventure. Click here to read it on the Bucket List Publications site

Catalina Island on Dwellable

Catalina New Year’s Eve Party


bandRing in the New Year at the historic Casino Ballroom. After enjoying a buffet dinner you can dance the night away to The Xceptional Music Company. The Xceptional Music Company has a great horn section and ten musicians who have performed with the Supremes, Temptations, Earth Wind and Fire, The Pointer Sisters, Ike Turner, Tower of Power and the Whispers. Songs from the 50’s till now, with sounds of MoTown and Chicago and a few from the 20’s and 30’s to honor the great traditions of the Casino Ballroom.  Black Tie is optional.

A trio from the band will play during the dinner hour, and the full band will perform from 9:00 pm to 1:00 am. Coat & Tie are required.

Tickets to the New Year’s Gala, buffet dinner, celebration champagne split and party favors.

CALL FOR RESERVATIONS (310)510-1520 Reservations for this year’s Gala are $175.00 per person.

Dinner reservations will be accepted for 7:00, 7:30, 8:00, or 8:30 pm. Guests will be admitted into the Ballroom no more than 15 minutes before their reservation time. Guests arriving early may wait in the Marine Bar on the Mezzanine, where seating and beverages will be available. The buffet dinner will be available until approximately 9:15 pm.Casino_7020

Stay overnight at The Hotel Villa Portifino  with a full range of room types from courtyard to deluxe oceanview suites. All rooms feature air-conditioning and heat, telephone, cable television with two movie channels, coffee maker, refrigerator, hairdryers, irons, ironing boards and free WiFi. Our suites offer fireplaces, bathtubs and seating areas. Some offer balconies, patios, and steeping tubs.

Ask for the New Year’s Eve package. It includes accommodations, roundtrip boat transportation from Long Beach via Catalina Express. (Dana Point extra charge) Package also includes welcome champagne plus two tickets to the New Year’s Eve party in the World Famous Casino Ballroom. Enter boat departure preference times as well as your 1st & 2nd choice for dinner (7:00, 7:30, 8:00 or 8:30pm) in the “Comments” section. Visit Catalina Express or call 800-995-4386 for portifinoschedule.

111 Crescent Avenue
P.O. Box 127
Avalon, Ca 90704

TOLL FREE 1-800-34-OCEAN or (310) 510-0555
(888) 510-0555 (Nationwide)