Old Monterey District Blog

Cha-Ya Japanese Tea and Things is now offering everything in the store (except tea) for 30%, 50% and even more off the original price until our official closing date, which is yet to be determined. We want to thank everyone for helping make 2023 Cha-ya's best year ever! We've had wonderful sales and support throughout December, and we are on track to close, as planned, by the end of January.

We still have a lot of very nice items in the shop that are looking for a good home! We would love for you to come by and shop or even just say hi (and goodbye). Visit us at 118 Webster Street in Downtown Old Monterey. We're open Monday - Saturday, 11am-4pm.

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Webster Street Art Gallery presents an exhibit of the paintings of Olga Bond, a Ukrainian abstract artist currently living in Santa Cruz. Her work will be on display through February 2024 at 188 Webster Street in Downtown Old Monterey.

In her stunning, colorful work, Olga Bond taps into her emotions, thoughts, and the natural world around her for inspiration. When she picks up her brush and paint, she loves to watch the flow of colors dance and interact, each piece taking on its own name, meaning, and story as she brings it to life.

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New Mocktail Menu at Compact Disco

Posted on January 4th, 2024 by Compact Disco

Are you taking a break from booze? There's no reason to miss the party with Compact Disco's stunning new mocktail menu! Visit us at 420 Tyler Street in Monterey, where we're open Sun-Thu, 5pm-closing, and Fri & Sat, 5pm-2am.

Featured drinks include the Lychee Mojito (fresh lychee juice, locally-sourced mint, organic lime, and a touch of organic agave nectar) and the Pink Lady (organic pink grapefruit juice, lime juice, club soda, and a touch of maple syrup).

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Venture Gallery presents the paintings of Susann E. Cate Lynn, our featured local artist for January.

In her latest exhibit, Unpaved Paradise, Lynn focuses on natural, undeveloped locales that elicit a calm and peaceful feeling. These open spaces provide the “unpaved paradise” that people rely on for recreation and a connection with nature. Walking in a forest, hearing a red-shouldered hawk and the wind through the trees, or walking by the ocean is uplifting and healing.

Venture Gallery is open 10am-6pm daily. Susann E. Cate Lynn's artwork will be featured through January 2024. Venture Gallery is located at 260 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey. Visit our website to shop online for work by our local artists.

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Enjoy Panettone from Paris Bakery

Posted on December 13th, 2023 by Paris Bakery

Paris Bakery is now offering freshly-made panettone! A sweet Italian yeast bread with raisins and dried fruit, panettone is traditionally enjoyed during the winter holiday season. You'll often find it being sold in packages on the shelves of specialty markets, made in far-off places, but at Paris Bakery, we make it in-house. Visit us at 271 Bonifacio Place in Downtown Old Monterey.

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Haute Beauty Guide has a wonderful selection of gifts and stocking stuffers for the holidays, including hair clips, bath bombs, gemstone bracelets, candles, and Christmas ornaments. The shop also has a fantastic sale on lucite games such as dominoes, checkers, tic-tac-toe, and more, all now marked at only $50 (orig. $110-$325). These are beautiful, timeless pieces.

Haute Beauty Guide is located at 71 Pearl Street in Downtown Old Monterey. (Don't let the construction next door fool you - we're still here!) Regular hours: Tue-Sat, 10am-2pm. Beginning Dec. 18: 10am-4pm. Christmas Eve: 10am-1pm.

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After 18 wonderful years of serving our community, it is with mixed emotions that we announce the closure of Cha-ya Japanese Tea & Things. Starting December 6, all items (excluding tea and food) will be 30% off. Please come say goodbye in person at 118 Webster Street in Monterey and get your favorite Cha-ya items before they are gone!

Our journey with Cha-ya began in Pacific Grove and continued in Downtown Old Monterey, and we are immensely grateful for the support and patronage you've shown us throughout the years. We want to express our deepest appreciation for you being a part of the Cha-ya family.

Your loyalty has been the heartbeat of our business, and we are truly thankful for the memories and relationships we've built together. As we embark on this new chapter, owner Mitsuko Gammon, who started Cha-ya 18 years ago, is excited about dedicating more time to family, including cherished moments with kids and grandkids. While bidding farewell to Cha-ya is bittersweet, we look forward to the future with optimism and gratitude.

To celebrate our years together, we invite you to join us for several special sales over the next couple of months. It's a chance to reminisce, grab some fantastic deals, and say goodbye in person. Your presence would mean the world to us!

Thank you for being an essential part of Cha-ya's story. We look forward to seeing you at the upcoming sales and sharing our gratitude in person.

With heartfelt appreciation,
Mitsuko & Kay

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Winter Specials at Spa on the Plaza

Posted on December 8th, 2023 by Spa on the Plaza

Spa on the Plaza, located at 201 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey, is offering winter specials. To make an appointment, please phone us at 831-647-9000.

Winter Specials

Glisten and Glow Facial
$160 for 60 minutes
This facial includes a gentle, lightning lift forte peel targeted to give your skin a bright and youthful glow. Followed by a hydrating antioxidant-rich sheet mask and finishing with a neck, shoulder, and hand massage for added body relaxation.

Cranberry Bliss Massage
$195 for 80 minutes
Envelop yourself in our warming cranberry and orange spice massage that will stimulate tension relief and help fatigued muscles. Finishing with a relaxing foot scrub.

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La Casa del Sazon Caters!

Posted on December 8th, 2023 by La Casa del Sazon

Great news for lovers of delicious Mexican food: La Casa del Sazon caters! Now you can enjoy their authentic family recipes, made from scratch, at holiday celebrations, family gatherings, birthday parties, office lunches, corporate events, and weddings.

View their menu online or stop by the Monterey restaurant at 431 Tyler Street, meet their friendly staff, and try it yourself. You'll find a variety of traditional favorites as well as delicious vegetarian, gluten-free, and Blue Zones dishes, and all tortillas are made fresh in-house. To book catering, please email Dakota or call 831-595-5823.

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Parker-Lusseau Pastries and Cafe, located at 539 Hartnell Street in Downtown Old Monterey, has fresh stollen on our shelves from now until Christmas. This holiday favorite is so popular you should probably place your order in advance just to make sure it's there when you want it, 831-641-9188.

What is stollen? A traditional German fruit bread with candied orange rind, raisins, and sliced almonds macerated in rum...plus it features the amazing flavors of cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, and a hint of tellicherry pepper.

Slice it, toast it, smother it with butter, eat it...Repeat! Bonus feature: it makes your house smell like Christmas.

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Board and Brush Monterey is having a Holiday Sign Sale! Any non-personalized, pre-made sign in the studio is only $45. These are all handmade and they make great gifts.

Our studio, located at 458 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey, is open when workshops are happening or by appointment. You can contact us via Facebook or Instagram, or through our website.

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Give the Gift of Om Studios Classes

Posted on December 7th, 2023 by Om Studios

Om Studios gift cards are a great treat to share with your loved one. Gift cards can be purchased and used for any class passes, retail items, or membership fees. Gifts can be purchased online and sent electronically through our website.

We're also offering some great deals for new clients: for only $59, get 21 days of unlimited yoga or barre classes OR 3 Reformer Pilates classes.

Om Studios is located at

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Find Locally-Made Gifts at Alma del Mar

Posted on November 29th, 2023 by Alma del Mar

Alma del Mar is ready to help you with your holiday shopping! We have a wealth of locally-made gift items, including soaps, bath bombs, shower steamers, keychains, cards, and cutting boards. Plus, we have a selection of wetsuits and booties in children's and adult sizes for your favorite surfers.

We're open Tue, 4pm-7pm, and Wed-Sun, 11am-4pm, at 269 Bonifacio Place in Downtown Old Monterey. Proceeds from all sales benefit the nonprofit Wahine Project, which seeks to give a diversity of Monterey County youth access to ocean sports who would not otherwise have the opportunity.

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Monterey History and Art at Stanton Center is offering a December Special - get a free Salvador Dali mystery print with select purchases while supplies last!

Buy one ticket or $20+ in merchandise and receive one free small Dali print. Buy two tickets or $30+ in merchandise and receive a free medium-sized Dali print. Buy three or more tickets or $40+ in merchandise and receive a free large Dali print.

Visit us at 5 Custom House Plaza in Downtown Old Monterey. We're open six days a week, 10am-5pm. Closed Fridays.

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Venture Gallery presents a group exhibit of local artists, A Few of My Favorite Things. The show will feature smaller, favorite works that have special meaning for the artists who made them.

As artists, the urge, the desire - the need to create - moves that creative energy through us. This show of our favorite things will perhaps be your inspiration for gift-giving! Bring joy to a loved one and support local artists by purchasing paintings, jewelry, wood, and glass creations.

Venture Gallery is open daily, 10am-6pm daily. Closed on Christmas Day. We are located at 260 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey.

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Kayuragi Incense is back at Luminata Books and Gifts. Indulge in the light, dreamy fragrances of new scents including Wisteria, Mikan Orange, Osmanthus, and Pomegranate.

Nippon Kodo incense from Japan is renowned for its high quality, using closely guarded techniques and scents dating back to the 16th century. Current perfumers interpret the traditions of Takai Juemon, an incense artist who supplied the Emperor of Japan in the Tensho Era.

Luminata Books and Gifts is located at 631 Cass Street in Downtown Old Monterey. Designated parking spaces are available in the lot outside our shop.

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Have a book lover in your life? Consider giving them a holiday book bundle from Old Capitol Books! Tell us what kind of books they like and our in-house experts will curate a book care package they'll love. Book care packages are now available for $15, $25, and $100. Visit our website to shop online!

$15 Holiday Book Bundle
Includes one book personally selected by our experienced booksellers based on your preferences plus a special, unique gift.

$25 Holiday Book Bundle
Includes two books personally selected by our experienced booksellers based on your preferences plus two special, unique gifts.

$100 Holiday Book Bundle
A big ol' box of books personally selected by our experienced booksellers based on your preferences along with some special little gifts.

Old Capitol Books is located at 482 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey and open Saturday and Sunday, 12pm-6pm.

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