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Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

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Bristol, England
posts: 2
reviews: 1
Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

My husband and I are visiting San Francisco in July and driving down the coast to LA. We would like to book a night in Carmel/Monterey and one in Cambria.

Please can anyone help us with choosing a good place to stay? It will be our 25th wedding Anniversary and the first holiday away together without the family! Would love ocean views, comfortable rooms etc.

I would really appreciate some advice from anyone who is familiar with the area. Thanks!

Warwick, United...
posts: 646
reviews: 28
1. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Hey Julia

We did the SF to LA trip via Hwy 1 last year BRILLIANT loved it so much and we stayed in the places you mentioned. However may need a bit more info re budget then i could advise on places and other people will be able to also.

When we stayed in Cambria we stayed on Moonstone beach (just off Hwy 1- 10 mins south of hearst castle perfect place to stay) i got the recommendation off this fab website. Anyway we stayed at The Fog Catcher Inn the rooms was nice bit like a travel inn (but better) and we had an ocean view room (which is a MUST) and the ocean is the otherside of the road!! fantastic. Am sure there are better hotels but we went in November and got a great deal and as i said the rooms was nice and comfy (beds were lovely) and i could hear the sounds of the ocean. I would put this in the mid range price bracket (breakfast was very average though). Its also close to a FABULOUS seafood restuarant called the Seachest. This restuarant is wonderful.

The trip you are doing really is stunning you will have a great time.

Hope that helps

Asha

Bristol, England
posts: 2
reviews: 1
2. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Thanks Asha for your reply. Budgetwise, I suppose a max of about $300 per room per night.

Would like decent room with ocean view within walking distance of restaurants, sights etc. Really just looking for something clean and comfortable that isn't too noisy. Looked at Cambria Pines but many reviews said walls were paper thin and very noisy.

Any reports on the Best Western Fireside Inn, Moonstone Beach?

Washington State
posts: 467
reviews: 21
3. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Yes, we stayed here a couple of years ago to do a daytime tour of the Hearst Castle, and to check out the elephant seals. We're staying again soon in September to do the evening tour of the castle. It's a basic motel with a fireplace in the room. We found it to be good, comfortable, and served our needs. Would have preferred a b&b, but they all had 2 night minimums and we only needed one night. So there you go. Have a nice trip!

Scotland, UK
posts: 3,237
reviews: 126
4. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

JuliaUK,

I would book now especially if you hope to go down the coast at the weekend. It's gets very busy and we have had problems getting booked for the weekend of 8th/9th anywhere decent in Carmel/Monterey area. San Francisco seems to be ok for availability and LA but coast is different story. Have a great time on your own without the kids!

los angeles, ca
posts: 2,677
reviews: 13
5. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

HI JuliaUK,

We've stayed at the Cambria Pines Lodge last spring, and had a wonderful time. The staff very friendly and the gardens were beautiful. We had a one bedroom suite which included a living room, and a little kitchen/dining area. We didn't hear anybody the whole time we were there. The breakfast buffet was nice and included in the room rate The one nice thing with the Cambria Pines Lodge when looking for hotels around Cambria, it didn't require a 2 night minimum stay as the other hotels required it, especially along Moonstone Beach. During weekends, most of the hotels there require 2 night minimum stay, didn't have that problem with the Cambria Pines Lodge. I loved our stay at the Cambria Pines Lodge and would love to go back again. As for booking in July, I would advise that you should book in advance as summer gets pretty busy all over California.

Warwick, United...
posts: 646
reviews: 28
6. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

JulieUk

We only stayed the 1 night on Moonstone beach but to be honest its such a great location that with your budget am sure you will get somewhere nice. As i said we got a deal because of the time of year and we were walk inns and i think we paid $119. (during our trip we paid between $119 and $400 for rooms to give you an idea)Am really fussy about hotels rooms but this really was fine in fact i liked it a lot,(except the breakfast) had a little fireplace which was lovely but don't think you will be needing it. Bathrooms are ok (but very clean) the rooms as huge and it was so nice to have the space and that wonderful view and sounds.

We also went to the early tour at Hearst Castle which started at 9.20am and moonstone beach is a perfect location if you want to do this the next day, just 10 minutes back up Hwy 1. (if you havent done Hearst Castle before it really is brilliant)

In Carmel we stayed at The Cypress Inn, Doris Day co-owns again we got a good deal (there are lots of dogs here!! but this wasn't a problem) the hotel is great really cute and in a very central location. Would have no problem staying here again and would reccomend it for its location. When we go back to Carmel am looking at maybe the Post ranch Inn or maybe Tradewinds they both look very nice but are more at the top end of our budget.

Hope the above helps sorry its gone on a bit .

Regards

Asha

Washington State
posts: 467
reviews: 21
7. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Julia, I just looked at pictures of both the Fog Catcher and Cambria Pines. We stayed at Cambria Pines back in the early 80's and am glad to see it's still going strong! Fog Catcher looks great too. I would pick one of these over the BW, in fact I'm going to change our Sept reservation. Trouble is, I can't decide either!

I'm glad to hear of Asha's post of the Hearst Castle as brilliant, but wondering if the castle is really of great interest to Brits and Europeans, since there's so many palaces, castles, and churches over there?

We're going to UK in 2006- cheerio!

Washington State
posts: 467
reviews: 21
8. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Oh no I got San Simeon Pines and Cambria Pines mixed up from the 80's- sorry. I just tried booking both Fog Catcher and Cambria Pines, finding a 2 night minimum at both on weekends. There is not a 2 night minimum on weekdays tho. Now it's back to the BW- shucks!

los angeles, ca
posts: 2,677
reviews: 13
9. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

HI JuliaUK,

Maybe try and use Expedia, as sometimes they may not require a minimum stay. Now that I think of it, we did use Expedia for a Saturday stay at the Cambria Pines Lodge, for 1 night. It maybe different for the summer, not sure.

Hi Love 2 travel - I just wanted to say..I'm not European, but we've visited both Hearst Castle and many of the castles, palaces, and churches in Europe and for me they are very different from each other and all are interesting places to go. I'm always intrigued by them whether the history or priceless work of art. Hope you enjoy the UK next year! If you get a chance, visit Windsor Castle. We only had a chance to visit London last spring, and we hope to visit more of the UK soon!

Washington State
posts: 467
reviews: 21
10. Re: Visiting from UK - Cambria, Carmel/Monterey

Thanks for the tip amcsocal! Been running across many of your posts- you are so knowledgeable! I love the Southland- my husband did a fellowship for 1 year in Santa Monica and we'd love to retire down there if only we could afford it!