I just spent a couple nights at the Fernwood Motel, and I will definitely return (probably in a hot tub room next time). I tend to rely on the most recent reviews on Trip Advisor, which proved to be a good practice on this trip. Many of the complaints I read below are now out-of-date—the motel’s manager told me she reads the reviews and tries to address concerns. So, for example, the rooms now have clock radios.
I was pleased with the room. The curtains weren’t the high-end hotel blackout version, but they weren’t sheets, either. They even matched the bedspread. The room had plenty of light, with lamps on both bedside tables and a floor lamp. No dresser but the closet held a luggage rack. With my bike and cooler, plus the luggage rack and the reading chair, I still had plenty of room to move around. The shower was a tad small, but I’m almost 6-feet tall, and I managed somehow to shave my legs, and the water was hot—very key. The towels were a bit thin but in abundant supply. I wasn’t sure whether to expect toiletries, based on other reviews, so I unnecessarily brought my own. Fernwood supplied two bars of soap and shampoo and conditioner. No hair dryer, though. Most importantly, the room and the bathroom were very clean.
It’s true the rooms face the highway, but that seems to be the case for all of the places along this stretch of Big Sur. I brought my white noise machine and slept fine (of course, it was during the off-season). I had a room with the faux fireplace, and it worked well.
The bar was fun and reasonably priced. I wouldn’t call the Redwood Grill a “restaurant,” though. You order at a counter, and someone brings you your food in the bar. I thought it was kind of overpriced, although that seems typical of the area. I had chicken quesadillas one night and a gyro the next—they were both adequate. I thought about checking out one of the restaurants nearby but lacked the energy. So it was nice having the bar and general store right on the premises.
All in all, I would recommend the Fernwood. You’re unlikely to spend much time in the room—that’s not why you visit the area—and it’s more than sufficient for sleeping, etc.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.