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“The views....” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hyatt Carmel Highlands

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Hyatt Carmel Highlands
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   120 Highlands Drive, Carmel, CA 93923   |  
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Bed & Breakfast for Two
Ranked #18 of 23 Hotels in Carmel
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“The views....”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2012

Great views, very romantic. We were upgraded to a townhouse suite, which is split level. Lots of space. Maybe a little tired. Loved the fire place and the smell of smoke on the balcony. Will always remember that sunset. Only downside was that it felt quite touristy, but afterall it is a Hyatt. Breakfast was just ok.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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707 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (195)
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San Diego
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

My wife had wanted to come to the Highlands Inn based on a good experience nearly 30 years ago. Unfortunately, our room, apparently, had not been updated or maintained well in those 30 years. While it had a fantastic view, the room was run down, and things (like the floor to ceiling shade) broke. When we contacted management, they said they would knock off $100 per night off the room. Guess what? They didn't.
It is a beautiful location, and the people working there were great. But we got the impression that the goal was to sell timeshares. Spending 500+ a night didn't qualify with the management for service.

Room Tip: Check it out, first, if possible.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CarmelHighlands, Manager at Hyatt Carmel Highlands, responded to this review, October 22, 2012
We are so sorry that you did not enjoy your experience with us, and we encourage you to call and speak with our general manager. We pride ourselves on wonderful customer service, and a truly memorable, beautiful visit on this stunning property. We hope you will consider staying with us again and we hope to speak with you soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, New York
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2012

My wife and I recently had the pleasure of spending three nights at the Hyatt Carmel Highlands and found it to be a very picturesque, peaceful and romantic spot.

The physical aspects of the hotel are fantastic...impeccably manicured grounds and a main lobby that is beautifully designed with great views of the ocean below. We stayed in a two story "town home" style room with a balcony, a wood burning fireplace and a gigantic bathroom sporting a very large whirlpool tub. The shower might have been a bit small, but it was all-in-all very clean and very comfortable. The fireplace added a nice romantic touch, with wood supplies near the rooms to keep the fire roaring on those cold, fog swept evenings. The staff would prepare the fireplace again each morning...which is very, very nice.

The welcoming and front desk staff were very helpful and friendly. There were bikes on site for the guests to use and plenty of information on local hikes, things to do and places to go. Heated swimming pool, gym and hot tubs offered other diversions for the guests..though I must say the gym wasn't anything special, but then again who wants to spend time inside a gym when you're in as nice a place as Carmel by the Sea.

There are two restaurants on site.

For evenings the Highlands offers an upscale restaurant and bar that by some accounts has received some measure of acclaim; However, despite the lovely views through the giant plate glass windows, my advice is to run, not walk, to other off-site establishments for your dining and drinking pleasure. While $15 isn't unheard of for a glass of wine....it becomes somewhat unconscionable when that glass of wine is coming from a bottle that costs just $18 at a local wine shop..We did have a bite to eat in the bar on our first night and the food was truly good...it's just a shame this establishment feels the need to fleece its customers on the wine...I would leave this restaurant to those on corporate expense accounts and/or politicians dining on the taxpayers' dime....there are just too many local restaurants offering better food and better wine at far better prices...

The other restaurant offers breakfast with a lovely outdoor dining area complete with stunning views out over the coast. It's just unfortunate the service didn't match the food or the view. On Sunday we waited at least 20 minutes before a waiter had the time to visit our table...clearly they were understaffed...which probably helped contribute to our waiters surly attitude. Oh well, the food was filling and the view on that sunny, Sunday morning in Carmel was well worth the attitude problems.

We would certainly enjoy a return visit to the Highlands for another romantic weekend..the spot is truly a nice one...just next time we'll be sure to bring our own coffee, breakfast food and wine so as to avoid the Highland's own rather disappointing eateries.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CarmelHighlands, Manager at Hyatt Carmel Highlands, responded to this review, October 22, 2012
We are sorry you did not enjoy your dining experiences with us, but happy you enjoyed the wonderful property. We thank you for your feedback as it helps us to know what you enjoyed and where we can improve. We hope you visit us again and we will look into your comments.
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Charlotte, North Carolina
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2012

My wife and I just spent three wonderful days at this hotel--I'm not sure where the bad reviews on here come from, but we were completely satisfied with every aspect. We had a beautiful two-story suite (#507), with an incredible view of the coastline and surrounding forest. The service was excellent--everybody we came in contact with could not have been friendlier or more eager to please. We made our reservations through the Hyatt website, not as a timeshare. As to the annoying sales calls several of the reviews reference, we did receive two calls during our stay--however, in both cases we politely and firmly told the caller we weren't interested and they didn't make any effort to pressure us. I can't say enough about how much we enjoyed our stay here.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CarmelHighlands, Manager at Hyatt Carmel Highlands, responded to this review, October 22, 2012
We are happy you had a wonderful visit with us! We strive to offer excellent customer service to compliment to beauty of the property and views, and we are so glad you enjoyed. We sincerely hope you visit us again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fremont, California
Top Contributor
427 reviews 427 reviews
56 hotel reviews
Reviews in 118 cities Reviews in 118 cities
158 helpful votes 158 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2012

This is a very expensive hotel, but the service here was good overall. You are paying for the great ocean views. & the peace of the area. Parking is complimentary valet. The hotel staff help bring wood in. Our tv did not work but they came to repair that. We got complimentary alcohol but since we are tee totalers, they replaced that with sparkling cider & chocolate covered strawberries. At their main restaurant, we were given a meat soup instead of the vegetarian one that we ordered & that was replaced. The lounge is also a good place to watch the sunset. At night if you are bored, the pay per view is quite expensive, so get DVDs from the Safeway down the street.

Room Tip: Choose from garden view or ocean view. If you have trouble walking, pick one near the lobby.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CarmelHighlands, Manager at Hyatt Carmel Highlands, responded to this review, October 22, 2012
We are glad you enjoyed the beautiful views and service. We thank you for the great review and we hope to see you again soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2012

Ok, so, Holly (my wife) and I stayed here for a few days in September 2012. We had a room with a fantastic view over the bay, the room was perfect and the service was excellent. If I close my eyes, I can imagine the smell of the pine wood smoke drifting out of the rooms. We wouldn't hesitate to come back when we are next in the US, I would like to explore the Carmel area a little more.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CarmelHighlands, Manager at Hyatt Carmel Highlands, responded to this review, October 22, 2012
We are glad you enjoyed your stay! We hope you visit us again next time you come to Carmel- thank you for the wonderful review!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hillsborough, North Carolina
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

We spent 4 days at the Hyatt Carmel Highlands, beginning on Sept. 29, 2012. It's a Hyatt Vacation Club (now called 'Residence Club') destination we'd wanted to book for a couple years and eventually found a slot to our liking. I'm glad we were able to visit- great weather, incredible location, and good room & amenities.

First, the location.... The resort is a couple miles south down Hwy. 1 from 'downtown' Carmel-by-the-Sea, a really neat little town that sometimes seems to be overrun with tourists but is well worth a visit nonetheless. Nice little beach, quaint houses and shops, and many restaurants. Just north of Carmel is Pebble Beach and the famous 17 Mile Drive. A state park with spectacular scenery, Point Lobos, is south of town about a mile from the resort entrance, and
the Big Sur area begins just a few miles down the highway. The highway separates the resort from the coast and there's really no direct way down there from the property, so your best bet to walk on the beach and check out the scenery is Point Lobos, the Carmel beach, or drive a few miles south to the Big Sur beach areas. Or, if you're fortunate enough to have an ocean view room, you can sit on your porch and just gaze out over a fabulous view. All-in-all, we've
visited several of the Vacation Club properties and the location for this one was by far our favorite.

Our experience at the property itself was pretty good. I had called a couple weeks prior and requested an ocean view, which they couldn't guarantee at the time but which we did receive when we checked in. We arrived a couple hours before normal check-in and were told we could get in early as soon as room cleaning was complete. They expedited that process so we hung around nearby so we could relax after a long flight and our drive down from SFO. We checked back several times and were told they were in the middle of cleaning, and eventually were checked in a grand total of 5 minutes early. We definitely would've preferred to have been told we'd need to wait for normal check in so we could've explored for a couple hours. Not a big deal, just an irritating start. Otherwise, check-in went smoothly as did check-out. The only other minor issue we had was with our 'sales presentation'. Hyatt apparently is making a big push to completely sell-out the property, so we were invited to attend a one-hour, low-pressure 'discussion' about it in exchange for a $75 certificate. The hour stretched to nearly 2 and there was definitely a lot of 'selling' going on, particularly in light of the fact that we were very clear we had no interest in buying. Again, not a big deal, but time is a precious commodity on a vacation and in retrospect we should've given the marketing guy a 1 hour hard-stop.

The Highlands has been around since the early 1900s, although obviously it's been added to throughout the years. The main building is a beaut, with lots of wood, superb views, and a nice lobby area with fireplace. The grounds around it are extremely well-maintained and just beautiful. We were told that over 40,000 weddings have been held there over the years, which is believable in light of the fact that there were 2 in the 3 nights we visited. Probably a really expensive proposition, but it's tough to imagine a prettier setting for a ceremony.

Our room's location was super, a one-bedroom top-floor ocean view with a nice little porch. The suite itself was fine, about in the middle or maybe a bit below midpoint of the other Hyatts we've visited but still much better than a typical hotel room. The kitchen was relatively small but very functional, nice living room with a ceiling-hung flat screen TV that I still wonder how I missed walking directly into it a couple times, wood-burning fireplace, big bathroom area with large shower and a spa-tub, and a world-class view from the deck. We endured a bit of traffic noise from the highway, but it sort of blended in with the sound of the surf crashing on the rocks below. Daily maid service was a plus.

The amenities were fine, all on the rather small side but at no time crowded. There are hot tubs and fire pits scattered through the property, a heated pool, and a fitness center. We made use of all (except the firepits- little warm for that). The fitness center has a couple ellipticals (high end, good quality), a few treadmills, and a dumbell set for weight training up to 50 lbs. The fitness rooms are pretty small, so I assume this was all they could reasonably fit in. They did have a nice selection of restaurants, all of which had tremendous views of the coastline. We had breakfast our last morning on the deck of the California Market, gazing out at the coast with the smell of flowers all around us- a great end to one of our best Vacation Club trips.

This property is all about location. We found out during our 'sales pitch' that the reason why we'd had trouble finding an available time to make a reservation was that almost every owner uses their allotted week there, unlike other locations where owners (like us) tend to trade them for weeks elsewhere. That's entire believable- 2.5 hours or so out of San Francisco, where apparently most of the owners live, beautiful surroundings... I'm not sure I'd want to go anywhere else if I owned a week there.

If you're an HVC owner and have not yet visited this property, do yourself a favor and try to find a slot to do so.

Room Tip: Ask for a top floor ocean view!
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hyatt Carmel Highlands

Address: 120 Highlands Drive, Carmel, CA 93923
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Monterey Peninsula > Carmel
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Carmel
#4 Luxury Hotel in Carmel
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hyatt Carmel Highlands 4*
Number of rooms: 448
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
448 room luxury resort nestled in Monterey pines overlooking Point Lobos State Reserve. Oceanview rooms include wood burning fireplaces and private balconies and 11 suites also include in-room double spa baths, kitchenettes. Renowned Pacific's Edge Restaurant(dinner only) and California Market Restaurant (breakfast & lunch). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hyatt Carmel Highlands Hotel Carmel
Highlands Hotel Hyatt Carmel
Carmel Highland Inn
Carmel Hyatt

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