First of all, there's a lot of confusion in the reviews about this property which has a dual nature. On one side there is a Hyatt hotel, which is a collection of smallish but charmingly rustic rooms on one side of the property. On the other side of the property there are small time-share condos on offer from the Hyatt Vacation Club. So, as far as I know, a stay in a unit with a kitchen or a separate bedroom is in one of the HVC units. They do not seem to be bookable on the Hyatt website. I assume most people who have written reviews about short stays in the condos booked them through VRBO or took advantage of a cheap vacation in return for sitting through the timeshare sales pitch. The people selling those units are the ones who have bothered other reviewers and have taken over the lovely lobby, but they soon may sell out and go away (or at least I can hope).
My wife and I love the hotel and recently made our third visit to the hotel side of the property. I think a lot of reviewers are disappointed that such an expensive hotel is so rustic and different from other high-end Hyatt properties, but if you go knowing that you will be staying in one of the loveliest bits of the California coast, you will come away happy. The hotel is minutes from Carmel and Big Sur. Sitting on your terrace or in the hotel bar watching the ocean is a sublime experience. The staff are also excellent and go out of their way to accommodate guests's wishes.
Yes, there are negatives. The rooms are close to the road, but we've never let it bother us and at night there are few cars. Yes, the rooms are somewhat dated, but that's part of the place's shabby chic charm. Yes, the restaurants are pricey, but there are good options in Carmel, 10 minutes away. We did eat it in Pacific Edge for the first (and probably only) time. The food was excellent and the sunset was spectacular. We offset the meal by sitting through one of the timeshare spiels and getting a $200 restaurant credit. (We decided the timeshares aren't for us, but it's a matter of taste.)
Finally, a note to the Carmel Highland's manager: drop the resort fee! The rooms are already pricey enough and most of the services supposedly covered by the fee are included at most urban Hyatt properties. For $20 all you manage to do is annoy your guests. It's supposed to cover Internet but that's supposed to be offered gratis to Hyatt gold and platinum members. Besides the service is spotty In some of the rooms. Charging for the concierge--not so much. And the in-room safe? You've got to be kidding.
Anyway, we'll be back--I hope without a resort fee.
- 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