First of all, I should point out that we've never stayed in Carmel before. So I have no other hotels to compare this one to.
We managed to get a last minute booking at the Bay View Inn - it was Poodle Parade weekend and most of the hotels were full. Carmel does seem to have a pretty busy schedule of events through the year, so be sure to check 'what's on' before you book. A nice guy who we got talking to on plane on the way home said that he and a friend had tried to book in for the weekend too, but without success. So it appears we booked one of the last rooms in town.
OK, the details.
Don't get me wrong. This is a perfectly acceptable place to stay the night, but it doesn't set the world on fire for accommodation either. I agree with several other reviews who suggested the Bay View is more of a Motel than a Hotel.
First the positives.
The position of the Hotel is good. To be fair, most hotels in Carmel are conveniently positioned. It's just a short walk to take in the sights.
Parking is plentiful and free, either on the higher level at the back of the Hotel, or down on Street level. This is especially helpful in Carmel, where parking is apparently at a premium.
We had an ipad with us and the used the free WiFi with no probs - there was a transmitter in the room.
There was a Fridge and a coffee maker installed inside a cabinet in the room (seems a bit odd and a little dangerous). However, if you're a tea drinker you wouldn't be able to use it to heat water because the water would be tainted with the taste of coffee. But if you fancy a cup of coffee, it's there for you.
We found the reception staff we came across very efficient and helpful. In particular a very nice guy called Francisco who helped us out with one or two things.
There's a computer (Apple Mac, well done guys) in the reception area. This means you can confirm flights and print out your boarding passes if you need to. Or just use it to research the area of course.
Now the negatives.
We stayed in one of the top floor rooms with a view (just) of the sea and a balcony with a small table and a couple of chairs. The room was clean but looked as though it had seen better days. The carpeting was odd and not unlike velcro. We hoped it was the type of carpet and not something unpleasant that had been spilled on the carpet that was sticking to our feet!!
We noticed other people had their doors open onto the car park and realised why. There was a very strange rather musty smell in the room. So we did the same thing, opening the back door and the sliding door to the balcony to let some fresh air into the room.
There was no air con. Luckily it wasn't too hot, so this didn't matter to us. But worth considering if you need to book a room in Carmel during a very hot period of weather.
The bathroom was very good, it was clean and looked fairly new. But one huge drawback was the lack of blinds at the window. Bear in mind the bathroom faced onto the car park and there was also a walkway outside the window. This meant we spent our time ducking down every time anyone walked past. Keep the light off, or you'll provide a free show for everyone. It would cost very little to put curtains or blinds at the windows, so I don't know why they haven't done that.
We found that we were being woken at around six in the morning by loud noises. We couldn't work out whether it was the bins being collected or the fact that the Hotel laundry was under our room. It was a particular pain on the morning of the day we were due to fly back. We could have done with an extra hour or two of sleep before facing our long flight back to the UK.
Whilst we were there we had to use the Hotel phone. If it had been earlier we would have made the call from a payphone. But a short International call cost us $28. So only use the phone in your room if money is no object.
Finally. After the super duper breakfasts on offer at the Elm House Inn in Napa, breakfasts here were very basic. Arrive early or you'll find little left on the counter.
The coffee dispenser can run out and isn't always replaced. But they will fill your cup in the kitchen next to the breakfast room if you ask.
To sum up. This Hotel is OK. Not brilliant, but not as horrendously bad as some reviewers have painted it.
We wouldn't stay there again given the choice, but if you have no other choice, then it's a perfectly acceptable place to stay.
We had a top floor room where parking is directly outside the door.
See more room tips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.