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“All the good comments are true!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Moonlight Beach Motel

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Moonlight Beach Motel
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233 2nd Street, Encinitas, CA 92024   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 9 Hotels in Encinitas
Deerfield, Massachusetts
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“All the good comments are true!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2013

I stayed there for eight nights last Nov and I hated to leave. Very friendly and cool people who are there when you need them and know how to give you space to relax. The place has a really good feeling.They're good at what they do! I'm going to stay there again if I can get back to San Diego again this Nov.
I thought I had left my large "white beach" towel in my room after I checked out and asked George if it had been turned in to the office. George went through many sacks of laundry trying to find it among their hundreds of (unwashed) "white" towels and couldn't find it. It was way above and beyond ...........I found it at the bottom of my suitcase when I got home. Sorry George.......I owe you one...Scott

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 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 31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, August 24, 2013
coyoteguy45,

"Sorry George.......I owe you one...Scott"
Sounds more like "TWO" to me :^)
Thanks for the kind words ...
We look forward to your return ...
November reservations open 09-01-2013
cheers ... geo & deb
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150 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    90
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    5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Tucson, Arizona
1 review
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2013

This has been our second summer staying at the Moonlight Beach Motel for a beach vacation. Our family of 4 (two little boys, ages 5 & 7) plan on staying for many more summers in the future! The registration process and check in is personable and friendly, the property is well maintained and clean, and the hotel fits our needs perfectly. I'm giving it a 4.51 stars (which i'll round up to a 5 for the rating)

On a four or five day vacation, we spend three of those days just going to the beach and the other two visiting attractions like Sea World, Legoland, or Safari Park. I can not say how amazing it is to be able to bring groceries, cook breakfast in our room and then pack lunches in the cooler to take to the beach. The great thing about Moonlight Beach is that there are no stairs down. So we can easily load up the rolly cooler with chairs and umbrellas and boogie boards and walk three blocks and right onto the sand. And on the way back, we can hose off our boards and the sandy kids in the outside shower and then go right into the rooms (also feeling secure to leave our stuff on the front porch of our room to drip dry).

The only reason had to go below a full 5 stars is that the property is on the older side and while the rooms are very clean and in good repair, the age and style of the furniture is a bit basic. (but I am also fully aware that this basic style is also keeping the motel in the price range that lets us stay 5 days instead of 2 at a chic little beachside resort). The maid service was very attentive--and while they won't wash your breakfast dishes in the sink when you leave in a hurry, they did alway have fresh towels and make the beds with my boys stuffed animals in cute little tableaus. But if there were new bedspreads and more luxe appointments, i'd probably never leave.

While the buildings don't get a 5 star, the customer service surely gets that and more. One thing that we really like about the north county beaches is that they are less of a party spot and more of a 'i could see myself living here' family type of beach. Going with the family we want to feel safe and secure--and not to be kept up at night with noisy neighbors or bar noise at 2 a.m. I know that the managers are keeping the place from stepping over the line: parking is very closely monitored (we left our parking permit off the dash on morning and he called our cell phone to make sure that that was our car as I had registered the wrong license number for the permit), and extra guests are also monitored to make sure that one room rented doesn't turn into a party for 20. And when it was discovered that I left a sentimental item in our room (it was just an old sun hat, but one I got on my honeymoon), George offered to mail it back to me (and without the crazy price of having FedX come and box it up).

We're fans and are already planning on our visit next year!

Room Tip: HIgher rooms have the best view, though families with young children are booked safely on the first...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, August 18, 2013
Dear Lorie A
Thank you for taking the time to review the MBM ! and we are so glad your second year was a success ! Your description helps people know what to expect so there are no surprises ... And yes ... I am known as the "mean" manager that asks guests to be quiet during quiet hours of 9:00 PM to 9:00 AM. We look forward to your return visit next year and years to come ...
cheers ... geo & deb
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Rio Rancho, New Mexico
1 review
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2013

I'll admit, I usually only stay at hotels that I can book online. But really, it was just a phone call and DEFINITELY worth it. If you are in Encinitas to go to the beach and visit SoCal attractions, then this is the best place to stay!
Last trip we thought we'd save a few bucks by staying farther from the coast. But it was a pain to be farther from "home" with a child, and we spent more than we saved in eating out and driving back and forth. Here, we saved a lot of money by eating in; full kitchens are equipped with a tall refrigerator, range with an oven and 4 burners, plus a microwave, pots and pans, dishes, utensils - even a corkscrew for the wine. There is a patio for guests with large gas BBQ grills but we didn't use them. Beach-goers at Moonlight Beach park on the street outside the motel, so you can't get a closer spot. Walking distance to coffee shop, frozen yogurt, pizza, 7-11, etc. It's also an easy exit/entrance to I5 if you want to get around. Suite with a private balcony. Roomy bathroom even had a cabinet. All this, and it was only $39 more than the Days' Inn we were about to reserve several blocks inland (NOT walking distance to anything)!
George was very helpful in accommodating us for a last-minute trip and after-hours arrival. He even had an extra boogie board for us to borrow!
Things to know: No coffee pot. I wouldn't request a suite next time because I couldn't hear the ocean from my bed. No elevator. Beds aren't really queen size. This is NOT a place to "party"; it's a quiet place to relax.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
A L,
Thank you for the nice review and good description of the Moonlight Beach Motel. I'm glad you enjoyed yourself and we look forward to your return visit.

One question or correction though, all the beds in the motel are queen size, although the box spring is half the hight size to fit in the small bed area, all the metal box frames and mattresses are queens. The difference of a queen and a full is only 6" and in the small bed area of the suite it may seem smaller. Yes ! next time ask for a two bed studio with two queens and you will be a bit more comfortable. I'm hoping to put two king's this fall on third floor. But with only 24 rooms our options are not that great.

cheers geo & deb
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San Bernardino, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

Thank you again George and Deb for making our weeks stay with you another great memory. As promised the place was quiet, clean, restful with a beautiful view of the beach. A word of warning - if you are looking for a place to party with a large crowd this is not the place for you and your party. George and Deb work very hard to keep the complete area clean and well maintained. It is not a luxury resort it is a small older motel. We love it and plan to come back for many years to come. George and Deb you rock and we feel very fortunate to find you guys.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, July 30, 2013
tym4mom2,

Why thank you for the kind words, and we are glad you found us also and had a memorable and nice stay ... It gets a bit crazy around here in July and having a full house keeps us on our toes ... The MBM will be here for you many yeas to come ...
Somethings were just not meant to be changed ...

cheers geo & deb
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Palm Desert, California
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2013

Moonlight Beach Motel is a great find. It's location is ideal, within walking distance of restaurants, shops, and most importantly the beach. The hotel is not a luxury resort but it is clean, well maintained and your hosts treat you like family. They make you feel welcome and certainly go out of their way to make sure your stay is perfect. My husband and I are looking forward to our next visit. Thank you Debra and George. See you in August.

Michelle D.

  • Stayed July 2013, 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 27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, July 24, 2013
Michelle D,

Thank you ... I'm glad you found us also !
Yes our location being so close to beach, but still in a residential area makes it feel more like you are home when staying here. That is our #1 mission ...

We are NOT a luxury resort or a business hotel. If guests are seasoned business travelers and require those kind amenities this is not the place for you ... We are a classic family owned Beach Motel, not a chain, and proud of it ... Built in 1976, yes there is not a day that goes by that we are not fixing or trying to make things better for our guests ... Summer puts this little jewel to the test, and yes, a spot from "red wine", "soda", a spill from a little to much fun may be on the carpet, but as so many have said ... "clean" That is our #2 mission ...

We look forward to your return visit !

cheers, geo & deb
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sedona
Top Contributor
71 reviews 71 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
109 helpful votes 109 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

It is rare today to find people that run a motel/hotel with heart and kindness. This is what you will find when staying at the Moonlight Beach Motel from your hosts Debra and George.

First, you will be speaking with them on the phone to make any/all accommodations. I am so used to using the internet for everything, I was a bit taken aback at first, but that is all part of the charm and exceptional customer service.

We arrived late on Monday night. We had reserved a room on the 3rd floor starting on Tuesday. George told us he'd move us from our 2nd floor (Monday night) room as soon as our 3rd floor room became available. At 9:30am Tuesday morning we got a text that the room was clean and ready for occupancy! WOW!

The rooms were SPOT LESS. Seriously, you could EAT off the floor in these rooms. One of my rings fell behind the dresser. I moved the dresser forward to get my ring and there wasn't even any dust in the BACK of the furniture. I can't tell you how many times I've had something like this happen at 4-5 Star properties and there was nothing but dirt/dust hiding from sight.

The location to the beach and the center of town could not be more perfect. Two short blocks to a lovely span of ocean front where there is a true sense of community. We took 2 hour beach walks every day and watched an incredible sunset one evening. You can see the beach from the 3rd floor rooms, but to get a really great sunset view, I'd recommend going down to the ocean.

George and Debra do everything to make your stay comfortable and enjoyable. For example, I personally found the beds to be too soft. If you require a very firm mattress, you may find this to be the case as well. George actually offered me his daughter's air mattress (that they use for her visits) as an option. We slept on the bed and did okay.

I respect and appreciate the care they take in making sure the property obeys the quiet hours (9am through 9pm), including putting families on the lower level floors so as not to disrupt guests (i.e. with Children running around as children will do)!

The down side of the property for me was the size of the bathroom and shower. I have very long legs, and it was virtually impossible to shave my legs in the shower. Also, the water was very hard. This would not stop me from staying here again, though! But, I would likely not spend an entire week here, as I do enjoy having a larger bathroom when I am traveling; especially with my boyfriend. It is what it is though and all the other elements of the property and superior customer service/location make up for this.

We were actually sad to leave!

By the way, there is a Whole Foods store within walking distance. It is not one of the better Whole Foods stores (smaller with not as much variety) but it's still a great place to get groceries.

And there is a wonderful coffee shop right next door, and a Starbucks about a 20 minute walk away.

George and Debra, thank you SO much for your hospitality! You are both so dear.

Room Tip: Third floor rooms do afford the best views.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, July 17, 2013
Dear LoisSedona,

Thank you for taking the time to review your stay at the Motel. It is always special when a Senior Contributor from Trip Advisor takes the time. As I've said to other reviews, you give Deb and I to much credit ! You do get what the Motel is all about from the booking process, to the on site customer service, to the quiet hours. We love what we do and we try and do the best job to keep the "old magic lamp" polished. This is our home when working and we want people to treat the Motel as their home when staying here. We look forward to your return visit ...

"B"e "G"ood in your adventures ... cheers, geo & deb ;60
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Phoenix, Arizona
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2013

We have been coming here for approx. 20 years and this is the first time that the room(s) were as dirty - kitchen sink drawers very sticky, top of refrigerator had a cake of dust and food particle, refrigerator door handle sticky. TV holder from wall is filthy/dirty. There is a huge stain on carpet in bedroom. The mattress of bed slopes toward the center.

Room Tip: The room we stayed in was 206.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MoonlightBeachMotel, Manager at Moonlight Beach Motel, responded to this review, June 29, 2013
vmnatzaganian,

As always I thank you for taking the time to review your stay at the Moonlight Beach Motel, good or bad ... I'm so sorry we did not talk about this when you were here so we could have addressed the problems immediately ...

There is no excuse for the problems you pointed out, and I can't tell you how sorry we are that this happened during your visit. Debs biggest pet peeve is making sure the kitchens are up to par, something that sometimes gets away from us when things get busy, and people want to check in early, and others want late check outs. The stain on the carpet was an oil ring left by a guest that had a therapeutic massage, and we have had it cleaned professionally three times with no good results in removing it. I was so upset when I saw it !

I will check out the condition of the mattress in 206 because we have had mostly favorable comments about the mattresses in the rooms, but obviously this one needs to be looked at.

cheers, geo & deb ...
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Additional Information about Moonlight Beach Motel

Address: 233 2nd Street, Encinitas, CA 92024
Location: United States > California > Encinitas
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Encinitas
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Encinitas
#3 Business Hotel in Encinitas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Moonlight Beach Motel, located two blocks from Moonlight Beach in scenic Encinitas, California, is one of the few true "beach motels" left in Southern California … Referred to as the "American Rivera”, Encinitas has the charm of the past but all the amenities today’s travelers are looking for. There are so many wonderful restaurants, Whole Foods Market and boutiques within walking distance of the motel that you may want to leave your car behind … Locals refer more family and friends to this motel than any other hotel or motel in Encinitas. Its quaint 1970’s charm brings guests back year after year. Some things were just not meant to be changed … All of the rooms have kitchenettes. Whether a romantic getaway, a quiet retreat, or family vacation, make reservations early, we book rooms three months in advance, so you get a room that is best suited for your needs. We try and honor all requests for certain rooms and floors when making reservations, but we cannot guarantee ANY room or number. We will do the best to accommodate your requests … This is a “NO PETS” and "NON SMOKING PROPERTY" In all of the Rooms - Front & Back balconies, walk ways and the patio barbeque area … The office and patio barbeque area closes at 9:00 pm … Quiet hours are from 9:00 pm to 9:00 am in consideration of all the guests … We have the “Good Neighbor Hotel Policy” and do not allow gatherings or parties in the Motel after 9:00 pm. If we receive noise complaints you could be asked to leave and responsible for the room charges of neighboring guest. We look forward to you experiencing The Moonlight Beach Motel, in Encinitas California. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Moonlight Beach Hotel Encinitas
Moonlight Beach Encinitas

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