Our family of five stayed here for a couple of nights over spring break. We had a very good time, with just a couple of hiccups.
First the good:
-Great location. Our room was at ground level and looked directly out to the beach. Wonderful.
-Clean room. Ours was a bit dated, and not super luxurious or huge, but clean. The beds were fantastic. Great linens and very comfortable mattresses.
-Very professional and helpful front desk.
-Decent pool area, and a fun interior courtyard with ping-pong tables.
-Great restaurant. Not cheap, but not terriby expensive either. The food was definitely a step above most hotel restaurants. And again, you can't beat the view!
-Very nice beach. The hotel has its own strip of beach right on the cove. On the south end it's a short walk to cliffs and caves, with some great tide pools at low tide. On the north it's probably about 1/2 mile to the UCSD Scripps Research campus, which has a great lunch restaurant on the cliff above overlooking a great surfing break. Steps lead from the beach, and you can show up sandy and wet and plop down on a great outdoor patio.
-Our room was in pretty good shape, but there were some signs of age, and minor upkeep issues like mildewed grout in the tub/shower area. The tiled hallway right outside our room had a mysterious red stain the entire length of our stay, our kids kept asking if it was blood!
-The pool area always seemed dirty. There were lots of used towels everywhere, including on all of the furniture, so you never knew what was really being used, or could find a place to sit.
-The beach is right next to the area where all of the local kayak tour outfits operate, so there were always lots of people milling around as tours start, and trucks loading and unloading gear.
-There was supposedly food and beverage service available at both the pool area and beach, but we never saw anyone. A few people resorted to walking into the restaurant and bringing drinks back to the pool, but that was about it.
-There was also supposed to be beach services staff available, but it took a call to the front desk, and then a physical trip there to get someone to come down. The sister property to the south had rows upon rows of beach chairs, towels, and umbrellas, but we were lucky to get just a handfull delivered after a lot of prompting.
-There is a small nearby retail district, with shops and restaurants, but for the most part everything seemed very high priced, and the restaurants weren't very family friendly. I'd recommend sticking to the hotel restaurant unless you're willing to drive.
-There's a nice underground parking garage, but the daily charge seemed a bit high.
These concerns aside, we really did have a good time here, and would return. It would take just a little more attention to detail to move this property from the good to the great category.
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