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“Overpriced, very poorly managed and maintained, outdated decor, good food.” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Madonna Inn

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Madonna Inn
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   100 Madonna Road, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 31 Hotels in San Luis Obispo
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Overpriced, very poorly managed and maintained, outdated decor, good food.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

Overpriced, very poorly managed and maintained, outdated decor, good food. That sums up our recent two day, two room experience at this 1960's era property. I drove my wife and her two parents, ages 86 and 91, to a 100+ person party hosted by one of her brothers celebrating his 60th birthday on the property. Two months in advance, I booked the last two rooms available (so they said), naturally their most expensive ($346 each/night), but was not advised they required climbing 20+ and 30+ stairs, respectively, to get to them. (The Inn has no elevators but doesn't tell people when they book the hard-to-reach rooms.) Upon our arrival and finding out where the rooms were located, I somewhat strenuously protested taking them due to the seniors' inability to climb the stairs. Lo and behold, we were magically offered two other rooms, requiring no stairs to climb. One room, #187, was marginally OK, but the other, #188, had one of the two sinks so stopped up it wouldn't drain and there was so much body hair in the shower it wouldn't drain, either! Gross! And so much for good housekeeping.

Not to worry, tho', I received a call about an hour later asking me to return to the office where they informed me that the new (?) rooms were ours only for the first night and then we would have to move back to the original stair climbers! I kept this good news from the seniors until the next morning when I returned to the office, protesting their "move every day" policy.

I spoke to the manager, I guess that's who he was, as he had no business cards with a name on them, but said he was "Joe Forgett" (what an apt name, as he must have forgotten what guest relations were all about). "Joe" said he could do nothing for us as they were sold out. I advised him that he was subjecting senior guests to a dangerous climb and, again, magically, a new room was located for them! Wow! But no room for my wife and I. As I left the office, Joe smirked and said "have a nice day", a fitting conclusion to our meeting, in his mind, no doubt.

During our visit, we enjoyed the bar, restaurant and coffee shop, as well as the birthday party. A marginal wine list, but adequate.

The "spa" lacks a sauna, steam room, adequate locker room (a total of 4 lockers) or space for more than one person at a time to change. The pool is excellent.

Would I return? Only to stop for dinner or to celebrate the hiring of a competent new manager.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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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935 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 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 of 5 stars
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English first
Wokingham, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

This hotel was recommended to us by a friend as a great place to stay on route from LA to San Francisco on our road trip. We were so pleased we booked a room here and I would say don't just make it a place to stop if you're passing - make a point of visiting! Each room is individually themed and we stayed in 'Rock Bottom' which was essentially a luxurious cave! There is a range of themes and prices to choose from - the web-site has more info. Okay so it's not suitable for those on a tight budget but if you can afford one night of luxury, then this is the place to stay. The sumptuous décor and eccentric design is fantastic and I also highly recommend the on-site Gold Rush Steak House. Superb wine list and delicious food with outstanding service.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this review, November 30, 2012
We greatly appreciate you taking the time to share your experience with others. Our rock rooms really are one of a kind! Thank you for your patronage in both our inn and steakhouse while traveling the Pacific coast!
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Bristol
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

We stayed for one night on our way down the PCH. We stayed in one of the rock rooms, the Daisy Mae room, which was awesome. The waterfall shower was so refreshing...the best shower I've ever taken. The interior decoration is so over the top...it really felt like we were staying in a cave. If I could recreate this for my own house I would. Food in the restaurant was ok, and I'd say visit it just to see the decor...so overly chintzy it actually works. Check out isn't until 12 so had time to spare to visit the rooftop pool the next day. A bit pricey but definitely worth the extra money...I won't forget this place in a hurry!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Oslo, Norway
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2012 via mobile

Great food,the best steak i ever tasted...
Top service, very nice waitresses and a very special and kozy atmosphere...

Everytime i am in California i visit this place...and i'll be back there the march 2013 for one more great steak... :)

  • Stayed May 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this review, November 30, 2012
We are very pleased that our Steakhouse ensures your return! Happy holidays to you and we look forward to seeing you again in March!
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Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2012

We stayed here for one night on the way to LA from SF as family of 4 with 2 teenage girls. We had pre booked 2 rooms (The Love Nest & Just Heaven) some time ago after an extensive review of their website, well before our trip. We read a number of mixed reviews on tripadvisor and we wanted to check it out, as looked very interesting. We arrived early evening after a long days drive and were warmly greeted at reception then directed to our rooms. Although we had high expectations, the rooms did not disappoint. Yes they were "Quirky" but that's what we all loved about them. The toilets were amazing - I've never had my rear end washed and blow dried before! We had a wonderful dinner in the fabulously adorned " pink " Gold Rush Steak House restaurant. Our morning breakfast in the Copper Cafe was also excellent, with well presented meals and very good service. We also visited the pool area, which was beautifully landscaped and very inviting. Our only disappointment, was that we had only booked one night, as we would have loved to experience the place more thoroughly. It's definitely a place you should experience, and if we ever head back that way again, we will be sure to book at least 2 nights.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 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
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San Francisco, California
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

We stayed in the William Tell room with a rock waterfall shower. It was great, very tacky, but in a good way. The shower was very fun and something that is very unique. I am surprised that there are bad reviews of this place based on cheesiness or tackiness- it's the Madonna Inn- that's the point, you should know what you are getting yourself into! Definitely something to do at least once.

The pool is heated, so although we were there in October, we still went swimming at night (the pool is open until 11pm), which was really fun. They also have two jacuzzis which are nice and open late as well.

The steakhouse was delicious. Somewhat pricey, but the ambiance is fun, and the wine bottles are reasonably priced- which somewhat makes up for the pricey food. The Copper Cafe for breakfast was just OK.

If you are noise sensitive I would recommend calling and asking for a quiet room, as this hotel is off of the freeway, and we could hear the cars from our room (as well as the ice machine, which was right outside the room). We are not noise sensitive so it did not bother us, but it's something to think about if you are.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012 via mobile

Overpriced, tacky rooms like bad Branson.
People in front of us at check in trying to change their room. Other guests at pool complaining facility is too tacky. Lots of rules and extra fees. We stayed because it was recommended by 1000 places to stay but they missed the boat on this one!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
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Additional Information about Madonna Inn

Address: 100 Madonna Road, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405
Location: United States > California > San Luis Obispo County > San Luis Obispo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in San Luis Obispo
#7 Family Hotel in San Luis Obispo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Madonna Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 110
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Madonna Hotel San Luis Obispo
Madonna Inn San Luis Obispo
Madonna San Luis Obispo

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