My friend and I were flying in to California from the east coast and decided to visit San Simeon in route to southern California. We stayed at the Cavalier on April 2nd and 3rd. We drove up from the airport at San Luis Obispo and decided to stop for lunch in Morro Bay. We asked in town and were told that Giovanni's was a good place to go-I am originally from New England and love good seafood that is reasonably priced and served in a very casual setting. I asked for a hot dog stand styled seafood place and Giovanni's fit the bill. We waited in line for more than an hour to place our order and then another 20 minutes or so to get our food, but it was worth the wait. The oysters, fish and squid were superb! We then continued north.
The landscape changed considerably the further north we got. Seeing the ocean along the roadway was wonderful.
I had called the hotel directly to make my reservation. I spoke with Christine. Originally we were only going to spend one night in San Simeon and then stay one night in Solvang. Her comment was "You will be sorry. If you can do it, 2 nights will be perfect." I thought about her comment and decided to take her advice. I cancelled the Solvang reservation and told her that we would like to stay for 2 nights at the Cavalier. She called me back a few minutes later asking
me if I was fond of Champagne. I told her that I really was not. She then offered red wine and I was delighted. She promised to have a
bottle sent to me room (it was my birthday). We got an ocean front room and soon after we arrived there was a knock on the door and a full bottle of wine (superb!) with wine glasses were delivered. The entire experience was wonderful. We stay on the ground floor and were
never disturbed by other guests either from above or those surrounding us. The bed was very comfortable. The bathroom was okay.
I am never fond of doors that open in and interfere with accessing the toilet (sometimes difficult to flush), but the marble tiles throughout were lovely. The shower had good water pressure. The hand soap at the sink was that wonderful glycerine that I adore! The fireplace was a nice touch but getting it started was difficult. We really needed more than one of the chemical packs that the hotel provided to ignite it. The "logs" provided are slices of chemical logs like the ones you would buy whole, only without the paper wrapping around them.
We never actually had the log slices ignite for any length of time.
We had breakfast at the hotel's restaurant. Our food was delicious. The service was very pleasant and we thorooughly enjoyed the coffee. My friend, who is a coffee afficiando, asked for a cup to go. I fell asleep before the bonfires started (I was on eastern time) but my friend watched them from our room. The setup was very clever with seating provided around each of the three.
We were not far from the heated pool and hot tub. We thoroughly anjoyed the hot tub. We went to Hearst Castle and took Tour 1. We returned to the hotel to relax and then went back to the Visitor's Center to see the National Geographic movie on Hearst and the building of the castle (the movie is included with the cost of the tour). The hotel is only 3 miles or so from the castle so it is a very short drive. Then we drove north 6 or 7 miles to see the elephant seals along the beach. It was fascinating to watch them and see the other "watchers" respectful of seals.
We went to Cambria, a delightful little town a few minutes south of San Simeon to find a drugstore. It was about 8:15 in the morning and the pharmacy we found was not going to open until 9. We went next door to a lovely produce/fancy food store and bought a newspaper. We asked the cashier if the pharmacy typically opened on time. It was serendipity that the many behind us runs the drugstore a block away. He asked us what we needed and said that he would open his store for us. He did and we were grateful. I can't imagine that happening at home.
One more lovely touch at the hotel: there were paper towels outside of the rooms so that one could clean the car windows of the sea/salt residue. How thoughtful! We had a lovely 2 days in the area.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Full-service hotel, the only oceanfront resort property in San Simeon, situated 3 miles south of Hearst Castle. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Best Western Plus Cavalier Oceanfront Hotel San Simeon
- Best Western San Simeon
- San Simeon Best Western