I'll be in SLO on a regular basis throughout the year, maybe once or twice a month. I've been paying around $135 - $150 a night, which is fine, but I haven't been all that happy. The Cliffs is a nice place, but the room I got had a recurring noise that sounded like someone moving their heel on the bathtub; it's a two-toned eeking sound that happened from time to time (for example from 5:15 AM to 6:15 AM one morning and on some regular basis at night). No one could tell me what it was, and it's not worth changing rooms when you don't know the origin.
I stayed at the Embassy Suites, but it's an older hotel. The hallway carpet was fraying and noticeably dirty. I also didn't like the whole atrium thing because you can still hear the noise from people talking or glasses clinking. I also heard a humming white noise throughout the night, but at least that one wasn't annoying like the "tub rubbing" one mentioned earlier.
What's the newest hotel in the area? Is there one that's known to be quieter, more insulated than the others? Several exits north or south of the Avila Beach exit is fine. Thanks.