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“Amazing breakfast”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Ventana Inn & Spa

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Ventana Inn & Spa
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Big Sur
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing breakfast”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 7, 2013

Stopped at Ventana Inn & Spa for breakfast after staying down the road at some far inferior accommodation. We wanted food that wasn't on the menu and they were happy to oblige, when it was served to our table 10 minutes later it was delicious. The view was beautiful even thought it was a very fogged morning. We had a nose around the facilities after our meal and would love to stay there but unfortunately way out of our price range!....... One day maybe, it is added to my wish list!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank yecak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,168 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (263)
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Leeds
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 5, 2013

We have just stayed at the Ventana inn for the first few days of our US vacation . Whilst pricey this place is truly amazing and worth every dollar. The rooms are rustic but luxurious, the wine and cheese every day a nice addition with the surprise of seeing deer and wild turkey roaming around the property. Service is ok but not great, we ate in the restaurant one evening and ate breakfast each morning.Food was good but the service was a little haphazard but the views make up for it. Above all else the place is peaceful, quiet and really helps you relax the moment you get there. We envy the folks who can get here regularly...if you have the chance give it a go I am sure you won't be disappointed.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Michael F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

This was our fourth stay at this marvelous resort and as soon as we left for home we wanted to turn around and go back for a few more days. The staff, from the ground crew to through the wait staff, to the desk clerks, were outstanding, helpful, and very cordial without being obsequious. The accommodations are great - our room was spacious (even though we were in the least expensive, though still pricey room). Breakfast was served in the main restaurant and was included in the price of the room (although if you wanted extras, such as eggs Benedict, ham or steak and eggs, etc. that was extra) and was ample and the variety was quite decent. The grounds are beautiful and there are a lot of walking trails that are clearly marked and exceptionally well maintained. There are two sets of swimming pools and Turkish baths, one of which is clothing optional the other clothing required. At four o'clock in the afternoon wine and cheeses and olives and dips and crackers are served and free neck and shoulder massages are also available. The property is located away from the shore but many rooms, including ours, had a gorgeous view of the Pacific Ocean. We wanted to walk on the beach and that was a short drive away (Julia Pfeiffer Beach) that was beautiful.

Room Tip: We asked for an Ocean view room but there are also views of the woods that some people may prefer.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Les G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carmel Valley, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

Have stayed at this hotel 2 or 3 times a year for most of 20 yrs of more. Enjoyed it every time, but when the extensive renovation inserted huge modern bathrooms in the middle of the rooms, they lost their rustic character and part of their charm.
Fortunately, 4 of the rooms (perhaps a very few more) have been left alone, as they probably were added later; they are the most expensive but well worth it.
Other than that, great place for relaxing or as a base for exploring the Central Coast. And the restaurant is great too, the more so as they have a reciprocal arrangement with the Post Ranch Restaurant next door, also excellent and be transported back and forth from your room with their golf carts and vans. So you can stay a weekend and dine at both places without having to take your car out of the parking area.

Room Tip: If you like rustic, ask for one of the rooms without the added ultra modern central bathroom. They...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cal00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hermosa Beach
Level Contributor
27 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2013

Considering the price and reviews, we had high expectations for Ventana Inn, and on some levels it delivered. The room was excellent. The location and woods around the hotel were stunning as was the view from the restaurant looking down on the marine layer covering the Pacific.

Check-in: We got to the resort early (~10:45) hoping to have a room available, but knowing it may not be. The check in person told us it would be 40 minutes to an hour but could be two hours. She said house keeping would make it top priority. So we hung around the resort instead of going to do something else and coming back. Our luggage was put in the room and we didn't have access to it. It actually took 3-1/2 hours! We could use the facilities but had no way to change clothes, get our swim suits, hiking shoes, etc. Every time I asked the answer was "40 minutes". Why couldn't they have just told me the real amount of time so we could plan for that?

Room: Very nicely appointed room in a rustic style with vaulted ceiling. Internet via the cable was fast and included in the room cost. Bizarrely, the DirectTV service was not in HD, but we didn't watch much TV anyway. Big tub and nice shower. Great bed. Big balcony with a hammock and some chairs. Although they stressed the room was non-smoking there was an ashtray on the balcony. No detectable smoke odor though. The robes were the right size to fit both my petite wife and not so petite me.

Spa: We didn't use the spa. My wife wanted to book something so called the spa desk. The clerk told her she would check and call back. No call back after an hour. My wife called again and was told there was no availability, and they forgot to call to tell her...

Pools: Great pools. The water wasn't too cold or too warm. The "Japanese" hot baths were chlorinated pools divided by wood screens. Not Japanese at all, but relaxing enough. Our room was adjacent to the top pool so we used it quite a bit.

Daily nature walk: Very informative one-hour walk through the woods around the resort. The guide is a botanist, so info was heavily flora oriented (good thing). We did see black tail deer and a variety of birds. The walk to the restaurant from our room was also via a nice 1/3 mile path through the woods.

Daily wine and cheese reception: Nice wine, friendly, generous servers. When I first saw the cheese cubes I expected the worst, but actually it was very good cheese cut in to cubes. Be sure to sign up for the free back and shoulder rub.

Breakfast: Served at the Ventana restaurant, the included breakfast is a "continental" buffet of breads, oatmeal, yogurt, boiled eggs and fruit. The salmon infused cream cheese was nice on a bagel. Croissants were also very good. Mini quiche had no flavor, and the boiled eggs were difficult to peel. The berry selection was very nice and fresh.

Dinner at the Ventana restaurant: We did the $70 4-course tasting menu (may have been the only option) which did not include wine. The selections were fancy but bland. My duck had almost no flavor, and my wife's salmon was equally taste-free. With some wine by the glass, the bill was well over $200 and left us full but unsatisfied.

Not the hotel's fault: It was a plague of flies when we were there last week. The weather was warm and sunny but any time we sat outside we were constantly buzzed on all sides by nasty little flies. We hardly used the balcony for that reason and ate all meals indoors. Really annoying.

Overall, we felt we over paid for a nice facility with mediocre service. Cost is in the realm of top resorts and this one just isn't fully up to par.

Room Tip: Upper floor
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Jaysquared
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Metro DC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 30, 2013

We started staying at the Ventana Inn years ago and found it to be one the best places if your're looking for a high level of comfort mixed with a spectacular landscape that leads down to the Pacific ocean. While not oceanfront, you get a view of the ocean from a number of rooms, the upper pool and baths, and the terrace of the restaurant. The continental breakfast in the restaurant was very good and included in the price, as was the afternoon wine and cheese reception.

Room Tip: Would recommend the rooms that do NOT face the woods.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Zsuzi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solana Beach, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 29, 2013

My son gave my partner and I a gift for Christmas of a 2 night stay at this exceptional property. Upon arrival, we realized we had lost our confirmation. Our hotel was able to locate our confirmation turned in down the road and was so helpful to us. We were upgraded at no additional charge to a room with privacy, a jacuzzi on the balcony, sitting area, 4 poster bed, a bathroom to die for and a fireplace. The place was immaculate, restaurants so good, we decided to eat there again, and the service par excellence. It was a splurge for my son, but I would pay the rates they charge without question. We had an incredible stay, gorgeous view, lovely walking trails. Such a quiet and romantic location. What a beautiful experience. I can't wait to go back. Loved the breakfast and access all day to fruit and cold refreshing drinks. If you want a trip to remember, indulgence extraordinary, and marvelous staff, do stay here. My son told me it was a place that I never would forget. He was right. I also liked the down to earth atmosphere at one with nature. The wild flowers and views took my breath away. Do yourself a favor and book this place. You won't be sorry.

Room Tip: I do believe every room is a one of a kind experience. You can't go wrong with any room here.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bobbi B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ventana Inn & Spa

Property: Ventana Inn & Spa
Address: 48123 Highway One, Big Sur, CA 93920
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Big Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Big Sur
#3 Family Hotel in Big Sur
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Big Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Ventana Inn & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 62
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ventana Inn & Spa is a luxurious resort nestled in the mountains above California’s central coast. Situated on 243 acres of wooded hillside, 1,200 feet above the Pacific Ocean on the Big Sur coast, Ventana Inn & Spa is quiet, secluded and beautiful. The Inn provides a peaceful and soothing atmosphere enhanced by its proximity to the area’s natural wonders. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ventana Inn And Spa
Ventana Hotel Big Sur
Ventana Resort Big Sur
Ventana Inn Big Sur

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