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“Relaxing Haven - wish we could have stayed longer”
Review of Ripplewood Resort

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Ripplewood Resort
Ranked #6 of 8 Hotels in Big Sur
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 26, 2009

After a long and windy journey down from San Francisco, we stopped at the Ripplewood for one night before continuing the rest of our journey down the coast.
Easily spottable from the highway, Ripplewood is about 25 miles south of Carmel. Checking in is easy - just pop into the shop on the road and they will provide a small map showing how to get to your cabin.
We stayed in cabin 4, a self-contained cabin next to the river. Cosy but kind of beautiful with a fire, kitchen and shower/toilet.
After a couple of days and nights busy in San Fran and a long drive, Ripplewood was the perfect remedy. Wish I could have spent more time enjoying the peace and solitude during the evening but the combination of country air and lack of noise made me fall asleep for one of the most refreshing night's sleep of my life.
Set amongst the trees, the site is small but hugely charming. I was reluctant to leave as it would be a great place to escape for a week or two. Be aware, if you need technology you should avoid the Ripplewood as there is no TV and no mobile/cell network signal.
We had breakfast at the cafe on site and it was lovely - all freshly prepared and served with a smile. Would recommend the pancakes.
I hope one day to go back

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ed_uk_08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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290 - 296 of 341 reviews

Reviewed April 22, 2009

We loved our two night stay and had cabin 3 which I'd get again. Be aware that some of the other cabins are right across the river from a campground and it was noisy about 8:30 a.m. when we took a short walk to check out the property. The cabin was very clean and well maintained - definitely old with simple furnishings and fixtures but it was very quiet and secluded. The only problem was the heater didn't work well - yes, the pilot light was on but a minimal amount of heat came out and even though we had it on all night at 70, it was very, very chilly in the morning. When we said something to the clerk (Tracy?) in the store (where you get your key), she gave us a space heater but when we went to plug it in, we noticed one of the prongs had been cut off! As it was late, we decided to deal with it and left earlier than planned the next day. One suggestion to the owner: a shelf or small table in the bathroom would be great. I put my cosmestic bag on the floor until I found the two small stools in the kitchen and used them. There is plenty of room in the bathroom for something. Also - hooks! It's so convenient for travelers. The back deck overlooking the river was perfect for a glass of wine and was also very private.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jonesgo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 16, 2009

We only had one night to spend in Big Sur so we did not need to go all out, just needed a bed. After looking here and on their website we decided to choose cabin 17 at Ripplewood. We arrived early after having my wallet decimated at Nepenthe. The nice young woman at the desk said we were a bit early but gave is the key anyway. We were pleasantly surprised when we entered the cabin on how clean and nice it was. Our only initial issue was the heater was not working. After a quick walk to the desk they sent someone out within minutes. It was explained that the pilot light had gone out from the wind, no biggie in my book. You can tell that this cabin is old but well maintained.

I think someone needs to mention the adjoining restaurant. We had breakfast there the next morning. I had the scrambled eggs sausage, and beans for about $8. Let me tell you that this was wonderful and very filling. So filling in fact it held me through to dinner!

Pluses: I was able to pickup Wi-Fi from our cabin, good price for the area, nice restaurant for breakfast.

Minuses: Proximity to the road made it noisy at times.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Cranky64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2009

Most everything I said in my last ('07) review of this place is still true (see : Rustic, Cozy, Fabulous and, Again, Rustic! Book Ahead-- for previous review. ) There is one big change, however, that has dropped it down a notch from the rustic paradise it was. We were in cabin 8, which is toward the north end, on the river. Across the small river there are now a few camp sites. They are not part of Ripplewood, i don't think.

The camp sites were not horrible to look at. The campers and children were relatively quiet and gone most of the day. They built big fires which we enjoyed looking at. However, we felt that once evening fell, we had to have the curtains closed or we would become lit like a movie for them to watch.

Mostly, though, it is just a disappointment. In the past, we felt like we were on the river at the edge of the world, surrounded by redwoods. With the campers across the way, you can no longer pretend that you are the only people in the magical forest.

It's still a wonderful place to get away, but no longer such a magical place for us.

If you get a cabin at the south end, there will not be any campers directly across the way. The last camp site (for now) is only as far south as cabin 8.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled with friends
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1  Thank kawh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ripplewood_Manager, Manager at Ripplewood Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 14, 2009

We are sorry that your stay was not 100% satisfactory.

The campground that you refer to in your post is nothing new. They have been our neighbors for a great many years. I believe Riverside Campground was built in the 50's. The proximity of the campground has never been raised as a problem prior to your post.

My suggestion would be for your next stay at Ripplewood, request cabin #2 through #7, or one of the upper hillside cabins as those are not near the campground.

Please contact me directly when you book your next reservation at Ripplewood.

Best regards,

Sean Shadwell
(831) 667-2242

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 15, 2009

My husband and I were very pleasantly surprised during our recent stay at Ripplewood....the cabins are so cute and clean, and the cost (for the area) is quite reasonable considering the quality. A few tips:
-stay in a riverside cabin if available
-get a cabin with a kitchen as it's a bit of a drive in the dark to eat out in the evening!
-the best mountainside cabin in our opinion was cabin 14
-consider a hot tub at esalen as it is only 15 miles down the road, but bring an alarm clock if you aren't going to stay up until 12:45 before you drive down as tubs open at 1 am, and call the day of before you go to reserve tubs as there is no cell signal in most of big sur!
-have breakfast at the diner located on the grounds of ripplewood, the huevos rancheros are amazing!
-drive down the road to pardington cove for a nice hike, and then have appetizers/drinks/a gift shop visit at nepenthe
-drive up the cost to Andrew Molera and hike into the beach to enjoy a late sunset (if it's warm out, bring bathing suit or wet suit so you can cross the river into the beach side as it's waist deep or higher during high tide!)
-there are limited hours at the big sur library located just north of the ripplewood store (200 meters or so) but if it's open, stop by as it's worth a visit and the selection is really good to pick up a book or two to enjoy by the fire!

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank brpferdehirt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2008

We stayed in Cabin 3 for a couple of nights at the end of September 2008. These cabins are rustic and some might say primitive, but everything you need is there – coffee maker, full kitchen with dishes and utensils, skylight shower, and a deck right above the river.

We had breakfast twice and lunch once in the delightful restaurant at Ripplewood and found it to be outstanding and quite reasonable. We had dinner at the Roadhouse (next door) one evening, and the Big Sur River Inn the other evening. Both were quite enjoyable, and the ambience at the River Inn was great.

Ripplewood Resort is nestled in a grove of Redwoods, centrally located in the beautiful Big Sur area. The location was a great starting point for exploring the Big Sur area. We thoroughly enjoyed Julia Pfeiffer beach accessible via a long narrow road and a $5 entry fee. Andrew Molera Park further north was a $10 entry fee and not worth the long boring walk. Point Lobos State Reserve was also enjoyable, just a bit south of Carmel.

Dave and Linda

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Island-Voyager
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 9, 2008

My boyfriend booked a cabin by the river to celebrate my October birthday and we were delighted to arrive at such a quiet, peaceful & incredibly beautiful place, with majestic redwoods outside the front door and a babbling stream in the back. Large golden leaves floated down from high above to the blanket of leaves on the ground. Only saw 2 other people walking along the creek briefly the whole time we were there.

The cabin is rustic, but had a good working gas heater. The view out the old pane windows was completely mesmerizing. The bed was clean but not very comfortable. The kitchen is simple and had everything we needed, including coffee which we had forgot to bring. The shower was small but extra special with nice hot water and a view above through the skylight roof to the tall redwoods, and the stars at night.

In the late afternoon we walked to the nearby River Inn Restaurant which was also very nice.

I read some of the other comments, and noticed someone mentioned the smelly carpet in Cabin 6. We were in Cabin 6 and it did not have carpet, it had linoleum floors and there was no noticeable smell they were talking about.

I will tell my friends about this special place & would recommend it to anyone looking for a quiet peaceful get-away. I look forward to returning- hopefully soon.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank CambriaTori
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ripplewood Resort

Address: 47047 Highway 1, Big Sur, CA 93920-9556
Location: United States > California > Big Sur
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Big Sur
#6 Romantic Hotel in Big Sur
Price Range: $95 - $250 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ripplewood Resort features a grocery store, gas station, Cafe open for breakfast and lunch, and 17 Cabins. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ripplewood Hotel Big Sur
Ripplewood Big Sur

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