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“It's Worth It”
Review of Mt. Ada

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Mt. Ada
Ranked #1 of 6 Avalon B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 15, 2011

My wife and I were looking for a memorable place to stay for our 10th anniversary. We couldn't have been happier with our choice. We've stayed in numerous B&B's around the world and can say hands down that this was the best one we've ever been too. It was a bit outside of our price range until we saw the last minute specials. Then, when you factor in all of the amenities that come with your stay, it more than makes up for the cost of the room. The staff has worked hard to maintain the historical integrity of the home by keeping it as close to what it looked like when the Wrigley's lived there as possible. They were also extremely friendly and worked hard to ensure a memorable visit. We will return to Catalina - not for the beaches, restaurants, or entertainment - but to stay at this B&B again.

Room Tip: Every room is a good room. You really can't go wrong!
  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jeff F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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119 - 125 of 162 reviews

Reviewed September 10, 2011

Great place to stay above all the compactness of Avalon. A very short drive above Avalon, but when your there you feel as thou it's your own home with all the freedom they allow. Freedom, but with someone catering to your needs if need be. A pool would make the Inn
perfect.

Room Tip: Booking last minute offers incredible deals when you add it all up.
  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank LouieGroup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2011

We just stayed for the tenth consecutive year at the Inn. We have tried other hotels and B&B's on Catalina and around the country and there is no place more refreshing, relaxing, enjoyable and all-around comfortable as the Inn on Mt. Ada, thanks to the staff and Inn Keepers. The view, the atmosphere, the service and the food are excellent. The only problem we had was we booked only two nights and not our usual three nights. Won't make that mistake next year. If you stay anywhere in Catalina, the Inn is the best. Looking for exercise, a brisk walk down the hill and a slow walk back up will get your heart pumping. Overall value, with accommodations, food, beverage, snacks and cart is spectacular.

Room Tip: All rooms and great. Won't tell you our favorite as we don't want any competition for it.
  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank SoCal-CDS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 29, 2011

My husband and I received a weekend stay as our wedding gift from his grandparents which quickly turned into the best honeymoon we could have dreamed of. The staff were incredibly sweet and accommodating, the food was wonderful and the views were nothing short of perfection. We will tell everyone how amazing the our stay at the inn was for years to come. What a wonderful experience our stay at Mt. Ada was.

  • Stayed: August 2011
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Thank walls7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 24, 2011

We celebrated my birthday by coming to The Inn At Mt. Ada. We had never been to Catalina & I was not sure where to stay, but after reading reviews on TripAdvisor I made the decision to come here & I am so glad we did. If you like to be in the center of town there are plenty of places to stay. BUT if you want to feel like you are in another world this place is it. Yes it is a little pricey, but with fantastic views, many places to sit and relax inside or outside you will leave here feeling very calm before heading back out to the crazy world. It is worth the money at least once in your life or perhaps more than once! We certainly enjoyed the use of the golf cart which if you rent in town costs anywhere from $20-$30/hr. The lunches and breakfast, evening appetizers, and plenty of other snacks are available. We enjoyed the wine, beer, champagne, sodas, ice cream, cookies, etc. where were available all day. And most of all the staff are so warm & friendly and they make you feel so at home, you will feel sad when you have to leave, we did. This was really a very special birthday, I can't wait to come back again.

Room Tip: All the rooms are amazing
  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank MNFROST
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 2, 2011

We stayed at the Mt. Ada Inn on Catalina Island in for six nights in July, 2011. Catalina has a special attraction for us. My wife has a picture of her maternal grandparents on Sugar Rock (currently the site of the Casino) from 1898. She has been coming to Catalina since she was little, and I have been coming to Catalina Island since we started dating in the 1950s. Catalina Island’s heyday was in the 1930s, 1940s and into the 1950s, when the top bands (such as Les Brown’s Band of Renown) played regularly in the top floor of the Casino (which was never a gambling establishment). The dance floor easily allows 1,500 people to dance. We did not take the tour of the Casino this time, although I remember it to be a worthwhile thing to do. The main theater of the Casino is used these days for movies, with the movie changing every week or so. Just before the movie begins one is treated to a small concert with the organ, and my wife and I greatly enjoy this tradition. This year we saw the final Harry Potter movie, and I remember seeing such American classics as King Kong in previous years. The theater is beautifully decorated. Catalina stopped being a prime vacation destination in the 1950s when cheap air travel allowed Southern Californians to fly anywhere, so that an island some 25 miles off the Southern California Coast was no longer such a big deal. The short documentary, “Hollywood’s Magical Island-Catalina”, was available in the DVD collection at the Inn, and it is well worth viewing.

Catalina Island retains its great charm. My wife and I were concerned that we might not like the Island after our 2+ weeks in the Paradise of the French Polynesian Islands, but we needn’t have worried. The Island is narrow and mountainous and some 25 miles long. It was formerly owned by PK Wrigley of chewing gum and Chicago Cubs fame. Mr. Wrigley wanted Catalina to be accessible to the common man, but he also wanted to preserve its pristine beauty. Some 88% of the Island is presently protected by a conservancy and not easily accessible. Most of the development is in the town of Avalon at one end of the Island. The year-round population of Avalon is about 5,000, which doubles or triples during tourist season. Catalina is easily accessed by commercial boats that leave from Long Beach, Newport Beach, and Dana Point. The current trip from Long Beach is about 1 hour, although the old Catalina Steamer took more than three hours to reach the island.

The Mt. Ada Inn is high on a hill overlooking the harbor. (See the attached photo of Avalon and the harbor – it is the building at the top and towards the right of the photograph.) The Mt. Ada Inn is a bed-and-breakfast that was formerly the summer home of the Wrigley’s. The Grand Suite was Mr. Wrigley’s bedroom, and the Queens Aviary (where we stayed this time) was Mrs. Wrigley’s. The Inn has five other rooms. This beautiful place has a panoramic view of the town, the mountains behind the town, the harbor, the Casino, and the ocean looking towards the Southern California coast. The Southern California mountains can be seen on a clear day, as well as the lights along the coast on a clear night. The Inn is a project of love on the part of the Innkeepers. They cannot be making a huge profit given the small number of rooms and the expense of caring for this old, historic building.

The Innkeepers and the people they employ are lovely people, and they made us (and all the other guests) feel like family. This is indeed a very special place on an enchanted island. Most transportation in the town of Avalon is by golf cart, and the Innkeepers provide for each room a golf cart, of which the guests have free and unlimited use. This is important since the Inn is otherwise quite a hike up the hill from the town. There are many things to do in Avalon, and what you do depends upon what you like. My wife and I decided, at our more mature ages, not to try the Zip Line Eco Tour, which is new since we were last here. We did motor up to the botanical garden that features, among its attractions, plants that are found only on Catalina Island, and we hiked up to the Wrigley Memorial. We also inspected the Zip Line tour from the road. The three attached photos were taken from the hills in back of Catalina that would not have been possible without the golf cart. Two are near the Zip Line, and the third shows a glimpse of the beautiful tiling at the Wrigley Memorial.

My wife and I love to swim. One should avoid the harbor in Avalon, which is often polluted from a sewage problem with the town of Avalon, and go instead to Descanso Beach, which is a bit beyond the Casino. Descanso beach has an outdoor shower and changing room, and a bar. The new cabanas are ridiculously priced and sold out, but the beach is open. We were told by beach staff that the charge was $2 per person to use the beach if anyone came around to collect, but no one ever did although we went pretty much every day. The beach is crowded, but I could generally find a shaded place. We loved swimming off Descanso Beach, where the water temperature was about 65 degrees F. The access to the water is through rather large pebbles. One of the consequences of having entered our mature years is that the soles of our feet are rather tender, and rubber water shoes are essential for easy access into the water. I don’t know if they can be purchased in Avalon, so you should be sure to bring them with you. I don’t know the exact brand we bought, but they are the kind that is depicted under “Watershoes” in SwimOutlet.com.

We love the miniature golf course in the middle of Avalon. This is a challenging and interesting course, with one hole having a Par 6 for example, and I know of none other like it anywhere. We had not played since we were last at Catalina, but we played once or twice a day during our stay. The price is $9 ($7 for seniors and small children), and two dollars less if you play a second time the same day.

At first glance the Inn might seem a little pricey, but it is not when you consider what you are getting. Golf carts rent in Avalon for $20 per hour, with a three hour minimum. We have stayed down in Avalon a number of times in past years, and we never rented a golf cart because of the expense. Being able to putt about town and in the hills behind the town for free is a huge plus. The Inn provides not only a fine breakfast, but also a very nice lunch that is included in the price of the room. Homemade cookies are always available, and hors d’oeuvres are served in the early evening. Later in the evening guests are invited to help themselves to ice cream, sundaes, and even banana splits from the pantry area. We never eat in a restaurant when we come to the Mt Ada Inn. The only food we purchase in the town is at Big Olaf’s ice cream parlor, on the harbor at the edge of the shops and towards the Casino. I don’t think we missed a late afternoon “dinner” at Big Olaf’s.

If you are coming to Catalina via LAX, you can buy a package deal that will shuttle you from the airport to the Catalina Express boat terminal in Long Beach and then back to LAX after your stay. Be sure to let the Mt. Ada staff know when you are arriving, and they will meet you at the dock. They will also transport you down to the boat dock at the end of your stay.

It has been five years since we were last in Catalina and last at the Mt. Ada Inn, but we have already made our reservations for next summer! There is nothing like Catalina Island, and there is no place to stay on Catalina Island that is at all comparable to the Mt. Ada Inn.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Danny38
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 29, 2011

What a wonderful place! We came here after a friend recommended it. It's expensive but worth it. It's like staying at a rich relative's house where they cater to your every request. All the beer, wine, champagne you can drink and run of the pantry. We had so many root beer floats! The staff is truly welcoming and so delightful. They also give you a free golf cart to tool around town. Breakfast and lunch is included and while good, it's not a full menu. But it's homemade, so you can't expect a full menu. We will never stay anywhere else in Catalina!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Bobblehead001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mt. Ada

Address: 398 Wrigley Rd., Avalon, Catalina Island, CA 90704 (Formerly Inn on Mt. Ada)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Catalina Island > Avalon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 B&Bs / Inns in Avalon
Price Range: $491 - $866 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Mt. Ada 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Complimentary Breakfast, Lunch and Evening Wine & Hors d'oeuvre Reception. - Complimentary Butler's Pantry available throughout the day, includes fresh fruit, mixed nuts, soft drinks, beer and wine, ice cream sundaes, popcorn, coffee, teas, and cocoa. - Complimentary golf cart for use during your stay - VIP access to Descanso Beach Club Cabanas, Access to Tennis Courts at the Catalina Country Club and Complimentary Green Fees at the Catalina Island Golf Course. - Complimentary access to Island Spa Catalina facilities including pool, hot tub, relaxation deck. (Spa treatments are additional.) - Complimentary Behind the Scenes tour of the Catalina Casino - Private van pick up from the airport, heliport, boat terminal or other properties - Daily housekeeping, robes, nightly turndown, High speed WiFi. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Inn On Mt. Ada Hotel Avalon
Mt. Ada Catalina Island/Avalon, CA

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