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“Incredibly, Magically Memorable!!”

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The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Half Moon Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Marin County, California
Level Contributor
106 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
“Incredibly, Magically Memorable!!”
Reviewed January 7, 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights to celebrate my 60th birthday. Though we live in the SF Bay Area, we had never even seen this hotel nor been out to the incredible point and property it sits on. I will first say that it is ridiculously expensive. Because it was winter, we got a third night free package that included the also ridiculous parking fee, and this is the only we way could justify paying more for a room, not even a suite, than we have ever paid for even a suite elsewhere. That aside, even though they've got you on the price as a captive audience once you've seen the place and they don't seem to have a problem filling up, I wish we could come back every year and stay longer. Also making the pricey blow a little easier to take was our stay in a king room with fireplace and wonderful ocean view was on the "club floor" which included access to the club lounge, with a sumptuous array of food, service, drinks, and a luxe atmosphere with the same ocean view, open all day and evening. We love room service but didn't use it at all, with the abundance of luscious food and the constant doting of gracious concierge service nearby. The room was large for not being a suite, and my only complaint was the single sink in the bathroom- quite an oversight for such an otherwise amply appointed room.

The property and magic of this location is almost indescribable. We don't play golf but if you do, the breathtaking links would be very appealing. A least in the winter, the light on the waves cast such beautiful pastel colors as we have never seen. The paved coastal trail along the bluffs stretched further than we ever walked, and the loud surf at night was magical. The carefully planned and orchestrated outdoor scene is over the top. Carefully arranged lawn chairs around fire pits, marshmallows for roasting, attentive outdoor bar areas, and the best- the bagpipe player at dusk- you can also see why weddings under the perfectly placed gazebo on the bluffs are big business here. The indoor public areas are vast, beautifully appointed, and of course, invite you at all times to curl up and relax. The bar areas, many fireplaces, seating nooks and cozy bar areas are all equally inviting. The Nuvio restaurant will be a separate review, but I will say the the food overall in this hotel is superb..

Then there is the service, of course this is the Ritz-Carlton. After I had only mentioned once on the phone about it being my 60th birthday weekend, when we were greeted at check-in, the gentleman immediately had birthday greetings. After we dropped our bags in the room and left to have lunch, upon returning, there was an outrageous cake decorated with a personal greeting and wishes for my 60th, along with a card from the staff. That was carried over into my spa day on my actual birthday- the spa will be a separate review as well. Attentive to say the least, this hotel runs like a well oiled machine, and the management's insistence in top of the line staff attending to your every need is apparent. It was also obvious that the staff are happy to work here, very refreshing in an age of vanishing customer service.

There is something about this place that transcends itself. The lack of pretense and snobbery while maintaining such friendly while impeccable service at a high end facility is what allowed us to feel like if we were going to spend this kind of money, at least we did it here.

As long term Bay Area residents and only hearing within the last 2 years about a Ritz-Carlton at Half Moon Bay, I remember laughing and wondering whose bright idea that was, wondering how they did a business here. I now see it is obviously the destination for many corporate getaways from the Bay Area and beyond, as well as a wedding destination and idyllic retreat for anyone willing to spend the money for such a memorable experience and it feeling of being very far away from the SF bay. Our stay here made my important once in a lifetime 60 years young birthday a once in a lifetime memory. A very bright idea indeed!

Room Tip: Definitely have to have an ocean view with a fireplace. The kind rooms are roomy, and the bathrooms...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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3 Thank Epiphany1953
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
37 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

Yes, the location of the hotel is fantastic. The view to wake up to and falling asleep to the sound of waves crashing on shore are also awesome. The rooms are standard 5-stars hotel type. Beds were nice and comfortable (feather bed top).

However, for the amount of money that I spent on our stay there, I found my stay wanting. The issue lies mainly with the inconsistency. First, our rooms were not thoroughly clean each day. Second, our breakfast at the Conservatory was a total mess, had to ask for juice orders twice, pancakes came without syrup and took another 5 minutes to bring them to us, and so on (although the waiter was friendly enough and even gave us a free item, but that's hardly the point). Third, the areas around the fire pits desperately needed power washing. Finally, the restaurant recommendation that we got from the hotel concierge was terrible (Crabs Landing, about 15 minutes north of hotel, "Red Lobster" food but not "RL" price).

Then, after we feel totally ripped off about spending all that money for what I listed above, we ran into a wonderful bus lady in the Navio restaurant and a great front-desk staff, both were quick with a smile and clearly proud to serve.

Come on Ritz Carlton, you can do better than this. Perhaps you had a few Marriott trainees in town working in your Half Moon Bay facility, let's just say that Marriott is not your standard.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank MVagusta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
59 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed January 3, 2013

Upper - Remarkable staff; friendly and attentive - Rooms are wonderful, if you get lucky and get an Ocean View :) - views and location fabulous - great golf courses - super quiet

Downer - breakfast over $ 40 per person - Smores - $ 45 per serving - very very soft beds - very old pool

Room Tip: The cottage Ocean front with fire place for the romantic peacefulness
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Dandu2003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eureka, California
Level Contributor
27 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2013

We spent the Christmas holidays at the Ritz Carlton, Half Moon Bay. As usual, it was a first class experience, but there were a couple of black marks. I am 6'2", and the shower was not tall enough, and felt a bit small. Not at all what one usually receives, namely a "Rain shower" type, in the ceiling. The Christmas dinner at Navio was incredible! Worth every bite!!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank TheBusboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Highland Park, Illinois
Level Contributor
138 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

We really enjoyed our stay at Half Moon. We loved the spa and enjoyed our time relaxing there. We ate at the Mullin's Grill next to the pro shop... it was empty...with excellent service and the very best staff you can even imagine. So much FUN

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Beanie88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
29 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

Second stay at this hotel, but my first time reviewing. We stayed one night at this gorgeous property as well as attended a banquet reception.

Driving up to the hotel, you can already feel the beauty that awaits you. The hotel is big, but not overwhelming. It actually has a quaint and welcoming feel to it. Chilled bottled water is offered at the valet area and wine is offered at check in. Both complimentary. Staff is very friendly and helpful. The room is very well appointed, clean and has an untra-luxurious feel. Its not modern, but very traditional and posh. All white marble bathroom is spotless. I just cant say enough how well maintained the room is.

The food at the reception we attended was delicious and I was actually surprised. I was very impressed by this as I have attended many events at hotels and the food is usually sub par. I wouldnt hesitate to host a party at this hotel myself.

Perhaps the best part of this hotel is the stunning views and outdoor areas. The beach view is unbeatable. It just makes you feel like you are in another world. Also, the grounds area facing the beach, with lawn chairs and fire pits is super relaxing. Many families there just hanging out and having a good time.

This is my favorite hotel thus far. Cant wait to go back. Its really a nice treat to spend some time there. :)

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank QBee10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange, California
Level Contributor
111 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
Reviewed December 29, 2012

While both the Ritz Carlton in Dana Point and this location are located ocean-front, this Half Moon Bay location sure has much better amenities and upgrade interior. The food is also much better. It sure kicks it up another knotch!

We visited during the fall season, so they have this huge 1,000+ lb pumpkin amidst other pumpkins and gords. Very beautiful setting with golf course and nice walking trail.

The town is cute with lots of nurseries and farms. It was a very relaxing stay.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank TravelWithRiley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay

Property: The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay
Address: 1 Miramontes Point Road, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019-2376
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Half Moon Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Half Moon Bay
#1 Family Hotel in Half Moon Bay
#1 Romantic Hotel in Half Moon Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 261
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, an elite golf and spa resort hotel. With two distinct guest room experiences from the guest houses to our main building, the hotel highlights the beauty of the Northern California coast with a modern and elegant decor. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay Hotel Half Moon Bay
Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay
Ritz Half Moon Bay
Half Moon Bay Ritz Carlton

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