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“Disappointing...in many regards”

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The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla
Ranked #3 of 4 La Jolla B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 7, 2012

The irony is that having spent 3 nights in La Jolla/San Diego, we both can't wait to go back - the only disappointment in our Californian adventure (which also took in Palm Springs and Los Angeles) was the Bed and Breakfast Inn at La Jolla. We've used Select Registry many times to choose places to stay, preferring where possible to have a boutique style hotel or inn (having said that, after our experience in La Jolla we erred for safety and booked Hyatt for the next couple of nights!).

The inn is located in a quiet part of the beautiful La Jolla, just 15 minutes drive up the freeway from San Diego airport. Within walking distance of the cove and also shopping area, with both having lovely restaurants too, the location is great. The inn, however, is an old property that is dated rather than historic and in our view showing signs of wear (compare for example to other similar properties that combine history with modern facilities).

Whilst Teresa kindly stayed on to ensure we checked in safely, at no time during our three days did we feel that there was any real attention to detail. Our overall view is one of a property that does not love it's guests or overly care for them. We had our share of problems but putting them to one side, this was not the place the other reviews lead us to believe we would find. Yes, there are touches such as a glass of wine and some cheese put by at tea time but had we known about the fixed breakfast time of 9am that in itself would probably have put us off staying there (although as we left Margaret, who had been absent the first two days we were there, said she would have made us scrambled eggs had she known, earlier than 9am. As it was, we ate out and have now had confirmation of a 10% refund for the problems caused). (Note: if like us you arrive and want to be up and about early then there are good places to go nearby!)

Regrettably, far from the Inn working around the needs of their guests it very much came across the other way around. There were many notes to be observed. This did not come across as a place to relax, socialise, sit by a log fire...a shame as many of the other Select Registry places we have been to were like that but not this one.

Unfortunately our first experience was to stay in The Cove - no fault of the Inn staff that the toilet was broken but the clanking and rushing of water didn't make for a good night's sleep nor the fact that the central heating comes on and wakes you up in that room at 5am! Although New Year, the inn was not overly busy so we were moved to another room (Peacock Salon) which was still relatively cramped but did have a balcony.

Aside from the distinct negatives, plus points include the back garden which no doubt in summer is a nice place to be. There is also a computer terminal on the upstairs landing beside a couple of the bedrooms. Although it can't be used between 8pm and 8am, it was useful to have the access. Note: it did not bother us but there are no tv's in the rooms. Plenty of parking on the road and nearby.

Interestingly this inn is owned by a group of investors and the staff/manager are simply hired in. To put that in perspective there is a manager, Margaret and a part-time assistant, Teresa. We simply didn't see them when we went out at 8/8.30am. Neither have an interest in the property and so unlike an owner managed inn we felt things went awry more we feel from a lack of investment by the owners and not the fault of the staff. Rather like 1984 if problems arise then they are sent up the chain to nameless souls - the investors - who deal with them and make decisions, not the threadbare staff in the Inn. With hindsight, we placed too much reliance on the reviews that all seem to adopt a similar description of the accommodation and make the same comments. Sadly our visit did not reflect those and made us call into question how things could be so different during our stay at a time of year during a major part of the holiday season. .

Room Tip: At $230-240 a night this was an expensive option - I'd go for the larger rooms which do cost mor...
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Trevorw38
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
marvelme_7, Director of Sales at The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla, responded to this reviewResponded January 17, 2012

I appreciate your review and your positive comments and am grateful for an opportunity opportunity to address your concerns.

The Inn was originally built in 1913 as a private residence and was revamped to be a B&B Inn in 1984. The walls of the Historical section of the property are the original Lath & Plaster and not as sound proof as a modern hotel may be. Some portion of the inn is always being updated and refreshed, but we are restricted in how far we can modernize the structure without losing our Historical Classification. However, there is no excuse for appearing worn. I wish you had been more explicit in what you found to be outdated and worn so we had an opportunity to address the problem. A fresh set of eyes is always encouraged. We remodeled 3 guest rooms just this winter and are always refreshing and updating some portion of the Inn or guest room. The old world charm of some of the rooms will be maintained as many of our guests perfer the Euopean or romantic ambiance to the more modern theme. We cannot please everybody even though we do try.

Staying in an historical B&B is like being a guest in someone's home. For those who are light sleepers we have ear plugs and eye mask available for their comfort. Many of the clock radios in the rooms also have a "White Noise" Function as well. We can also recommend a room that is more removed from the daily activity of the inn if this is a concern. The central heating ,or any heating system for that matter, is going to make some noise when it comes on and I really don't know how to make it perfectly silent. I appologize for the inconvenience it caused you.

We pride ourselves in attention to detail, personalized service and providing our guests with all the modern conveniences. We encourage our guests to let us know their concerns and needs immediately and we will go out of our way to satisfy them. Had you required an early morning breakfast you had only to let the staff know and it would have been provided. If the inn is not full, as it tends to be during the winter months, we have a single setting and try to make it as reasonable and comfortable a time for all of our guests as possible. For early morning risers there is coffee and hot beverages and sweets in the lobby for their pleasure and convenience. For guests who want to get out and about early they just have to let the staff know the night before and they will be accommodated.

More and more of our guests are now requesting that the guest rooms have TV. Flat screen TV's are gradually being introduced into most of the guest rooms but not all. 4 more of our guest rooms were equipped with the 42" Flat screen TV's just last month giving us a total of 7. And 4 more will be going in before the end of March giving us a grand total of 11 . Many of our guests do not require a TV so we suggest that if that is a requirement then let us know and we can certainly accommodate you. 4 of the 15 rooms will not be equipped with a TV for those who perfet not to have it in their rooms.

The Inn has had the same group of investors involved in its ownership and management since its inception in 1984 and we are very concerned with the quality of stay that our guests experience. The day to day operation is handled by our Manager/Innkeeper, Margaret , who goes out of her way to make sure the assistant innkeepers on staff are attentive and freindly. The degree of involvement of our staff with each guest is dictated by the individual guests and what they require or request. Some guests want to engage and get to know the innkeepers personally and other guest are more private and introverted. We do not want to make any guest fill neglected or uncomfortable.

As for the toilet. Please keep in mind that with 15 guest rooms and toilets etc. there is bound to be a problem from time to time. As soon as we were made aware that there was a problem you were up graded to another guest rooms. That would have been a good time to let Teresa know that you would like to be upgraded to a room with a TV even though there was one right outside your guest room in the Library/Den. I personally love the Peacock Salon and the Shores guest rooms because the Library/Den and the 2nd Floor patio which other guests in the inn never seem to use, are adjacent to these two guest rooms- it is like having a private suite without paying the price for one. I am sorry you were not pleased with the upgrade.

Regarding the price of the guest rooms here in La Jolla, one must keep in mind that it is La Jolla afterall, the Riviera of Southern California. It is a highly desirable vacation spot with its cliffs, beaches, marine life etc. and don't forget Black's Beach, voted one of the top ten nude beaches in the world! Our prices are competitive for the area and are based on the amenities ( free parking, free toll calls, unlimited bottle water, and other beverages, treats, wine and cheese reception, etc. etc.) the location, the ambiance and the casual elegance of our inn are reasonably priced for all that we have to offer.

We hope that you will visit La Jolla again in the future; and since we were unable to accommodate you to your satisfaction, we are more than happy to reccommend the Parisi Hotel in the center of the village wihich has a more modern, European flare that I believe would be more to your liking. But please stop by the B&B to say hello and have a little refreshment if it is convenient.

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314 - 320 of 524 reviews

Reviewed January 1, 2012

I enjoy staying at the La Jolla Bed and Breakfast. I grew up in the area and it's the closest experience that I have to "coming home" for the holidays, business or vacation. The breakfasts are delicious and tailored to my family's dietary needs. The staff is welcoming, helpful, courteous, attentive and generous with their time and attention to detail. I appreciate the freshly baked cookies and free coffee, tea and cocoa as well as the wine and cheese every afternoon. The location is fabulous--close to the beach and the lovely streets of La Jolla Village.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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Thank cindi_knapton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2011

I've stayed at the B&B at La Jolla a number of times. It's always been a pleasure. The rooms are very comfortable and the staff most welcoming and affable. Breakfast is terrific, and there is wine and cheese in the afternoon for those who are interested. The location, right in 'downtown" La Jolla, near the museum, the cove, shopping, etc., is excellent.
Highly recommended.

Room Tip: There is a wide variety of rooms, and (I believe) room prices. So ask.
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with family
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Thank George M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2011

We have stayed at this charming Inn several times and consider it our favorite romantic getaway. Margaret and the staff are the absolute perfect B&B hosts. We enjoy the awesome breakfasts and the nightly wine and cheese! The Inn is perfectly located across the street from the Contemporary Art Museum as well as the beach. Once you park your car, you can leave it for your entire stay. Shops and restaurants are all within walking distance.

Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
Thank Kim S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
marvelme_7, Director of Sales at The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2011

We are grateful that you chose us when planning your romantic getaway, and we are thrilled to welcome you into our circle of repeat guests. It allows us an opportunity to get to know you on a personal level so you can feel right at home each and every time you come to visit. Margaret and our wonderful staff are very appreciative of your praise. We look forward to your next visit.

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Reviewed November 26, 2011

Two nights at this wonderful, romantic B&B were just what we needed to celebrate our 30th Anniversary! We stayed in the Pacific View because I had memories of sipping sherry by the fire in that room 25 years ago on our initial visit to the Inn. This time we had the romantic package added with roses, champagne, chocolate dipped strawberries and flameless candles all around the room. The room was what I remembered and more! We were alone at the Inn for this weekend (glad our wedding was an off-season one!) so we felt like we were treated like royalty! Our breakfasts were top-notch! Scrumptious and beautifully presented...way more than I expected. The shoreline is so close to walk to and just beautiful to behold. We watched the sun set both nights we were there. Watching the seals, pelicans, sea gulls while walking along the coast was heavenly! In the evenings there are so many excellent restaurants to choose from...all with tastefully prepared meals and superior service. Then it was back to our room for a blazing fire, candles, fluffy robes and some much needed alone time! We enjoyed reading in the room's journal about other people's experiences with our room and added ours as well. All the rooms are beautifully decorated and have their own charms to them but I plan to return to "our" room, the Pacific View, for future anniversaries! I think we will be back sooner the next time! Thank you for the wonderful memories!

Room Tip: Review the website to see how the rooms are decorated and what they offer. Some have fireplaces that...
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Janet A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
marvelme_7, Director of Sales at The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2011

Wow! I don't know what else to say. You have said it all so beautifully, Thank you for letting us share in the celebration of your life together; we are honored. We look forward to having the opportunity to visit with you again in the very near future- your room is ready.

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Reviewed November 22, 2011

Just off busy Prospect St, The Bed and Breakfast Inn at La Jolla is a stone's throw from a contemporary art museum, the beach, and about a hundred cool restaurants and shops yet feels secluded and peaceful. The Holiday was the nicest room I've ever stayed in, hotel or otherwise. The bed was comfy, the service friendly and attentive, the breakfast was insane. Lying in your bed watching the fire crackle with your snuggly SO is just the best! I'd recommend this to any couple - this frankly sets an impossibly high standard for B&Bs. :D

Room Tip: If you have a little extra $$, the holiday room is like a little guest house. The romantic fireplace...
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Chris C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2011

We spent two nights at this very welcoming, pretty, relatively small (13 rooms) inn on a block which is tucked in between two lovely Spanish-style churches in beautiful downtown La Jolla. The main part of the inn is a carefully restored 1920s home which was the residence of John Philip Sousa's family at that time and apparently the inspiration for the house in Dr. Seuss' "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" book! We stayed in what seemed to be a more recently constructed section towards the rear which matches the architecture of the original (stuccoed walls on the exterior, arched doorways on the interior) and was decorated similarly with beautiful antiques, fresh flowers, etc. Our room was decorated in French Provincial style, (although each room is different) and offered no view, but had a very comfortable bed, and an electric fireplace--a great amenity for the rather chilly nights. Bathroom was large, but plumbing in the shower needs updating-- low water pressure.

There are several very small off-street parking spaces located behind the inn, which are fine if you are driving a compact model. Otherwise, there is plenty of free parking on the street in the front, but there are time limits, so you may have to move your vehicle.

The neighborhood is absolutely perfectly located--very quiet and yet only a few blocks to the main street which is loaded with lots of upscale stores and restaurants. Don't miss eating lunch at "The Cottage"! A few more blocks away is the sea walk where one can watch seals sunning themselves on the rocks, herons and all kinds of sea life. If you are a tennis player, the local tennis center is right across the street, offering lessons and court time to the public. On an adjacent corner to the inn is the local art museum which offers stunning views of the ocean as well as exhibits of contemporary art. We took a drive to Torrey Pines State Park and hiked up the hills there--again the views are amazing. Well worth it. San Diego is only a short drive away as well.

The inn offers a lavish gourmet breakfast in the dining room of the main building at 9:00AM. Hot coffee, tea, bottled water, fruit, and snacks are available all day and there is a wine and cheese hour at 5PM. Part of the inn experience is meeting people from all over the globe. My husband and I have enjoyed many interesting, informative and lively discussions with other guests, and this time was no exception, at least at breakfast in the dining room. But unfortunately there is no real common space for guests to gather other than in a small, awkward, inconveniently located den/deck at the end of a hallway on the second floor of the main building or in the small garden area right off the inn kitchen. However, that said, this inn is just about perfect-- wonderful location, lovely comfortable rooms, and accommodating, friendly staff. We plan to return!

Room Tip: Third floor is probably quietest. Some rooms have their own private balconies.
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank elizajane47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla

Address: 7753 Draper Ave, La Jolla, San Diego, CA 92037-4301
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego > La Jolla
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in La Jolla
Price Range: $197 - $264 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla 3.5*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover a Luxury San Diego Bed & Breakfast in the heart of La Jolla only a block from the ocean. Relax in our serene gardens or on the sunny deck. Some of the Deluxe rooms at our Inn in La Jolla feature fireplaces, some ocean views, fresh fruit, flowers, and robes for total comfort. Awaken to unforgettable breakfasts and the ideal location to explore beautiful beaches, shopping and dining and all that La Jolla and San Diego have to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
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