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Reviewed March 7, 2017

My wife and I stayed one night at the Seal Cove Inn as a side trip from visiting our son in nearby Palo Alto. The inn was really helpful to make lunch and dinner dining suggestions and made the reservations. The inn's location is terrific a short walk out back to the tide pools and Pacific overlook. The host was super friendly and welcoming at check in and throughout our stay. The inn is very elegantly appointed, cozy and comfortable. How can you complain about a plate of warm cookies at check in? We enjoyed the complimentary glass of wine and talking with other guests in the living room. Our room was a deluxe balcony suite, which was very spacious and well appointed. Loved the fireplace and sitting area. The afternoon sun was shining so we enjoyed the balcony with a view to the ocean. Breakfast was wonderful...good selection, healthy choices...and you have a choice of being served in your room or the dining area. We tried to book the Ritz Carlton but it was sold out which is what took us to the Seal Cove Inn. We decided to check out the Ritz for a drink before dinner in Half Moon Bay and we discovered we made the right choice going to the Seal Cove. The Ritz is a beautiful property with stunning views but it has a totally different feel. We found the Ritz to sterile and impersonal. Also, the Ritz was very crowded...the bar was packed, tables dirty and the common areas noisy. I get the impression they do a lot of business with Silicon Valley company retreats which "take over the place". $15 mandatory valet parking and $30 for a glass of Chardonnay wasn't exactly welcoming either. If you are looking for a peaceful, romantic getaway minutes from everything pick the Seal Cove over the Ritz any time.

Room tip: Rooms on the 2nd (top) floor have vaulted ceilings and are very quiet. If you have lots of luggage or anything heavy stay on the 1st floor.
Date of stay: February 2017
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Dan M
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Jenny K, Guest Relations Manager at Seal Cove Inn, responded to this reviewResponded March 9, 2017

Hello Dan M,
Your glowing review set our hearts to dancing! We couldn't be happier that you discovered our slice of tranquility along the California coast. It's always our pleasure to assist our guests with area suggestions and reservations; we love knowing we've had a hand in making their stay nothing short of spectacular. We couldn't agree with you more, warm cookies and an evening wine reception are the ideal way to begin a getaway. It makes us smile to know our spacious rooms, in-room fireplace, balcony, views, and healthy breakfast all impressed, thank you. It is our goal to provide only the highest standard of service in a friendly manner, and we're delighted to have succeeded for your visit. The only thing better than having you stay would be welcoming you back. Our team sincerely hopes we'll get the chance!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2017

We just recently returned from a three night stay over New Year’s Weekend with another couple. We were excited for them to join us at this lovely inn having stayed here five times over the years. The last couple times we have stayed it seems there is new management as there was again this time.

The inn is beautiful inside and out. It sits in a beautiful setting right next to the very walkable cypress reserve and ocean bluffs, tide pools and seals. The Distillery Restaurant, one of our favorites, is a couple blocks away.

We prefer the downstairs garden rooms and this time stayed in Room #1 – a very quiet room all by itself at the end of the hall. In the past we stayed in Room #2, which is right in the middle of things. The rooms are lovely, but this time both my husband and I found the bed to be too hard. That is just our personal preference, but our backs were definitely talking to us. The bathrooms are older, but clean with towel warmers. The tubs are slippery though, so use the bath mat and make sure it is firmly attached to the tub.

The new owners have instituted a new breakfast program, Be Replenished, that sounds good on paper, but became tiresome and boring after the first day. Although beautifully presented, it was not a positive for us. I would at least suggest a rotating choice of 5 different items, that are not the same each day, providing for some variety for guests staying more than one night. The Half Moon Bay market is quite competitive and for the price of a room one would expect at least one hot dish at breakfast.

Finally, we all agreed there was just something missing, something off. Wondering if it was just me, I began to read some of the other reviews. While most of the staff was, especially Stacy, helpful and friendly and will suggest and make dinner reservations for you, others made us feel like we were a bother. The gentleman who checked us in was very meticulous in his explanations of how everything worked, plus that fact since there was no staff in the Inn overnight, and the emergency number was only to be used for real emergencies, which didn’t include getting more ice, etc. While I get it, still makes you feel like they didn’t really care we were there spending $300 plus a night for a room. A final suggestion would be for you to institute a more professional dress code for the staff that deals with the public. There was real lack of hospitality all around. Another reviewer referred to it as “soulless” which is a good description.

We probably won’t be back. We wish you the best.

Room tip: Room 1 is very quiet.
Date of stay: December 2016
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
3  Thank Peg H
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Jenny K, Guest Relations Manager at Seal Cove Inn, responded to this reviewResponded January 5, 2017

Hello Peg H,
Welcoming back familiar faces is always a special treat; thank you for your ongoing loyalty. It sounds like you've discovered many of our local gems, and we're sure future guests will greatly appreciate your recommendations, thank you. We understand that not every guest has the same bedding preferences, and we're sorry to hear our mattress was not to your liking. You'll love to hear that you're able to change your breakfast selection from our provided options each day of your stay. Guest satisfaction is our highest priority, and we are listening. We'll be taking all your feedback into careful consideration, and we're thankful that you've taken the time to share your concerns with us. We hope you'll allow us another opportunity to welcome you; we'll be working diligently towards wowing you when you return.

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Reviewed December 23, 2016

We've tried to resolve our issue via Better Business Bureau, but Sea Cove Inn does not respond to BBB. We are sharing our experience here as a warning to all:

We made a reservation at Sea Cove Inn on 12/1/14 through Bookings.com but had a subsequent change of plans. Because we did not know our return date to reschedule, the inn keeper instructed us, over the phone, on 12/2/14 to cancel the reservation and call back when our return date became finalized. She indicated that we could apply the cost of the original reservation credit towards a future stay. She also specifically indicated that the credit will not expire.

When we called in 7/3/16, the original inn keeper is no longer working at Seal Cove Inn and the new keeper (Kevin) would not honor the credit promised by the original inn keeper. To be clear, the original inn keeper's offer of credit for a future stay is not in dispute, but Kevin indicates that too many months as passed and the credit has therefore been "written off" and cannot be redeemed.

The original inn keeper's instructions were specific and is the reason we allowed many months to elapse before attempting to redeem the credit.

Sea Cove Inn took $700 and refuse to provide any service. We recommend everyone to stay somewhere else.

Date of stay: January 2016
Trip type: Traveled with family
2  Thank 3l3ctric
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Jenny K, Guest Relations Manager at Seal Cove Inn, responded to this reviewResponded December 29, 2016

Hello 3I3ctric,
We're sorry that your change of plans prevented you from visiting our coastal home when you originally planned; the Half Moon Bay area is truly beautiful. Although our cancellation policy was included in the terms and conditions you accepted when placing your original booking, we did extend a credit to you to be used within the first quarter of the approaching year. This, and the full details, were explained in the cancellation email we sent you immediately following your cancellation. Credits to our inn have never had an indefinite expiration time allotment; perhaps you misunderstood the difference between our credits and gift certificates. As you mentioned, we are not BBB members, but are happy to resolve any concerns directly. When you recently called, a year and a half had passed since your original reservation and your credit was no longer available. As a courtesy to you, we did offer a discount and am sorry to hear it was not to your liking. We hope you'll have the opportunity to visit the area in the future; we're confident you'll find the tranquility here enjoyable.

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Reviewed November 13, 2016

This was our first time at an Inn. We have had such a romantic, relaxing weekend. The hosts are friendly and welcoming. The breakfast is amazing. The walk to the beach beautiful. Prior to arrival the front desk called us and offered to make a dinnner reservation. It was so easy to have dinner plans taken fare of. We will return.

Room tip: All rooms are good
Date of stay: November 2016
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank LuisMercy
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Jenny K, Guest Relations Manager at Seal Cove Inn, responded to this reviewResponded November 15, 2016

Hello Luis Mercy,
We strive to provide our guests with an exceptional coastal getaway, and your appreciation for our dedication has us smiling from ear-to-ear, thank you. It makes our day to know that you felt well cared for and that our fresh breakfast started your day on the perfect note. We'll love sharing your praise with our full team. We couldn't agree with you more; a walk to the beach is an ideal way to unwind and enjoy the stunning area beauty. We hope to have the opportunity to welcome you again in the future for many more picture-perfect getaways.

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Reviewed November 5, 2016

This is not just a bed and breakfast but an experience that we will relive forever. You walk right through a gate on the property onto an amazing trail along the coast that is breathtaking! This is a property that is located in an area that I believe is historical toward the development of Moss Beach. We very treated like royalty and enjoyed the wonderful chocolate chip cookies. The no children policy helps to make this a relaxing retreat. I could see coming here alone for some rest and relaxation with a good book.

Room tip: We stayed in a garden room and loved having a patio
Date of stay: October 2016
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Ray1993
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Jenny K, Guest Relations Manager at Seal Cove Inn, responded to this reviewResponded November 8, 2016

Hello Ray1993,
It was our pleasure to welcome you for a serene getaway. We're delighted that you love with our historic and picturesque location as mush as we do. You're absolutely right; the stunning coastal bluffs California is famous for can be enjoyed by simply strolling along the trails just outside our doors. Thank you for your praise and appreciation for our team's dedication. We'll love sharing your review with everyone here. We're looking forward to welcoming you again; more relaxation and chocolate chip cookies will be waiting for you.

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