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Asilomar Conference Grounds
Ranked #10 of 17 Hotels in Pacific Grove
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed November 8, 2007

Asilomar, is a jewel on the California coastline. There is not other place I have been to or know of that offers a view of the coast the way it was, before all the development and clear cutting off the trees to make way for hotels and housing. This is the place to stay to escape the 4 star gigantic hotels (unless that is what you are looking for, then this isn't the place). Some of the room here have fireplaces, it's not unusual to leave your room and find a few deer grazing just behind your room. The food is ample, not memorable, but there are many many restaurants not to far a drive is you want fine dining.
Please realize that Asilomar is a conference center, so rooms are limited. It is also just off the coast, so it's a 5 min walk down to the beach.

Stayed: December 2004
1  Thank drjil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 13, 2007

My husband and I just returned from a trip to the Pacific Grove - Monterey area. We spent one night at the Asilomar Conference Grounds. We knew there would not be phones, TV or internet access in the rooms and that was fine with us. There is wireless access at their main hall. We had the standard modern room which had two double beds. The rates are very reasonable. A nice aspect was a sink, mirror and counter area just outside the bathroom, which also had a sink, mirror and counter in it. We had a view of the ocean from our room, but very few of the rooms have this view. Each building has a separate living room area where you can relax, read, play games etc. Some of these living rooms also have a fire place. The main hall is also a very comfortable place to hang out. The conference grounds were not real busy the night we were there so it was very quite. We were impressed at the cleanliness and how the housekeepers acted in a professional way. We have been to other conference grounds and none were clean like this place. The ocean is just a short walk away and you may see deer on your walk there. We saw lots of deer while there. The food could really be improved so we suggest you eat elsewhere. It's unfortunate some have given this place such bad reviews. It is a conference ground, not a place to go party. We hightly recommend this place, but not the food.

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank AlmondBlossomCapital
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 6, 2007

I'll add a few comments to DaveEd1975's fairly accurate description...

First off, it's a little known fact that Asilomar is located at one of many cosmic vortices on the California pacific coast. (for more info, google Humboldt County, Castro District or Esolan Institute.)

Highly concentrated around this property's grounds, the Asilomar Vortex, as it is known to anyone who visits, results in the following phenomenon:

1) The time capsule effect. While Pebble Beach and rest of Monterey have evolved over the last 30 years, Asilomar remains frozen in time. Just try to make a phone call, watch TV, logon to the internet, or find out about current events. If that doesn’t convince you, try the food.

2) You feel like you’re trapped on a 1970s B-movie horror show BECAUSE YOU ARE!! Stay too many nights and risk your body hair growing at a supernatural rate and your brain turning to goo.

3) Inclimate weather patterns. While the sun shines warm and bright a mere 1.5 miles away, Asilomar enjoys the same climatic effects of a 1 million BTU fog machine & AC condenser.

4) It’s a ‘No Fun Zone.’ Much like that front row seat in a religious studies class…or being flagged for secondary search by Homeland Security at the airport…Asilomar is devoid of all things fun. Don’t believe me? Allow for an audible cork pop on that extremely expensive bottle of Chataueneuf de Pape and then watch the fun police (aka Security) materialize from aforementioned fog and pour it on the ground!


Asilomar isn’t all bad though. The fun police ensure that the ants, worms and slugs are the happiest on the planet!

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled on business
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3  Thank cdoell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2007

Been at Asilomar for a conference. Not my choice, but,. what can you do? Anyway, short story is: 'Stay away from it'. Long story is:
- the staff is completely dysfunctional. Called in to find out if the room had a king bed or two doubles, they could not tell. Got in, complained, they cut me short and told me I could go somewhere for less money and not bother. Nice and friendly, huh? So checked in, and the horror started. Nice brochure says: 'if you need ANYTHING, please ring the front desk' except there is no phone in the room. Anyway, not they would do anything.
But the top is the food. Simply unbelievable, bad beyond imagination. it is garbage that not even rats would eat. Greasy, unhealthy, tasteless, in short: disgusting. So much for a healthy vacation close to nature. The only nature you want to be close to are the raccoons: rummaging garbage would have been better than eating Asilomar's food!
As I said: stay away from it!

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled on business
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2  Thank proksoch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2007

If you've ever feeled like being on the set of some weird 1970's b-movie horror show then this is the place for you. Open grounds with plenty of wildlife, wood lodges, open fireplaces and constant talk of the mountain lions that might be lurking in the dark ready to devour your mortal soul.

If you are a fun loving individual or at least a bit normal. And get asked to attend a management conference. You may want to reconsider your options! With no tea or coffee making facilities in the rooms, no TV anywhere, no internet except in the main lodge, a 10pm curfew and most importantly no bar. It was not exactly the perfect location for a management conference.

The staff were very friendly in a prisoner cell block H kind of way, the way the food (it may have been food but it was edible and we were hungry) was slopped on the plates and the friendly manner in which the happy go lucky fun police patroled the area endeared these guys to all who attended.

If you're after a very, very quiet get away with nothing to do but get close to nature in a weird and wonderful way then this is the place for you.

I like many of my colleagues though have never been so happy to leave somewhere in my entire life

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled on business
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4  Thank DaveEd1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 26, 2007

Although the quarters are a little on the tired side and the walls/floors are thin as others have said, I thought the location of this place was excellent. I could walk to the beach in five minutes, and I enjoyed going into Pacific Grove to eat and shop. I was a female traveling alone, and always felt safe both at the conference grounds and in the town.

I was looking for some solitude and relaxation, not luxury and excitement, so this is a good place with a pretty good value if that's what you also want. I only ate breakfast at the dining hall, and didn't like having to sit with strangers first thing in the morning and make small talk. None of the other meals sounded appealing so I ate elsewhere. PG has a Trader Joes, so it was easy to pick up pre-prepared foods and go out and enjoy the scenery, which is gorgeous.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled solo
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2  Thank pirategirrl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 23, 2007

We loved our stay at Asilomar Conference Grounds. But, if you are looking for a place with phones, television and room service this is not the place for you. It was just right for us (spouse, 9 year old granddaughter and myself). The rooms do show their age (this is history folks) but were clean. While the conference grounds are set up for retreats, conferences and family reunions it worked fine for regular travelers. The grounds and buildings were well maintained. They had bike rentals, a pool, ping pong, volleyball, and two pool tables but, it is also a great place to just kick back and read. It is just a short walk to the adjacent state beach where the children played in the surf and searched the tide pools. We had a package deal that included room, breakfast and two day passes to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The first day breakfast was sub par, the following day it was great. When asked they provided us with a beautiful plate of fresh fruit. If you want something you don't see ask, the staff was very pleasant and accommodating. A great reprieve from a hectic schedule.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
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3  Thank Caleve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Asilomar Conference Grounds

Address: 800 Asilomar Blvd, Pacific Grove, CA 93950-3704
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Monterey County > Pacific Grove
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Pacific Grove
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Pacific Grove
Price Range: $178 - $272 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Asilomar Conference Grounds 2*
Number of rooms: 312
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This refuge by the sea is a tranquil oceanfront retreat cradled by pine forests and white sand beaches. Situated along the shoreline of California's famed Monterey Bay, Asilomar offers historic lodging with views of the forest, surf and sand, plus unique conference spaces. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Asilomar Conference Grounds Hotel Pacific Grove
Asilomar Conference Grounds Pacific Grove
Asilomar Conference Center
Asilomar Hotel

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