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Carmel/Monterey places to stay

Old Apr 21st, 2008, 11:36 AM
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Carmel/Monterey places to stay

If you had to choose, would you prefer to stay in Carmel (Tally Ho Inn, Cypress Inn), Carmel Highlands (Tickle Pink Inn), or Pacific Grove (Seven Gables Inn, Green Gables Inn)?
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Old Apr 21st, 2008, 03:31 PM
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I'd suggest staying in the village in Carmel for ease of parking (at your hotel), and easy walking to a wide range of restaurants, shops, galleries, town beach. Monterey & Pacific Grove can be easily driven to for some daytime activities. If you like the idea of Seven Gables or Green Gables, then take a look at Vagabond's House Inn B&B in the heart of Carmel. www.vagabondshouseinn.com Reasonable rates for a very quiet and charming place ringed around a lovely courtyard. I posted a trip review, with photos, on www.tripadvisor.com a while back. Nice breakfasts, nice late-afternoon wine and cheese fests on the patio.
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Old Apr 21st, 2008, 04:30 PM
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We loved Seven Gables in Pacific Grove and highly recommend it.

Here are some of our pictures:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...1&tid=35116973

Deb
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Old Apr 21st, 2008, 04:57 PM
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we just came back from Carmel Valley Inn. What a wonderful place. Not only were the views beautiful, but the rooms and service were wonderful. We stayed in Pismo Beach on our way to Santa Barbara, and that was just ok..we only had one night in SB, so it was hard to find a place, but we stayed in a small place near the pier. Don't miss Los Lobos State Park in Carmel. It just may be the most beautiful place I've seen in the US.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 03:47 AM
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Thanks so much for the replies. DebitNM - the pictures were great. Did you go to Carmel to walk around and dine at all? If so, was it difficult to find parking? Or was it just as easy to walk around Pacific Grove and dine? Are there good dining choices within walking distance? It looks like you can walk right into downtown Monterey....is that true? We are planning for three nights there.....is this too much or not enough?

I guess my inability to choose stems from the fact that since I am on the coast, I would really like to be on the water. Most of the accommodations in Carmel have a village type setting. Tickle Pink Inn seems to have everything we are looking for, except it is not in walking distance to other things. The Pacific Grove locations look lovely and seem to have the best of both those worlds, except they lack a television (I know, I know) and the breakfasts have been described as average.

I had checked out the Vagabond House Inn previously.....reviewers have described it as "rustic" and there were reports of sagging beds and noise. I was not able to find a Carmel Valley Inn.

Is it possible to find everything I'm looking for in downtown Carmel? Or will I be equally happy (or more) with my oceanfront room slightly offsite?

Any comments from those fodorites who have stayed at Tickle Pink Inn?
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 05:49 AM
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We thought the food at Seven Gables was very good: wine tastings each evening with a number of choices and from several wineriers [there were also lots of lovely appetizers available too, some pretty substantial!]; hot, fresh home made cookies and milk [or coffee, tea etx] every night; and a very tasty enjoyable breakfast.

There were many great restaurants that were within walking distance of Seven Gables - we ate at Passionfish, which was very good. Unfortunately, we had too many appetizers at Seven Gables, and didn't have enough room for much at dinner.

We had dinner the next night in Carmel at L'escargot which was excellent. We had picked up cheese and picnic things for lunch that day and had a picnic at Lobos Point Reserve.

Seven Gables was a perfect location as it is the closest B&B to the water. We could hear the waves breaking on the rocks. Everyone that we talked to indicated they were return customers and really loved the place.

Yes, the walk to Monterey was a lovely stroll along the bay that had the otters playings and a beach full of seals.

We wanted to be on the water and Seven Gables was the perfect place for us. No TV wasn't an issue. 3 nights seems perfect; I wish we had one more night and day.

Deb
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 06:09 AM
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DebitNM - it is looking more and more like Pacific Grove is nosing ahead. A couple of more questions, if you don't mind. What room did you stay in? Did you see any other rooms or are there rooms that you would recommend? What time of year did you go? Can you go to the beach there, or is it more rocky and not conducive to a beachgoer? How was parking in Carmel? Did you do any shopping/walking/sightseeing in Carmel or was staying in PG good enough for that? If you were to go back to the area, where would you stay?

Sorry for so many questions, but this is truly helpful. I am from the East Coast and have this leg of the SF-Napa-Carmel trip planning the most difficult.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 06:28 AM
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I've stayed at Tickle Pink Inn twice and absolutely adore this place. There is so much charm and beauty here. From the "Continental" breakfast each morning to the wine and cheese reception each evening, the whole place is just a delight. And those views...oh my gosh. They are fantastic.

Yes, you do have to drive everywhere, but that was fine with us. We drove in to Carmel (very close) and never had trouble parking. We always parked in a parking garage...plenty of spaces. Then we walked all around the shops and restaurants.

We also spent a day driving down to Big Sur...incredible drive. Have lunch on the deck at Post Ranch Inn and dinner at Ventana Inn which is across Highway 1 from PRI.

We also took a half day driving 17-mile drive around Pebble Beach. Another great day. We stopped and had Bloody Marys at The Inn at Spanish Bay...did the drive, making all the stops. Then we had lunch at the clubhouse overlooking #18 of Pebble Beach.

Sorry...didn't mean to ramble. I just want to assure you that Tickle Pink Inn is very convenient and I just LOVE this place.

Lastly, the Hyatt is an easy walk from TPI. It's a great place for lunch on the deck or dinner in their dining room.

Have a wonderful time!
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 08:09 AM
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If you want downtown Carmel and it sounds like you do, try the Pine Inn or La Playa. They both have their own parking lots, are charming, older hotels and are both within walking distance of the beach and the shops.

I have stayed in both of these many times and have always been happy. Happy to answer specific questions!

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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 08:15 AM
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It's not on your list, but I've stayed at the Lobos Lodge on Ocean Avenue in the heart of Carmel many times and it is great:

http://www.loboslodge.com/
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 09:25 AM
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onemoneygirl - I was considering the Tally Ho Inn in Carmel, the sister inn to the Pine Inn. They seem to have more rooms with ocean views and the website states some rooms have been recently redecorated. Do you know anything about the Tally Ho? Any comments about the Pine Inn are appreciated as well, since they are related properties. Good breakfasts? Convenient locations?

Unfortinately La Playa has no availability for our dates.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 09:50 AM
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Jewelhawg - did you find the rooms at Tickle Pink to be noisy, i.e.thin walls? Are the rooms dated? Or do they feel like a glorified motel? How are the rooms sized? Are the bathrooms small? Updated?

Could you recommend any specific rooms? I guess the view would be our #1 priority.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 09:51 AM
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Too bad about La Playa, it's a lovely property and one of the few places in Carmel proper that has a swimming pool. We also love the Tickle Pink Inn, the views are gorgeous and they offer so many nice amenities, the drive is really not far to downtown Carmel from there and it is close to Pt. Lobos State Park, one of the most beautiful areas of the coast. ***kim***
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 10:14 AM
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My husband and I have been to the Carmel/Monterey area many times (we live in Vancouver, BC). In Carmel we have stayed several times at The Normandy Inn. It is just about at the bottom of Ocean Ave. Lovely flowers all around the property and it has a small pool in the central courtyard. The rooms that we have had have not been anything hugely fancy but we've enjoyed our stays.

This year (we seem to do a California road trip just about every year) we have booked two nights at The Seven Gables Inn (June 8 and 9) in Pacific Grove. I am very excited to stay there ... I believe we have booked "The Gable" room.

I have yet to make my dinner reservations at Passionfish but fully intend to eat there one night. Haven't chosen the restaurant for our second night ... maybe we'll just fill up on appetizers and wine at the Inn like DebitNM!!

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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 10:29 AM
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Boxer - does the Normandy Inn have any views of the water from the rooms?

You will have to provide some feedback after your stay in Pacific Grove.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 10:35 AM
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OMG!!! I am SO losing it!!

I meant we have booked two nights at THE GREEN GABLES INN.

Sheesh, I hope I remember to turn up at the right place in June!!!
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 10:40 AM
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I don't believe that there are rooms at The Normandy Inn with "views" of any kind, ocean or otherwise.

We stayed there mostly just for convenience (near the beach, yet walking distance to everywhere ... albeit uphill to the main shopping/eating area).

Also the price was right.

We are spending much more to stay at The Green Gables Inn ($200+ per night). I believe The Normandy Inn is something like $150 dependant on the type of room.

We are a bit "tired" of staying in Carmel (the old "been there, done that" syndrome) so are looking forward to Pacific Grove for a total change of locale.

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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 11:27 AM
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I've never peeked at the Tally Ho... sorry. The Pine Inn was the first hotel of Carmel... originally it was up the street and at some point they moved it! It has facinating historical photos throughout the common rooms and i love that kinda thing! As you've seen on the website... lots of dark wod and antique furniture with red velvet fabrics... they are also great about helping with your bags. I don't believe they serve breakfast but Il Fornaio is connected to them and they do serve a nice dinner, although I prefer local places to "chains" and usually don't choose to eat there.

The ocean view rooms anywhere "in" Carmel proper are just "peeks" IMO unless you're at La Playa.

After all the posts here... your choices are clear. if you want stunning ocean views.. then you need to stay in Pacific Grove (bed and breakfast) on Ocean Avenue or Spanish Bay ( did you have a budget? LOL!!) or Monterey. Carmel has an entirely different feel... and since the beach is at the very edge of town, the view are through the trees... unless you're at La Playa.

if tally Ho has the views you want... I'd take it! Good luck!
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 12:15 PM
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At the end of the day, that's what it comes down to.....and I still haven't made up my mind. Each property seems to be missing just one or two things that I would like each to have. I guess it comes down to prioritizing, but when you haven't been to a location, it's hard to know. Is staying in the Carmel village so unique and special that it trumps having the oceanview location and spiffier accommodations? Does Pacific Grove have the best of both worlds? Is Carmel Highlands all about the views and too far removed to appreciate the flavor of the locale? These are all things I must try to discern.

Boxer - I look forward to your comparison of staying in Pacific Grove vs. Carmel.

(By the way - I can always use Marriott points and stay in Monterey....but I'm not sure if the "corporate" feel will detract from the overall experience.)

Thanks for all the replies.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 12:32 PM
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Where do you live? if you Do NOt nirmally have ocean views... these are some of the best, because as DebitNM says, these waves crash on the rocks and the sound and sight is truly beautiful. if you want that drama... then your only choice is PG. Just do it... and don't look back! You can't go wrong at eihter Green Gables or Seven Gables or Martine Inn. Focus on the best room you can get for your budget. Even if you don't get a "view room" just walking around will be incredible... you can walk Lover's Point and a few miles around to Spanish Bay to hear the bagpipes at Sunset... or not. The point is... there is no "wrong" decision.

Walking around PG is the most beautiful (IMO), next would be the charm of Carmel and lastly would be Monterey... unless you're into California history and want to see the adobes, the first theatre and all of that stuff!

Personally, I like to get a good feel for the area and prefer to walk around... so haven't stayed at the Highlands. For a first trip to the area I would want to be "in" the middle of things.

Don't miss Point Lobos.. as others have mentioned.
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