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Travel Blogs from San Luis Obispo
Today is marked for another icon, this time man-made, of the California central coast; Hearst Castle. "La Cuesta Encantada", or "The Enchanted Hill" was built over the course of 30-odd years by William Randall Hearst and his architect Julia Morgan on a hilltop overlooking San Simeon Bay.
Although Hearst Castle is a museum and part of the …
Good morning Big Sur.
We're waking up to the sounds of birds singing and enjoying the clear clean air. After the great dinner last night, and a good night's sleep, we preparing ourselves for breakfast. When we checked in we were told about the hiking trail up the hill behind the Inn, so we decide to go for a walk before breakfast. It turns …
We stopped for lunch at this cute Cafe over looking the sea. Was lovely sitting out in the sun, but unfortunately the food was massively over priced and we felt a bit ripped off.
Back on the road and with wind in our hair we pointed our nose to Pismo Beach. Arrived and we were very impressive (full marks to Si on booking of hotel). The hotel is right on a cliff and has the most amazing views. You can then walk down ...
... more climbs than last time and did good on a few, constant growth and improvement. I do really enjoy watching people climb because I feel like I learn. Study, analyze, do, repeat. I highly suggest if you're in SLO checking it out. For $10 you can try it and decide if you want to do it again. When our arms were good and tired we called it a night and Matt took me back to Lacie and Devin’s where I got ready for bed and took in some reading of My Antonia.
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TravelPod Member ReviewsMadonna Inn San Luis Obispo
Madonna Inn is hard to describe - on the one hand it's more a phenomenon than something as plain and simple as a hotel, but on the other hand it's a hotel pure and simple. You start to get an idea of what is expecting when you pass the Madonna Inn sign along the freeway, and also when you pull up to the registrations office; the colors, the designs etc etc. It's all over the top and, let's face it, that's why we come here. Madonna Inn offers all the regular stuff you expect to find at a resort hotel; a steakhouse, a coffee shop, a giftshop etc. There's also a pool and exercise room, and they offer horsebackriding and hiking as well. The rooms are over-the-top; design-wise there is no way to describe the interior design in a simple way - let's just call it unique in the true essence of the word. Having said that - beyond the wacky designs our bed was very comfortable, we had a sofa that could seat 6 or 7 people, a huge bathroom with a waterfall shower. We did not try the steakhouse but did try the Copper Cafe and Silver Bar. The portions at the Café are huge and the food felt "heavy" - old school would be a way of describing it. The Bar is nice and the bartender mixed great drinks for us.
All in all, Madonna Inn should be looked upon as an experience rather than a place to spend the night. If you are just looking for a place to sleep with less care for the immediate surroundings then this is probably not the place for you. However, if you appreciate a truly unique experience then Madonna Inn is a solid, comfortable hotel with the added twist of the over-the-top interior design. There is no need to stay at "McHotels" all the time, you know... :-)
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Madonna Inn San Luis Obispo
Not a good honeymoon spot
My husband and I stayed at the Madonna Inn 10 months ago for 2 nights on our honeymoon. It definitely wasn't all I had hoped it would be.
Maybe we just got one of the less impressive rooms--the Swiss Bell room. It was pretty tacky--all green and flowered with stained glass windows with cows on them. The rock waterfall shower was neat, though.
We ate at their restaurant and the food was mediocre at best. We told people it was a lot better than it was!
A hotel like no other!
I have lived in San Luis Obispo for 6 years and stayed at the Madonna for our first wedding anniversary in the room called American Home.
Every room is unique in this hotel and you can see them all online. Our room had a huge rock fireplace, two king beds, a 7ft bath tub and was enourmous. The rooms are expensive, but it's an experiance like no other to stay there. The steak house is suberb, I recommend the filet mignon, which I have had about 6 times there. While there check out the world famous public bathrooms. This place is recommended for people who like Disneyland or other over-the-top decoration, and who like pink and red. The website represents the place quite fairly, so check it out.
Here we are at the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo. Barking mad, this place, Mr Madonna a highway construction owner and his wife Phyllis built this Hansel and Gretel paradise out of pure love. John Wayne and George Burns had a share in it too. The clothing in the man's store is obviously Mr M's own wardrobe. I have never seen such dreadful taste, but somehow kinda appealing. The ladies shop looks like a second hand dowager duchess's cast-offs. We are staying in two vast rooms tackily done up like London and Paris, Bayswater Road art style. We love it. Dinner in the pink leather and rose patterned carpet under twinkling flower lights for steak and more steak. Cattle baron's feasts. Mr Madonna ambles by and asks if everything is OK. Hardly the word for it. Louis Theroux should do a programme on this place and get into the mind of the owners. There is great generosity of spirit at work, the rooms are vast and comfortable. More is given than taken. Sue alarmed by the prospect of us turning into Derby and Joan as we shuffle around the dance floor to wannabe Glen Miller tunes.
Love the interiors
We have stayed here many times, love the different rooms and the food is wonderful!
It has a '50 flare but not my style.
If you want to go back in time to the 1950's this is the place to stay. It is very essintric. Lots of hot pink and florecent colors. Garish is a good word to describe the rooms and amenities in the rooms are not modern.Forget your computer. It is nostalgic so if you are looking for that plush modern look this is not the place to stay. If you're wanting an outlandish experience with a querry flare than you found the right place. It is pricy for the style of rooms but the service was good. I would only stay here again if the all the other nicer hotels in the area are full.
Madonna Inn is garish and chinzy. Prices run far higher than other places in San Luis Obispo and generally for lower quality. The place makes me think of what a brothel owner would design to make his building look swank.
Fun and Exciting place
Our first time there was very exciting and relaxing, almost like being a kid again. We are going back to "get away from it all" on our way to Monterey, our favorite place. Recommend it to anyone.
Madonna Inn--Terrific memories
My wife and I have been staying at the inn as a tradition for nearly 30 years for our wedding anniversary. Many times we stay during the year if we travel thru, and we
always stop to eat if we are on the way thru town. I read many people describe the Madonna Inn as Tacky. I think this is totally wrong. Tacky is the Motel 6 with cheap
beds, generic fixtures and paper thin walls with a cheap price. The Madonna Inn has never waivered in its quality of food and service. It is a unique and origional
place, with no 2 rooms alike. Yes the Inn is still the origional rooms, but they were a vision the Madonna's had in the 1950's, that still are in demand after 40 years. People book reservations months ahead for special occasions.
If you want modern glitsy night life, phoney atmosphere, and fancy trendy stuff--goto Vegas! If you want to enjoy the central Coast, and a nice easy lifestyle, relax in a romantic area, this is it. If you can't firgure out how to have a romantic time in the Madonna Inn, enjoy the walks on the beach, San Simeon, Morro Bay, Cambria, this isn't for you.
In 30 years I can tell you I have never had Lobster like the Inn, Never had better Steaks, never had better deserts. Everything the Madonna's serve is the best in my book.
In Addition Mr and Mrs. Madonna are a credit to the San Luis Obispo's growth. They have been a sourse for college kids to have good jobs while in school for years, and they have given to the community unselfishly. Mr. and Mrs. Madonna are 2 people who made a vision come true, and the result has been grand memories for people like me and my wife, who have stayed at the Madonna Inn. I highly recommend it and enjoying a great dinner in the Gold Rush Steak house or the Coffee shop.
Sleeping on a Cloud
I was just a child when I first stopped for lunch at the
beautiful Madonna Inn. The coffee shop was elegant in copper and pink. 40 years later, I stopped for the night! What I had expected was elegance, but to my surprise - the furnished room was garish and tacky looking. I was slightly disappointed but excited just the same to have finally been able to stay here. The room was very large, had 2 bedrooms, and 2 rooms for the bathroom. My husband and I slept 1/2 the night in one bed, then the other 1/2 in the other. What I shall always remember about the Madonna Inn is the Beds! I told my husband to find out what kind of mattress we were sleeping on. He did! When we came home, we ordered the pillow top Serta Perfect Sleeper just like we had in both rooms at the Madonna! After 2 weeks on the road, and an aching back from all the hard hotel beds, we both felt like we had slept on a cloud in our tacky, garish, funky room at the Madonna Inn.
the madonna inn is very nice! go there if u wana! and u should! its so cool!
well i stayed there, so it must be excellent!!