Balanced view (I think) A review of Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites
I've visited Mendocino numerous times, and stayed at several places in town, including the main part (as in "old part") of the Mendocino Hotel and the Garden Suites of the Mendocino Hotel. I don't plan to look further than the Garden Suites for accommodation ever again. Rooms in the old part leave much to be desired, as is true of many old hotels, though I love the common area with the fireplace and antiques for a late afternoon drink. The Garden Suites, however, are spacious and comfortable -- at least those with a fireplace and adjacent sitting area. Frankly, I'm amazed to see the negative reviews. One must remember that Mendocino, in general, is not -- and does not try to be -- Park Avenue or Union Square or Place Vendome. It's quiet, picturesque, thoroughly relaxing -- maybe a tad shabby in some of its details, but you'll probably conclude, as most do, that it all adds up to a wonderful place. And bear this in mind: while others may find other places to stay that have nicer rooms, I doubt you'll find a better-located spot than the Mendocino Hotel. It's right in town, which you might (mistakenly) take to mean that it's noisy and bustly, but quite the opposite is true. The main town is actually very quiet, since it's sufficiently far away from the main route (Route 1, running along the coast), and sufficiently close to the crashing waves, that it's very quiet, day and night. It's very close to the beaches, the cliffs, the open fields between the town and the shore on the west, and the shops and restaurants.
I'd second someone else's recommendation to book a table at Cafe Beaujolais -- BEFORE you ever get to Mendocino. And I'd skip the restaurant next door to CB: 955 Ukiah is the name and the address.
Noisy, poor service, bad attitude, mediocre food, high prices (only the last is true of CB).
To be thorough in this review, I'd have to tell you the exact room number to ask for at the Garden Suites, which I won't in order that it remain available to me next time, but I'll at least tell you it's on the ground floor and has a fireplace.