Not our cup of tea A review of Wine Valley Inn & Cottages

We spent two nights at the Wine Valley Inn & Cottages. I'd say that our stay was ok, but I don't know that we'd return.

Location: The inn is located in the heart of Solvang, making it a good place to serve as home base for forays into town, if you're into wandering around Solvang. It's also a good place to stay if you plan to visit wineries; there are dozens within a 45-minute radius.

Rooms: I liked the layout of the king suite; the bedroom had a freestanding fireplace and was separate from the living area, which was down a couple stairs. The bathroom was huge. The room had a coffee maker and a small fridge, which is always nice. There was a small armoire for hanging up clothes - inconvenient and not much storage space. The view from our room was abysmal: Stairs to the third floor on one side, stairs to the ground floor on the other.

The decor fell somewhere between unfortunate and horrifying. Our room was graced with two different patterns of annoying wallpaper. The bathroom was very, very beige. I don't think I've ever seen that much beige tile. If you like beige, you'll be positively giddy over its beigeness.

Perhaps the decor highlight, though, is the artwork. Most of the prints feature children that look depressed, alarmed, or about to break into tears. One particular print still haunts me. Two young girls, pausing to sit at the base of a large tree while (presumably) on a walk through the forest, hold each other and look at you with fear in their eyes, as if a large and hungry animal has discovered their presence. Their dog looks pretty alarmed, too. Our room had not one but TWO prints of this same picture. We got to enjoy this children-about-to-be-eaten scene whenever we went to the bathroom and whenever we left the room. OK, I've rambled a bit here. Sorry about that.

Noise: The inn is one block off the main street, and the environment is pretty quiet. However, the rooms themselves conduct sound from other rooms very, very well. I was convinced that our upstairs neighbors were using our bathroom. The walls, ceilings, and floors must be very thin.

Breakfast: Uninspiring. Carb freaks will love the cereal, toast, and danish selection. We had mushy apples as a fruit selection one morning. I don't expect much from breakfast at hotels-that-call-themselves-inns, so I wasn't that disappointed. Like much of the rest of the decor in the place, the breakfast room looks a bit like an assisted-living facility. Somehow, I get the feeling that much of Solvang looks this way.

Service: The staff was efficient and friendly. No complaints there.

Bottom Line: It served the purpose ok, but I imagine we'll try our luck elsewhere next time. Weekend rates are pretty pricey, but I suppose that's unavoidable in that part of the world. Some people would probably like it a lot, but it's not really to our taste.

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Wine Valley Inn & Cottages
661 reviews