A perfect location hotel on a California road trip: Casa Grande Inn

The pool is heated year round.

The pool is heated year round.

Finding the right price/right location hotel is a family road trip must. Too many miles between each stay is melt down material. Our California road trip had a perfect timing stop at the Best Western Casa Grande Inn near Pismo Beach.

best western casa grande outsideWhen we left San Francisco—the starting point of our California vacation, our aim was to take in an afternoon whale watching trip in Monterey before heading further south on the Pacific Coast Highway to Santa Monica.

The Best Western Casa Grande Inn, halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles off US 101 was just where we needed it to be–close enough to Santa Monica so the next day’s drive would give us time to sight-see, but not so far that we felt compelled to hurry past the gorgeous coastal scenery to get there.

Happily, the Casa Grande Inn reflected its California location. This 114 room hotel, with its Spanish hacienda style architecture, is clean, comfortable, and aesthetically pleasing. Our spacious double queen room on the 2nd floor was near the courtyard with its bubbling fountain. The heated pool and hot tub were also close.

best western casa grande lobbyThe lobby, where guests can get complimentary coffee and tea outside of the breakfast hours, is a place to hang out. Over-sized leather furniture, large area rugs, and paintings of western scenes are part of the decor. The fireplace, expansive tile floors, arched windows and doorways and winding staircases also create at a homey hacienda feel.

Unfortunately, our stay wasn’t long enough to enjoy the hotel’s library where board games are available for guest use. We also didn’t take advantage of the lobby’s large screen TV–or the sauna and the fitness center.

best western casa grande room resizeWe did linger long enough to enjoy the continental breakfast that included make-your-own waffles, fruit and yogurt.

For folks staying here longer than we did, the Best Western Casa Grande Inn is a place to utilize guest services. Staff can provide useful information such as tide levels and can make reservations for fishing trips and wine tastings.  Because Pismo Beach is  just minutes away, Casa Grande Inn is one option for an affordable beach vacation.

Old Mission Santa Barbara

Old Mission Santa Barbara

Each of the rooms that range from 1 King Bed to a 2 Queen Bed Suite has free WiFi access, a hair dryer and coffee maker. Some rooms have a microwave and refrigerator. Room prices range from $79 to $149.

It would have been great to have had another night here so we could have worked in beach time but we were on a tight schedule. We did have time to stop in Santa Barbara for a couple hours to visit the historic Old Mission.

Santa Barbara is roughly halfway between Pismo Beach and Santa Monica. I highly recommend a stop here. Founded in 1786, the Old Mission Santa Barbara includes a museum, a cemetery, a retreat center and historic church.

Best Western Casa Grande Inn
50 Oak Park Boulevard
Arroyo Grande, California, 93420-1812

Book online at Hotels.com or Priceline.

Phone: 805/481-7398

Post and photos courtesy of Jamie Rhein, member of Midwest Travel Writers Association

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