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“If you are in the area, consider this inn.”
Review of Ballard Inn

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Ballard Inn
Ranked #1 of 1 Ballard B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 October 2010

My wife and I and other couple recently spent 2 nights at the Ballard Inn. It is charming, although the decorations verged on the kitsch and knick-knacks seemed to be found on every available surface of our room. The breakfasts were wonderful, with a plethora of choices, all prepared well with good quality produce. We ate dinner at the Inn one night and were quite surprised at the inventiveness of several of the dishes. The raw fish appetizer was especially tasty.

All four of us had one complaint, and that was noise from the restaurant after 10:30 at night. We spent our days hiking about and were tired in the evening. Noise from the restaurant and reception area traveled easily to the rooms at the top of the staircase where we stayed. Our friends were in the annex and they stated they were bothered by kitchen cleanup noises after the restaurant closed and in the am with breakfast prep. If you come to the Inn, ask for rooms in the main building away from the stairs and I think you'll have a much more restful night if you are bother by such sounds.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled with friends
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1  Thank LJman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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142 - 148 of 184 reviews

Reviewed 13 September 2010

My husband and I stayed at the Mildred Room over the Labor Day weekend and had a fantastic time. Most of the rooms were located on the second floor, with the exception of 3 rooms located just outside the main hotel. The room may not admittedly have a "wow" factor, but it was quaint and clean, tastefully decorated and quite comfortable. There's no TV or phone in each room, but there is wireless access, which was a bit erratic, though I think the remote area was partially to blame.

Contrary to some reviewers that their room was noisy, I found our room surprisingly quiet (I am a light sleeper too). Our room faced the back of the inn (rather than the "main street," which wasn't a very busy street). I also noticed that some rooms are carpeted and some rooms have wood floors, which would certainly make a difference. The rooms pictured on their website accurately reflects what you get when you arrive (I peeked inside other rooms throughout our stay...when the door was open of course!).

After I booked the room, I noticed the 10% service fee per night, which at first I was a little shocked. However, after staying there, I thought the fee was justified. The staff were very attentive and courteous to our needs. When we checked in, we missed the 4:30-5:30 happy hour/wine tasting, but the front desk was kind enough to bring a glass of wine to our room. During breakfast in the morning, service was prompt and friendly. When we did make it to happy hour the next day (which consisted of fresh fruit, marinated vegetables, cheeses and crackers) the staff managing the wine tasting was also very friendly and helpful. Sure, other inns around the area don't have a service fee, but at least I felt it had some merit in this instance.

Breakfast in the morning was great - traditional American comfort food with ingredients that tasted like it was bought locally. There's a self serve station of cereals, homemade pastries that change daily (scones, cakes, apple turnovers, etc), fresh fruit and juices. The standard menu was a choice of eggs (cooked to order) or oatmeal, with bacon, sausage, potatoes and toast for sides. We really liked the bacon and potatoes. There are 2 specials each day, a "carb" special (Danish pancakes, french toast and regular pancakes) or an "egg" special (omelette, egg scrambler). Again, we thought the food was great and cooked to order.

If you stay at the inn, a HIGHLY recommend reserving a table for dinner. Chef/owner Budi makes some fantastic dishes. I had his signature duck dish which was easily the best duck I've tried. My husband had the seafood paella, which was not a traditional Spanish-style paella (it was more of a cross between a cioppino and a risotto per his description), but it was very tasty. This is definitely a restaurant I plan to return to the next time I make my way back here! If you are a foodie, I'm quite sure you will enjoy the dinner.

Lastly, I thought the inn was located in a very good location - a few minutes drive to Los Olivos, about 15 minutes to Buellton. In the vicinity is the miniature horse farm and lavender fields. Just down the road, you can pick our own apples (when in season of course), which was quite fun. During our stay, Fuji apples were the pick of the day, which was very crisp and juicy. You can even rent bicycles if you are more adventurous.

Of note - I would look on their website for special packages. During our stay, I added on the Restaurant package, which came with a $100 restaurant voucher for paying $50 more that night (so essentially we got a $50 voucher, which isn't half bad). There are many other packages I'm sure you would find useful as well.

For sure, I would stay at this inn again and recommend it to my friends.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Rebecca Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 July 2010

A beautiful inn located away from the crowds in a small town, but still near all the local vineyards. The rooms were quaint, good sized, comfortable. The restaurant's chef is right out of Chef Masters on TV. The food was incredible and very reasonably priced. Not to be missed. If you want to tour the vineyards but stay away from the tourists and crowds, this is the place to go.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled with family
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Thank thebigarn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2010

Our stay at the Ballard Inn was even better than we anticipated. It was charming, warm and very comfortable with many amenities. The staff was very friendly and helpful which greatly enhanced our stay. Our room was spacious and the wood burning fireplace delightful. The included made-to-order breakfasts were delicious and our dinner at the inn restaurant was exceptional. Afternoon wine and hors d'oeuvres were nicely done. The inn is centrally located to wine country, Solvang, Los Olivos, and Santa Ynez, and the surrounding countryside is beautiful.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank 2CaliforniaTravelers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2010

We had booked one night at Ballard Inn only to realize it was Super Bowl Sunday and no TV's in the rooms. I received an immediate positive response to my email requesting a TV for the room, and it was there!!!! While not wanting to spend hours in the room watching the game, we were able to watch what we wanted with wine and cheese during half time. All the staff was pleasant and helpful. Breakfast was excellent. We were delighted with our experience.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Barb g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 January 2010

We finally got to stay in this charming little inn after several years of just driving by. We live in the Ojai Valley so the drive to the Santa Ynez valley is a little more than an hour away. We traveled to Santa Ynez many times and only admired the Inn from the outside. Well we had a special occasion to celebrate and thought it would be a great opportunity to visit the Ballard Inn. We went for two nights and stayed in the Wildflower Room. They are running a winter special for $169 per night which makes this a great deal. We upgraded to a king suite with fireplace for $195 per night.

The bottom line of our review is that if you have the opportunity, you most likely will not be disappointed in the Ballard Inn. I can't think of a better place to stay in the whole valley. It is centrally located to all of the points of interest in the valley whether wine tasting, exploring Solvang or Los Olivas or even just traveling the US 101 highway. It is also in the middle of some great restaurants including the one at the Inn. Each of the rooms are different in theme, decoration and antique furnishing. Several have real wood burning fireplaces with wood provided. The rooms are very nicely furnished, very clean and spacious. There are no phones or TV's in the rooms. These are however provided in the downstairs sitting room along with books, puzzles and numerous board games. All the rooms are upstairs in the main building with 3 located on the first floor in the annex. The bathrooms are small, very clean but at the same time, non-descript. They are certainly adequate but the dreaded skin clinging shower curtain prevails. Linens & towels are basic and nothing fancy. No robes or slippers are provided.

They provide a great breakfast which is included in the room price along with wine, cheeze, salami,crackers, relishes and fruit in the evening and then cookies during the bed turndown service. All of these amenities are of a very good quality. Coffee, tea's, hot chocolate, etc are provided in the mornings and the evenings. off street parking is provided along with a few newspapers in the mornings. There is a great front porch with comfortable rocking chairs that is great fro reading or just relaxing. They also provide bikes but I believe there may be an extra charge.

The staff is wonderful! Very friendly and helpful. Jordan, the resident innkeeper, is one of our favorites. He could not do enough to help us with whatever we requested. But all of the staff we encountered was great.

Some great restaurants we tried in the area: Hitching Post II, Brothers at Matties Inn, Los Olivas cafe and the Los Olivas Grocery for wonderful sandwiches & wine to be enjoyed under the on site Oak trees.

When traveling back to Santa Ynez, we will stay at the Ballard Inn.

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank CarlOjai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 January 2010

My husband and I got away without the kids for a weekend in January. We chose the Ballard Inn for its location (near Los Olivos, but not on the main street), and quaint character. The staff at the Inn was extremely accommodating and very friendly. We dined at their excellent restaurant where everything was perfect. We had a well-trained and delightful server who hails from North Dakota of all places. It was really nice to have dinner with a staff that really knows what they're doing. She was very professional, yet warm and friendly. We stayed in the Mountain Room- lots of light and a lovely fireplace. Wine and cheese in the evening was very good. I thought better than other reviewers had made out. We love this hotel and will be back!

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank ColoradoLover65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ballard Inn

Address: 2436 Baseline Ave, Ballard, CA 93463-9711
Region: United States > California > Ballard
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Ballard
Price Range: £178 - £333 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Ballard Inn 4*
Number of rooms: 15
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Ballard Hotel Ballard

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