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“Loads of fun time at Catalina Beach House”

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Catalina Boat House
Ranked #20 of 20 Hotels in Avalon
san diego
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Loads of fun time at Catalina Beach House”
Reviewed 10 June 2013

My wife and I (we're in our 30s) bought a 2-night stay at this hotel as part of a package, which also included roundtrip transportation from Newport Beach, a 2-hour bike ride and 2 tickets to the Casino musem. We had a blast! Our room was ready for check in hours before the usual check-in time (so, we didn't have to just store our luggage there and wait--we could check in right away.) Our room was just a bedroom with a partial kitchen and a bathroom, but had a huge flat-screen TV and was nice and cozy. We loved the patio with a BBQ and table/chairs outside, which had a beautiful view of the Avalon Bay. We love Catalina, so we enjoyed perusing through the museum items at the Casino, reading about the island's unique history and culture. The bike ride was fabulous; the hotel staff (friendly and responsive) told us not to worry if we were a bit late returning the bikes, and we rode up on top of the hill overlooking the bay, were the big U.S. flag is, riding by Ada Wrigley's mansion, and then zipped downhill from there. On our final day we checked out and stored our luggage at the hotel while we went kayaking/snorkeling for 4 hours. I would absolutely recommend it, especially to couples.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank maradonov
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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151 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Fountain Valley, California
Level Contributor
227 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 June 2013

We read that the staff here is very helpful, and we definitely found that to be the case. When we left our luggage at the Hermosa Hotel at the end of our stay, the staff willingly agreed to charge my husband's cell phone in the office. However, the accommodations were not as great as the staff. Our room had two beds and a chest of drawers; two of the drawers were broken. The beds were high, making it awkward to sit on them to get dressed. There was a folding chair in the closet, but no place to leave it set up where it was not in the way. One of the pillows was awful; it seemed like a bag of rags, whereas the other pillows were quite firm. The toilet ran on if we didn't push the handle all the way up. Two of the four light fixtures didn't work, a problem for people like us who enjoy reading at night. When our room was cleaned, the maid didn't leave any coffee, and there was no blow dryer in the room. The patio furniture is rather shabby; one of the chairs didn't even feel stable. If you are looking for a hotel where you can comfortably relax on the property, this is not the place for you. If you are looking for decent accommodations with few amenities in a quiet neighborhood while you go off to explore the Island, this place might work!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Sheri V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
968 reviews
117 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 421 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 June 2013

With the exception of the staff, I would give it a 0 .

I have stayed in a lot of places all over the world, from flops to tops. This is just a sad place to stay.

Upside, the staff sometimes.

The downside.
The golf cart that brings you up from the sister hotel Hermosa, is broken, and apparently has been for a week so dragging your bags up the hill is just stupid on an island that has golf cart rentals 70 feet from the Hermosa. Why they didn't just rent one for their guest luggage and travel up to this hotel shows poor thought.

No Internet, we were given the code for logging in and at the same time told it works sporadically. Naw that was a big lie. Didn't work at all.

Paid an additional 150 for room 3 room 3 has an exclusive balcony with a view of the harbor, you pay for the table and view, but no one bothered to tell other guests that its not community use. We never got a chance to use it because it was always full of other people.

The blinds in the room are broken and missing parts, yep people can see in, the sun comes in in the morning so it's a complete joke.

The carpet is crusty, in bare feet, granted there's an ocean close by, but I live at the beach in LA and never had it happen.

Maid service. They did clean and make up the room that was fine. They didn't clean the patio, leaving trash and stuff on the patio, bird droppings, pistachio shells and other people's empty wine bottles.

It's inexpensive and maybe the above reasons are why, but there is no excuse for the downside, easy inexpensive fixes could make this much better. This is the high season here. Time for a major overhaul here

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank AARDVARKKILLER
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Palm Springs, California
1 review
Reviewed 10 May 2013

Really couldn't say more for the views, the staffing, the overall feel good feeling when staying at the Catalina Beach House!

Small and quaint but I could still make a meal in my room and save a few bucks not eating downtown every meal. The patio is a great place to socialize while BBQ'ing!

Had a great time and anything I needed was just a call to the front desk away.

Thanks Guys we had a blast!

Room Tip: Ask for the jet tubs, they warm you up after being in the ocean all day!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, travelled on business
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Helpful?
Thank MonSherri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California
1 review
Reviewed 6 May 2013

We found a great deal on a room at the Catalina Beach House and spent two nights there in a very quaint room right on the patio. Because it was so small, it had the feeling of being in a boat cabin, which we thought was cute. Even though it was very small, it had a kitchenette and a king size bed that took up almost the entire room. And the bed was absolutely the most comfortable bed we've ever slept in anywhere, including at home.

Scotty -- the desk clerk-- was amazingly helpful and exceptionally cheerful, too.

Though we enjoyed the hotel and our stay, we didn't realize the hotel was uphill when we booked. We're seniors and since walking is the main form of transportation, we'll probably chose to try their sister hotel (The Hermosa) a couple of blocks away next time we visit since it is not on a hill. The only down side to that is the Hermosa is closer to a lot of golf cart traffic, whereas the Catalina Beach House was away from the noise.

But if you'd like a good deal on a cute room with amazing beds in a quiet area, and you don't mind the hill, give the Catalina Beach House a try!

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Steve H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wilton, California
Level Contributor
1,353 reviews
225 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 794 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 April 2013

We got a package for $299.99 that included: Two nights in Unit "B" (Excellent), two RT Ferry tickets (as seniors it would have been $68 ea. RT), 2 1-Hr Segway tours (an hr. runs $42 ea.), two tickets to the museum ($5 ea.), two tickets to the Arboretum and the night Ghost tour, we didn't do the last two. But What a great deal! The room was clean, we loved the kitchenette, the front porch deck was great for sunning, a picnic, or just enjoying watching the little village below. The deck backs up on a nice well-wooded canyon. I feel truly blessed to have gotten this deal. We appreciated that the check-in was at the sister hotel Hermosa Inn at beach level. They have a new 3 seat golf cart to move you up to the house, the staff was friendly, and informative. We got in early to the room and after check out we stored our gear at the Hermosa Inn until the pm ferry to Dana Pt. boarded. I couldn't imagine a better cottage experience.

Room Tip: Top level is great, mid level has BBQ area
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ruthandvern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2013

I'm so confused by the negative reviews here! My best friend and I stayed here for four days in January 2013 and we were floored by how perfect our room was. Perhaps we got a remodeled one? Nonetheless, we went with the standard room which has two beds and the bathroom with the big tub. (We didn't use the tub but it makes for a very nice, roomy shower.) Our room had hardwood floors, wainscoting, a well-stocked mini kitchen with nice glass door cabinets, a big stainless steel sink and lovely tile. Our bedding was comfy and modern. The bathroom was gorgeous! Beautiful tile and a neat-o "waterfall" faucet fixture in the sink. The overall property is really awesome too...we just stepped out the door to the patio and a few more steps took us to an amazing view of the ocean.

For those whining about the room size---guess what? I've been going to Catalina since I was a kid and all the rooms in Avalon are tiny! (There is also no Macy's or Walgreen's here--it's a quirky little island, folks.)

It IS a bit of a hike to get to the hotel but we liked that remote aspect and it made for a nice, quiet stay. We checked in at the Hermosa (their sister hotel) and Scotty (he is awesome!!) grabbed our bags and drove us to our place. Regarding the complaints about the lack of staff at the Catalina B.H.--again, we loved the quiet. There was maid service every day and if we needed something (we didn't--what would we need??) the friendly staff is just a phone call and a block away.

The BEST part about this trip is that parents were also there, only they wanted to stay somewhere "nicer" for about $300 a night. After we raved about our room, they came up for a night cap on our patio and were beyond impressed. We had ice! We had proper glasses! Not only was their room smaller than ours, but they didn't have any kitchen amenities and my dad complained that he could barely fit in his shower. Hahaha, finally the kids win!

While there we did two tours--the terrifyingly fun "extreme" HumVee tour over the top of the hills (our guide was the awesome Bear) and we did a whale-watching tour in a high-speed raft boat. So cool!!! We also spent waaaay too much time at JL's Locker Room on Sumner Ave. They have pool tables, salty barkeeps and boy, do they make some nice stiff drinks. (We actually renamed it the "Hurt Locker.")

Catalina and its residents are fun, bohemian and laid back. This is a real mom and pop kind of place and if you are uptight and picky you should probably go elsewhere. If you love to have fun on a beautiful, non-commercial island, this is the place for you! Give Scotty a call, he will get you set up and take great care of you. And if it's the off-season he'll probably give you a good deal. I can't wait to go back!!!!!!

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
5 Thank MegK8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Catalina Boat House

Property: Catalina Boat House
Address: 200 Marilla Avenue, Mailing: PO Box 646, Avalon, Catalina Island, CA 90704 (Formerly Catalina Beach House)
Region: United States > California > Catalina Island > Avalon
Amenities:
Beach Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Avalon
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This charming property is located one block uphill from the beach in a quiet residential area still walking distance to the shops and restaurants. Modern kitchenettes and our sunny patios set the scene for relaxing barbecues with family and friends. Store your bikes in our lush courtyards or enjoy lounging on one of our public or semi-private decks with sweeping harbor views. We have some pet friendly rooms. This is the perfect setting for intimate weddings and small events and celebrations. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Catalina Beach House Hotel Avalon
Catalina Beach Hotel
Catalina Beach Avalon
Catalina Boat House Catalina Island/Avalon, CA

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