I will say up front that this is a very nice hotel in a beautiful, remote location. But when you charge luxury prices, you should deliver a luxury experience, and ours was far from it. So if the price were lower, my rating would be much higher.
We stayed at the Bodega Bay Lodge for our first night away from our baby. Since it was a special occasion, we splurged for an ocean club suite ($500+ for one night). From the moment we tried to check in, it felt like we had been relegated to low priority status. Maybe it was because so many of the other guests checking in were celebrating an anniversary, but again, we had paid a pretty penny for a suite, so I think our money was just as good. We arrived for check in at 3:30 pm, but apparently check in is at 4:00 pm and as I've read in other posts, it appears that not very many rooms - if any - are ready before 4:00 pm. A little strange, but we were happy to wander into "town" and come back in 30 minutes. Both times we checked in - at 3:30 and when we returned at 4:00 pm - we were treated as if we were bothering them. We asked about the possibility of late check out the next day and were told that late check out isn't available when they're sold out (we didn't know they were sold out until she said that), but sometimes they will allow guests to stay an additional half hour if we call the morning of to check on availability. An additional 30 minutes hardly seemed worth it, so we abandoned that idea.
The room (#703, Blue Heron) was nice, but again, not what we expected for the price. Our assessment was that the rooms were likely state of the art luxury about 10 years ago. And today, they really are nice, but for the price, we expected more. The bed was unbelievably soft and the comforter was really heavy/hot, resulting in poor sleep and one sore back. The walls were thin, so we heard a fair amount of the family next door. And it was the little things, like when we wanted to turn on the pre-programmed radio and all six pre-programmed radio stations came in as static because there was no antenna to be found.
We were starving when we arrived, and the Lodge is in a truly remote location so we asked about ordering room service, but none was available until the restaurant opened (at 6pm?). Slightly odd given the price tag for the hotel and the fact that nothing else is nearby. Oh, but the Lodge offers a wine and cheese reception each night, so we headed to that only to find mediocre wine, a slightly rude woman pouring the wine, and cheese cubes/slices from a local grocery store.
Our experience at the Duck Club Restaurant for dinner was another disappointment. The restaurant is romantic and friendly; it feels like a special occasion restaurant, especially with the pretty views and the ability to watch the sunset. But similar to our experience at check-in for the hotel, we were treated like the lowest priority. We were shuttled to the one table in the entire restaurant shoved in a corner without a view. One chair faced outward toward the windows, and the view, but the other chair faced a corner with not only no view, but also nothing on the walls to look at. My husband was looking at two walls all night. We began to feel like our guest record had been tagged for sub-par treatment. The food was truly underwhelming and overly salty. Nothing special, especially given the price.
But as I said, this is a nice hotel, just not for the price we paid. So the positives included the view from our room. We had a nice seating area outside with an unobstructed view; they give you binoculars in your room, which is a nice touch. We had a working fireplace, which we used. The room was spacious, with a separate seating area, and a very nice large bathroom and good toiletries. The pool and hot tub are great; we sat in the hot tub in the morning and watched the fog lift over the bay.
Overall, a disappointing experience for the price paid. This is a lovely hotel that needs to step it up a notch to justify its price.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An Unexpected Getaway in a Soul-Stirring Hideaway With its rugged shoreline and rolling countryside, the Sonoma Coast has its roots firmly planted in the land. The Bodega Bay Lodge—a Bodega Bay hotel poised atop a tranquil bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean—reflects the wild beauty of this romantic region and offers an array of incredible things to do in Sonoma. Watch the fishermen ply the bay for the day’s catch. Spot migrating whales in the waves. Scout for rare birds in a location prized by the Audubon Society and Alfred Hitchcock. Stroll two miles of soft sands, hand-in-hand. Signature Service Whether it’s our popular wine hour, in-room fireplaces or complimentary Taylor Maid Farms organic coffee and organic Numi teas in the lobby, our signature service offerings are noteworthy extras that make every moment something to savor. Our staff is available 24 hours, ensuring you have a memorable and inspiring stay. Complimentary services include: •Luxurious, oversized guestrooms and suites •Concierge services •Complimentary morning newspaper in the lobby •Ocean-view pool, whirlpool spa and sauna •Bay-view fitness room •Wireless internet access •Free parking •Taylor Maid Farms Coffee served in the lobby throughout the morning •24-hour business desk with PC and printer access •Complimentary wine and cheese reception (daily from 5-6pm) •Safety deposit boxes •Non-smoking hotel •Views of Bodega Bay throughout the property Services available for an additional charge: •Drakes Sonoma Coast Kitchen •Spa treatments ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Bodega Bay Hotel Bodega Bay
- Bodega Bay Lodge And Spa
- Bodega Bay Lodge Spa