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“Great location, but old and tired”

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Asilomar Conference Grounds
Ranked #10 of 17 Hotels in Pacific Grove
GreenLeadersGold level
Maryland
Level Contributor
68 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Great location, but old and tired”
Reviewed 11 February 2014

This was a pretty neat place to stay. It's located in (and basically is) a state park right on the pacific coast. It was maybe a 10 minute walk from my room to the ocean. It's very quiet and peaceful, and the grounds are pleasant to walk around. Everyone who works here was also friendly and helpful.

That said, it's clear this place needs an overhaul. The room I stayed in looked like it has last been decorated in the 1980's, and there were lots of hard-to-reach places where dust and grime had accumulated and not been cleaned. The plumbing was also odd. To take a shower, I'd first set the temperature of the water coming out of the bathtub spout to be comfortable, and then switch the diverter to start the shower. The first time I did this, I was quite surprised that the water coming out of the shower was about 20 degrees hotter than the bathtub spout. The toilet also didn't feel quite sturdily attached. And in the conference facility my group used, the bathroom had these really annoying spring-loaded faucet levers that you had to hold down to get water out of.

The food, provided in the dining hall, was quite decent. There's not a lot of choice in the offerings, but they compensated by having different things available each day. Several people I was with complained about the taste of the water in the dining hall, but I didn't notice anything.

Wifi was adequate---it was on the slow side, but entirely usable.

All in all, it was fine to stay here once, but I don't think I would come back until it gets a facelift.

Stayed February 2014, travelled on business
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2 Thank a_traveler54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (227)
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Cotati, California
Level Contributor
64 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2014 via mobile

The setting here is absolutely beautiful. The walk to the beach is short, and the grounds are well kept. The location is what you are paying for.

We stayed in a historic building. The rooms were clean, but the furniture and fixtures were showing signs of wear, and frankly for the price, I'd expect a better appointed room. Also, the walls were thin, so at meal times and in the morning it is door slam city.

The on site restaurant is geared towards banquette service, so the food quality is mediocre. The breakfast is served in a cafeteria line, and then you sit at a table for 10, so expect to be social in the morning.

I'd definitely recommend this place for a conference, but as an individual traveling, I'm confident you could find nicer accommodations for the price.

Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank benjer71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
California
Level Contributor
74 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 January 2014

... drop everything and sign up right away! You are just a 5 minute walk from tidepools and beaches on the Pacific and a ten minute walk from the famed 17-mile drive. The comfy downtown of Pacific Grove is just a bike ride away - and contrasts well versus the tourist-crazed Monterrey zone near the Aquarium or the stifling uppity commercial strip that makes up downtown Carmel. Yes, the Conference Center is rustic with lots of "camp" feel from the TV-free rooms to the family-style share-your-table dining. But if watching the sunset through the pines and cypresses from the lodge while sipping your Zinfandel appeals, then complete the reservation form.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BirdBikingBuddha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunnyvale, CA
Level Contributor
379 reviews
89 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1,548 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 January 2014

Asilomar Conference Grounds is a campus with 31 buildings in some 7 clusters of buildings, with buildings within the same cluster of the same design. Buildings are named after nautical terms west of Asilomar rd, and after earthly terms east of Asilomar rd. The buildings in a cluster are designed to face inwards around a central courtyard, and not like a resort facing the ocean. There are both modern and historical buildings.

We had taken a walk through the ACG from our hotel in downtown Pacific Grove, and jotted down many pertinent tips about ACG toward getting a good room here.

1. I define a good room as an ocean view room and/or a room with a balcony with afternoon sun. Rooms with balconies have sliding glass back doors and larger expanses of window than a room without a balcony, and have noticeably more sunshine and daylight.

2. Conference attendees get priority over leisure guests, as they pay the full rack rate. You may book a reservation for a specific room, and get bumped later by a conference attendee, before your arrival.

3. Leisure guests may have to pay a surcharge of up to $50 a night to reserve an ocean view room. The rooms now come without breakfast, which costs $15 per person extra.

4. The ocean may be a blue sliver on the horizon in an ocean view room. ACG is at least a quarter mile from the ocean with minimal elevation gain, among the sand dunes.

5. Spindrift South is the closest building to the ocean, and faces the southwest, with no obstructing buildings between it and the ocean. All rooms in Spindrift South have one king size bed, with a balcony. Note that there is a Spindrift North, also with balconies, but facing the southeast with no ocean view, and no afternoon sun.

6. Other rooms with balconies and partial ocean views include: second floor of Whitecaps South and second floor of Breakers West. These buildings have two double beds, with balconies facing the southwest. The second floors have cathedral ceilings, and give a more spacious feeling.

7. Other rooms with balconies with afternoon sun but with no ocean view include: Breakers East, second floor of Whitecaps North, first floor of Whitecaps South and first floor of Breakers West. Each of these has two double beds.

8. Rooms with the best ocean view but no balconies are: 101-105 Long View North, 111-115 Long view Middle, and 121-125 Long View South. These are on the far northern section of ACG on top of a hill, facing west, and are designed like a motel, with external corridors, with people walking right in front of your single front window. In this one case, you park your car right in front of the motel. The disadvantage of these rooms is that they require a long upward trek from the dining room, are among the smaller rooms at ACG with two double beds, are former smoking rooms, and have antiquated plumbing and bathrooms. Note that rooms 106-110,116-120, 126-130 in these buildings face east, away from the ocean toward the inland forests, with no ocean view whatsoever.

9. The second floor of Willow facing the ocean has a king bed with an Ocean view but no balconies, with interior corridors, and underground parking. There is no elevator from the underground parking, so you must climb a series of stairs to get to your room. Also there is very limited underground parking, so you risk losing your spot if you drive out to dinner. These rooms have a large picture window, and are among the larger rooms at ACG.

10. If you require 3 or more separate beds, Surf, Sand, and the second floor of Windward will have ocean views. Surf and Sand do not have balconies, but private back yard decks with a view of the ocean. Windward does have balconies. These rooms may have a combination of up to three or even four singles and doubles.

11. Rooms in Afterglow have balconies but no ocean view. Afterglow has a surplus of underground parking, with interior corridors, and are located on the eastern side of Asilomar, farthest from the ocean. Rooms often have two double beds. There is an elevator from the parking area to the rooms upstairs.

12. Finally no review would be complete without mentioning that the ACG rooms come with no TV, no phone, no refrigerator, no microwave, and no sound insulation in the walls from your neighbors. If your next door neighbors have a crying baby or heavy snorer, you are going to hear it all night, with the sounds amplified through the hollow wooden walls. You can order a room with a fireplace but it will cost you extra.

13. And should you want an historic room, I would recommend a corner room, as they have the most windows, leading to more daylight in the room. All historic rooms however have no carpets, and so you will definitely hear every footfall of your upstairs neighbors.

14. Historic rooms and rooms on the eastern side of ACG have common living rooms with sitting areas and fireplaces. This is fine as long as your neighbors don't have toddlers and young kids running amok in the common living rooms.

15. Finally if you come here in June, July, August or September you may be able to get a room with an ocean view. However you will not be able to get a room with a balcony with afternoon sunshine. The marine layer comes in and covers the area with a layer of clouds, fog and mist for weeks at a time!.

Room Tip: Spindrift South has king beds with balconies and ocean views. The 2nd floors of Whitecaps South and...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Location
Helpful?
13 Thank robert c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Charlottetown, Canada
Level Contributor
238 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014

When we arrived at our hotel, Lovers Point inn, they didn't have our reservation on their system, although we had booked and paid in April 2013. They said theyhad lost it whenthey changed theur system... Oh well, hotels.com took good care of us and found us another place to stay nearby and in the end were happy for the mishap. The Alisomar is an awesome location. We enjoyed our stay and room; staff wrere friendly and very helpful. Rooms were clean, but no tv, which was fine with us. There was a great fireplace in common room and got to meet other customers staying there.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank colleens941
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 31 December 2013

I would stay at this place if they updated it a bit. The bathrooms were from the 1970's. The room was very cold until we had a technician come in and fix the heater. The breakfast seems to be a tad expensive for the fare. All in all a decent place to stay - loved the No TV in the room.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank S B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Penryn, California
Level Contributor
50 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 December 2013 via mobile

Yes it is old but it has beautiful grounds with wildlife running around. Many rooms have views of the ocean, some have fireplaces, most buildings have common rooms with fireplaces and pianos. A full good and filling breakfast is served in the dining room. There is a main building with a Christmas tree, couches, tables, fire. It is the most relaxing place I've ever visited. The staff is attentive and responsive to requests. The grounds are being updated and nice sidewalks are being installed throughout the grounds. I love it here.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank since1985together
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Asilomar Conference Grounds

Property: Asilomar Conference Grounds
Address: 800 Asilomar Blvd, Pacific Grove, CA 93950-3704
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > Monterey County > Pacific Grove
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Pacific Grove
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Pacific Grove
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2 star — Asilomar Conference Grounds 2*
Number of rooms: 312
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This refuge by the sea is a tranquil oceanfront retreat cradled by pine forests and white sand beaches. Situated along the shoreline of California's famed Monterey Bay, Asilomar offers historic lodging with views of the forest, surf and sand, plus unique conference spaces. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Asilomar Conference Grounds Hotel Pacific Grove
Asilomar Conference Grounds Pacific Grove
Asilomar Conference Center
Asilomar Hotel

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