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“The very BEST for traveling with your dog”
Review of The Cliffs Resort

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The Cliffs Resort
Ranked #12 of 29 Hotels in Pismo Beach
Certificate of Excellence
San Jose, CA
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“The very BEST for traveling with your dog”
Reviewed 31 August 2010

My husband and I wanted a few days away at a beach location where our dog, a St. Bernard, was welcome. After reading about the The Cliffs dog policy, I wanted to give them a try, as the hotel was an easy traveling distance from our home.

From the very first moment we arrived, every staff member treated us AND our dog as welcome guests. The dog bed and dog bowls in the room were more than large enough, even for our St. Bernard. We were allowed to take her with us to the restaurant, at one of the outdoor tables. Water bowls were readily available, and if we wanted, we could even order something from the doggy menu for our furry companion.

Access to the beach is very convenient. Our room was located on the first floor (as are all the rooms where dogs are allowed), with a sliding glass door opening onto a small patio area. Beyond the patio was a beautiful grass area. Although our room faced the ocean, we couldn't actually see the ocean from our windows - only the upper floors truly have an ocean view. This is something to keep in mind when making a reservation. Personally, I liked the convenience of the first floor location, and didn't consider the view an issue.

Our only negative experience (and it was fairly minor) was at the restaurant. It was difficult to get service out on the terrace unless you actually went inside and told someone you were there. It wasn't so much of a problem for us since there were two of us, and one person could wait outside with the dog. It could be an a much bigger issue if you're there by yourself with your dog. Otherwise, the service was good (once you got it) and the food was great.

A couple of suggestions that would have made our stay even better: it would be great to have a location outside where you can rinse the sand off your dog after playing on the beach. Although we were invited to use the spot set up for people to rinse their feet, it's a spray nozzle attached to a post and it's difficult to position a dog under the spray (we ended up using the shower in our room). A hand-held nozzle on a hose would be ideal. The other suggestion would be to have more fresh fruit choices in the breakfast buffet.

I loved our stay there, and I hope I have the opportunity to return soon.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank pjmorrison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 6 September 2010
I appreciate your suggestions, it's always nice to get tips on how to improve our service. Its nice to be able to bring your dog on a trip with you, and still enjoy everything from the beach to the restaurant. There are a lot of hotels that impose weight limits or really restrictive policies or fees; we think it's important that guests who bring their dogs feel as welcome as those who don't normally travel with pets! It seems to be a good combination of travellers, since most owners do a great job of keeping their dogs leashed and pets that get to go on vacation are usually amazingly well behaved. Its fun for guests (and employees!) to see all the people and dogs playing and relaxing at the resort.
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Santa Barbara, California
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 August 2010

I went on a getaway trip alone (well with my dog), to write, visit the beach, just relax. This was the perfect spot. I splurged and got a King suite, they had to put me on the ground floor because I had a dog with me, but it was a great room, beautiful bathroom, beyond comfortable bed, great small patio overlooking the ocean, even on the ground floor. And they have a special for travelers with pets, perfect, treated my furry friend like a guest too.

Made it even more relaxing with a deep tissue massage one day, followed by a hot stone the next. Great prices, great massages, great stay.

Check out the restaurant next door, great for an inexpensive good lunch and glass of wine.

Only slight con, parking can be limited, but they do offer valet.

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank GypsyTravellerCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 6 September 2010
Good to hear you enjoyed the suite, the massages, and Marisol! It's nice to be able to have dogs stay on the first floor (easy access to the lawn and the beach in a room near other animal lovers), and I'm glad to see that you felt the dog had as luxurious a time as you did.
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San Francisco
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2010

Our trip in August 2010 was our third trip to the Cliffs and by far the best we've had. Overall, the hotel is great for families with kids and pets (we brought our dog this time) and with the exception of a few issues, we had a great time.

Pros:
- Kid friendly. The hotel has activities and an arts/crafts room for kids and you have the opportunity to drop off your kids for an hour or so to have some grown up time. Activities included Bocce ball, trips to the beach, and movies by the fire pit. They have art activities as well. What a great service! Our son had a blast.
- Pet friendly. For a $50 fee, you can bring your pet, stay on the pet designated floor and your room comes complete with a dog bowl, bed and a little bag of treats. They also provide baggies for picking up after your dog outside.
- Fantastic staff. Mostly college kids and just as nice as they can be, responsive and great service.
- Great breakfast buffet. And the wait staff were fantastic.
- Beautiful scenery. The hotel is a hop, skip and jump away from the beach.
- Great pool area. Our son had a great time spashing around while I caught up on my reading.

Cons:
- Tiny bathroom; no whirlpool bath.
- Rooms outdated.
- Beds weren't very comfortable.
- Tons of extra charges: The first two visits, I don't remember being charged for breakfast. Most hotels don't do that. Then there is the resort fee (what's that??) - doesn't my $279.00 per night fee cover using the pool?
- Overpriced spa: I did the $65.00 30 minute swedish massage because I couldn't stomach paying $100 for a 60 minute. When I asked for extra pressure, more like a sports massage, the therapist said that would be another $20.00. I live in San Francisco, and our high-end spas generally don't charge more than $85.00 for a full hour and the amount of pressure is never an issue.

Overall, we really liked the hotel and would recommend it but I think next time we will not be coming back during peak season. I felt a little nickel and dimed this time around.

Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
Helpful?
Thank mkhughes11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 6 September 2010
How great to hear such high praise for our staff and activities program! A lot of our employees are studying Recreation and Tourism, and working at The Cliffs gives them a chance to get experience and use what they've heard in school (the activities program was actually developed this year by interns from the program!). Their enthusiasm is a huge part of our success and really matches our style of service. I'm sorry you felt nickel-and-dimed this summer; we've got some good deals coming up for our “off season”, so keep an eye out for discounts and packages. The last two weeks in December we usually start up the Activities program again, so we hope to see you and your son back soon!
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California
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2010

We stayed at The Cliffs Resort for a wedding. It was a beautiful setting, overlooking the cliffs and beach. We drove to Morrow Bay for breakfast, quaint and nice little beach town. The weather was perfect, so that was a plus. But, even if the weather wasn't sunny, the location and Hotel are wonderful. The Restaurant, Bar and Pool are great. They have nice patio furniture at the outside dining and heaters and a great fire pit by the pool. They have thought of everything. The rooms were very nice, even a fireplace! I would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank mamagrigs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 6 September 2010
It sounds like you got to take advantage of everything while you were with us! Even when we have those foggy mornings, we try to keep everyone comfortable: heaters at the restaurant, firepit outside, pool kept at 85 degrees. Those 5th floor rooms with fireplaces can also be very nice on a chilly night. I'm glad to hear you got to enjoy some beautiful summer weather, and we look forward to having you back soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vacaville, California
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 July 2010

I had trouble making our reservations online but was treated with excellent "guest" status once I made a phone call. The girl was very patient and answered every question in detail. When we arrived, we were greeted by AJ who provided excellent customer service and some great incentives for our stay. My wife and I were celebrating our first year of marriage so we wanted something nice and relaxing. We got a room that overlooked the ocean and the pool. When we first stepped into the room, the view from our room was simply breathtaking! The bathroom was a bit small - but served the purpose. The beds were large and comfortable with a nice new TV with plenty of options. We had a private balcony which overlooked the pool and glazed into the ocean...BEAUTIFUL!!! We sat out at least once a day taking in the sounds of nature.

We then headed to the pool which was a little crowded but we still enjoyed the time there. David, Ben and Nicole provided guest with whatever their needs were for an enjoyable time. The bar next to the pool has an outdoor patio that looks out over the ocean and they serve great appetizers and drinks. The next morning, we got the inclusive breakfast, which was a buffet style which was nice with made to order omelets, eggs and waffles. Again great job by the staff!
The front desk was very helpful with directions and suggestions. One suggestion, a wine tour, was really nice as we enjoyed a free shuttle and tasting, which was provided at one of the local wineries. Overall, our trip had it all - relaxation, fun and great service!! So much, we decided to stay an additional day. Andrew, one of the managers on staff, took care of the changes with professionalism and the quality of customer service expected during a romantic getaway. Based on my discussions and dealings with him, I can see why the staff "appears" to enjoy what they do. Great Resort which will only continue to get better. Thanks for a memorable time. As Arnold would say..."We'll be back"!!!

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank DoctorRed_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 15 August 2010
It's good to hear that our reservationists were able to help you after the internet didn't work out so well; it's always nice to get a preview of the service level of the property by speaking with people actually there! Everyone working here really is having a great time, and I'm happy to see that Andrew could convey that to you in your interactions.

I'm so glad you had a great first anniversary and that we got to keep you here for an extra night. The free Laetitia shuttle is a great amenity that is a new addition to the local winery scene, and it gives our guests a chance to check out a beautiful winery that's just south of us without having to worry about driving there and back after tasting.

We look forward to having you back again soon!
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Santa Clarita, California
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 July 2010

The drive up the coast in July, from sweltering inland Los Angeles county was magnificent as usual. Upon driving up to the Cliffs Hotel property, The pictures online were a bit exaggerated as to the scale of the place. I was a little disappointed, as I expected more of an upscale resort. The hotel property was on a gorgeous bluff above the sea though, and I adored my view of San Luis Bay from our balcony. I was fortunate to have a summer package with a Sunday arrival, stay 3 nights, get 1 free for $189. per night plus taxes, resort fees, and 2 free adult breakfast buffets. Our partial-ocean view room on the quiet north end of the property was the best location and view. Whoever decorated the rooms was quite off-scale, with over sized chairs and shutter doors leading to blank open holes in the room. The sliding glass doors leading to a too narrow balcony were very heavy and did not slide without grinding. The bathroom was a total disappointment. The restaurant located next door was also decorated in the same manner. Very over-priced fare, with extremely bad service, actually no service unless you step up and demand it. The happy hour at the bar was the best deal with a fabulous clam chowder and free taco bars and theme oyster and wine nights, but limited on the type of drinks or appetizers which were discounted. If you can get a table you were even luckier to get a waiter. The teens did not like the pool/ spa. The best bet was the public trail to the shore that had marvelous tide pools. The horror came when I checked out and was told very loudly at the small front desk that the bellman who carried my bags down was requested to tell them if my room smelled of smoke, and he had reported yes to the behind the scenes unruly management. I would be slapped with a $250 cleaning fee. We never smoked in the room and they clearly were trying to scam us into paying more for our room. I wish I had never left the 105 degree inland valley.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank lorilovely
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 29 July 2010
Unfortunately, while we have guests sign in at registration to acknowledge the cleaning fee for rooms affected by smoking, those who smoke on the balcony can get some of the odor drifting into their room with them or through other guests' open sliding glass doors. Because we insist that linens and carpets are fresh for the next check in, we only allow smoking by the outdoor seating at the restaurant (where nonsmokers can sit inside to avoid it if they choose, as it does not affect those indoors). Since I spent some time trying to re-explain the reasoning behind the smoking policy and inspecting the room with the guest as well as her family members, I was under the impression that we had reached an agreement when she did depart.

I am sorry that it seemed like we were pulling a “scam”, as we're happy to give deals like the Stay 3, Get 1 Free whenever we can, and I hope that most of our hotel guest know that we are very upfront from reservations to registration to checkout with each of our policies and charges. This response does help us craft our wording at registration even more specifically so that guests (smoking and non) know that The Cliffs is a nonsmoking property and disappointments like this can be avoided.
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Ontario, Calif
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 16 July 2010

Absolutey beautiful setting and view. From our window was a fantastic view of the pool, grounds and ocean. The room had a balcony with chairs you could sit at and enjoy the view. The rooms were good size, very nicely furnished and very clean. The personnel were very helpful, nice and friendly. They have a great breakfast buffet with made to order omlettes which were delicious. We can"t wait to go back again.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sasysandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at The Cliffs Resort, responded to this review, 29 July 2010
Well, we can't wait for you all to come back again! I am definitely glad to see that the furnishings have improved the rooms since last year, and I am proud to hear that my staff created such a welcoming environment. Everyone from the omelet chefs to the Front Desk are as happy as you are to be here, and I'm glad you enjoyed your time with us!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Cliffs Resort

Property: The Cliffs Resort
Address: 2757 Shell Beach Rd, Pismo Beach, CA 93449-1602
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > San Luis Obispo County > Pismo Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Pismo Beach
#6 Family Hotel in Pismo Beach
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Pismo Beach
#10 Business Hotel in Pismo Beach
#11 Romantic Hotel in Pismo Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Cliffs Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 165
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Oceanfront full-service resort with sweeping ocean views, beautifully located 100 feet above Shell & Pismo Beaches. Deluxe guest rooms with private balcony and mountain, pool or ocean views. Friday night wine and cheese reception and Saturday Sangria Reception. Heated, outdoor oceanfront pool, new Spa diaFeliz and 24-hour fitness center. Full service restaurant with room service, focusing on fresh, local produce and providers, as well as an oceanfront lounge with Happy Hour specials Monday through Friday. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Daily, as well as Sunday Brunch. Live music select days throughout the year. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Cliffs Hotel Pismo Beach
Cliffs Hotel Pismo Beach
Cliffs Resort Pismo Beach
Cliffs Pismo Beach
Pismo Beach Cliff Resort

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