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“Good value for the soak”

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Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa
Ranked #8 of 32 Hotels in San Luis Obispo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 27 December 2013

The rooms are somewhat worn, although there is fresh glossy paint in two tones, and they're obviously cared for. The bed is crap. It's a mystery to me why you would want guests to come and rejuvenate and soak in the therapeutic waters and then sleep on a bouncy bed with junky pillows.
Yes, folks the water is a bit stinky but it works wonders on your aches and pains and on your skin too. The overall atmosphere is quiet and reflective with the exception of ? Neighbours playing some foreign language media too loudly at all hours.
Avila beach is gorgeous, the trails and such are beautiful.
All in all an enjoyable stay, as I say , bed no good. Fail on the sleep portion of the break, which is why only 3/5.

Room Tip: I'd want a room on the upper floor, for privacy. Ours was on the south side of the harmony bldg...
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank sm_art_1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,287 - 2,293 of 2,645 reviews

Reviewed 20 December 2013

My wife and I have stayed here probably 5 times over the last few years because we enjoy the area and the location. We have always stayed in either a queen suite or in a West Meadows suite. In general, I have been satisfied with the rooms. During our most recent stay, we were in one of the West Meadows suites. The room was large and clean. In comparison to other hotels of a similar price, the room amenities fall a little short. The storage is limited and two of the drawers in the TV stand were broken, the carpet seems thin and cheap, the furniture seemed a little worn, and the bed was so tall, I could barely climb in it and I am 6 feet tall. Additionally, the West Meadows rooms have noise issues. They are on pilings and the mechanicals must be under the rooms. The water heaters were extremely noisy, as were the AC/Heating unit and the fan in the bathroom. Also, the walkway outside the room is elevated and noisy. All that being said, having the hot tub on the deck to use any time makes up for a lot.
My other concern is the staff. When you spend this much money for a room you expect a certain level of service. The resort routinely falls short in this area. The West Meadows suites are across the highway and over a bridge. There is no way to park close to these rooms. Ask for bell service on a golf cart. The desk clerk didn't mention or offer this service to us. It's a hike from the lobby to that part of the resort. I would suggest that you stay in a queen suite. The rooms are no better, the bed is a little smaller. You can park closer and there is less road noise. The one drawback is that there are garages under these rooms that are used for storage and they tend to open the garage doors early in the morning and make noise. While I've focused on some of the negative aspects, I'll probably go back. The area is nice and there's plenty to do on the central coast of California.

Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Spidey1165
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SycamoreGuestService, Guest Relations Manager at Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 23 December 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your recent stay at Sycamore Mineral Springs. We are glad that you were able to get away and relax here at our Resort. Thank you for your time and comments, as it helps us improve for the future.

We are so glad you have been able to stay and enjoy Sycamore multiple times. There is so much our Resort offers that every time you can focus on a different aspect whether it’s relaxing and hot tubing or hiking and meditating and dining. We apologize for the noise inconveniences you had to deal with. We are hoping we can rid of some of these noise complaints with our new renovations and reconstruction happening in 2014.

As for the level of service you mentioned, we have addressed this issue with our Front Desk management. There should be golf cart service mentioned to you at time of check-in – especially when a guest is staying in West Meadows. Fortunately, you knew to inquire about this, and please never feel bad or shy asking for a golf cart ride – that’s why we have them after all! Hopefully this won’t happen again and every guest will be asked upon check-in whether they would like golf cart service.

Thank you again for your time and comments and we look forward to hosting your again in the future!

Sincerely,
Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa

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Reviewed 16 December 2013

My Wife and I spent two days at this resort in a King Suite. The room was very spacious and clean. The furniture was somewhat dated yet in good condition. The King suite had a private balcony with a Fiberglass Mineral Hot tub. It was very relaxing to get in and out of the tub as you pleased. The room also had a nice fireplace.

The restaurant at the resort is great with locally sourced ingredients.

The spa was very relaxing and we both got the hot stone massage.

While the staff was not overly friendly, the were generally helpful and would greet you as you entered public areas.

Overall we will return to the property in the future without hesitation.

Room Tip: Get a King Suite as it is more private.
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank badgerlaw2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 November 2013

Staying at the Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort (the "Sycamores") was my second-worst lodging experience ever. (My worst, in Newark, NJ, included being awakened by the sound of plate glass being smashed, followed by gunfire and an unannounced entering of my room by the police.)
Lodging units at the Sycamores are designated by name, not Unit number. There are two problems with that: (1) you can't find your assigned unit on their sprawling complex by its proximity to other units, and (2) electronic reservation systems remember Unit numbers perfectly but evidently not Unit names, as described below.
We arrived after 6 P.M. The desk clerk assigned us to Room X. We tried driving close to Room X. Because it was dark and it is difficult to read maps in the dark, we arrived at Room Y. To the considerable annoyance of the occupants of Room Y, we made two attempts to enter Room Y before concluding that it wasn't Room X.
We then drove back along the route we had come but ended up parking much further away from Room X than before because of inadequate parking space. After we parked, I walked to the building containing Room X and climbed the stairs (there was no elevator). I tried to enter Room X. It was occupied. I tried again. The occupant demanded to know my name and what I was doing. I explained. I was informed by the occupant that the room was occupied.
Being unable to reach the registration clerk by phone, I walked to the registration desk. The only clerk there was busy on the phone. I nonetheless informed him that we had been assigned a room that was occupied and tossed my room key onto his desk. He ignored me and continued on the phone for a few minutes. It turned out that the occupant of Room X was on the other end of the phone, was quite angry and was demanding more than an apology from the resort.
The clerk (who had assigned us to the occupied Room X) was initially baffled. He queried his computer system, then stated that we had been correctly assigned to Room X. Eventually he stated that we should have been assigned to a different room and assigned us to Room Z, which was near Room X. He did not indicate whether or not it had the same amenities as Room X.
I then went to Room Z to determine whether it was vacant and whether the electronic key given me for Room Z worked (the key he had given me for Room X hadn't worked). Satisfied on those points, I then walked back towards our car.
But since I had not returned to the car within the time interval expected, my roommate had concluded that I expected her to lug all of her baggage to our room by herself. We met as I was walking back towards our car. Both of us were now very upset. Those feelings did not quickly dissipate.
The walls between units were paper-thin. I was awakened in the middle of the night by people in an adjacent unit. Later I heard snoring from that unit. You'll need earplugs if you stay here.
Comfortable chairs for reading, relaxing, watching TV or conversation? There weren't any. Chairs in an average Motel 6 are slightly better. I have a bad back and was in considerable pain when we checked out.
Here is more information you might want to know before booking a stay at the Sycamores.
Drinking glasses or cups near the sink? There weren't any. Even Motel 6 provides drinking cups for water. If you have ever experienced a dry throat during the night, bring your own bottled water or paper cups.
Some units are not on the ground floor. There was no elevator serving our room on the second floor. The corridor serving units above the ground floor was an outside, narrow ledge which made lots of noise when walked on. Anyone arriving after we did or departing before us disturbed our stay, just as our arrival and departure must have disturbed other guests. Motel 6 has outside ledges but they're quieter.
Only one flight of stairs served the entire building, was outdoors and was at the end of the building furthest from the roadway nearest the building, i.e., the worst possible choice for a single stairway. If your assigned unit is upstairs and at the end of the building nearest the only roadway nearby, you must traverse the length of the building twice to reach your room in addition to climbing the stairs.
Don't arrive after dark. Building identifications are hard to read. Signs directing you to your destination (e.g., hotel registration) badly need repainting. For first-time visitors, it is a complete guess which building houses the registration desk.
In many cases including ours, it was not possible to park anywhere near our unit. So you'll probably need to bring an umbrella in case it rains.
There were no manually-operated luggage transporters, devices available without charge at virtually all commercial lodging facilities of any quality. That, in conjunction with the unavailability of proximate parking and our upstairs accommodations, left us with these choices: (1) valet service; (2) a bag-free stay; (3) an unpleasant experience handling our own baggage. To make a rational choice among these, one needs to determine where one's assigned room is and the availability of temporary parking near that room, if any, and then estimate how arduous the trip(s) between parked car and room would be. My roommate and I agreed on neither the choice nor the process to use in making a choice.
The hotel lobby doesn't exist. If you wake up in the middle of the night and can't go back to sleep (because of noise in an adjacent room or otherwise), there is no place to go to read or watch TV; you must either disturb your roommate(s) or suffer in silence.
The resort dining room was a joke, unable to handle at any one time more than a small percentage of the total guests there during our stay. That feature would have been acceptable if there were other places to eat nearby, but there weren't.
Hand soap had an ultrathin cellophane wrap which I found impossible to remove with wet hands. Nor was the wrap discernible, even after trying to use the soap. (You don't need to know this if you don't mind having unclean hands.)
Sheets, towels and robes were very clean, indicating a professional linen service and putting Motel 6 to shame. (Budget motels are usually operated by proprietors who do their own laundry.) And the toilet paper was comfortable, unlike that of Motel 6.
If you're going to arrive late, don't bother calling to tell them that because they won't make a note of it. My surmise is that if they reserved a specific room for you, it might not be available if you arrive late for a weekend or holiday stay.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
9  Thank Charles C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SycamoreGuestService, Guest Relations Manager at Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 5 December 2013

Dear Charles,

Thank you for choosing Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa for your vacation and getaway. We were honored to host you. Thank you for the time it took to write your review.

We apologize for the room confusion you had to deal with. We try our best upon check-in to give a detailed map with the best route to your room drawn up. Sometimes these may still be a little confusing, so please, ask any questions you may have upon finding your room. Also, we love to offer help with your baggage through our golf cart service to your room and throughout the resort. We have this available for every guest, every stay, no matter the time.

All of the issues you stated have been addressed with the correct departments in hopes that neither you, nor any other guest will experience these things again. Thank you again for your time and concern. We appreciate it. Sycamore hopes to host you again sometime in the future.

Sincerely,
Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa

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Reviewed 24 November 2013

I stayed here with my wife a few years ago and the place is beautiful! Its hidden with lots of trees and covered with flowers everywhere. You can reserve a private bungalo to stay in or a room with a mineral spring. They are pretty secluded and worth the price. I remember reserving a suite with a nice size living room with a fireplace, a nice huge bedroom with a comfortable clean bed, and a private balcony with a mineral spring tub. You can also sign up for a complementry wine tasting at a winery where a shuttle picks you up from your hotel and take you to a gourgeous winery. The restaraunt at the resort is a very romantic place where they will accomodate your needs if you are celebrating that special engagment or anniversary. Overall its clean, the staff is helpful, there are things to do like go on a walk to the maze of stones. I can't say anything bad about this place except its not located in Nevada : (. But please take your spouse here and you'll come back again and again.

Room Tip: Depends on how selcuded you want to be. If you want absolute privacy get a bungalo. They are all pre...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Jason S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 November 2013

This is my second trip to Sycamore Springs, our second trip for an anniversary outing. The first time we stayed in a large cottage, which ended up being right on the very busy, noisy road that runs through the resort. This time we stayed in one of the king suites; through email, we requested to be as far from the road as possible. I never heard back but apparently they weren’t able to grant that request since we didn’t end up in a room far away from the road. If you have a place to ask for requests, then it would be a good policy to respond OR grant the request, or maybe both?

We arrived in Avila Beach/SLO early and were able to get into the room about an hour early; that was nice!

Several days prior to our arrival I made a phone call to the resort to request a late check out. The reservation agent was very accommodating and was able to promise a noon check out, which was okay since it was just enough to be able to take a quick morning walk, have a last hot tub soak, eat a leisurely breakfast in the hotel restaurant and get on our way back to Santa Barbara. He was pleasant and said to call the front desk on our checkout day to see if we could get an even later checkout; he said it depended on how busy the resort was going to be on that Sunday night. When we arrived they said they had NO record of that call, would NOT accommodate a noon check out but if we wanted, we could call in the morning and request it again. In the morning, guess what—no noon check out. That is bad, horrible customer service! Bad enough that it changed the tone of my review and how I will relate my experience to others. They should have never made the promise in the first place and, given we were there for under 24 hours but spent almost $1000 (on a room, dinner and spa treatments), you think they would have granted that small insignificant request - a request that they had ALREADY previously promised would be accommodated by the way. Oh well, obviously a management issue. As an aside, on the advice of someone in reservations, we reserved everything separately when in fact had we done the spa package special advertised, we would have saved a few dollars. That was no big deal, just worth paying attention to if you are doing room, dinner, breakfast, and spa while you are there.

Dinner and Spa: We ate dinner at the restaurant and got 1.5-hour spa treatments as well (not including 30 minute pre-soak in a hot tub). I will do a more in depth review of the restaurant, The Gardens of Avila, under a restaurant review. For here suffice it to say it was pleasant, satisfactory and very convenient. We would eat there again if we were staying in the resort. After dinner we had a Swedish massage and a hot stone message. Both were good, not great. My wife mentioned that the massage therapist asked if she had any special requests of where to focus, but then disregarded those requests. Again, bad customer service to create expectations when you cannot or do not intent to follow through. This seems to be a theme for the Sycamore Springs experience. My wife said the hot stone massage was still relaxing and enjoyable. All in all we had a nice time. We would use the spa services there again if we were staying in the resort.

Last day: Because the resort had reneged on its promised late check out, we left early and ate breakfast down the road at Fat Cat instead of at the resort. It was nice-really nice! But for the broken promise of the resort, we wouldn’t have found this little gem of a breakfast place---a silver lining! Highly recommend it if you are visiting the area.

I know my review sounds negative, but believe it or not, we would actually stay there again. We enjoyed our time in spite of the extremely poor customer service, mainly because we focused on what went well while we were there, and a lot went well for our trip and experience overall. Having the hot springs is what this place is all about. It is akin to eating in a restaurant that has mediocre service and food but a great view; you know why you are going and hope for the best in regard to the rest of the experience. If there were no hot springs, it is unlikely we would ever return. If we go again, we will remember that we have to adjust our expectations for customer service and focus on why we are there---relaxation and the hot springs!

Room Tip: Try to get away from the highway running through the Resort.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank santabarbaraserenity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 November 2013

A fantastic place up in the hills. $13.50 on week nights/hr/person for a relaxing, private tub up in the trees. Clothing optional after it's dark. Ahem.

Some complained about the lighting but I found no problems with it. The last thing you want are bright lights ruining the peacefulness.

Everyone we encountered were very nice and helpful. The girl even gave us about 15 extra minutes to get up to our tub.

TIPS:
- Make sure to enter through the gift shop at the West side of the parking lot.
- Bring a towel
- Call for a reservation (even on the weekdays)

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
1  Thank Erin M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SycamoreGuestService, Guest Relations Manager at Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 25 November 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you for choosing Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa for your accommodation and relaxation needs. We value your comments and the time it took to review us.

We love our tubs and what they can provide for people and we are always grateful and glad when people enjoy them, also. We are happy that everyone you had an encounter with was helpful and enhanced your experience. Thank you again for visiting Sycamore and we look forward to hosting you again soon in the future!

Sincerely,
Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort

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Additional Information about Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa

Address: 1215 Avila Beach Dr, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405-8048
Region: United States > California > San Luis Obispo County > San Luis Obispo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Romantic Hotel in San Luis Obispo
Price Range: £127 - £344 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 71
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort rests atop hot mineral springs and spans more than 100 acres of forest, hills and meadows on the picturesque Central Coast of California. An authentic California resort, the property features hillside mineral springs hot tubs, a beautiful spa, the Gardens of Avila Restaurant, a labyrinth, private balcony hot tubs, meditation gardens, and wide selection of mind-body classes in our Yoga Dome. Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort -located halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles is just a short walk to the ocean and close to award-winning wineries, golf courses, Hearst Castle, Pismo Beach, and San Luis Obispo. Escape to our historic resort voted best Spa and Weekend Getaway on the Central Coast. Experience rustic elegance in a serene and relaxing environment surrounded with the best California has to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sycamore Mineral Springs Hotel San Luis Obispo
Sycamore Springs
Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort
Mineral Resort Springs Sycamore

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