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“Its weird and they have cake”
Review of Madonna Inn

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Madonna Inn
Ranked #6 of 32 Hotels in San Luis Obispo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 13 December 2013

Odd place, lots of pink. I have stopped in here for food a few times driving around the coast but never stayed over. Its just an odd place you have to experience.

Food is eh, desert is good.

Waterfall in mens bathroom.

Can't comment on the rooms since I have not stayed over here.

Oct 2012

Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank PeterOlson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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881 - 887 of 1,696 reviews

Reviewed 12 December 2013

After a recent stay at the inn, I arrived home to find a charge on my credit card that I found confusing. I called the main desk at Madonna Inn, explained my problem, and was transferred to the accounting department for resolution. Upon being transferred, a man answered and said hello, without identifying himself or the department. I asked if it was the accounting department, and he said no. I explained that the front desk had told me I was being transferred to the accounting department to resolve a question regarding a credit-card charge. He then acknowledged that it was in fact the accounting department. He said the person I needed to speak with was out at the moment, but he would have them return my call. I explained that I did not want to play telephone tag, and asked to be connected with someone who was available and had the authority to resolve my issue. In a very haughty manner, the man identified himself as a Senior Vice President and assured me that he could assist me. Needless to say, I was dismayed to learn that I was speaking with a high-ranking executive who had answered the phone without identifying himself or the department, denied that I had reached the accounting department, and then projected an arrogance that I found quite distasteful and disrespectful. I said I would like him to clarify the charge for me. He said he did not have authorization to access the computer system required to resolve my issue. I expressed my dismay that a Senior Vice President did not have such authority, but he was silent on that point. He took my name and telephone number, and he assured me that he would handle the followup personally with a call to me that same day. After I asked, he finally identified himself as Gary Tanner. It has now been a week since my conversation with Mr. Tanner, and neither he nor anyone else from Madonna Inn has contacted me. This experience makes me think that the company has lost sight of the hospitality in hospitality industry.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank zbrka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 December 2013

We booked this a week before Thanksgiving, without much research, so take this review with a pinch of salt in terms of any negative views (most are positive!).

Checkin: The staff were helpful and clear. Because we booked late, we had a different room each night (actually was nice to see different rooms) and how the room change would work was very clear. We also had some other questions later and they were very personable, which makes a huge difference.

Dinner @ Steakhouse: We booked into the Steak restaurant on Thanksgiving night. Two problems. Firstly, the greet staff werent very attentive or massively polite. Secondly, we were seated in an outter circle from the booths, which really changed the experience. Our waiter was very good, but frequently wait staff would stand nearby us (near the back of the restaurant) and chat / discuss things, which made the experience that bit less special. We should probably have asked to move tables, but it was a busy time and we booked in late so it was on us too. The food was delicious, no rush to finish up and plenty of time between courses.

Dinner @ Cafe: We had cake & coffee in the Copper Cafe one day, and late lunch/early dinner in it another. The food is great, the service is with a smile. I couldnt get over the fact the women have to wear these ridiculous heidi costumes, while the men are just in shirts - very out dated. I know it's a kitsch place, but either everyone is subjected to it, or no one.

Bar @ Steakhouse: Great chairs, great mix of clientele if you like people watching, delicious seasonal cocktails.

The Rooms: I liked them. I've stayed in boutique hotels before where the quality was higher. The price isnt well matched to the rooms, but I suppose it is for the resort and experience. My favorite thing was the lovely bathroom, great big shower and fancy toilet (heated seat, surprising at first!).

The Pool: We managed to get the pool & hottub to oursevles for about 40 minutes the day after Thanksgiving, which was lovely. Because it's up, built into the hillside, you can see the stars. The ambience is somewhat ruined by the music half in the background, but the huge hot tub, open sky and location make it a great experience. And it was fine temperature wise being there in November, heated pool.

Location: About a five minute drive away is a Drive In Cinema - this was a really cool experience (as non-americans), conveniently located and enjoyable on a quiet night. It's not far to SLO itself and is right off the 101, so very handy.

Overall Experience: Enjoyable. It's a mix between a resort and a kitsch hotel - enjoyable for a night or two. If I was to go back I'd go all out and get a ridiculous room, for the experience.

Room Tip: If you have mobility issues, make sure to ask in advance, a lot of the rooms are up two steep hills.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank SaoireSaoirse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this reviewResponded 7 December 2013

What a thorough review, thank you very much! I am pleased to hear the front desk staff was personable and welcoming and that you enjoyed the hotel amenities. We appreciate your comments regarding your Thanksgiving dining experience and this has been passed on to the restaurant manager. We would enjoy having you back to try another accommodation!

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Reviewed 26 November 2013 via mobile

We came in for one night - wished it was longer!! We have two boys and they loved our room!! We got the Travelers suite... Our boys love it!! Dinner at the steak house great servers great steak!! The bed was very comfortable - having Bfast in the cafe now!! Delish!! Already discussing our next trip and hoping to experience different rooms!! Love love love this place!!

Stayed: November 2013
Thank Lisajb1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 November 2013

Getting off the 101, you pull into a massive parking lot with an even larger structure behind it. Walk into this building and you are blasted by the overly-sweet smell of watermelon-sized cake and coffee from the main cafe. The interior of this cafe looks like it could be designed be Walt Disney, if he was tripping on acid and his favorite color was pink. Even the waitresses, in their frilly blue uniforms and gleaming whitened teeth, look right out of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (for all I know, they could have actually been wearing Snow White Halloween costumes).
This is not a place for those who despise kitsch -- this is the mecca of Alpine Swiss-American Overdone Pink Fairytale chic.

You make your way over to the checkin counter in a separate building, and right away see that there are 2 or 3 equally massive structures in the distance; these are the guest rooms. The exterior decor matches that of the main building, but one look down, and you see large boulders holding up the structure. Inside these boulders are the "rock" rooms, such as the famous "Caveman" room. I stayed in the "Kona Rock" room, and was pleasantly surprised to find that all the rocks were in fact
all real and not hollow or plaster. This, of course, made the bedroom and especially the bathroom, which is completely covered in rocks from floor to ceiling, as cold or colder than the outside at night.

Take three steps out of the bathroom, however, and you find yourself gazing point-blank into a gas fireplace whose mantle is completely surrounded by more large boulders. One flick of the switch sends flames shooting up from behind the faux logs, and almost instantly, the room warms up. However, this also gives off the distinctive smell of burned propane, so I decided to shut it off.

Once the burning propane smell subsided, I made my way to the king-sized bed. I will be completely honest in saying that it was the nicest bed I have ever slept on, but it is not the worst either. The sheets are on the rough side, and I have seen nicer blankets and comforters in low-rent motels, but the mattress is fine, and I slept through the night, with no soreness or discomfort the next morning.

I overall liked my stay, though I must say this is the gaudiest place I have ever set foot in, let alone stay overnight in. There is probably no other hotel like this anywhere else in the world, and I do not regret staying here at all. This place is ridiculous in the best sense.

Room Tip: Caveman is not the only "rock room"
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Alex S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 November 2013

This was the first time I have traveled to America. My friend and I were traveling from San Fran to Las Vegas via San Luis Obispo - just to stay at the Madonna Inn. We booked one of the Rock Shower rooms and stayed for one night.
The Madonna Inn is a piece of modern paradise with a country backdrop. While it is the only thing within a half-hour drive, there is enough awing to be done on the hotel grounds that will keep you entertained for long enough. No expense has been spared in constructing the individually themed rooms and unique landscape.
The dining hall is very... bold. An interesting array of red, white and every imaginable tint between those two. Stacks of decorations. Excellent menu and service though!

Only negative experience:
After checking out, we went to have breakfast in the cafe attached to the dining hall before setting off. We waited 15 minutes to be seated and waited a further 45 minutes before we both received a cup of complimentary coffee. Our order still hadn't been taken despite asking the waiters, twice. We left without eating after more than an hours wait. They were extremely busy and the waiters seemed understaffed. As we were leaving, the manager asked if we were happy with our stay. We explained what had happened and she was very apologetic and gave us the complimentary cups of coffee for free. Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the stay, I wouldn't let a tiny thing like missing a meal turn me off staying here!

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Owen T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 November 2013

We stayed here for one night in the Safari Room a couple of weeks ago. We had a fantastic time, the room was amazing and really quirky but very comfortable. We parked the car right outside, access was brilliant. The dazzling and twinkly lights all over the buildings was very pretty and we ate in the steakhouse. We had seen pictures but wasn't prepared to see the magnificence of the place inside! they were starting to get ready for Christmas, and there was no music on the monday night, but a group of local enthusiastic dancers, doing swing, which was very entertaining. Food was good, my steak was the best I had all week, and the cocktails were fabulous! Ended up having the champagne cake for dessert which was fantastic. The staff were courtesy and the waiting staff were lovely, well done and making visitors feel very welcome! We used the poolside area the next morning, lovely warm pool and very hot jacuzzi, a lovely relaxing few hours spend there in the morning sun, they also provided towels especially for the pool in the room. Robes and hairdryers and great toiletries were provided!!! The shop was amazing and I managed to bring home the glass goblets without breaking them, to the UK, shame they didn't have any hoodies in pink for me that day! All in all, we had a great time, and recommended the hotel to people we met in San Francisco! Sure to be on our list for travelling again!! Well done Madonna Inn!

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Jollygirlsouting
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this reviewResponded 7 December 2013

Thank for your recent stay with us and for the wonderful comments. So happy to hear the goblets made it safely home! We look forward to seeing you again the next time you are in our area.

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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 Madonna Inn

Address: 100 Madonna Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405-5489
Region: United States > California > San Luis Obispo County > San Luis Obispo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in San Luis Obispo
#6 Family Hotel in San Luis Obispo
Price Range: £162 - £234 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Madonna Inn 3.5*
Number of rooms: 110
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Also Known As:
Madonna Hotel San Luis Obispo
Madonna Inn San Luis Obispo
Madonna San Luis Obispo

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