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“Customer Service Not Like It Used To Be”
Review of Madonna Inn

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Madonna Inn
Ranked #5 of 32 Hotels in San Luis Obispo
Certificate of Excellence
Pismo Beach, California
Level 5 Contributor
88 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“Customer Service Not Like It Used To Be”
Reviewed 19 June 2014

I just stayed here on Monday and Tuesday with 12 teachers. We wanted all of the pink glam to help celebrate two of our friends who had finished breast cancer treatments. When I called to make a reservation, I gave my reason for the stay and asked if there was any kind of local discount. The person on the phone said no and was really not helpful. I was not to able to reserve rooms for my friends unless I paid one night in full for each of the three rooms. They charge $20 extra for each person over double occupancy. Then on top of that, there is a $16.50 resort fee each night. Usually, when I pay a resort fee like that, it includes wi fi in the rooms, but not here. Since all of this added up to over $330 per room per night, I only booked two rooms. Later, my friend called to book the third room and again asked if there was any type of discount. Once again the answer was no. About a week later when I was looking to see if we could find a less expensive room, I saw that there was now a discounted rate. We could book the Hike and Stay plan for a 10 percent discount. That makes quite a bit of difference when the rooms are so expensive. I emailed and was able to get the discounted rate, but it is really annoying that this was never mentioned when we asked if there were any upcoming discounts. Although the rooms were perfect for our celebration, I was also disappointed with the service. I have stayed here many times and always felt the staff went above and beyond to make you feel special. There was none of that on this trip. The front desk has no personality. They were really not friendly at all. One of our rooms was not ready until about 4:20. When we called at 4:00 (check in time), they said they would call us when it was ready. I don't think it would have been ready that early if we hadn't cornered a nice man on a pink golf cart who finally went and got us the keys. Also, we paid extra to have 4 people in a room, yet we only were given keys and towels for 2 people. My friends want to make this an annual event, but for the price we paid (even with the discount), we could rent a house somewhere for a week. I'll have to think about it before booking again.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank BonJoviGroupie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (422)
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Gilroy, California
Level 4 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 June 2014

Wow! If you don't like this place I think you are not a fun person. Ok I said it! I honestly don't get any of these reviewers saying about the horrible gaudy pinkness of it all. Didn't they know that to begin with? Anyway I absolutely love this hotel and wish I had stayed more that 1 night. It was our 10 year anniversary and we were heading up the coast. For our anniversary we chose the Vous room. Yes- the velvety dark blue room with the round bed and spectacular chandelier! Following tips on T.A. I called direct to book the room I wanted. I had a short list of favorites in the mid price range and asked the reservation desk lady her opinion and she said to definitely go with the Vous. So glad I did- it was so sexy and fun! The room itself is round too and on the third floor so maybe this made it quieter than other rooms. It was very clean and had all the creature comforts like bathrobes, hairdryer, a coffee maker and some wonderful smelling lotion (wish I had more)! The water pressure was great and the A.C. worked well. My only gripe is that the quaint little sink had barely any counter space.
We went to the pool after taking the many obligatory photos of our room. I should mention check in was a breeze and we received complimentary cookies and bottle of champagne for our Anniversary! So glad I mentioned it when I booked!
The pool area really makes this a resort! I bought a mai tai (very good) at the pool bar and went to dip my feet in the pool and boy- another surprise- water as warm as the Caribbean! I had been here for my bachlorette party 10 years ago in the pony room- the room with a carousel horse. I remember the room was really nice and the massage I received in the spa was excellent. Back then I don't think the Madonna Inn had a pool. The pool is a gorgeous walk-in infinity pool with Madonna mountain right behind it and a vista to the east of SLO and the Edna Valley. It feels kind of las Vegas without the hordes of guidos and crazy party atmosphere. It was a quiet mix of a few couples and families with children. Plenty of loungers to go around! There are 2 hot tubs, 1 being fairly secluded in a nook behind a gazebo and waterfall.
We opted to eat at Nova downtown on the creek instead of the Madonna steakhouse so I can't review that, but I have eaten at the Cafe twice and it was just ok, pretty slow service as it gets busy. The cakes are delicious and you should try the pink champagne cake at least once. We did go to the bar but after a late dinner it was past 11 and empty. The bartender (don't recall her name) was a friendly blonde woman. We were taking pictures around the place and she offered to turn on the big fireplace just for us and took our picture after seeing us struggle to get a selfie.
The next morning after loading up the car we gave ourselves a little tour. Many people were checking out and let us peek in the rooms. Housekeeping had some of the windows open too. This was so much fun. I could see the other guests were having fun the same way we were. This is a must visit hotel. Two big cheesy thumbs up!

Room Tip: call the hotel directly to book the exact room you want. Make sure you look through all the picture...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mommagarlic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Horsham, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 June 2014

A lovely and unique hotel set in beautiful countryside, although a shame about the traffic noise from the highway, but unless you have your bedroom windows open, you don't hear the traffic. We stayed in the Indian room which was clean and pleasant. Rather a shame though that it was difficult to sit up in bed with no headboard and three paintings set in thick frames, which were in the way on the wall. It would have been nice to have seen a colourful padded headboard, using the same material as the sofa, which would have added more character to the room. The two smaller paintings could have gone either side of the lights, and the rather large, but nice painting of the Indian lady could have been hung right of the wardrobe. The bed was however comfortable. It was a shame about the venetian blinds letting the light in the room as there were no curtains.
The bathroom was nicely fitted out with a good shower and my husband loved the electric washing toilet (like a bidet), and now wants one! The toiletries were good quality and a nice size too.
We dined in the restaurant which looked like you were in a lavish over-the-top hotel in Vegas. It certainly gave us plenty to talk about. We felt the food was very over-priced. If it was not for the fact that we were tired from travelling, we would have gone somewhere else. The food was nice but not of the quality to command those sort of prices. I had salmon and my husband BBQ chicken. When his food came, there looked to be so much, but there was in fact very little meat on it, and certainly no breast meat, but just plenty of bones. Rather disappointing.
One bonus however, was a live band playing/singing dance music (mostly ballroom style), which seemed very popular with the locals and we enjoyed listening whilst eating.

Room Tip: If you have numerous heavy bags ask for a street level room. You don't however get as much priva...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank CarolineSilver10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this review, 7 July 2014
Thank you for your comments and suggestions about the room and decorations, we appreciate that! We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed the stay and your husband enjoyed the amenities.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canton of Zurich, Switzerland
Level 6 Contributor
109 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2014

We stopped here on the recommendation of friends during our road trip from San Diego to San Francisco. The rooms can be pretty pricey but we stayed in ' Marguerite' which was a comfy blue floral intense space. For our rate, called the 'hike and stay' meant wee also got free pink sigg style water bottles in addition to the free cookies which were a nice touch. The room was fun and kitschy with modern bathroom facilities. The fitness room was a good size with a variety of equipment and the pool and jacuzzi was fantastic - warm, big and a great view of the area. We were very happy with the stay and would happily recommend it to anyone else looking for a fun stay in SLO

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Marichan623
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Berkeley, California
Level 6 Contributor
123 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2014

Great experience from check in to check out. Staff was amazing and even gave one of the Trip Advisor Kudo pins to the receptionist. Stayed in Swiss Rock. Very "red"...Rock shower was fun. Rooms are quiet, beds are very comfortable. Plenty of outlets for the electronic recharging. Convenient to the town. Ate at the cafe in the morning which had the best egg white omelet. Work out room near the pool had treadmills and weights. Pool, walking trails, hot tub, and great views. Wifi was a little spotty...Definitely an experience!

Room Tip: Any of them will provide you with something to talk about. when you check in you get a bag of cooki...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SilverStar-7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joe_Forgette, Manager at Madonna Inn, responded to this review, 7 July 2014
Wow, what a wonderful review, thank you! We are so pleased you enjoyed your rock experience!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Memphis, Tennessee
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 June 2014

we have been eyeing this hotel for years and finally were able to stay last week. we stayed in "rock bottom" which wasnt my top choice but my husband really wanted to experience one of the rock rooms. it was pretty amazing to see in person. everyone on staff is INCREDIBLY nice. the mountains are absolutely gorgeous. a lot of reviews complain about the non-rock rooms having worn curtains/carpet/etc but i think that adds to the charm. the bed definitely felt worn in but i found it to be so cozy. it was reminiscent of spending the night at grandmas when i was a kid.

the pool is amazing as well. we didnt try out the spa but definitely will for our next visit.

the pictures do it justice and its definitely worth a trip. its like stepping into another world. now that we have gotten the cave room out of our system, i cannot wait to visit again and stay in one of the gaudy, ridiculous rooms.

Room Tip: you cant go wrong here, they are all amazing.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Erin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, CA
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 June 2014

My husband and I recently spent the night at the Madonna Inn for our anniversary, and really enjoyed our stay! We selected the "Kona Rock" room. Check-in was fast (we were given cookies as we left!), and we were greeted in the room by a complimentary bottle of champagne for our celebration.

Bed was comfy. Decor was everything we were looking forward to, from the over the top pineapple chandelier to the rock walls. The fireplace was excellent for a gas fireplace (it felt like a full fledged fire, not a faint flicker). The bathroom's open shower was enjoyable and the toilet seat was even heated.

If you're staying at the Madonna Inn, you should be staying for its unusual rooms, and the over the top general design of the hotel. But I was pleased that there was more to the hotel beyond that, in the form of good service and a comfortable room. We unfortunately did not have time to try the heated pool or the spa services, but we intend to stay longer next time we return!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ZoomLA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Madonna Inn

Property: 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
#7 Family Hotel in San Luis Obispo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
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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