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Carriage House Inn 3.5

Carmel, California, United States

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Great location close to restaurants and shops
  • 15-minute walk to the beach
  • Beautiful, plush rooms with fireplaces, quality king beds, and coffeemakers
  • Some rooms have pitched ceilings, jetted tubs, and window seats
  • Free a la carte breakfast delivered to the room
  • Free wine and hors d’oeuvres daily in the library
  • Free coffee, freshly baked cookies, and fruit available in the lobby
  • Free Wi-Fi, and free outdoor parking
  • Daily turndown service

Cons

  • One of the more expensive inns in Carmel
  • Light on amenities: no restaurant, bar, pool, or spa
  • No pets allowed (pro for some)

Bottom Line

Consistently ranked among the top properties in Carmel, the upper-middle-range Carriage House Inn is as quaint and romantic as it gets. Rooms are elegant and cozy, with excellent king beds topped by quality linens, working fireplaces, window seats, jetted tubs, and a soothing earth-tone palette. Though this 13-room boutique lacks most of the amenities expected of larger hotels -- such as a restaurant, pool, and spa -- it offers a wonderful array of freebies that add charm and value: a hearty breakfast delivered to the room, evening wine and hors d’oeuvres, freshly baked cookies, outdoor parking, and Wi-Fi. Still, rates are some of the highest in town, so travelers on a tighter budget may want to consider sister property Svendsgaard’s Inn, located a bit farther from restaurants and shops along Ocean Avenue.  

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Scene

Quaint, intimate boutique with elegant interiors and great freebies

Geared exclusively towards couples, Carriage House Inn fits the bill for a romantic getaway. Its 13 rooms are housed in a couple of moss-green buildings with pitched roofs dating back to 1980, but after renovations in the mid-2010s, there’s not a trace of old-fashioned style. Everything here is designed to create an intimate, cozy vibe, from the lobby to the rooms and the services provided. The reception area looks more like a living room than a lobby, with a heavy wooden desk where guests are checked in, wooden floors covered with rugs, plush armchairs, and a bay window outfitted with a bench and several pillows. On a table covered with white knitted fabric, coffee, freshly baked cookies, and oranges are offered throughout the day. There are no restaurant, gym, or spa, but freebies such as evening wine and hors d’oeuvres, turndown service, and tasty breakfasts delivered to the room are wonderful perks for guests wanting to relax and feel pampered. 

Despite the welcome amenities, central location, and excellent room quality, the Carriage House Inn is one of the most expensive properties in a town known for its high accommodation prices. Though there are few hotels that can compare, there are several good options for those not ready to spend that kind of money. The famous Cypress Inn -- known for having been co-owned by actress Doris Day -- is a charming, dog-friendly boutique with cute rooms and a similar array of freebies as the Carriage House Inn. Carmel River Inn is a good alternative for those who don’t mind the five-minute drive into town -- it is simpler and a tad secluded, but offers quaint rooms and cottages set in 10 acres of lovely grounds, plus a small year-round pool. On the opposite side of the spectrum, those wanting something even more upscale may want to compare rates at L’Auberge Carmel, which has an excellent restaurant with an impressive cellar.

Location

On a quiet side street, a short walk from shops and restaurants in downtown Carmel

The Carriage House Inn is centrally located in downtown Carmel. Though the street is quiet and mostly residential, the property is a block away from great shopping and dining on and around Ocean Avenue. With free on-site and street parking, it’s an ideal place to park the car and explore the area on foot. The beach is a 15-minute walk away, as is the Forest Theater. Carmel Mission can be reached in about 20 minutes on foot, or a five-minute drive. Other attractions such as Robinson Jeffers Tor House, the Pebble Beach Golf Course, Gravity Garden, and Point Lobos are all within a 10- to 15-minute drive from the inn. The drive to San Jose International Airport can take up to an hour and 25 minutes.

Rooms

Elegant rooms with great beds, working fireplaces, jetted tubs, and free Wi-Fi

The Carriage House Inn has a total of 13 rooms, all done up in a soothing earth-tone palette. Decor is elegant, stylish, and tasteful, with beige walls, tufted benches in Prussian blue, handsome dark-wood furniture, exposed stone accents, and white shutters. The quaint, romantic style of common areas continues in rooms, which feature working fireplaces, excellent king beds with several pillows and soft duvets, and window seats in many. All rooms and suites are large enough to fit at least a small sitting area, complete with a couple of plush armchairs and a coffee table, while units on top floors have pitched ceilings with exposed wooden beams. 

Standard amenities include ceiling fans, iPod docks, flat-screen TVs, Keurig coffeemakers, safes, and minibars. Wi-Fi is free. Bathrooms are clean and big, with either jetted shower/tub combos, or separate walk-in showers and deep whirlpool tubs. Robes, quality toiletries, and hairdryers are provided in all rooms. 

Features

Free in-room breakfast, and wine and hors d’oeuvres hours

As is typical with a bed-and-breakfast property, Carriage House Inn lacks a full restaurant, pool, spa, and gym. Instead, it offers a handful of excellent free perks. A guest favorite is the free, tasty breakfast that's delivered to each room every morning. Although the spread doesn’t include American breakfast items such as scrambled eggs and bacon, guests can choose from a list of options that include quiche, frittata, and other savory foods, as well as pastries, breads, juice, and hot drinks. Another perk guests rave about is the daily wine and hors d’oeuvres hour, which is a great chance to mingle with other couples while sipping on quality California wines. 

Additional freebies include freshly baked cookies in the lobby, on-site parking, and daily turndown service complete with chocolates. No pets are allowed on-site.

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Things You Should Know About Carriage House Inn

Address

Junipero between 7th & 8th Avenue, Carmel, California 93921, United States

Phone

(831) 625-2585

Room Types

  • Deluxe King Room
  • Deluxe King Room W/ Fireplace & Jacuzzi
  • Deluxe King Room W/ Jetted Tub
  • Large Deluxe King Room

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