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Aurora Hotel In Avalon
Inns within Walking Distance of California's Best Beaches

A stone’s throw from California’s best-known beaches as well as little-known gems of sea and sand—these inns offer close access to the ocean, bays, and lakes that make California a beach-lover’s paradise.

The Bed and Breakfast Inn at La Jolla is a historic property just one short block from La Jolla Cove.  It’s an idyllic place for building sand castles and admiring the picturesque views.  Stroll north along the sand to watch the seals at Children’s Cove. Guests can also partake in more active pursuits like kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving, paddle boarding, or surfing nearby. The inn is considered one of the finest examples of Irving Gill’s 1913 "Cubist Style" Architecture. The garden, originally designed by the horticulturist who landscaped San Diego's Balboa gardens, is a tranquil respite filled with ocean breezes. The inn serves a full breakfast each the morning and complimentary wine and cheese in the evening.

The Aurora Hotel, located on the spectacular paradise known as Catalina Island, is a modern
boutique property just steps from the relaxed beaches of the charming seaside city of Avalon. A confluence of cool style and warm hospitality, the hotel is a beacon of modern design that redefines the bed and breakfast experience. Throughout, guests will find clean lines, mod furnishings, and thoughtful accents that reflect the Catalina Island lifestyle. An ultra-chic roof deck features awe-inspiring views of Catalina Island and the Pacific Ocean. More adventurous guests choose to explore the island's remote windward side, where they can hike to some of the most unspoiled and isolated beaches in the state.

A block from the beach in Santa Monica Canyon, the Channel Road Inn offers a tempting alternative to big-city accommodations in the Los Angeles area. It's a scant five-minute walk from the inn to Will Rogers State Beach, where visitors will find not only the expanse of sand and sea, but also a paved coastal path and the famed Santa Monica Pier. Built in 1910 by architect Frank T. Kegley, the property is a rare West Coast example of a shingle-clad Colonial Revival home. While it has undergone extensive renovations throughout the years, the house still boasts many original Craftsman accents like the massive oak front door and Batchelder tiles in the living room fireplace.

Situated adjacent to the nearly 600-acre Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve, yet only four miles from Los Angeles International Airport, Inn at Playa del Rey is geographically inside Los Angeles but experientially worlds apart. From the inn, guests can easily walk to Playa del Rey beach, watch a great blue heron glide over the estuary just outside the inn, or pedal the ocean-front path on one of the inn’s bicycles. Close to both the ocean and the attractions of the city, inn guests can also easily access world-class museums, shopping, and restaurants. The intimate hotel was the recipient of the Condé Nast Gold Award, voted “One of the Ten Best Urban Inns” by Forbes.com.

Carmel-by-the-Sea is known for its man-made charms: cottage architecture, exquisite flowering gardens, and world-class art galleries. But the natural beauty here is also a big draw, including the pristine white sand of Carmel Beach. Coachman's Inn is situated right smack in the middle of all these delights. It's just a five-minute stroll to the beach. And since this beach allows dogs, guests can bring their best friends along; Coachman's Inn has pet-friendly guest rooms, too. The inn’s superb location, architectural charm, and attentive staff have been making first-time visitors into repeat guests since 1954. It's the perfect base from which to explore Carmel-by-the-Sea and all of the Monterey Peninsula.

L’Auberge Carmel, a European-style luxury hotel built in 1929 and renovated in 2004, is a close-to-the-ocean indulgence complete with fine linens, down bedding, and spacious baths with radiant floor heating and hand-hammered copper sinks. Just four blocks from the hotel, guests can stroll along the white sands of Carmel Beach, a sanctuary of natural beauty that represents the best of what the California coast has to offer. Linger among the pines and cypress trees for a breathtaking ocean sunset before heading back to a luxurious room for a private massage. Reminiscent of a French country estate, the historic hotel is known for its graceful architecture, personalized guest services, and European-style elegance.

On Monterey Bay and mere steps from the beach, Seven Gables Inn is one of the most iconic of the historic mansions lining the Pacific Grove coastline. The view from every single guest room is bound to include waves crashing along the rocky shoreline, sea otters frolicking just offshore, whales spouting, and spectacular sunsets. Along with the stunning bay views, opulent furnishings like stamped-tin ceilings, crystal chandeliers, ornate columns, gilded-framed artwork, high-quality antiques, and Persian rugs make the Seven Gables truly memorable. Just outside the inn’s door is Lover’s Point Park and Beach and miles of pedestrian and bicycle pathways running along the ocean.

The Green Gables Inn is a meticulously-restored Queen Anne Victorian with panoramic views of the Monterey Bay. Situated along Pacific Grove’s dramatic coastline, the inn has 11 beautifully appointed rooms, each more unique than the last. Guests can watch the waves from their breakfast table, and then step outside for a short walk to Lovers Point and the sandy beach. The inn is adjacent to the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail, which provides miles of walking and biking paths with views of the Pacific along the way. A stay at the inn includes a full breakfast for two, afternoon wine and hors d’oeuvres, freshly baked cookies and turndown service.

Perched on a bluff above Cowell Beach and the famous Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, the West Cliff Inn provides guests with both splendid views of the Pacific and an easy walk down to the sand. With a breezy, coastal-inspired décor and ocean views from many guest rooms, the inn blends the modern luxuries of a boutique hotel with the traditional amenities and architecture of a B&B. Guests can take in the historic boardwalk, bike along the water, or surf the waves that made Santa Cruz famous. Inn guests are free to borrow boogie boards, sand toys and beach towels for their day in the sun. 

The Golden Gate Hotel offers guests the rare chance to experience the Pacific Ocean while enjoying the sights and sounds of the city. In the hub of San Francisco, The hotel is a short cable car ride from some of the best waterfront views of the spectacular Golden Gate Bridge. At the east end of Crissy Field Park in the old Presidio Area of Golden Gate National Recreation Area lies East Beach, a vantage point that offers a stunning view across San Francisco Bay that features—from west to east—the Golden Gate Bridge, Marin Headlands, Angel Island, and Alcatraz Island. Nearby is Crissy Marsh, a tidal lagoon surrounded by trails and viewing platforms for watching the many species of birds that frequent the area.

Nestled in peaceful seclusion atop a bluff overlooking a mile of dramatic beachfront, the historic Elk Cove Inn & Spa features spectacular views of the Mendocino coast and easy access via private stairs to the driftwood-strewn beach below. Set back from the road and surrounded by native trees, a creek, and the ocean, the property offers a variety of guest rooms ranging from cozy hideaways to lavish suites with ocean views. An amazing breakfast spread is served each morning in the oceanfront dining room. A short walk brings guests to Greenwood Beach, a hidden gem that looks out onto a rock formation (Gunderson Rock) towering just offshore.

The Alegria Oceanfront Inn and Cottages is nestled on a bluff overlooking Mendocino’s Big River Beach, where the river meets the ocean. The only oceanfront inn in the village with direct access to the water, most of Alegria’s rooms feature decks that look out onto the sea. A short path from the inn’s backyard garden winds down the bluff, bringing guests to the wide sandy beach in just 200 footsteps. In addition to the beach, the village restaurants, shops, museums, and galleries are also within five blocks of the inn, making it the ideal location for exploring all that Mendocino has to offer.

Across the street, Mendocino’s Headlands Inn is also within a short stroll of the beach. Tucked behind a historic local church, the little-known footpath leading to the ocean is hedged with coastal wildflowers and native berries. The trail opens to a gorgeous white sand beach and a stunning vista.  Back at the inn, guests can enjoy the ocean views from the garden, the parlor, and select guest rooms. All of the guest rooms feature cozy featherbeds with down duvets and private baths. A gourmet breakfast is served each morning.  The historic, Victorian saltbox inn is also just a short walk from the shops, galleries and restaurants in Mendocino Village.

The Westport Hotel offers ocean view lodging in a remote village on the spectacular Mendocino coast. A few hundred steps from the hotel is a small private beach perfect for a picnic, sun-bathing, wildlife viewing, or catching the sunset as it melts into the Pacific Ocean. Though Westport boasts miles of hiking trails, unspoiled beaches, verdant hills, and secluded lakes, what guests won’t find are traffic, crowds, or celebrities. In fact, the hotel’s Old Abalone Pub, stands alone as the only dining option in town. The Westport Hotel is also proud of the absence of televisions and telephones in its guest rooms, making it that much easier for guests to enjoy the beauty and solitude of the coast.

Black Bear Lodge trades crashing waves for serene, crystal-clear ripples in a relaxed mountain setting. Just a half-mile walk away is Lake Tahoe, flanked by the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains and ringed with pristine beaches, providing easy access to leisurely pursuits that include boat rentals, parasailing, and fishing. With hand-hewn logs and meticulously crafted river rock gas fireplaces in every room, the lodge exudes rustic elegance. There are five well-appointed guest rooms in the main lodge, and three romantic cabins scattered among the pines. The one-acre property, lushly landscaped with flower gardens amid the pines, is also within walking distance of some of the best restaurants in town.


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Ginger Scallops with Artichoke Mashed Potatoes
From the East Brother Light Station's recipe collection, these scallops make an elegant entree with comfort-food appeal.
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Save on the price of admission with packages from California B&Bs that include complimentary tickets to local attractions.
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