People sometimes ask us why we travel from a beach city like San Diego to other beach cities like Santa Barbara, Loreto or Mendocino. The reality is that we just love being by the ocean – doesn’t matter if the water is cold, or the beach covered in soft, white sand. Both kids and parents are just more relaxed near the ocean. So when we were invited to visit Monterey Bay by The Cannery Row Company, we immediately said yes! On our recent trip there, we had the distinct privilege of being hosted by the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa. It really is one of the best hotels for families in Monterey.
Best Hotels for Families in Monterey
One of the things that makes the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa one of the best hotels for families in Monterey is its stunning location. Positioned on the former site of a wealthy family’s mansion, the Monterey Plaza is situated right on the water’s edge. The hotel overlooks the expanse of Monterey Bay looking north, with easy views east towards the marinas and west along the coastline. Just steps away from all the interesting activities along Cannery Row, the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa is centrally located in town as well.
Gorgeous Grounds/Great Spaces
One of the things we loved most about the Monterey Plaza is the grounds. There are so many great spaces in and around this hotel, it was fun to explore and discover one after the other. For one thing, there is the enormous plaza fronting the bay that separates the main hotel buildings from each other. A fantastic fire pit is located here, surrounded by comfortable seating. We saw many a family cuddle next to the warm flames as they watched the waves.
Inside the hotel, the lobby is enormous and full of different places to hang out, sit and read or people watch. Of course, everything is situated to maximize the tremendous views from this hotel. When we first checked in and were waiting for our luggage, we sat in the lobby and just stared out at the vast ocean, punctuated with waves and sail boats.
Spacious Guest Rooms
Our rooms were enormous, and we were fortunate to be given a suite with a giant living room area. It was so giant, in fact, that there was a living room, dining room, two balconies with outdoor seating and a grand piano! Yes, you heard that right – a grand piano in our living room. And even with all that, there was still a ton of space to move around.
The living room faced Monterey Bay, so our view was overlooking the plaza and the ocean beyond. It was a great place to sit and drink my morning coffee, I will tell you that.
Our separate bedroom contained a king bed, dresser, writing desk, and comfy chairs. There were two more balconies off of this room as well. The bed was super comfortable too.
The girls were given an adjoining room with two queen beds, large bathroom and yes, another balcony. Together our family occupied more footage than one entire floor of our home back in San Diego. It was – impressive.
World Class Spa
Sometimes hotels have spas, and sometimes hotels have great spas. But if you are going to put the word spa in your hotel’s name, you better deliver. And Monterey Plaza Hotel & SPA definitely delivers. The Vista Blue Spa is not enormous, but it is extremely well appointed. There is an outdoor deck with two hot tubs that overlook the bay through glass walls. Nearby, there is a fireplace where flames warm guests as they towel off from exiting the tubs. Honestly, it was so peaceful out here we could have stayed all day.
Inside, the treatment rooms are comfortable and welcoming. They smell like that special spa scent that relaxes me as soon as I breathe it in. I really needed a good massage, and my therapist delivered. She just the right amount of pressure and relaxation to coax my muscles into the zen mode. It was so good, I may or may not have fallen asleep for a second. I know I’m having a great massage when I wake myself up with a loud snore!
Nearby Activities at Cannery Row
Because the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa is located right at the entrance to Cannery Row, there is a ton of cool things to do a few steps away. Kayaking on Monterey Bay, fun shops and delicious restaurants and the Monterey Bay Aquarium are all just down the street.
For more info, here’s my recent blog post on things to do at Cannery Row in Monterey.