The Five Best Hotels in Santa Cruz, CA

While the current wildfire situation in California has dampened the desire for travelers and vacationers to visit the state at the current moment, there are some people who may have to travel there on business or to check on a loved one. If you happened to be one of those people, you probably need to keep reading. Santa Cruz is a pretty popular location for tourist and vacationers during the summer and fall seasons. If you are planning on visiting Santa Cruz but have never been, one of your first questions will likely deal with accommodations. While there are some five-star hotels in the areas, there are a number of hotels that are comfortable and offer remarkable amenities. When I started looking for the best hotels in Santa Cruz, I had to admit that I was surprised at what I uncovered. Following are the top five hotels in Santa Cruz — based primarily on comfort and overall value.

Comfort Inn Beach/Boardwalk Area

Maybe it’s just me, but listing a Comfort Inn location as a top hotel anywhere feels kind of funny, but I am not pulling these locations out of the air. When pulling from all of the travel sites, this particular Comfort Inn gets very high ratings, especially when it comes to location and responsiveness of the staff, something that is immensely important to me. According to Booking.com, the room books for $300 per night. No, this is not a five-star hotel, but it provides comfort, convenience, and a friendly environment.

Best Western Plus All Suites Inn

Look, don’t shoot the messenger. I can only write about what I find. I am as shocked as you that a Best Western hotel made the top five in Santa Cruz of all places. Actually, it is not a normal Best Western, it is an all-suites hotel. At a rate of $409 it definitely better have some nice accommodations. The reviews that I was able to pull from travel sites list this as being in a highly convenient location. Truthfully, Santa Cruz is not laid out in a way that there are any really bad locations for a hotel. The service, amenities, and attentiveness of the staff all rate high.

Hotel Paradox, Autograph Collection

If you are into boutique styled hotels, then you will love the Hotel Paradox. The hotel gets rave reviews in several categories. First, there is the stylish design and layout of the hotel. Guests absolutely love the rustic presentation and the unique appeal of the hotel. Another area in which the hotel gets high marks in the attentiveness of the staff and how quickly they respond to the needs and desires of the guess. Many guests raved amount the chic style of the rooms. If there were any concerns, it would be that the view guests suggested that the beds could be a bit more comfortable. To increase its appeal, the hotel has an onsite eatery, as well as a Solaire Restaurant and Bar that serves American cuisine in a casual setting.

Chaminade Resort & Spa

Now, this is the type of hotels I was expecting to find when I initially started my search. If you are looking for a beachside hotel, this hotel will not appeal to you, because it sits more than three miles inland. However, what you give up in oceanfront views, you gain in the view of the Santa Cruz Mountains, as well as the gorgeously lush forest that surrounds the hotel. This hotel chose a location that emphasizes the point that there is more than one form of beauty. To some, the beauty of the ocean is unparalleled, while others marvel at nature through observing greenery and trees. If you are seriously looking to take in the entire experience, you should request a room with a patio to take in the whole scene. There is a cardio and weight room onside as well.

The Dream Inn Santa Cruz

Now, this one is primed for those who love the ocean — sitting beachfront and resting adjacent to the Santa Cruz boardwalk. The Dream Inn is noted for its funky furnishings and its warm colors. In fact, when you first walk into the hotel, you may feel as if you have entered a time warp and traveled back into the 1960s. The colors are bold and bright, but not overwhelming. The room is stocked with flatscreen televisions, WiFi, iPod docks and a glorious rainforest shower. Most importantly, the staff is highly responsive.


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