Jan282012

The Inn at Spanish Bay on the Pebble Beach dunes

The Inn at Spanish Bay is a Pebble Beach golf course resort built near the Pacific Grove town line. A public access boardwalk from Sunset Drive runs along the sand dunes above Asilomar State Beach to Spanish Bay. 17-Mile Drive and Sunset Drive form the road boundaries of Spanish Bay Resort on the Monterey Peninsula.

Google Maps Spanish Bay

Google Maps showing Spanish Bay Resort, Pebble Beach at lower left of image. [click on image to open full-size].

This is not a hotel review of The Inn at Spanish Bay. This is another post in my Loyalty Traveler series “At Home He’s a Tourist” where I share the sights of the Monterey Peninsula from my walks around local communities near my home.

Walking to Spanish Bay, Pebble Beach

Asilomar State Beach and Sunset Drive see a steady stream of cars on any evening with clear skies as locals, workers, tourists, surfers and stoners come down to the wild western coastline to watch sunset.

Pebble Beach has a $9.25 car fee to enter the gates into the private residential lands of this scenic and exclusive southwestern point of the Monterey Peninsula. The famous Lodge at Pebble Beach can be seen from Carmel Beach, but natural barriers make it difficult to access the Lodge walking along the coastline. And climbing up the bluffs to the Pebble Beach Golf Course is certainly frowned upon.

The Inn at Spanish Bay is easily approached by foot or bicycle and there is no entry fee required into Pebble Beach for walkers and cyclists. Spanish Bay Resort was developed in the late 1980s during the years my wife and I lived away from the Monterey Peninsula while going to college and working as teachers in small fishing villages in Maine and north coast California in Humboldt County.

Resort development in Pebble Beach is tough to get through environmental impact reviews. Just recently a project to expand The Lodge at Pebble Beach, the Inn at Spanish Bay and a new build hotel resort for Cypress Point have made headway.

The Inn at Spanish Bay has a public access walkway between the beach and the golf course leading to the hotel. This is one of my favorite walks on the Monterey Peninsula with the ability to be in nature, see whales and waves, and find myself at a comfortable place for a nice cold beer when I reach the bars and restaurants at Spanish Bay.

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The access path is off Sunset Road about 200 yards west of Asilomar Road past the Fishwife Restaurant.

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My wife recalls living in Pebble Beach as a child and playing in the sand dunes where the golf course is now. The path turns west to the beach where the wooden walkway begins.

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Asilomar State Beach is an area for tidepooling and surfing and general lounging about on the beach. This is a protected marine reserve and it is illegal to remove natural items from the beach.

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The boardwalk is subject to winter storms and each year the boards become a little more uneven to walk. A couple years back the stairway from Asilomar Beach leading to Spanish Bay was completely washed out. The stairs have not yet been rebuilt.

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The beach grass has been restored to some extent. The entire area off the beach sand has restricted access to allow plant restoration along the dunes.

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This is a place to watch big waves, however, the spindrift created by crashing surf on the beach makes big wave days not so nice for photography.

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Giant kelp can grow to over 100 feet long. Asilomar Beach is a place where the natural beauty of the sea and sand and wild grasses gives way to a luxury golf resort built on top of the dunes.

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The path along the shoreline leads to the beach parking lot at Spanish Bay off the 17-Mile Drive. The path heading inland goes to the hotel Inn at Spanish Bay.

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The wooden public access path to the Inn at Spanish Bay gives way to the golf course cart path for a little bit of shared space between pedestrians and machines.

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The Inn at Spanish Bay has an outdoor patio for ocean view drinking and food. Fine dining is available inside too.

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Rates for the Inn at Spanish Bay are typically $500 to $800 per night. This hotel by all standards is a luxury class hotel. I have never stayed here and I haven’t even ever tried to get inside a room for photos. TripAdvisor has dozens of guest photos and the rooms look spacious and comfortably furnished.

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You do not need to be a guest to enjoy the luxury of Spanish Bay. You can simply walk or bike into Pebble Beach for free and sit on the patio for drinks and appetizers in winter sunshine or summer fog.

Insider Tip: The car entrance fee to Pebble Beach counts as a credit for food and beverage purchases for The Inn at Spanish Bay and The Lodge at Pebble Beach. Just give your payment receipt to the waiter for credit on your bill.

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Sunset at The Inn at Spanish Bay Pebble Beach as a bagpiper plays tunes carried in the wind.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Comments

  1. The Spanish Bay property is very nice. It is probably closer to 4*+ than 5*, but anything ever so slight that it misses is more than made up by the golf!

    The property is usually much quieter than the Lodge.

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