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Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay, CA, USA [Master Thread]

Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay, CA, USA [Master Thread]

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Old Apr 3, 18, 1:34 pm
  #46  
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Thanks very much, ntamayo!
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Old Apr 4, 18, 2:50 am
  #47  
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Any recent experiences/impressions of whether the club lounge access is worth the charge? I'm being offered it for $150/night for two people, for an upcoming trip with my wife. (Also, any experience about using points to get the lounge access?) As of now, we're only planning on eating outside the hotel once for dinner during our three-night trip.
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Old Apr 4, 18, 3:49 pm
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$150 for 2 ppl is a good deal. The food and wine alone served throughout the day is worth more than $75/ea.
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Old Apr 4, 18, 3:53 pm
  #49  
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Originally Posted by ntamayo View Post
$150 for 2 ppl is a good deal. The food and wine alone served throughout the day is worth more than $75/ea.
Thanks! Booked it.
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Old Apr 4, 18, 8:24 pm
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The Club here was one of the better clubs we have been to. Have also been on the Club Level in Los Angeles and Laguna Niguel. Did have a better room with balcony facing the ocean when we stayed here once not on the CLub Level.
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Old Apr 11, 18, 12:41 pm
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My wife and I just completed a fantastic three-day weekend stay at the beautiful and beautifully located Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay. We agreed that this is the nicest hotel we've stayed at in the USA and ranks with the best of the many great ones we've visited abroad.

Even before we arrived, the management personnel Anna Katrina (who reached out to us before our stay), Ruben and Tiffany were all very helpful in providing information and facilitating key aspects of our stay, which was complimentary thanks to the three free nights I'd gotten from my RC credit card sign-up/initial spend. If you have special requests, I'd suggest emailing the hotel rather than simply calling, as the front desk staff is friendly but can't help out the way management personnel can.

Various impressions and bits of advice, in no particular order of importance:

1. A fantastic complimentary upgrade to an ocean front view fire pit room. This was probably due to a combination of my RC platinum status, our celebrating a couple of special occasions and (perhaps most of all) the hotel not being very full. Regardless, it was very nice and much appreciated.
2. The room was in the Guest House, about a five minute walk from the main hotel building. On balance, we liked being there and would recommend it in terms of more privacy and/or sunshine than most fire pit rooms in the main building. It seemed that the ocean view fire pit rooms in the main building could get some noise from the nearby outdoor restaurant/reception area, had considerable foot traffic passing by them (though not right nearby - maybe 30-40 feet away) and the golf course ocean pit rooms missed the afternoon sun.
3. In addition, our room in the Guest House had a nice gas fireplace inside the room which was great for both atmosphere and for heating up the room (though of course there is a regular heating/cooling system as well). Also, a (fold-out) couch. Some photos of the fire pit rooms on the hotel website don't show these, so perhaps they're unique to these rooms in the Guest House.
4. A couple of other minor perks of the GH rooms is that you don't pay the daily $45 parking fee that main building guests have to pay and you're right near the building housing the indoor pool and jacuzzi.
5. Now, having said all this, I'd say that if the weather is really rainy and you just want to hang out indoors, you might be better off in the main building to avoid having to go outside, even though the hotel will transport you back and forth in carts (which we never used).
6. I shelled out the $150/day for the wonderful lounge, which is very well attended by staff and very comfortable and spacious. (Perhaps about 40 seats, including six two-person tables by the windows with wonderful views looking north. Never even half full whenever we stopped by, though again the hotel did not seem very full when we were there.) Nice breakfast spread (including good omelette station on weekends), decent lunch (mainly a couple of kinds of sandwiches, plus salad fixings and snacks), passable dinner snacks (even to fill you up, but certainly not a substitute for a regular meal) and great chocolate chip cookies (along with other sweet stuff). Some basic bubbly on offer (Chandon) all day, as well as a choice of eight wines that made for a fun little impromptu wine tasting. We didn't work at all, but I noticed at least a couple of outlets by the windows and would think there would be more scattered about the lounge.
7. I should have mentioned this sooner: fantastic staff throughout the hotel. Uniformly friendly, efficient and professional. Right up there with the best hotel personnel we've ever encountered.
8. Beautiful walks along or near the coast heading both ways from the hotel. I'd say maybe a mile heading south along a paved coastal path until you reach a sign that says no pedestrian access and a little less than that heading north until you reach dirt paths. Heading north, we actually walked all the way to Half Moon Bay (took us less than an hour), though I wouldn't advise doing so unless the ground is dry: we did the walk the day after some rains, and the last stretch into HMB was really soggy.
9. We ate out near HMB or used the lounge for food, but it's worth noting that the golf club on the property has a decent-looking restaurant with a small outdoor area and relatively moderately priced salads, sandwiches and main meals (about $15-25) compared with the hotel itself. It's a separate business, so you can't charge meals to your room. On the day I stopped by just to check it out (Sunday), it was open until 8 pm.
10. In addition to the nice, easy walks right outside the hotel, the concierge can provide info on other hikes in the area. We did a a great, beautiful hike at the Purisima Creek Redwoods park about a 15-20 minute drive away.
11. We're not golfers, but couldn't help noticing what a beautiful golf course the hotel has.
12. A couple of minor problems with the fire pit not working properly at first and the hotel air/heating system making noise, but these were promptly addressed.
12. Only other quibbles - and they are only that - is that it often took a few minutes waiting to get through to anyone at guess services (which isn't indicated on the phone - you just dial "O") and no wine glasses provided in the room unless you ask for them.
13. Most folks visiting the hotel will simply hang out there, go golfing or go into HMB, but for a change of pace you could check out the San Gregorio General Store, a 15-20 minute ride away. In addition to being a quirky gift shop with a bar, several tables, bottles of wine and beer on sale, and packaged sandwiches and snacks, on the Sunday afternoon we stopped by after a hike it had a great guitarist strumming away. Nothing else in the immediate area there, but a pretty ride and, like I said, a change of pace.
14. Beach access on a stairway from the coastal path to the south (and maybe to the north, though I didn't see it). Pretty beach to stroll along or even picnic on if it's a nice day.

Again, this was a fantastic stay at a wonderful, gorgeous property. I'd be glad to answer any questions about it.
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Last edited by Thunderroad; Apr 11, 18 at 6:18 pm
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Old Apr 11, 18, 5:46 pm
  #52  
 
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This is also one of my wife's favorite hotels we have ever stayed at.
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Old Apr 13, 18, 9:56 am
  #53  
 
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Great stay report, Thunderroad. Good to see you availed of the club lounge while in the guest house. Those hikes sure make you work up an appetite.
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Old Apr 13, 18, 10:08 am
  #54  
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Thanks, ntamayo. And thanks again for the great info you provided beforehand.
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Old Jun 3, 18, 3:04 pm
  #55  
 
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Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay

So have about 65k SPG points and debating whether once I have got to 80k to burn my miles on 4 nights at my favourite property. Would still have to pay some taxes and resort fee, but cash rates are circa $800 per night for my dates. Is this a good use of my miles? I will be earning enough over the next 6 months so I wonít have to buy any! Thanks
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Old Jun 4, 18, 7:58 am
  #56  
 
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Yes!! This is one of my top top favorite properties. Be aware that itís catered to people who like peace and seclusion from the city. The vibe is very relaxed and friendly and the rooms are bigger than most other ritZs. Yes, you must pay both parking and resort fee. (it sucks because resort fee doesnít cover parking..) so it will be about $75/day with all fees and taxes if you do reward booking.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 4:22 pm
  #57  
 
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In the past, booking a room at the guest house would not incur a parking fee - and if you happened to get upgraded to the main building, the parking fee generally would continue to be waived. You'd still have to pay the resort fee, but this was one way of avoiding the mandatory parking fee.
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Old Jun 7, 18, 2:36 pm
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Yes I agree with others. It's a very nice property, secluded. I used to go there for afternoon tea/coffee with friends. Wonderful view of the ocean.
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Old Jul 10, 18, 5:56 pm
  #59  
 
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Originally Posted by Thunderroad View Post
Again, this was a fantastic stay at a wonderful, gorgeous property. I'd be glad to answer any questions about it.
Great review, thank you for all of the details. I'm considering booking a rewards stay here for my girlfriend's birthday next month. She has been on property a few times as a day guest, and has really enjoyed it.

I was reading through the TripAdvisor reviews, and a lot of the gripes I read had to do with the fact that the hotel is "open" to the public, and that it loses some of it's exclusive charm. (I realize that most hotel bars and lobbies are open to the public.) To this end, the reviews mentioned that it was crowded and noisy. Did you experience any of this when you were there? Is this reason enough to choose the Guest House over the main building?

Thanks!
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Old Jul 12, 18, 12:23 pm
  #60  
 
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Originally Posted by LRMErnst View Post
Great review, thank you for all of the details. I'm considering booking a rewards stay here for my girlfriend's birthday next month. She has been on property a few times as a day guest, and has really enjoyed it.

I was reading through the TripAdvisor reviews, and a lot of the gripes I read had to do with the fact that the hotel is "open" to the public, and that it loses some of it's exclusive charm. (I realize that most hotel bars and lobbies are open to the public.) To this end, the reviews mentioned that it was crowded and noisy. Did you experience any of this when you were there? Is this reason enough to choose the Guest House over the main building?

Thanks!
That complaint is mainly due to the fact that the hotel gives public access to the beach, and the walk along the coast winds through the golf course and the fire pit area. It's also a popular venue for weddings, also near the fire pit area. I've stayed in both areas, and Guest House does offer the isolation that some guests are looking for. However, I haven't found much issue with the crowds and noise given the expanse of the property.
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