Santa Cruz Good Times

Tuesday
May 26th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Why Monterey’s Hotel Abrego is the Perfect Portal To Reboot

blog_stay_abrego1Years ago, when I lived in Monterey, a friend and I often frequented a Denny’s restaurant that was nestled near the corner of Abrego and Freemont streets. We’d spend countless hours there chatting about life and, whenever we went our separate ways, we barely noticed the hotel that shared the same parking lot with the diner.

Well, those days are over—it’s hard not to pay attention to the hotel now. For starters, the Denny’s bit the dust. In its place is a new structure that makes up just one portion of an impressive 93-room vacation—or staycation—portal that was once dubbed the Sand Dollar Inn.

Welcome to Hotel Abrego.

Think of it as a charming venue that can cleverly balance the feel of a lodge and an upscale hotel reminiscent in, say, Tahoe or Park City, Utah, perhaps.

I arrived on weekend evening  and immediately found the adjoining “lounge/lodge” adjacent to the lobby unique. A wine-and-dinner bar resided near the front desk while nearly a dozen dining tables, beautifully set up, took up camp in the main dining area. A fireplace on the far wall was a nice touch.  It’s not often you’d find a “dining room” so close to the front desk, but this was part of the charm of Hotel Abrego—cozy, accommodating, friendly.

Upon check-in, the hotel staff—kudos for the professionalism—handed me a room key and off I went. When I walked in to my third floor room, I was happy to note how spacious it was—king-sized bed with a bountiful supply of pillows, a thought-out workspace and desk (iHome docking station is a plus), a lounge chair and gas fireplace encased in wonderful stone underneath a flat-screen television. And the balcony view: breathtaking. We’re talking about the Monterey Bay here, a pristine marine sanctuary and something you can easily loose yourself in if you just sit there and stare at it for some time. (Which, I did.)

From the getgo, I realized this was a perfect spot to be to simply decompress. By its very nature, the Monterey Peninsula emits a curious healing energy, so especially if you’re a local—within 25-65 miles of this hotspot—this can be one the finest staycation landings around.

For others travelling from afar, it’s good to know that the hotel is perfectly situated just a short walk from several beaches, some of the best dining spots—consider Montrio or Stokes Adobe—shopping (Del Monte Center and Alvarado Avenue—and festive nightlife. It’s also not that far of a walk from the famous Cannery Row, home to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Outdoor enthusiasts may also dig all the rec trails and other activities—kayaking, scuba diving, surfing.

blog_stay_abrego2Truthfully, I could hardly think of going out. Not yet, anyway. I simply wanted to “chill” in this spectacular room. What’s the term? It is done “Craftsman-style.” But it also wins points for its fine Italian linens. Personally, I got a delicious thrill with the design of the entire place and feel its important to mention just how spectacular the darn bathroom was—you’ll swoon over the bowl-shaped design of the sinks and how the bathroom door (an interesting shutter-like look) slowly closes behind you.

The most refreshing surprise? The hotel’s eco-friendly accents—recycling bins can be found each guestroom, as well as fluorescent lighting, faux leather ottomans and bamboo hangers. The bathroom is equipped with low-flow toilets and showers

I must have napped for several hours. Later, I ventured forth, hitting Cannery Row, marveling a bit at how much it has evolved since I lived in town. Stops to consider: Bargeto Winery’s Tasting Room (831-373-4053), Amarin Thai Restaurant (831-373-8811) or Bistro Moulin (831-333-1200)—each has its own distinctly original vibe.

blog_stay_abrego3Of course, there’s always the Aquarium—never dull. If you’re new to an Aquarium visit, be sure to check out the feedings of the sea otters, but any direction you head, once you’re inside that masterpiece, you’ll be certain to find some amazing eye-candy. And the view? Well, it’s unbeatable.

Later, back at the hotel, I was craving a Caesar Salad and good news—the chef at the restaurant lounge quickly whipped one up. I also ordered a mini Margharita Pizza, which, I learned, is cooked on the spot. Fresh. All of it. Take note, too, of the wine list here. Staycationers may already be in the know with how spoiled we are with stellar wine in this region of Northern California, so indulge.

I dined on a Sunday evening. It was quiet, just me and several other couples. A nice fire flickered nearby in the fireplace. Relaxing.

When I returned to my room, I posted an update on Facebook about my rejuvenating journey thus far, then tossed myself onto the luxurious bed, sinking into its splendor. Time for another nap. Talk about dreamy.

Bottom line: This place is a keeper.


For reservations and information please call 800-982-1986 or visit www.hotelabrego.com.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Gate Openers

Up-and-coming artists like Ryan Bingham are a great reason to show up early to the Santa Cruz American Music Festival

 

Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Off Her Meds

Kristin Wiig runs wild—and transcends her sketch comedy roots—as a truly strange character ‘Welcome to Me’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Flats Bistro

Pizza with an artisan twist comes to Aptos Beach

 

What’s your take on Santa Cruz locals?

Santa Cruz locals are really friendly once you know them. I think a lot of them have a hard time leaving, and I would too. Ryan Carle, Santa Cruz, Biologist

 

Soquel Vineyards

If Soquel Vineyards partners Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan were walking down the street wearing their winning wine competition medals, you’d hear them coming from a mile away. This year was particularly rewarding for the Bargettos and Morgan—they won two Double Gold Medals and five Gold Medals at January’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

 

Enlightened Flavors

Squash & Blossom’s artisanal alternative-flour delights, beet kvass from Cafe Ivéta, and the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival