Brunch and the weekend getaway are obvious soulmates. A good weekend getaway is not complete without a laid-back late breakfast, and the core of what makes brunch so special is that vacation-like serenity that's created when friends gather around the table for a leisurely meal. So when our friends at Pacifica Hotels offered us the chance for a weekend away at their newest property in Pismo Beach, complete with a tasty tour of their hotel's finest brunch offerings, we packed our bags and hit the road as quickly as we could.
While we've had the pleasure of dining at restaurants inside Pacifica's hotels before, we'd never had the opportunity to stay overnight at one of their lovely properties - and lovely they are. Here in L.A., the Marina del Rey Hotel offers glamour and modern luxury overlooking the Marina, while the Jamaica Bay Inn feels like an upscale Cape Cod charmer just steps from a quiet, sandy beach. Inn at the Pier, the hotel group's new property in cozy Pismo Beach, lives up to the brand's high standards. Every inch of the shiny-new building has been thoughtfully designed and beautifully decorated. Rooms are luxurious and modern, appointed with fun details like an Amazon Echo available to answer all your burning questions, and an espresso machine to appease your morning coffee craving without having to change out of that fluffy bathrobe. Dining options are plentiful at both Blonde Restaurant and The Rooftop bar, and the views from the chic little seating areas on the roof were breathtaking. And to make the entire experience that much sweeter, from the moment we pulled up in the hotel's driveway until check-out the next afternoon, service was spot-on impeccable - a detail that is easily lost in many high-end, boutique hotels.
After checking in, we explored the charming Pismo Beach, its tiny downtown packed with tourists shopping or looking to grab a snack after a day at the beach. We spent a few hours wandering along the beach path and popping in a few shops, and then made sure to stop in to Old West Cinnamon Rolls for a sweet treat - its legendary fluffy sticky rolls are not to be missed. When the sun started to sink lower in the sky, we headed back to the hotel to secure our spot on the roof for the day's main event - an epic sunset with a side of cocktails.
The Rooftop Bar's fantastic staff whipped up several creative tipples for us to enjoy - we especially loved the Strawberry Lavender Lemon Fizz, a bright and peppy drink made with citron, fresh lemon, and strawberry lavender root elixirs. And for the lovers of coffee and bourbon out there (ahem, me), there's the Midnight Smoke, a smooth and sultry combination of Eagle Rare Bourbon, chipotle simple, and black walnut bitters, served over a coffee ice cube. Oh, and the flaming orange zest moment is not to be missed.
After a wild night (read: we cozied up in our rooms and watched silly TV in bed - because, let's be real, that's what makes a hotel stay so luxurious!), we woke up ready for some really good brunch. And fortunately, some of the best brunch in town was waiting for us just a few floors below at Blonde Restaurant and Bar.
The brunch menu at Blonde offers something for everyone, as every good hotel restaurant should - whether you're after something sweet, something savory, something healthful, or something that's over-the-top indulgent. We sampled a little bit of a lot of dishes, and there was not a dud in the batch. The simplest dishes were prepared perfectly, from the Steel-Cut Oatmeal to the All American Breakfast, and the more complex, indulgent plates offered fun and playful flavor combinations. Our favorites were the Chilaquiles, packed with crisp tortilla chips and savory black beans and topped with perfectly runny fried eggs and big slices of jalapeño, and the Brioche Custard French Toast, creamy in the center and topped with salty-sweet cinnamon honey butter.
To finish out our trip, we couldn't help but take advantage of that dreamy view from The Rooftop upstairs, so we finished out our meal with some classic brunch cocktails and a fancy-pants fruit and cheese plate. There's nothing like kicking back by the pool and enjoying an ocean view with a mimosa in hand - talk about living our best lives!
We so enjoyed our weekend away at Inn at the Pier - it was the perfect spot for a upscale experience in a charming, sleepy California beach town. Come for the views, stay for the brunch!