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  1. #1

    • Elven Queen of Caffeine
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    Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    It was the first time at Pismo Beach for Mom and me, but we both love the beach and I found a decent resort at a decent price on a recommendation from About.com of all places, so, back in December, I booked us a Spring Break getaway as an early 50th birthday present for mom.

    We got a bit of a late start, due to some last-minute laundry and packing, so instead of leaving at noon, we left around 2pm. Then we had to stop and get snacks for the road and we grabbed a quick lunch, so really we got on the road around 3pm.

    Due to the late start, we hit some major freeway traffic that slowed us down a bit, but once we got on the 101 it eased up.


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    Also due to the traffic and late start we had to change our dinner reservations from 7pm to 8:30pm – it was worth the wait, but I’ll get to that in a bit.

    The drive up was pleasant, check-in was easy, and once we checked in to our room, (which was REALLY dark, with dark green carpet and walls, and not nearly enough electric light, but the view more than made up for this) we went to dinner at the hotel restaurant, super ready to be settled and fed.

    We ordered the Deconstructed Bruschetta to start, and for entrées Mom got the salmon and I ordered the Filet Mignon – not only because I love a good steak, but because it was served with Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus – one of my favorite things (which I discovered at Bengal Barbeque at Disneyland).


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    And yes, it tasted as good as it looked! Actually the food was phenomenal all the way around. The only thing we missed out on due to our delay was the view at sunset, which I was kinda sad about – the hotel restaurant has glass windows overlooking the beach, but since we didn’t get there until after dark, the full glory was a bit lost on us.

    After dinner it was most definitely bed time, and we crawled into the king-sized pillow-top bed, complete with featherbed and crashed for the night.

    We woke up the next morning to a lovely breakfast basket, consisting of food we had requested the night before: frittatas and muffins and bagels and coffee – I will say the coffee provided in the room was TERRIBLE, but the coffee they served with the breakfast basket was quite good, if limited in quantity to one cup per person – simply not enough for mom and me. We were very pleased that we thought to bring a pound of real coffee from home: all we needed was filters for the 4-cup pot in the room.

    But the best part was easily the view we woke up to:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    This was what it looked like, sitting on our balcony at the lovely table and chairs provided. Another perk to this hotel was the private Jacuzzi, also on the balcony and just the right size for 2 people.

    After a leisurely breakfast we went to explore the area – we were just 3 small blocks from the pier and pier-side shops, so we headed in that direction on our way up to the local brewery (Mom’s boyfriend wanted a T-shirt from them, it’s kinda his thing).

    I was amazed at the flora around the pier – in SoCal we don’t have stuff like this, so I snapped a quick pic:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    We window-shopped up the street until we reached the brewery (lovely people there, and decent beer and root beer). Grabbed lunch at Trip Advisor’s top-rated place in Pismo: The Moose Deli – which was good, but hardly the best food in Pismo, I mean, at the end of the day it was just a sandwich – and window-shopped our way back to the hotel, where we got ready to do the Evening Tour of Hearst Castle.

    We had been to Hearst one time previously and thoroughly enjoyed the Grand Rooms Museum Tour, so we wanted to try something different.

    After a nice drive up the 1 to Hearst Castle, we discovered we were a bit early for our tour, so we looked around the Visitor’s Center until it was time for our tour to begin.

    One of the best things about this tour (actually the whole trip) was the gorgeous sunset from the top of the hill – the view from the castle grounds:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    I left my camera back in the hotel, so I was only able to snap a few pics with my iPhone – and those only outside, because flash photography was not allowed either outside or inside. (Actually I don’t understand why not outside, but whatever). So here’s the famous pool:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    And that is about all I got. Mom took her DSLR, so hopefully she got some decent pictures of the rooms. We saw SO much of the castle on this tour – some of the things we had seen on the Grand Rooms tour, and many things we had not. I see now why people say the evening tour is the best – it really provides a nice overview of the whole place, we visited rooms on all the floors and some of the outbuildings.

    One of the nice touches was the people in period costume wandering around and interacting with the Castle (playing billiards or sitting on the couch and knitting or…any number of things really).

    Overall a highly recommended tour! I have really bad knees, and I was concerned about all the stairs (this is the most strenuous tour they offer) but I did fine, which was a huge relief.

    We got back to Pismo rather late and starving, so we went to Denny’s for breakfast-for-dinner and then back to the hotel for another night’s rest. (This is when I discovered I had brought the almost-empty bottle of Ambien instead of the full bottle, which meant for some long sleepless nights for me for the rest of the trip, but I digress…)

    The next morning was Sunday, so Mom went to church and I lounged about until she got back – then we went back to the hotel restaurant for their Sunday brunch, which everyone had raved about – and rightly so!

    It was time for Mimosas and omelets on the patio of the restaurant:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    Absolutely divine!

    After brunch, we donned our swimsuits and went for a walk on the mini-dunes outside the hotel, with a walk back along the ocean. Pismo Beach is a very quiet beach and dog-friendly – very different feel from SoCal beaches.


    Pismo Beach by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    When we got back, we de-sanded ourselves and enjoyed the rest of the evening window-shopping and taking it easy. Once again, there was a beautiful sunset that evening:


    Pismo Beach by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    Monday was mom’s spa-day so we left it unscheduled except for that – she had never had a massage before, and didn’t know what to expect, so we didn’t do much that day: Breakfast basket in bed, cartoons on the TV, a little more shopping, and then she went across the hall for her 3-hour spa package, while I attempted to get some homework done on the balcony.

    One of the things that got in the way of me accomplishing much was this seagull who was trying his best to get into the hotel restaurant (which was situated just above our room). He kept going down the line of windows to the restaurant, knocking on them with his beak. Absolutely hilarious:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    Another thing that precluded my studying was that I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in a couple of years – she was also vacationing in Pismo that Sunday-Tuesday and I literally looked down from the balcony randomly and she was standing there in front of our room with her boyfriend looking for a place to get beer with an ocean view. Funny how life happens like that.

    Anyway, they invited me to join them and we ended up at the Pierside Restaurant. It was nice to catch up with her! We stayed on their patio with our beer until the wind whipped up and we were too cold to continue.

    Returning to our respective hotels, I got in the Jacuzzi to warm up and then mom returned from her spa treatment.

    That went over well. She was absolutely thrilled with how it went – she hit it off with her massage therapist, and loved every minute of her treatment. She came back so relaxed that we decided to order room service for dinner – and I made her drink about a gallon of water that night.

    Room service was from the hotel restaurant, and once again, was fabulous. I opted for the chicken this time, while mom got her bruschetta again and a salad. We finished the meal with Crème Brulée for mom and an Apple Crostada for me. So good.

    Tuesday we had a leisurely morning and then walked the beach seeking shells and whatnot – Pismo is great for shells and especially sand dollars. It was overcast, but not too cold, and the view from the beach was nice:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    That night we had dinner reservations in San Luis Obispo at a restaurant I found on Trip Advisor – Novo. It offers creek-side dining and the website states that the dress code is business casual. So we put a little effort into looking decent and drove into old-town SLO.

    On first arriving at the restaurant, I had high hopes. The view from our table was beautiful:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    We ordered the Crab Cakes to start – just OK, IMO, I’ve had better.

    I ordered the lavender lamb chops, and Mom ordered the spinach and ricotta ravioli.

    The lamb chops looked good:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr


    But they SURE weren’t kidding about the lavender. It was overpowering! I like lamb, but I couldn’t taste it in this dish – just lavender.

    OH, and “business casual” is hardly the word. “Casual” is right, but “business” was not. Most people were there in jeans and sweatshirts.

    The wine was good, and the dessert was good, but overall it was a disappointing experience – not to say I’d never go back, but I’d certainly go dressed down and order something else. Mom’s food was good.

    Wednesday was our day to do nothing. No plans that day, so we shopped. A lot. I was glad I left room in my bags for all the souvenirs we got.

    Lunch was at Giuseppe’s Cucina Italiana. So. Good. Best Italian food I’ve had in…ever. And the service was great too. If you’re ever in Pismo, look this place up!

    We opted for dinner at the hotel restaurant again, and we weren’t sorry! We made it in time for the sunset this time:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    And on Wednesday nights they have live jazz, which really added to the ambiance of the place.

    We left Thursday morning, and were sad to leave. We could have spent another week there and been happy! It was a beautiful day – actually, it was the first day the sky was perfectly clear, which made the ocean look particularly blue:


    Pismo Beach Vacation 2013 by KelilaJ, on Flickr

    So, overall, it was a great trip! If you ever go to Pismo, stay at the SeaVenture Resort and get an Ocean View Room! And enjoy!
    Signature courtesy of Poisonedapples

  2. #2

    • Sock Puppet
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    AWESOME! I been to that one with the creek! it is nice! i got cousin that live in slo!

    awesome report!!!!!

  3. #3

    • Circle of Ancients
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    I feel like I got to step away from the office and hit Pismo for a few minutes.

  4. #4

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    • Chicago Gal
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    Thanks, Lady N. Trip Reports are fun to read, and I know they take lots of time to do. . Thanks for sharing your vacation with all of us here.

  5. #5

    • Selfie Expert
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    I feel relaxed just reading your TR. Love it!! Will you be updating with pics from your mom's camera of the tour?

    Thank you to Poisonedapples for my awesome signature!
    KellyMcG86's Disneyland To Do List

  6. #6

    • Lord of the Sky
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    LADY.........
    I sure enjoy your trip report!
    Looks like a very relaxing time ,you had with your Mother.
    Glad you was able get away......
    and THANK YOU for shareing your trip and picture's with us all!
    Jim



    Love this picture........
    Soaring like an EAGLE !

  7. #7

    • Delawarean Girl
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    Thanks for making a great Trip Report. The pictures are too beautiful. Just love how blue that ocean is. Looks like you had a very good dinner and breakfast.

    I'm sure your mother is thankful to have a very nice daughter like you and to have made her 50th birthday a day to remember.

  8. #8

    • Sshhh, being very quiet
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    Re: Pismo Beach: March 15-21, 2013

    Quote Originally Posted by Eagleman View Post
    LADY.........
    I sure enjoy your trip report!
    Looks like a very relaxing time ,you had with your Mother.
    Glad you was able get away......
    and THANK YOU for shareing your trip and picture's with us all!
    Jim



    Love this picture........
    Great Report! This is also my favorite pic! That pool is fantastic!

    Thanks for sharing

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