Life has been a bit hectic lately, adjusting to teaching back on campus and recovering from the awful COVID surge in Southern California over the holidays. We were grateful to getaway over the long weekend in February to beautiful Pismo Beach – a place we’ve enjoyed immensely for years in the past. A big change this year was that we took our children for the first time! Consequentially, rather than staying at our favorite Kon Tiki Inn, we stayed at the new Vespera On Ocean by Mariott (Autograph Collection) downtown.
The Vespera On Ocean hotel is very clean and the rooms are nice and spacious. We were a little disappointed that our room didn’t have a full view of the ocean and had a lot of noise from the parking lot and hotel rooftop lounge next door. If we return, we’d definitely request a room on the inner courtyard, which is lovely with better views and a bit more quiet. The pool at the hotel is lovely though small, and we were unable to use it with the pandemic regulations because reservations are required and book up at 8 in the morning on busy weekends. The pools at neighboring hotels were open with social distancing, so this was definitely a disadvantage of Vespera.
The Vespera On Ocean was a fun new experience for our Pismo stay
A huge advantage was the close proximity many local eateries for outdoor dining and/or take out. We were happy to see many local businesses have weathered the pandemic thus far, and enjoyed some of our favorites like Splash Cafe and Old West Cinnamon Rolls was a huge morning hit for the kiddos. We also tried some new places, including the tasty Boardroom Pub right below Vespera. It was well worth ordering online or calling in orders for all local restaurants well in advance, however, as the wait times for take out food were 45-60 minutes from the time of ordering. The small kitchens are definitely more designed for sit down with spaced out orders, rather than everyone ordering food at once.
Always a favorite!
Most of all, we loved being right by the beach and our kids had a blast playing on the slide, the playgrounds, the sand, and looking for shells and sanddollars. The sunsets were absolutely gorgeous! While chilly, we had beautiful sunshine and a great time walking the beach in all directions. We love Pismo and will continue to return to this Central Coast getaway when we can, especially as the pandemic continues to improve. In the meantime, we’ll be fully vaccinated just in time for our next Walt Disney World trip in April and some more adventures this summer. Please contact me if you’re up for a Florida Disney visit or another pandemic-friendly, safe vacation!
The kids loved Pismo! They can’t wait to go back!