Surfers, Blue Bottle Coffee and Pacific Ocean Views

My friend Jenna lucked out during her week long trip to California. I had a completely blocked itinerary for her as soon as she arrived at the San Jose airport. I’m not saying it was so cholker-blocked that she couldn’t relax, it was the epitome of relaxation if I do say so myself. Hotel stays, wine tours and spa treatments — I’m tellin’ ya, not everyone is going to get that type of treatment. I’ve known Jenna since we were three years old, and it’s been close to 4 years since we’ve seen each other in person. It was long overdue for a girls trip, so I invited her down to Sunny California. Except, it happened to be really chilly and only kinda sunny the entire time she was here. Whoops. Can’t change Mother Nature.


HanaHaus-Blue-BottleAfter our overnight trip to San Francisco came to an end, we woke up at a reasonable hour, packed up our belongings and started the drive down to Carmel. To break up our 2 hour commute I swung by the city of Palo Alto and stopped at the new Hana Haus Blue Bottle coffee shop. More on that place later, but it’s a beautiful spot to relax and/or work if you so choose. I had to show her all the cool spots, you know.

Lunch-at-BumbleThen we stopped for lunch  at one of favourite brunch spots in Los Altos: Bumble (see what I did my first visit to Bumble)! We had a nice little lunch on their adult patio away from any children, and had a grand ol’ chat, catching up. After we were done there, we took our time driving down the scenic Highway 1 to Carmel.

I always love to stay at the warm and welcoming Hofsas House when visiting Carmel. I surprised my husband for his birthday last year for a trip down to Carmel as a late honeymoon gift for the both of us, so I knew Hofsas House was the place to go once again. I love going there!



Hofsas-House-2-double-bedsOur room was so spacious, quite large really! Such an airy, and sweet feeling room. Perfect for our little getaway for just the two of us.

Red-wine-and-chocolatesTalk about being spoiled. A bottle of red plus some chocolates and wine walk tour tickets were waiting for us in the room as we arrived. We definitely hit up the Wine Walk tour right away but not before showing Jenna the little town of Carmel and taking her to the serene Carmel beach, hoowee!




Carmel-BeachThe sand here is the softest I have ever felt underneath my feet. Surfers galore. Dogs frolicking on the beach and couples holding hands. My heart was swooing! Can you now see why I love this place so much that I need to take every visitor here?








After a quick visit to the beach, since it was windy and chilly, we walked around the downtown core, and did the self-guided Wine Walk Tour and sampled wines at three different wine tasting rooms before heading off to supper.



Wine-in-a-TubThis one being my favourite. Because, how fun is it to pretend you’re taking a bath drinking wine? It’d be better if the tub was filled up and in my own bathroom. Hehe! Cheers to that!

Hofsas-House-roomAfter our wine tastings were over with, we walked back to our room at Hofsas House, grabbed some warmer clothes and got ready for supper.

Prius-in-Pacific-GroveWe headed out for a quick 15 minute drive up north to Lovers Point in Pacific Grove to have a meal at The Beach House in our trusty 2015 Prius Five that took us everywhere on our week long excursion. I never thought about buying a red car, and not for any real reason to be honest. But doesn’t this red just pop out at you?


View-from-The-Beach-HouseI don’t know what place is prettier, Pacific Grove or Carmel. Both places are absolutely breathtaking. This was our balcony-type view from The Beach House, in Pacific Grove. I mean. Come on! Watching the sunset while eating supper with this view… unreal, and nothing like I’ve ever experienced in my life. We couldn’t stop raving about it.





Beach-House-ice-cream-cakeOur meals at The Beach House hit the spot, but the winners of the entire meal was most definitely the home made ice cream cakes. I’m still thinking of how good they both were.



Sunset-in-Pacific-GroveAfter we finished our delicious meals, we drove around Pacific Grove for a little bit just as the sun was setting. Perfect timing for that golden hour photo op, am I right? I think I have a thing for taking photos of trees. Especially the ones around this area, they’re really cool looking.

Once we were back in our room at Hofsas House, we lit a fire and hung out for the rest of the evening, watching a bit of TV before falling asleep. The next morning, we woke up super early because I wanted to take Jenna back to Carmel Beach for some more photos then off to Point Lobos (you can see more photos here from when my Husband and I went). I’ll let the photos do the talking for themselves…Carmel-Beach-CA





Pt-Lobos-NancySecluded beaches = everything dreams are made of.


Pt-Lobos-JNHooray for my camera balancing on the edge of a fence, and me racing down to beat the self-timer count down. Oof!

Standing-on-Prius-FiveThat next day when we went to Point Lobos, we were heading back to San Jose — but not before doing a bit of outlet shopping in Gilroy. Such a fun way to end this leg of the trip! Stay tuned for the San Jose staycation in Santana Row which will be up next week sometime.

Hofsas House
San Carlos St, Carmel, CA 93921
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The Beach House at Lovers Point
620 Ocean View Boulevard, Pacific Grove, CA 93950

Disclaimer: Thank you to Hofsas House in Carmel, and The Beach House in Pacific Grove for hosting our stay and feeding us yummy supper!

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Visiting Hofsas House in Carmel-by-the-Sea

Hofsas-House-HeaderFor my husbands birthday I surprised him with a two day honeymoon to the 3rd romantic city in the world Carmel-by-the-sea, California. You see we got married in less than a week, and immediately packed up our belongings to move to the United States. We never did have a chance to have our honeymoon, so I took it upon myself to book a small one for us. The only thing I told him leading up to his birthday was to clear his weekend schedule, something I knew would prove to be difficult.

Imagine an unplugged weekend where you reconnect with your loved ones. A beautiful place where the entire town shuts down at sunset and is completely quiet. Street signs, and store fronts made from wood, no street addresses to get to a place, just the customized names on houses or businesses. This is Carmel, a welcoming and friendly atmosphere from everyone who was visiting and living there. The incredible pacific coast line was simply breathtaking. Today, I’m taking you through our trip and stay at the Hofsas House.




Laying-on-rose-petalsWe called Hofsas Hotel in Carmel-by-the-Sea our home for the past two days. The location of Carmel-by-the-sea is about a square mile on Carmel Bay. Hofsas House is walk-able to Carmel itself, where it has many boutique stores to meander through, a diverse selection in restaurants and wineries, everything in walking distance.

Once we collected our room keys and walked in through the pink dutch doors, we were taken back by the hospitality. Our room was completely decorated into this romantic honeymoon suite with rose petals, fireless candles and Hershey kisses (an added upgrade guests can request for a fee) with a massive king sized bed with treats and a dog bed off to the side for Alfie. On our bedside table there was a bottle of wine and a cheese platter from The Cheese Shop, which guests can order to their room for $30. Talk about a warm welcome, hey?

Hofsas-House2The three of us (Alfie came too!) took off for this two day weekend to explore this town for the first time. We have heard a lot about this place and its beauty. We were welcomed with open arms, even after arriving an hour later than anticipated due to traffic, from the charm of the Hofsas House, which is in its 3rd generation of the family run business. We had about an hour to get ready for supper at The Grill when we arrived. Perfect time to re-curl my hair, swap out my cozy clothes and change into a silkier blouse and skinny jeans for our date night.

Fireplace-Alfie-and-ICarmel is much cooler at night, so we took advantage of our in-room fireplace and had a cozy fire each night. There’s nothing quite like sitting in in front of a warm evening fire.


Hofsas-House-breakfastThere were trays available if we wanted to enjoy our continental breakfast in the comforts of our room.




Alfie-chewing-on-boneCarmel is known for being incredibly dog-friendly with tons of restaurants catering to your pooches. At Hofsas House, not all rooms are dog-friendly but the ones that are take special care and go the extra mile to make your family pets feel much more at home. Alfie is crated and we bring his with us when he travels, but to our surprise he hopped on the plush dog bed in front of the fireplace to chew on one of his bones that we picked up in Carmel at Diggity Dog.


Carrie-of-Hofsas-HouseCarrie Theis started working at Hofsas House with her Grandmother Donna Hofsas, the founder of Hofsas House over sixty years ago. Carrie has since taken the position full time and moved to Carmel to run Hofsas House. You can tell she takes great pride in not only the business aspect of Hofsas House, but she truly lights up, talking about Carmel. She gave us many suggestions as to what to do while we were in Carmel along with supplying us with wine walk tour tickets, and reservations to The Grill, a fantastic restaurant where we had a delicious 3 course meal, which I’ll talk about in an upcoming blog post. Our impression of Carrie is that she doesn’t care just about the business she runs with the family, but more about the village itself.

Out of the 38 rooms on the Hofsas House property they are each decorated differently. Looking past the retro feel to the room we had, it has its charm. The room itself was huge and we had a lot of extra space which felt comfortable. I got sparkly eyes looking out the Dutch doors in the morning when I realized the view we had. There’s nothing like waking up in the morning and taking in the Pacific Ocean air. It’s clear I missed the ocean living in central Canada for a number of years after growing up in Newfoundland.


Alfie-and-me-outside-HofsasSaturday night we were completely wiped from our day adventure to Point Lobos where we had a picnic lunch provided by 5th Avenue Deli. We hadn’t planned on staying all afternoon until the sun set, but the place was more breathtaking than we had imagined. More on that spot soon! I loved the hospitality we received from Carrie and everyone at Hofsas House last weekend. Since we are so close to Carmel, we’re excited to return sometime to explore the other areas we didn’t get a chance to. Big Sur is definitely on our to-visit list, along with a trip to the neighbouring city, Monterey.

Hofsas House Hotel

San Carlos St, Carmel, CA 93921, USA
Phone: 831-624-2745

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Our stay was hosted by Hofsas House, however the opinions in the blog post are 100% my own.

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