Over Valentine’s Day weekend (prior), Hubby surprised me with a weekend trip to San Luis Obispo County. We’ve driven past while on our way to/from Los Angeles and have toured Hearst Castle in San Simeon but haven’t actually spent any time in the area. Within San Luis Obispo County are great beach towns, a burgeoning wine region, Santa Maria barbeque and a lively (thanks to Cal Poly San Luis Obsipo) medium-sized city in San Luis Obispo itself. Besides these things, there are hot tubs, a kick ass hike up Bishop’s Peak, sand dunes and Morro rock – a weekend of relaxation and exertion in one.
For around $50 a night we booked a room at the Best Western Casa Grande Inn in Arroyo Grande. With a Spanish mission / Southwest style, this isn’t your regular old Best Western. Besides the more unique styling and furnishings, there’s a river walk area with a fountain and nice little garden for guests to sit around in. The only thing I have a minor gripe about is the bed, which left me a bit sore in the mornings but hey, that’s what you get for $50 a night on a weekend. Never again will I make fun of Hubby for buying an expensive all natural mattress.
First stop for the night was dinner at F.McLintocks Saloon & Dining House. Located along the 101, it’s hard to miss as there’s a big ass statute of a cowboy (Mr. McLintock himself perhaps?) in the front. This dining establishment was recommended by one of Hubby’s colleagues. When I asked him what’s supposed to be good about this place, Hubby responded that they pour water from really high up. If you haven’t noticed from previous threads, Hubby is not a man of many words. Now when Hubby and I arrived there, I was excited as I love all things cowboy and Western. Walking into the dining room and being confronted with the skulls and hide of dead animals was a bit puke inducing (yes, I’m a hypocrite) but I was ready to be surprised.
The meal was gross. Just a typical chain restaurant that compensates for lack of quality with quantity. Everything was swimming in oil and butter. Even Hubby, who never speaks up, told the waitress that he thought steak was supposed to be tender. I cook most of our meals at home (we eat out maybe once or twice a week) from scratch and once you start doing that, you really notice how crummy most food at chain restaurants are. And the local featured wines tasted like dirty socks. The schtick was that whenever called, a bus boy will stand on top of a chair and pour water, while blindfolded, from a pitcher into the cup held by the diner on top of his head. We saw this AMAZING feat twice during dinner there. It just about made our night!*
After the nasty dinner, we spent an hour soaking in one of Sycamore Springs Resort and Spa‘s hot tubs. While the resort has full service spa, you can rent one of their hot tubs by the hour without a spa package. The tubs are all located outside on different levels, individually named, and are shaded by trees and wooden fences for privacy. Just make a reservation, bring a towel and bathing suit (or not), some water as you do get quite thirsty during a soak, and you’re all set. It was nice to have a relaxing end to the night before our hike up Bishop’s Peak the next morning.
San Luis Obispo continued…