Accommodations, DESTINATIONS, Restaurants & Bars, Road Trips, TRAVEL, Travel Planning, United States

Fireside Inn at Moonstone Beach

From the Fireside Inn Website
From the Fireside Inn Website


Well Merry Christmas to everyone.  I hope this is a holiday to remember.  I’ll continue with my travelogue.

Fireside Inn at Moonstone Beach in Cambria is now on my list of favorite bed-and-breakfast inns.  I think you’d like it, too.


Several months back I explained how this trip to California went through several permutations before I actually got to take it.  Though pretty much everything about the trip changed several times over, I guarded my night on Moonstone Beach with a vengeance. It was one of those experiences that I’d wanted for a long time and I was determined to keep it on the itinerary.

I wasn’t so sure about the accommodations.  Though I’ve been doing my booking with Expedia for years, recently I’ve begun to do a lot of research on Trip Advisor.  Their reviews seem to resonate with me more than the Expedia crowd’s and I love using the Saved Trips feature for things I want to see while I’m researching.  And of course there’s an app, so I can get to the items I’ve saved when I’m out on the road.

There was one small problem with Moonstone Beach.  Every single inn sounded perfect.  Oh, there was usually one or two people who ranted about smelly rooms or noise or something, but those grumps were sprinkled pretty evenly among my choices. Each time I got online I’d change my mind and Bill wasn’t much help either.  Eventually, I chose Fireside Inn, but I have no reasonable explanation for it.  I just had to make a decision, so I did.


It was late afternoon, almost evening, when we arrived and the desk clerk made it seem as if he’d just been dying for us to get there.  He was friendly in a genuine way, not in a corporate mandate way.  He was full of restaurant suggestions and well wishes.  He acted like he hoped we’d have a reason to call him so he could visit with us again.

With that kind of reception you want to like your room and we did.  It was huge and felt more like a suite.  The bathroom had plenty of room for two people and was perfectly appointed.  The room itself was down right luxurious.  Not in an expensive over the top sort of way, but it made me want to curl up on the sofa in front of the fire.

Speaking of the fireplace, it didn’t work at first, but when I called my friend at the desk he hurried over and jiggled whatever needed to be jiggled.  The flame lit right up.  My desk clerk fan explained that it would be safe to sleep with the fire going, so we did.


Right next door to the Fireside Inn is the Moonstone Bar and Grill.  My desk clerk friend endorsed it as a great place for dinner.  I remembered having at least one meal there and reviewers had raved about it, so that’s where we had dinner.

The place was jammed and it had been redecorated since our last visit.  The menu had also been completely revamped.  We were looking to grab a bite and they wanted us to go the full monty.  We were tired from driving all day and the noise level was extreme.

So it was not our favorite dining experience of the trip, but I think that had more to do with us than them.  The last meal we had there was earlier in the day, so we got to enjoy the view out of the big picture windows overlooking Moonstone Beach.  I’m thinking this is a “go-there-for-lunch” place – at least for us.


So after dinner we chilled out by the fire.  My only regret about the Fireside Inn is that I only had one night there.  I think it deserves at least a three night stay.  I lounged on the sofa before the fire jotting down notes from the day.  Notes which, by the way, are now packed away in some box while I’m waiting for my house to get finished.  I’m writing this from memory rather than my copious notes.

One thing I wanted to be sure everyone understood.  This is a casual seaside inn.  For me this was a plus – and the rooms are out of this world.  However, this is not the Taj Mahal.  There’s nothing fancy about the exterior or the hallways.  There’s nothing wrong with them either.  The lobby is pleasant, but not opulent  It’s clear everything is meticulously maintained, but there are no frills.  They save the good things for the room and have extreme hospitality instead of Louis XVI antiques.


We woke up refreshed with the fire still blazing.  It was one of those memories that sticks with you long after you’ve forgotten what you ate at that expensive restaurant.  We got ready for another day on the road and wandered over to the breakfast room.

What a nice experience!  Breakfast was served buffet style, so you could get whatever you wanted.  They didn’t have anyone cooking fresh eggs and such, but they did have a fresh pancake machine.  I thought that was cool, because most places have a waffle machine.  I ate with a growing appetite and everything was delicious.

The room itself is next to the pool and the day was warm enough for them to have the french doors open.  Crisp linens covered the tables and I liked the ladderback chairs.  Everything felt comfortable and homey.  Did I mention the food was delicious?

We climbed in our car and continued down Highway One, exiting at Morro Bay.  We were about to wander down memory lane.  Come back next week and wander with us.

2 thoughts on “Fireside Inn at Moonstone Beach”

  1. Jane – I’m writing down some great tips and don’t want to leave your site as I’m having a great time living vicariously and of course remembering places I’ve been, etc.
    Tom and I are big fans of B&Bs. You mentioned the breakfast as a buffet. I liked the idea because that meant I didn’t have to get up and get going so early. On the other hand, I wondered how many rooms the B&B had. I also liked the fact that the great pieces, including furniture, were saved for the guest rooms.
    We prefer to stay at B&Bs with 8 rooms or less and of course the room must have a full private bath and almost always a gas fireplace.
    Great write-up. I’ll be back for more from you as I also want to hear how the new house is coming along. We also like to stay as long as possible in one B&B and then do day excursions from that one special location.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Fireside Inn has more than 8 rooms, but don’t let that scare you away. It’s not a home, It’s a small inn. Every room has a private bath and fireplace. Even though it is across the street from the beach, the rooms don’t have ocean views. The whole thing is one story, which we liked. I highly recommend it.


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