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Fresno is a lot of things. It’s a wonderful place to share food from cultures around the world with friends. It’s a great spot for local coffee, craft beer, baseball games, and shopping. What it is not, however, is a hot spot for romantic hotel getaways. And sometimes, you just need a little romance in your life!
If you and your special someone are looking for a wonderful, one-tank (both ways, unless your car has a really small gas tank!) getaway, I have uncovered a hidden gem destination I’m certain you will love.
Avila La Fonda Hotel is located in Avila Beach, CA, just 120 miles (2.5 hours) from Fresno. Many Fresnans frequent Avila Beach as a day trip destination and are familiar with the city, but in case you are not, Avila Beach is a beach front town with under 2,000 residents (as it is mostly a tourist destination). It’s basically two piers and a quaint, colorful, and recently rebuilt boardwalk lined with restaurants and boutiques. Significantly smaller and less crowded than its neighbors Pismo Beach and Morro Bay, Avila is popular with families who prefer a little more room to roam and quiet—especially during the week.
Avila La Fonda Hotel is located in the heart of Avila Beach, just one block from the sand and within easy walking distance to the entire boardwalk. My husband and I have now celebrated two anniversaries at the hotel, and have found it to be one of the most relaxing, enjoyable, and positive customer experiences we’ve had, anywhere. Though I hesitate to share and make the hotel too popular, risking future difficulty in securing my own repeat reservations, I want to see the hotel continue to be successful, and to know that other couples are able to enjoy all that Avila La Fonda has to offer. So alas, I share the details here with you!
Reasons You Should Make Avila La Fonda Hotel Your Romantic Getaway Choice
As I mentioned, Avila La Fonda is located just steps from the beach where you can enjoy a long walk, game of Frisbee or a ride on the beach swingset. Also within easy walking distance are great local businesses where you can enjoy a tasty breakfast (try the Avila Market breakfast tacos!), a delicious cup of coffee (the vanilla latte at Kraken Coffee is all creamy dreaminess) or a relaxing dinner overlooking the shore (eat at Ocean Grill and don’t miss the Brussels sprout appetizer or wood-fired pizzas).
Each room at Avila La Fonda is beautifully appointed, has a comfortable bed with excellent bedding, a fireplace with thermostat control, a two-person whirlpool tub, and a 52” plasma screen t.v. Many rooms also offer balconies and lovely views of Avila.
3. FREE Food
The food at Avila La Fonda is one of the hotel’s high points, for sure. Included in the cost of your room is access to enough “free” food that you could essentially avoid spending any additional money on meals during your trip. (Would your diet be totally balanced? Eh, maybe not so much… but is an excess of pie really all that bad in the short term, anyway?)
Avila La Fonda offers all of the following to its guests every day:
- A big basket of assorted snacks and drinks in every room. Like M&Ms more than Skittles? No problem. Just trade out your Skittles for a second bag of M&Ms in the hall pantry off the downstairs lobby. There are also single-serve coffee brewers and an assortment of k-cups in each room.
- Freshly baked butter and chocolate croissants, orange juice, and coffee are served each morning (the butter croissants are the best I’ve ever eaten, and HUGE!)
- From 12-2 p.m. each day, there is a nacho bar where you can build your own nacho bowl. There are also ice-cold Coronas and Mexican Cokes in glass bottles to enjoy with your chips
- At 5 p.m. each evening, you may help yourself to appetizers and local wines during the Manager’s Reception
- And (I saved the best for last) every night at 8 p.m., Avila La Fonda serves freshly baked, piping hot fruit pies from Avila Valley Barn with vanilla ice cream. (We actually rushed through our one meal off-site to get back for “Pie Time!”)
4. Discounts for Costco Members
My husband and I first discovered Avila La Fonda Hotel through a promotion Costco sent via email several years ago. Avila La Fonda offers discounted pricing to Costco members year-round.
Upon arrival, my husband and I were welcomed with two branded, stemless wine glasses and, in our room, there was a Happy Anniversary card along with a bottle of sparkling wine left in our room’s fridge for us to enjoy. At the time of check out, we were offered a thank-you gift of either a box of handmade truffles or a painted tile coaster.
6. Customer Service
At Avila La Fonda, every element of your stay makes you feel as though your needs and interests were considered. From the abundance of food and wine served throughout the stay, to the closet with free loaner beach chairs and towels, to the room amenities, gifts, and the way you are greeted, the hotel and its staff makes you truly feel like a welcome guest. The price you pay is free of unexpected surprises and lots of extra fees (unlike so many hotels who tack on fees for parking, use of amenities, WiFi, etc.).
Bottom line, if you’re looking for a truly relaxing, romantic place to visit, to celebrate a special occasion or just to reconnect with your partner, Avila La Fonda Hotel will not disappoint.
Enjoy your stay. Oh, and don’t forget to set your alarm for 8 p.m. sharp—you won’t want to miss pie time!