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Cayucos Sunset Inn, located in southern California, features nine units, as well as a dining room and lobby area for guests. The owner's wife, Lisa Mankins, designed the building and the stained glass windows featured inside some of the rooms. A full breakfast is served in the morning at the guest's chosen time. The inn's close proximity to the beach typically draws in visitors who are hoping for a relaxing getaway. The overall atmosphere of the location tends to be quieter as it is a small town area away from the more urban cities. Some of the nearby restaurants include Café Della Via, Lunata Garden Bistro, and Duckies Chowder House. Outdoor activities such as fishing or kayaking are relatively popular within the area. Several rental stores for recreational gear are near the property.
Cayucos Sunset Inn is situated in the southern area of California near the beaches of the Pacific Ocean. Located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, California, on the Scenic Highway 1, the property features nine units, a commercial kitchen, garage, main office, dining room, and lobby area. To the right side of the building is a driveway that has full parking for each guest room in the back. The sidewalk is surrounded by jasmine plants and palm trees. The back of the property provides a sand shower, where guests can rinse off after a trip to the beach. Additionally, in the back area of the inn is a smoking section with potted plants.
Alexis, the general manager and daughter of the owner, has been frequently asked by guests if the inn was redone from a Victorian building. The inn's interior and exterior have a Victorian appearance, with stained glass windows, hardwood flooring, a banister, palm trees on the outside, and a garden in front of the inn. Within the building, there are several touches and details to add to the Victorian look, for example, the handmade furniture and the woodcarvings in the fireplaces. Alexis's mother designed the building before it was constructed. Each room has different characteristics, but they all fall into two categories of styles which include French country style and Tommy Bahama. The dining room has a dining patio where guests can read a book or eat their meals outside. Alexis works as the main keeper of the inn and the cook, maintaining Cayucos Sunset Inn's overall condition and managing the service for guests. Her father, John Mankins, works as the owner.
The upstairs rooms are two-room suites with ocean views, and they are approximately 700-1100 square feet in size. They are generally spacious, with the inclusion of a living room that features a fireplace, TV, and DVD player. Down the hall, there is a double vanity, two-person jacuzzi tub, and a shower, in addition to a bedroom area that also includes a fireplace, TV, DVD player, and patio with an ocean view. All rooms have decks, with the exception of the handicapped room, and each suite includes filtered drinking water. Cayucos Sunset Inn's decks have views of Cayucos Pier and Morro Bay Rock, which is known to be a prominent landmark. The rooms downstairs are single-suites, measuring about 500-600 square feet. The rooms and dining room also include UVC air purifiers. One of the more popular units of the inn is the Sunset Room, also known as the "honeymoon suite." It is approximately 1,100 square feet and is decorated with white and cream colors. The two-person jacuzzi tub in the Sunset Room is a little larger than the other ones and can fit up to four people.
One of the inn's most unique characteristics is the "wall of fame" in the office. Cayucos Sunset Inn has accommodated a fair amount of celebrities such as Phil Nevins, Druscilla Campbell, and several Olympians who have signed the wall. The wall, in length, measures out to be approximately three feet by three feet. In addition to the wall of fame, another unique feature about the property is their motto: "Let us pamper you."
Cayucos Sunset Inn serves a full breakfast in the dining room, and guests can appoint a time for breakfast. Alexis and the staff work as waiters and cooks for the guests and try to treat them as though they're dining at a restaurant. Muffins or scones are typically served as the first course. Some of the drink options for breakfast include orange juice, coffee, or water. Guests can choose a sweet or savory as the main meal, additionally with oatmeal or granola. Cheese platters with an additional charge are also offered to guests. In the evening, cookies and milk are given to guests. The owners cater to dietary restrictions or preferences such as gluten-free or vegan. All food is fresh, and the majority of it is organic.
Cayucos Sunset Inn is located within walking distance of the beach, which is approximately 200 feet away from the property. Additionally, restaurants and coffee shops are located about a 25 minute drive from the inn. A few of the nearby dining options that Alexis recommends are the Café Della Via, which serves homemade Italian cuisine, and the Lunata Garden Bistro down the street from the inn. Lunata Garden Bistro's menu includes several lunch options, as well as steak and lobster. Another restaurant recommended by the general manager is Duckies Chowder House, which is a casual-dining restaurant by the pier that serves fish and chips and other similar foods.
The general atmosphere of the area is relatively quiet. Several guests come to get away from the majorly urban cities. The busiest season for Cayucos Sunset Inn, and for the majority of the town as a whole, is typically during the summer months from June to late September. The owners welcome guests of all ages, as the inn receives a wide variety of age groups, more often couples and occasionally families. Some visitors stay at Cayucos Sunset Inn because they've come to get married at the pier.
The owners have made it their goal to help their guests have a "healing" experience during their stay. One unique element that the owners do to make guests feel more special is if the guests are celebrating a birthday, the cook will add a candle to the French toast or pancake, and the staff will sing to the guest. One guest, in particular, commented, "My husband and I loved the room. We stayed on the 2nd floor. It had two fireplaces, one in the living room and one in the bedroom. When you turn them on, it really keeps your room nice and cozy".
Cayucos Sunset Inn has beach access from down the street of the inn, with close proximity to the Cayucos Pier. Alexis explains that there was a nearby shipwreck that occurred a couple of years ago that visitors enjoy taking pictures of. Additionally, some of the most popular attractions in the area are kayaking and fishing. If guests plan on fishing, they must have a license to do so on the pier. Virg's Tackle Shop and Good Clean Fun are nearby rental stores where visitors can rent fishing gear. Another activity recommended by the staff at Cayucos is the sea glass hunting on the beach. Some visitors also come to see the elephant seal colony along the beaches.
Alexis remarks that the town is known for celebrating the Fourth of July. During this holiday, the entire downtown area is closed off for a sizable parade that starts at 10:00 a.m., and in the evening, fireworks are launched from the Cayucos Pier. Another holiday that the town celebrates is New Year's Day. During this time, the town will hold small events such as the Polar Bear Dip, where people are invited to jump off the pier.
Cayucos Sunset Inn first opened in 2002. Lisa Mankins was in the real estate industry and, at one point, was working as a dental hygienist. She had always had a dream to build, own, and operate a B&B. Her husband, John Mankins, was a plumbing contractor who was encouraged by Lisa to get his general contractor license for the million-dollar league to build Cayucos Sunset Inn. The county had doubts that he would receive the license within the two months given to him, so they gave him the approval of building the B&B in the town with the condition that he make it a Victorian-style inn. They were surprised to find that he followed through with it and constructed the Victorian-style B&B. Because of John's background and experience with plumbing, the inn's rooms are all able to have drinking water, as well as jacuzzi tub water. John currently works as the plumber for Cayucos Sunset Inn. In 2003 the inn received its first four-diamond award.
Lisa Mankins was from Santa Barbara, and she had connections there that helped her design all of the stained glass in each of the rooms, in addition to the furniture and decor. Lisa passed away more than five years ago and her daughter Alexis has taken over in maintaining Cayucos Sunset Inn ever since. Over the course of time, several renovations such as repainted patios and baseboards and replaced doors have taken place for the upkeep of the inn.
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