The first overnight stop on our road trip last month was a pretty memorable one… we finally got to stay at the infamous Madonna Inn. And it was… the most crazy awesome amazing slightly terrifying pink glitter dream boat. For those of you who aren’t familiar, The Madonna Inn is this crazy gem of a hotel with over one hundred completely unique rooms located in San Luis Obispo. Literally everything is pink. From the floor to the chairs to the tennis courts to the curbs to the street lights to the room keys to the receipts. It’s bananas, you guys. Pink bananas. And since I have a pretty strong inkling you all like pink just as much as I do, I thought I’d take you on a little Madonna Inn tour.
Let’s start with our room. Like I said, each room is different and has its own name. You get a postcard of your room upon check-in! Some rooms are safari themed, some color themed, some have walls made of rocks and some… some have pink glitter WALLS! Husband and wife, Alex and Phyllis Madonna opened the hotel in 1958 and each room was unique to cater to different tastes and it makes the hotel some sort of “one stop shop” for all sorts of “adventures”! We stayed in the Merry room, which was freaking amazing. A few other rooms I’d love to stay in next time: Carin, Canary Cottage, Love Nest, Sugar & Spice, Tall & Short
PRO TIP: If you want a SPECIFIC room, you have to CALL them to reserve it. There is an option to “request” a room when reserving online but it is not guaranteed. The only way to guarantee your room is to call. And book far ahead, we called several months in advance wanting to stay in “Carin” and it (She?) was already booked. They’re great about suggesting similar rooms though, and that’s how we ended up with Merry! If you book the “hiking” package, it’s often the same price or less and you get a free sparkly Madonna Inn water bottle which, if you like tacky touristy stuff like me… it’s worth it.
So the main building has a steakhouse, a diner/cafe, a bakery and a bunch of gift shops. And yes, it is pink flowers from floor to ceiling. Literally. They are uber famous for their pink champagne cake which was covered in pink chocolate curls! Amazing! However, I’d recommend heading into the cute town of SLO for dinner if you can swing it (Some recs here!)! In the gift shop you can buy a rainbow of glass goblets which is what they serve drinks in at their restaurant, along with a bunch of other funky things. At night, they have a live band and dancing in the main room which is like the cherry on top of this place.
And for our next stop on the tour de pink.. the tennis courts! You guessed it! They’re pink too. I may not play tennis, but I can lay on a pink tennis court like a BOSS! And the dress I’m wearing? I bought it in the gift shop! HA! ALL PINK ERRYTHANG!
The rest of the grounds are just as colorful. The main building at the top of the hill (where our room was) had colored doors, a color blocked wall and rainbow patio chairs! There’s pink umbrellas and street lamps and even horses! Ok, the horses aren’t pink. But they sure are cute! It’s definitely worth a walk around the property even if you aren’t staying overnight.
Photos by Jeff Mindell
Have you ever been? What room did you stay in? If you haven’t been but have a few minutes (Read: you need an excuse to procrastinate) just take a peek around the room photos here, it’s quite a trip! And let me know your fave!! I’m so so glad we finally went and we talked about how fun it would be to bring kids back there some day. I mean, could you imagine walking into a glitter room at age 5? My heart probably would have stopped beating. Jeff did describe it eerily well at one point though, “American Horror Story: Barbie Dream House”. Now if we see that story line on TV, Ryan Murphy, I’ll have a bone to pick with you. 😉