Santa Cruz is a captivating seaside getaway offering sunsets, surfing, and the historic Beach Boardwalk. Home to attractions like Natural Bridges State Park, the Mystery Spot, Santa Cruz Wharf and, of course, the vintage rides at Beach Boardwalk, there is always something to do and see. Downtown Santa Cruz offers vacationers a wide selection of shops, museums, art galleries, cinemas, restaurants, and bars. Accommodations in Santa Cruz range from modest hotels like Beachview Inn to luxury boutique hotels like Belle Notte. Visitors can stay in the mountains at resorts like Chaminade Resort & Spa or stay right on the beach at hotels like Dream Inn Santa Cruz. For a sampling of all Santa Cruz has to offer, check out these 25 accommodations.
1.Mission Inn & Suites
© Mission Inn & Suites
Mission Inn & Suites is located near the Lighthouse Field State Beach and features just over 50 tastefully decorated non-smoking guestrooms and suites. Each comes with several amenities including microwaves, refrigerators, in-room coffee, air conditioners, cable with HBO, and high-speed wireless internet. For those who want to experience more relaxation and luxury, they can choose suites equipped with Jacuzzis. The inn boasts numerous on-site amenities, such as a sauna, outdoor spa, and 24-hour guest services. Mission Inn & Suites is close to various local attractions, including MJA vineyards, Natural Bridges State Beach, the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum, the Santa Cruz Wharf, and the Museum of Art and History.
2250 Mission Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-425-5455
2.Ocean Echo Inn & Beach Cottage
© Ocean Echo Inn & Beach Cottage
Situated between the magnificent Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and Capitola Village, the Ocean Echo Inn & Beach Cottage provides accommodations for every style of vacationer, from families to the solo traveler. Their larger cottages can house up to four people comfortably and feature a full kitchen with a full-sized refrigerator and gas stove. The smaller cottages are ideal for up to two people and are situated in a charming beachside atmosphere. They are in proximity to attractions such as the Santa Cruz Harbor, the Mystery Spot, Roaring Camp, Pleasure Point, Capitola Village, and Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park.
401 Johans Beach Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-462-4192
3.Ocean Pacific Lodge
© Ocean Pacific Lodge
Ocean Pacific Lodge is just two blocks away from the Santa Cruz Wharf, which is known for its fishing, boating tours, fine dining, and local shops. Just one block farther and visitors will find the famous Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, known for its wealth of activities. The hotel’s design is modern with a retro twist and offers four styles of guestrooms and suites, from a standard two-queen room to a deluxe king room with Jacuzzi. Lodge amenities include in-room Keurig coffeemakers, complimentary continental breakfast, a heated outdoor swimming pool, a spa, free parking, and guest laundry facilities.
301 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-457-1234
4.Chaminade Resort & Spa
© Chaminade Resort & Spa
Nestled outside the city in the Santa Cruz Mountains, Four-Diamond Chaminade Resort & Spa offers sweeping views of Monterey Bay and the surrounding mountainous landscape. This mission-style resort has 156 recently renovated rooms and suites with resort and forest views. Accommodations are in eleven villas that dot the 300-acre luxury resort. The coastal décor and Spanish furnishings give the resort a relaxing, casual elegance. Among the many resort amenities are a world-class spa and two superb restaurants. Sunset Restaurant serves award-winning cuisine, perfect for Sunday brunch. Linwood’s Bar & Grill is the resort’s signature restaurant, serving California cuisine. This is a great getaway for frazzled travelers looking to unwind.
1 Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-475-5600
5.Babbling Brook Inn
© Babbling Brook Inn
This lovely bed and breakfast in a natural organic setting is the epitome of peace and quiet. Upscale accommodations include 13 spacious rooms or suites with garden views. Room amenities include comfortable featherbeds, plush bathrobes, Wi-Fi, a fireplace, a flat-screen TV, and a coffeemaker. Some have decks or adjoining rooms. All share an elegant ambience with French country décor and the artwork of poets and painters like Tennyson, Renoir, and Monet. Inn amenities include a full country breakfast buffet, evening reception of hors d’oeuvres and wine, daily fresh-baked cookies, Wi-Fi, and a daily newspaper. It’s a charming oasis with romantic flair.
1025 Laurel Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 800-866-1131
6.Bay Front Inn Hotel
© Bay Front Inn Hotel
For those looking for a pet-friendly hotel close to both downtown Santa Cruz and nearby beaches that welcome off-leash dogs, Bay Front Inn Hotel is the place. This contemporary inn also offers guests deluxe rooms with a queen bed, family studios with two double beds or a king bed and sleeper sofa, and accessible rooms. All have hardwood floors and a fresh, contemporary décor. Inn amenities include complimentary breakfast with waffles, eggs, yogurt, and fruit, an outdoor pool, complimentary Wi-Fi and satellite TV, and complimentary parking, to name a few. The inn is adjacent to downtown and close to the Santa Cruz boardwalk and beach.
325 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-423-8564
7.Beach Street Inn and Suites
© Beach Street Inn and Suites
Beach Street Inn and Suites is a popular boutique hotel situated across the street from Monterey Bay. Many of the rooms and suites have either poolside or beach views. Guests can choose from 12 styles of rooms and suites. Room amenities include accommodations for up to six guests, some full kitchens and fireplaces, DVD players, complimentary HBO, flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations, and complimentary Wi-Fi. The Picnic Basket is the hotel’s signature restaurant, providing guests with room service, casual seated dining for lunch and dinner, and ice cream service. Other inn amenities include an outdoor heated pool with a hot tub and fire pit, a complimentary coffee/cocoa/espresso bar, and retail shopping.
125 Beach Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-423-3031
© Beachview Inn
Beachview Inn is located within a half-block of the main beach on Monterey Bay near the wharf and boardwalk. Budget-minded vacationers will appreciate this unpretentious inn. The small yet clean rooms offer color TVs with HBO, air conditioning, and direct dial phone service. The décor features a neutral color palette with light wood furnishings and floral accents. Some rooms have been renovated with flat-screen TVs and more updated décor. Rooms have Jacuzzi tubs, and some rooms have peekaboo views of the ocean as well as microwaves and minifridges. The inn provides a continental-style breakfast in the lobby. Free parking is also available.
50 Front Street, Santa, Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-426-3575
© Bella Notte
Bella Notte is a luxury boutique hotel with an Italian villa motif. The hotel has ten opulent rooms with five on the ground floor and five on the second floor. All rooms have countertops in Italian marble, custom cabinetry, luxuriant Italian sheets, European-influenced furnishings, and heated bathroom floors. Rooms one through four are on the ground floor – two double queen rooms and two king spa rooms. Junior king, king, and superior king rooms are on the second floor. The junior king is the smallest. The two king rooms are larger and also have a wet bar. Superior king rooms are the largest and also have oversized shower/tub combinations, walk-in closets, and fireplaces.
21305 East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-600-0001
10.Boca del Cielo Inn
© Boca del Cielo Inn
Boca del Cielo Inn is a Victorian home, built in 1897, turned bed and breakfast by owners Maria and Shahin Gutierrez. The innkeepers opened the inn after being inspired by the Mexican beach from the movie Y Tu Mama Tambien. The inn’s name translates as “mouth of heaven,” which is where guests will feel they’ve arrived. The six rooms and two cottages have a Mexican motif of vibrant colors and textures, antique furnishings, and interesting details. Rooms include fireplaces and private en suites. The homemade full breakfast is complimentary to guests and served in the dining room. Located about a minute from the Santa Cruz boardwalk and beach, this B&B accommodates solo travelers to families. Caracias Café is on the property.
118 1st Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-457-2430
11.Carousel Beach Inn
© Carousel Beach Inn
Carousel Beach Inn is named for the iconic 107-year-old Santa Cruz beachfront carousel. A mere half block from the beach and boardwalk, this inn is brilliant white inside and out with contrasting vibrant colors like pink, orange, turquoise, red, and yellow. It has both a whimsical and an energetic ambience. Guests can choose from five styles of rooms – king, double queen, king view, king spa, and accessible queen. King view rooms offer views of the boardwalk a half-block away. Hotel amenities include continental breakfast and Wi-Fi and, of course, proximity to the beach and boardwalk. Midweek stays are often discounted.
110 Riverside Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-425-7090
© Courtesy of Aleksander - Fotolia.com
Casablanca Inn is located directly across the street from the beach in this fun vacation hot spot. The inn, converted from what was once a seaside mansion, has 33 rooms in three styles – classic queen, ocean view king, and a gorgeous penthouse suite. Rooms are casual and most offer ocean views. Room amenities include Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, microwaves, and minifridges. Some have a fireplace, hot tub, or balcony. There are also suites and free-standing bungalows on the property for families or larger groups. They feature living areas, full kitchens, and patios. Guests can order room service from the hotel’s casual Thai restaurant on the corner.
101 Main Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-423-1570
© Coastview Inn
Coastview Inn has a prime location directly across the street from the beach and beautiful Monterey Bay. What was once an aging two-story hotel is being transformed into a three-story luxury hotel with a multi-million-dollar renovation to go along with its million-dollar views. Second and third-story accommodations will have balconies. Remodeled rooms have Beautyrest mattresses, microwaves, refrigerators, new desks, chairs, flat-screen TVs with satellite service, and granite bathroom counters. A rooftop patio will provide incredible panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. The hotel is within walking distance of Santa Cruz Wharf. Guests also enjoy free parking. Things to Do in Santa Cruz
301 Beach Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-426-0420
14.Dream Inn Santa Cruz
© Dream Inn Santa Cruz
The Dream Inn, located on Cowells Beach, is a seaside hotel that self-describes as “retro-chic.” This hotel has 165 guest rooms, and each one has an ocean view. Room amenities include a Keurig coffeemaker, minifridge, private balcony/patio, walk-in shower, Wi-Fi, flat-screen TV, and iPod docking station. Aquarius is the hotel’s beachside signature restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch, dinner, and brunch. Jack O’Neill Lounge is their casual beachside bar. An ocean-facing pool that is literally steps from the ocean has been recently renovated. Guests will appreciate the heated pool, hot tub, chaise lounges, cabana beds, fire pit, direct beach access, and poolside service by Shorebreak Drink and Dine.
175 West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 844-510-1746
15.Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites
© Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites
Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites is a modest hotel on Beach Hill, a short walk from the beach. It is not on the beach, as the name implies, and has a historical fishing village vibe. Rooms have dark wood-beamed ceilings, simple furnishings, flat-screen TVs, minifridges, microwaves, coffeemakers, and modern, updated bathrooms. Some have kitchens, fireplaces, and adjoining rooms. Some sleep up to six guests. Hotel amenities include outdoor garden spaces to relax, a pool, and a barbecue area. The hotel offers complimentary continental breakfast and free Wi-Fi. Guests can enjoy panoramic views of Monterey Bay from the comfort of the hotel’s outdoor spaces.
525 2nd Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-423-0440
© Fireside Inn
Under new management and following a complete renovation in 2014, the Fireside Inn is the closest motel to the iconic Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and is situated next to the Boardwalk Bowl. This unassuming motel offers visitors the choice between guestrooms featuring two queen beds or a family suite with one king and two queen beds. Each of the rooms and suites feature incredible views of the ocean and surrounding area. They also include air conditioning, high-speed wireless internet, free parking, and basic amenities. Its close proximity to the boardwalk and other popular attractions such as the Mystery Spot and Roaring Camp is its biggest draw.
311 2nd Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-426-7123
© Hotel Paradox
Unlike most of the hotels in Santa Cruz, Hotel Paradox isn’t in proximity to the sandy shoreline, but rather situated within a magnificent redwood forest. A perfect balance of urban design and nature, this Autograph Collection Hotel challenges guests with bold contradictions. Surrounded by majestic redwoods, rugged mountains, and vibrant communities, Hotel Paradox offers an ambiance that is modern, welcoming, and a little mysterious. The guestrooms and suites all feature a contemporary design with rustic adornments offering a tranquility to its guests. Amenities include swimming pools, a poolside bar and lounge, electric bike rentals, and a fitness center.
611 Ocean Street, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-425-7100
© Hotel Solares
Hotel Solares is located in downtown Santa Cruz near the iconic beach boardwalk. The contemporary guestrooms and suites provide options for everyone, from family vacations to romantic getaways and everything in between. Each room is equipped with high-speed Wi-Fi, refrigerators, coffeemakers, and microwaves. This is a pet-friendly hotel that offers a wealth of amenities, such as a hot tub, outdoor pool, and a complimentary continental breakfast each morning. Its location puts guests in close proximity, often walking distance, to many sought-after attractions like the historic amusement park, Santa Cruz Wharf, and Pacific Garden Mall.
600 Riverside Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-458-9660
19.Pacific Blue Inn
© Pacific Blue Inn
Inspired by the NY Times article “36 Hours in Santa Cruz,” Pacific Beach Inn was designed to create an atmosphere that would allow guests to take advantage of the best aspects of the city. Situated halfway between the bustling downtown and the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, the inn provides a tranquil, secluded oasis for guests to recoup after long days of exploration. This charming nine-guestroom hotel is ideal for solo travelers and couples as all rooms are equipped with king-sized pillowtop beds and eco-friendly electric fireplaces. Pacific Blue Inn also features a magnificent private bamboo courtyard with two gas fire pits and offers two complimentary bikes for guest use.
636 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-600-8880
20.Pelican Point Inn
© Courtesy of dvoevnore - Fotolia.com
Situated in the Sunbelt near Twin Lakes State Beach and the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor, Pelican Point Inn is a family-owned inn featuring old cottage charm and modern amenities. They offer ten charming suites that can accommodate up to four people each. Some are just standard king suites, while others feature separate bedrooms, living rooms, and full-sized kitchens with bar counters and stools. The hotel is surrounded by attractions including local wineries, Pacific Garden Mall, golf courses, and Nicene Marks State Beach – perfect for hiking and cycling. They are also within driving distance of Monterey, Cannery Row, and Pebble Beach.
21345 East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-475-3381
21.Santa Cruz Inn Motel
© Santa Cruz Inn Motel
The Santa Cruz Inn Motel is simple and understated, featuring three guestroom options – a standard king with Jacuzzi and fireplace, a queen bedroom, and a double queen room. This is a budget-friendly option that doesn’t offer as many amenities as the more upscale locales, but it does offer daily maid service and a hot tub for guest use. It’s in close proximity to the city’s major attractions, such as the narrow gauge railroad, the Natural Bridges State Beach, Neptune’s Kingdom, the Mystery Spot, and the Santa Cruz Wharf. They are also surrounded by various restaurants offering numerous styles of cuisine, such as Erik’s Deli, El Chino Mexican Restaurant, and Upper Crust Pizza.
2950 Soquel Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-475-6322
22.Sea and Sand Inn
© Sea and Sand Inn
The Sand and Sea Inn is an upscale hotel that offers guests an ocean view from every one of its guestrooms and suites. There are 12 different types of accommodations to choose from. All feature a contemporary design with exquisite adornments and a luxurious yet simple design. A standard queen guestroom may be ideal for a solo traveler, while their cottage suite may be perfect for a family or couple’s retreat. All accommodations include 40” flat-screen televisions, fireplaces, and minifridges. The grander suites include four-person hot tubs, sleeper sofas, and private balconies. The inn provides free Wi-Fi, complimentary continental breakfast, and a central location close to several prominent attractions.
201 West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-427-3400
23.Sunny Cove Motel
© Sunny Cove Motel
The Sunny Cove Motel is an older mission-style motel featuring 13 newly remodeled guestrooms, suites, and studio apartments. It is located in a quaint sandy beach cove on Monterey Bay’s northern side between Capitola and Santa Cruz City. The studios feature full kitchens with gas stoves and full-sized refrigerators. The complex has a swimming pool and barbecues. It’s just a 3-minute walk to the cove near several popular attractions and activities including fishing, boating excursions, and incredible surfing opportunities. Capitola Village, downtown Santa Cruz, Roaring Camp, and the Mystery Spot are all nearby.
21610 E Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-475-1741
24.The Inn at Pasatiempo
© The Inn at Pasatiempo
Situated near Highway 17 roughly 4 miles from the stunning beach of Santa Cruz, The Inn at Pasatiempo is nestled beside an ethereal eucalyptus grove in a wooded ambience. Their year-round heated outdoor pool is encircled by magnificent gardens and provides awe-inspiring views of the neighboring Pasatiempo Golf Course. The inn features 54 non-smoking guestrooms that are rustically designed and feature modern amenities such as flat-screen televisions, complimentary Wi-Fi, in-room coffeemakers, and mini refrigerators. They also feature 2,600 square feet of event and meeting space, the Back Nine Grill and Bar, and a complimentary breakfast each morning.
555 Highway 17, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-423-5000
25.The Seaway Inn
© The Seaway Inn
Perched on a hillside overlooking picturesque Monterey Bay, the Seaway Inn is a charming Santa Cruz hotel featuring all the coziness and warmth of a traditional beach hotel with an array of modern amenities. Its location along West Cliff Drive affords guests breathtaking ocean views from many of the guestrooms. Each of its rooms is equipped with a refrigerator, microwave, coffeemaker, and shared patio or balcony. Kitchen suites, two-room suites, pet-friendly, and ocean view rooms are all available upon request. The inn is just a short walk to downtown Santa Cruz and is situated across from Santa Cruz Wharf and the beach.
176 West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, Phone: 831-471-9004
Where to Stay in Santa Cruz - 25 Best Romantic Getaways
- Mission Inn & Suites, Photo: Mission Inn & Suites
- Ocean Echo Inn & Beach Cottage, Photo: Ocean Echo Inn & Beach Cottage
- Ocean Pacific Lodge, Photo: Ocean Pacific Lodge
- Chaminade Resort & Spa, Photo: Chaminade Resort & Spa
- Babbling Brook Inn, Photo: Babbling Brook Inn
- Bay Front Inn Hotel, Photo: Bay Front Inn Hotel
- Beach Street Inn and Suites, Photo: Beach Street Inn and Suites
- Beachview Inn, Photo: Beachview Inn
- Bella Notte, Photo: Bella Notte
- Boca del Cielo Inn, Photo: Boca del Cielo Inn
- Carousel Beach Inn, Photo: Carousel Beach Inn
- Casablanca Inn, Photo: Courtesy of Aleksander - Fotolia.com
- Coastview Inn, Photo: Coastview Inn
- Dream Inn Santa Cruz, Photo: Dream Inn Santa Cruz
- Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites, Photo: Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites
- Fireside Inn, Photo: Fireside Inn
- Hotel Paradox, Photo: Hotel Paradox
- Hotel Solares, Photo: Hotel Solares
- Pacific Blue Inn, Photo: Pacific Blue Inn
- Pelican Point Inn, Photo: Courtesy of dvoevnore - Fotolia.com
- Santa Cruz Inn Motel, Photo: Santa Cruz Inn Motel
- Sea and Sand Inn, Photo: Sea and Sand Inn
- Sunny Cove Motel, Photo: Sunny Cove Motel
- The Inn at Pasatiempo, Photo: The Inn at Pasatiempo
- The Seaway Inn, Photo: The Seaway Inn
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of Sheri Swailes - Fotolia.com