Heading to California’s central coast wine country? One of the newest places to stay in one of the most charming cities, Paso Robles, is the Hotel Cheval right in the heart of town. There are sixteen rooms in this boutique inn, but its relatively small size is amply compensated by the generous service. From the moment you enter the Hotel Cheval you’re greeted, not by an impersonal face at a front desk, but by someone who welcomes you to take a comfy seat in a living room-like setting while you’re checked in and supplied with all the information you’ll need to have a restful and enjoyable stay. They’ll offer you wine country maps, in-town maps and be happy to chat about the best dining spots in Paso Robles.
There are two types of accommodations at the Hotel Cheval: the classic or deluxe room. All have high vaulted ceilings with California King beds featuring 400 thread count sheets, and down comforters and pillows ($375 for a 2-night stay for 2). The deluxe rooms include individual fireplaces and his/her robes and slippers for use during your stay ($425). You have your own iron and board should your shirts need a little touchup, and no need to bring a hairdryer.
Each room has a 37-inch LCD flat screen TV and an assortment of premium movie channels. There’s also complimentary WI-FI and in-room Ethernet connection. And if you forgot your laptop, no problem. There’s one you’re welcome to use in the lobby.
There’s no restaurant at the Hotel Cheval, but the Pony Club offers a free breakfast supplied by the nearby Panolivo French restaurant. And we're not talking just cold cereal, toast and coffee. On weekends they serve frittatas, quiche, ham and cheese croissants, homemade baked goods, Fromage Blanc (silky European yogurt) and fresh fruit salad.
You’re welcome to dine in the bar area or take your breakfast out to the front or rear patio or your room if you’d prefer. Weekdays pastries and fresh fruit are delivered right to your door. If you like the cuisine, and there’s little doubt you won’t, you can have Panolivo rustle up a box lunch for you to take along on your afternoon winery excursion.
The Pony Club is also open in the late afternoon and evening for cocktails. The bar itself is unique with its zinc-topped horseshoe shape in keeping with the equine theme. On Thursday, Friday and Saturday The Pony Bar offers music to enhance the experience.
When the sun sets it’s lovely to sit in the rear patio at one of two wood burning fireplaces and enjoy the wine you may have just purchased at one of the local vineyards, or you may reserve a complimentary horse and carriage ride featuring Chester, the Red Belgian draft horse, who’ll escort you to one of a number of nearby eateries. They’ll even pick you up after dinner, as well.
Another service the hotel provides is a variety of spa treatments in your own room, including individual and couple massages, body scrubs, reflexology and facials. Prices range from $115 for a 60-minute facial to $120 for an hour-long massage. The website lists the full menu of services. The therapists bring their own equipment including CDs and candles to enhance the relaxing atmosphere. What a way to start or finish your day! Be sure to ask for Ali or Dori…they’re the best!
The only negative to staying at the Hotel Cheval……leaving!
1021 Pine Street
Paso Robles, CA 93446