European Charm in Carmel at Hofsas House
By Cuisine Noir Staff
After more than six decades of European hospitality, the Hofsas House (San Carlos Street; 831) 624-2745; ; HofsasHouse.com) in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California continues to celebrate its commitment to travelers who enjoy charm and comfort. The Bavarian-inspired boutique hotel that is owned by the Theis family is uniquely located in the city that has been recognized as one of the most romantic cities in the world by Travel + Leisure magazine.
Located three blocks from Ocean Avenue, the heart of town for shopping and dining, Hofas House offers 38 individually decorated rooms with a host of amenities to make your weekday or weekend getaway one to remember and a reason to return. Enjoy the view of the Pacific Ocean in the morning as you enjoy freshly baked pastries, fruit, coffee and tea as part of the continental breakfast. All rooms come with free Wi-Fi if you need to stay connected as well as cable and the best feature we found, a heated bathroom floor. Some rooms include a fireplace while deluxe rooms are accompanied with a microwave and refrigerator. Just like the city of Carmel, Hofsas House is dog-friendly so save the cost of boarding and bring your four-legged loved one along.
Enhance your stay with special add-ons packages such as Golf Stay and Play, an in-room massage or anniversary or birthday celebration.
Spend a little “we” time by the heated swimming pool or dry sauna as you plan out the rest of your stay that includes a variety of activities, all within walking distance allowing you to ditch the car after arriving.
If breakfast is your favorite meal of the day and you are looking for something a little heartier, we highly recommend Katy’s Place (Mission St between 5th and 6th; 831-624-0199; ; KatysPlaceCarmel.com), which is designated as a “Carmel tradition.” Enjoy all of your breakfast and lunch favorites and keep in mind to pay in cash only.
Stroll down eight blocks and walk on the white sand at Carmel Beach while enjoying lunch from 5th Avenue Deli (3300 5th Avenue; 831) 625-2688; 5thAveDeli.com). Get everything you need for the perfect picnic on the beach, including the basket, at this local spot that is a favorite among locals and visitors alike.
If you want to know more about Carmel up close and personal, asked the team at Hofsas House about the two-hour guided walking tour.
In the mood to shop? Treat yourself to a new bag at Coach, shoes from Cole Haan, accessories at Kate Spade and skincare from L’Occitane strolling along Ocean Avenue.
If you are looking to enjoy nature more, we had a chance to go on a hike at Point Lobos State National Reserve (62 CA-1; 831) 624-4909; Parks.CA.Gov/?page_id=571) in Carmel-by-the-Sea. The breathtaking views of the ocean make this destination hard to leave. We packed our lunch from 5th Avenue Deli and enjoyed it on Hidden Beach as the sun beamed down and the waves moved in harmony. The reserve was also the designated location on this day for an oil painting Meetup group. Looking at each interpretation of the same view truly showed creativity at work.
For wine enthusiasts, a passport for the Carmel Wine Walk By-The-Sea™ is the way to go. For $65, you can visit up to nine out of 14 tasting rooms that include Scheid Wines, Wrath Wines, and Manzoni Cellars. Plan to do this over a couple of days or a couple of visits as the passports are good for the following year. So, pace yourself as the wineries are generous and you don’t have to do it all in one weekend, maybe a few, making this passport worth purchasing.
Finally, it is time for dinner. So many great choices, again all within walking distance of the Hofsas House. Feeling a little Italian? Carmel’s Bistro Giovanni (San Carlos & 5th Avenue; 831) 626-6003; ThreeCarmelRestaurants.com) will fit the bill. From the wine selection to the food, you won’t leave disappointed. The restaurant group also owns two other eateries offering international, California, and Mediterranean fare. A little further around the corner is The Grill on Ocean Avenue (Ocean Avenue; 831-624-2569; TheGrillCarmel.com/TheGrill). The restaurant is just as warm and relaxing as it looks from the outside. End your day with a glass of wine or a cocktail while waiting to savor each bite from the selection of entrees that includes prawns, steaks, duck, lamb, pasta and more. Whatever you are in the mood for, the Hofsas House will make sure your ever culinary wish is met with a variety of recommendations.
This fall and beyond, make plans to visit this historic city and the Hofsas House.
Whether for a special occasion or just to get away from life’s hustle and bustle, both offer charm, relaxation, peace and a reason to stop and smell the roses.
As you plan your trip, be sure to check out the list below for what to do while staying in Carmel at the Hofsas House courtesy of the boutique hotel.
10 Best Things To Do in Carmel (WITHOUT A CAR!)
- Walk on the beach and finish your night with a glass of wine.
- Bus ride (Route 22) down PCH to Big Sur and back, stop at Point Lobos, Rocky Point, Andrew Molera State Park, the town of Big Sur and Nepenthe. Ask our concierge or manager for hike recommendations. Check for road conditions and route service to Big Sur!
- Bus ride (“Grapevine Express” Route 24) to Carmel Valley and back, stop at Chateau Jullien, Mid-Valley, and Carmel Valley Village. Finish the day with free wine tastings at various partnering tasting rooms in the town of Carmel, courtesy of the Hofsas House.
- Take a 20-minute stroll down to the Carmel Mission (3080 Rio Road; 831-624-1271; CarmelMission.org) and tour the Carmel Mission Museum.
- Go on a Carmel Walks Tour to learn about the history of Carmel and some of our unique City ordinances.
- Combine food, wine, chocolate, and history of Carmel by taking the Carmel Food Tour.
- Go to the Carmel Cheese Shop (Junipero Street; 831) 625-2272; TheCheeseShopInc.com) to sample cheeses from around the world. It is hard to select just one and then purchase a matching wine to take to the beach to watch the sunset.
- Learn about the famous poet, Robinson Jeffers, by taking the Tor House Tour.
- Happy Hour Tour: Ask our concierge to direct you to an assortment of happy hours (e.g. Vesuvio Restaurant, Barmel, Il Fornio and many more) right in town for discounted drinks and appetizers, and then finish off the night with a special entreé at one of our favorite places to eat.
- Arrange a surf lesson for half of the day at Carmel Beach with the South Bay Surf Riders. A professional surfer will take you out and ensure a safe and enjoyable time learning to surf Carmel’s amazing waves!
If those 10 activities were not enough, the Hofsas House staff picked these great events:
- Rent bikes at Bay Bikes and get a challenging workout up and down Carmel’s hilly back roads. Or, stick to the flatland and cruise by the beach for a wave-side bike ride. For the experienced rider, take it up a notch and bike 17-mile Drive into Monterey and back for an all-day outdoor adventure.
- For the spa lovers, relax at Kush Day Spa, one of the highest regarded spas in Carmel, for one afternoon.
- Rise early–or rise late–for a wonderful Sunday brunch at Clint Eastwood’s Mission Ranch. It’s only a 20-minute stroll across Carmel. Better yet, return on a weekend night for drinks and live piano playing.
- Find all the hidden courtyards Carmel-by-the-Sea has to offer, and see what surprise gift you can discover for a friend.
- On a chill day, go coffee tasting at the various local coffee hours in Carmel, Carmel Coffee House and Carmel Valley Coffee Roasting Co., who roast their coffee right in the area.
- For photography lovers, Gallery Sur has amazing prints from the area or go to Weston Gallery, one of the oldest photographic galleries.
- Drop by the Carmel Art Association for details on local artists and the best galleries to explore according to your taste.
- Tapas at Mundaka.
- Carmel Wine Walk-by-the-Sea–stroll to 15 different wine tasting rooms and taste a flight of Monterey County grown grapes. Purchase a Wine Walk Passport at the Hofsas House for $65 and it includes nine tastings. Because of the cool air, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are some of the best.
- Geocache in Carmel: There are over 20 geocaches within walking distance in Carmel. Take your GPS and test your navigation skills and find some treasure!
- Check out the live performances at one of our four theaters: Sunset Center, Golden Bough, Cherry Center in our one-square-mile town.
- Olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting at Trio Carmel on Dolores Street south of Ocean Avenue.
- Create your own custom perfume at Ajne Perfumery in the Court of the Fountains.
- Visit one of the oldest houses in Carmel, the First Murphy House, home to the Carmel Heritage Society.
This article was originally published by Girls That Roam media partner Cuisine Noir.
Your next destintion