by Lissa Poirot
With views of the marina, the Avalon Hotel’s has a beautiful location. The boutique hotel provides 15 intimate room spaces with a king or queen bed, some balconies, in-room DVD and CD players, refrigerators, microwaves and 30-inch, flat-screen TV’s. Guests will enjoy complimentary continental breakfast daily, a rooftop lounge and free Internet service. Guests can borrow binoculars, laptops and GPS units from the front desk. The hotel also provides a taxi service from the boat terminal to the property.
Our Editor Loves
- Complimentary continental breakfast
- Garden patio with koi pond and firepit
- Catalina Island zipline
- Meal Plan
- Onsite Dining
Once in a while you may be fortunate enough to come along to a place that has an innate sense as to what it can and should be – and then fulfills that sense in all respects. The Avalon is one of those unusual places. On top of that, if you can arrange to be there at the right time, the Avalon can present a remarkable value by Catalina standards.
I got the sense that everything the Avalon is derives primarily, if not entirely, from Laurie the innkeeper. She is simultaneously professional and personal, helpful without becoming intrusive, genuinely friendly without being overbearingly so. There are small touches throughout that show attention to detail – and the big difference those small touches can make.
The Avalon is sort of a cross between an inn and boutique hotel; I like to think it possessed the best characteristics of both. Our room was immaculately maintained, appropriately decorated and furnished without becoming too ornate or frilly. The courtyard/breakfast area is lovely, and if a continental breakfast suits you needs, the offerings, while not extensive, were more than appropriate. And no two ways about it: the rooftop deck has killer views.
So about the value: we arranged for a midweek package that included round-trip ferry transportation from Long Beach, and the price we paid was less than the standard rate for just the room itself. Other hotels offered “packages”, but I did not come across others that actually saved us money the way this one did. This may not be available at all times of the year, but if you have the opportunity, it is certainly something worth looking into. I believe all rates also include taxi transportation, and that was very helpful upon arrival. That said, the Avalon is close enough to the pier that on the way back, we elected to walk through town at our own pace with bags in tow; it was no problem.
The Avalon is a few steps from Crescent Avenue, near one end of the main tourist area, close to the action while being just a bit removed from it. The only negative I can point to is that the balcony rooms facing Whittley Avenue are not immune to the sounds of the occasional morning trash compacting vehicle that might come by before you had planned to be awake. (This is more of an observation than a complaint; Laurie upgraded our garden view room to a balcony one in 202, and we enjoyed the view from it.)
As other have noted, you do have to climb a flight of stairs to reach the lobby, and you must climb more to reach the 2nd, 3rd and rooftop floors. We are hardly young, but we encountered no problems. And as for the final question: would we stay there again? I can answer only with a resounding Yes! The Avalon does not attempt to be all things to all people; instead it does a remarkable job of defining what it wants to be, fulfilling its own high expectations and creating a wonderful experience for its guests. Highly recommended.
This small but warm and inviting hotel is a gem. It is close to everything in the town but on a quieter street. The view from our room was fantastic. The staff were all friendly and helpful. The room was very clean and the bathroom was newly updated. Definitely recommend this place.