by Phil Corless
As Oregon’s first beach resort, Seaside has a long history of providing unique and varied accommodations to visitors. From high-rise resorts to theme-roomed B&Bs, there’s no shortage of interesting places to stay. However, if you’re looking for a quiet location with the best ocean views in town, the Lanai at the Cove easily provides one of the best family vacation experiences in Seaside.
From the moment you step into the small, unassuming lobby, you are greeted by a staff that has made customer service their number one concern. The rooms at Lanai at the Cove are all privately-owned condos, so decor and equipment can vary room by room. However, management has set high standards for the owners. You will not find ancient television sets or broken down bed frames here. One of the first things you’ll notice is that the building is compact and simple, easy to get around. There are three floors, with nearly every room offering a private balcony or patio with an ocean view. The only real public gathering area you’ll find here is the beach.
Kids will immediately want to head to the rocky beach to explore. Make sure they understand that walking on this type of beach, strewn with pebbles and driftwood, takes a little more care than the more foot-friendly sandy beach just a few minutes away.
The studio-style rooms can seem boxy when your first enter, but the distinctive touch of their owners can make you feel like you’re staying in someone’s home. Every member of your family will make a bee-line for the sliding glass doors at the far end of the room, ready to take in that ocean view. Right away, you’ll notice the town of Seaside in the distance, with its rows of large resorts and noisy crowds along the promenade, and you will be immediately thankful for the peace and quiet of Lanai at the Cove.
Our Editor Loves
- Beachfront location and ocean views
- Quiet, residential neighborhood
- Heated outdoor pool
- Free Wi-Fi
Rooms & Rates
Ocean Front Rooms
Most of the rooms at Lanai at the Cove face the ocean. You'll pay a little extra for these rooms, but it's worth having a private balcony or lanai on which to watch the sunset and crashing waves. All of the rooms are privately owned condos, distinctively decorated by their owners, so they feel more like home than a standard hotel room. Many of the rooms can sleep a family of four on a queen bed and sleeper sofa in a studio-style layout.
Our room featured an antique-style brass bed, comfy leather recliner, sofa bed, and coffee table, with enough space leftover for us to tuck our suitcases away so they weren't underfoot. We were impressed with the size of the bathroom in our room, which is ideal for when family members are all trying to brush their teeth and get ready to go at the same time. As a corner unit, our room featured a huge picture window, in addition to the sliding glass patio doors, so everything was bright and airy. There were two plastic chairs on the patio, but definitely room for a couple more if you can find them.
Every room at the resort comes with cable TV, but not all feature the same TV and DVD player setup. Before you book a particular room, check with the hotel for the exact amenities, as not every room is the same. The hotel does require each unit's owners to maintain certain standards, so there's no fear of a room without certain basic amenities. One particular strength of the Lanai at the Cove is the management's focus on cleanliness. They don't allow things to get dirty or out-of-date.
Pool Side Rooms
For a more economical stay, Lanai at the Cove offers several pool side rooms. You miss out on the oceanfront balcony, but the nearly $40 per day savings can add up during a long vacation.
One huge advantage of staying pool side is the availability of the one-bedroom unit offered here. All other rooms in the hotel are studio-style. For a family, being able to separate from each other at night, with parents in the bedroom and kids out in the living room, can lower vacation stress levels dramatically. This unit also features a larger kitchenette than others, including a full-sized refrigerator/freezer and a full oven/stovetop. Along with a larger dining room table, this is definitely a good choice for families wishing to do more extensive in-room dining.
If you're worried about being right on top of the noise coming from the pool area, be assured that the rooms are well away from the pool. It can be a little noisy in the early evening, but most kids are worn out and in bed long before the pool's 10 p.m. closing time.
We have been staying at the Lanai for over 20 years. It is our go-to getaway for true relaxation. One of us can relax on the deck with a book and beverage while watching the other surf in the cove. Close enough to downtown when we want to shop but just far enough away to stay completely peaceful, especially in the evening.
On a practical note, our rooms are always clean and staff have always been friendly and responsive to any questions. The WiFi also worked great. We are already thinking about our next visit.
Annually I go to this wonderful out of the way motel in Seaside, Oregon. Built in the good old days,the rooms are cozy and clean. The ocean view is spectacular!
Charming and comfortable. It's a close distance from downtown Seaside where you'll find a nice choice of eating places.
I look forward to many more years of staying there!
The Pacific Ocean is lovely to look at, but bone-chilling to swim in, so Lanai at the Cove's heated outdoor pool is the next best thing for kids wanting to splash in the water. The pool ranges from about 3 to 7 feet in depth and is great for cooling off on warm days, or for warming up on colder days. The pool area is located at the front of the hotel, with the building acting as a break from any winds coming off the ocean. It makes for a relaxing, secluded spot to sit with a book while your kids play in the pool. Pool hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Lanai at the Cove sits right on the beach, as close to the water as you can get. The waves seem to hit so close that you'd swear you can feel the spray on your face as you stand on your balcony. Kids will love exploring the rocky beach right outside your room. It's a unique aspect of the Lanai at the Cove, as no other hotel in Seaside borders this type of beach. The traditional, sandy beach is a few minutes walk to the right of the hotel, so you really do have the best of both worlds at this location.
The rocky beach wraps around Tillamook Head for over a mile and is an ideal place to beat the crowds, as most of them don't wander this far south. The hotel provides four large fire pits for families to host their own private bonfire. You can buy firewood at any grocery store in town, or scavenge driftwood on the beach. Just don't forget the marshmallows!
Kids will want to bring a bucket of beach toys, because you can't go to the beach without building a sand castle or digging for sea creatures! You might want to bring a kite, Frisbee, and beach chairs, too. There aren't any tide pools in the immediate area, but there are an endless number of shells, stones, and pieces of driftwood to collect. The hotel lights up the surf at night, so you can hear and see the crashing waves from either the beach or your balcony.
There is no onsite dining at Lanai at the Cove, but guests can walk ten minutes down the beach to find several excellent restaurants, including the Osprey Cafe, which serves up one of the best breakfasts in town. Kids will love the animal-shaped pancakes and mouth-watering homemade cinnamon rolls. The Osprey's quiet, casual atmosphere is a nice way to start off your day.
For a casual night in your room, sitting by the fire and watching movies, call Angelina's Pizzeria for delivery. Their New York Style pizza, with freshly made crust, is the real deal. They also offer handmade calzones, sandwiches, salads, and soup. Angelina's is one of the most popular pizza places in town, and can get super busy during the summer months. Order early and expect a wait of an hour to an hour and a half. If you have hungry kids, just send them out to play on the beach, and the time will fly by.
There are several grocery stores in Seaside. The largest, Safeway, is 2 miles from the hotel. If you're looking for a smaller, local market that's just around the corner from your hotel, we recommend Ken & Sons Select Market. This family-run store is a staple of Seaside's south end. You'll find a good, but limited, selection of meat, vegetables, bread, wine, and other necessary meal items. If you're looking for a wide variety of fresh seafood to prepare in your room, head to the Bell Buoy Seafood Store, also on the south end of town.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Wi-Fi is strong throughout the resort, which should make your teens happy, but you might find them staring out at the water instead of at their screens.
Coffee and Tea
For those needing their caffeine fix each morning, the hotel offers complimentary coffee and tea.
The Art of Smart Timing
Seaside, Oregon is a popular destination, and can be crowded during the summer months of June, July, and August. However, a stay at Lanai on the Cove puts you away from the congested downtown and promenade area. That's one of the big reasons we love this hotel. No matter the time of year, it feels quiet and isolated. If you're looking for crowds and activity, it's a short walk down the beach.
There are several big events that take place in Seaside during the summer. The biggest occurs during the second week of August, when over 13,000 players and fans descend upon Seaside, Oregon for the world's largest amateur volleyball tournament. If volleyball is not your thing, this would be a good time to avoid the area.
The weather will also be a factor in your trip planning. July through September are the warmest months, with the least amount of rain. Temperatures never rise much above the 70s during the day, while the nights can be chilly year-round. Make sure everyone in your family wears layers and they'll be comfortable wherever you go.
Seaside, like much of the Oregon coast, may seem isolated, but it is easily accessible from Highway 101, which runs north-south from Washington to California. Portland, Oregon, is the nearest large city, and can be reached by Interstate 5 or the international airport. From Portland, it's an easy 80-mile drive to Seaside, via Highway 26 and Highway 101. Lanai at the Cove is located at the far south end of town, in a quiet, residential neighborhood near the end of Sunset Boulevard.
With Lanai at the Cove away from the center of Seaside, it can be a bit of a walk to most activities. The nearly 2-mile stroll along the beach to the Seaside Aquarium is beautiful, but might be too much for younger kids. However, nothing in Seaside is far away by car. And, except for the very busiest weekends of summer, parking is plentiful. There is a public shuttle bus that costs $1 per person to ride, but it doesn't pick up near the hotel, so you are better off relying on your car to get around town. Parking at Lanai at the Cove is plentiful, and free, so no worries of not finding a space when you return to the hotel.
For Mom and Dad
In the evening, leave older kids in the room with a movie, and walk 15 minutes down the beach to the U Street Pub for some quiet time as a couple. The U Street Pub is a cool neighborhood hangout that offers a large selection of beers, including local brews. They also serve tasty burgers, fish and chips, and clam chowder. The Pub is two blocks from the beach. One of our favorite things to do is enjoy a few drinks and light snacks at the Pub, then take a child-free beach stroll back to the hotel.
If the complimentary hotel coffee isn't enough, make a run to Highway 101 in the morning, where you'll find several coffee shops, including Mama Bair's Java Den, a local favorite.