Magical Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo, California
Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo, California
The Madonna Inn is a
motel in San Luis Obispo, California that opened over 50 years ago.
This inn quickly became a landmark on the Central Coast of
California. The Inn was created by Alex Madonna, a successful
construction magnate and entrepreneur, and his wife Phyllis. The
well-known motor inn, which includes a restaurant and bakery, is
prominently located on the west side of US Route 101 and situated on
the lower eastern portion of Cerro San Luis Obispo. The property is
adorned with a pseudo-Swiss-Alps exterior and lavish common rooms
accented by pink roses, Western murals, and hammered copper. Each of
the 110 guest rooms and suites is uniquely designed and themed,
though some tourists stop just to peek at the famous rock waterfall
urinal located in the men's restroom, a feature designed by
Hollywood set designer Harvey Allen Warren.
History of the Madonna Inn
The first 12 rooms were completed December 24, 1958, and were given
complementary for that nightís stay, to a very surprised group of
travelers. An additional 28 rooms were quickly built, making a total
of 40 rooms available to travelers.
Demand for public areas to handle the rooms encouraged us in April
1960 to start construction of the main inn, which was to eventually
consists of the wine cellar, bakery, coffee shop, dining room, the
cocktail lounge, banquet rooms, ladiesí boutique, menís gift shop,
and the gourmet shop.
One hundred ten unique rooms now exist, each decorated differently
to suit many individual tastes...rock rooms, waterfall showers, rock
fireplaces, European fixtures, and fine furnishings to name a few.
The Madonna Inn sits on approximately 2,200 acres and the large
rocks used in the construction came from these surrounding acres.
Some of the larger rocks weigh in excess of 200 tons each.
The leaded glass work throughout Madonna Inn and the large etched
glass windows in the coffee shop, almost things of the past, were
custom made for the Inn. The leaded glass inserts in the windowed
area facing the large fireplace are of particular interest, since
each insert illustrates one of the various Madonna enterprises:
construction, lumber and cattle.
The hand-carved marble balustrade in the Gold Rush dining room came
from the Hearst Castle. All copper and brass items were etched
and/or shaped from original designs and fabricated right on the
premises. The 28-foot gold tree fixture in the main dining room was
made from electrical conduit left over from building projects as
well as from left over remnants of copper.
Several wood carvers were brought in for the specialty work of hand
carving the doors, beams, railings and the many other carved
adornments you see here at the Madonna Inn.
We hope you, your families and friends will enjoy our facilities and
that you will continue to do so for many years to come.