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Dog-Friendly Travel; Hofsas House in Carmel

Ever since getting our dog, Chuy,* a new world has opened up to our family; we’ve met new neighbors walking our dog, we’ve discovered a new section of Target, and we’ve discovered new outings. Last weekend we went on our first trip with Chuy to the dog-friendly hotel, Hofsas House, in Carmel.

Mural at the Hofsas House hotel

Hofsas House

Hofsas House invited us to stay there and initially, my husband and I were going to have a romantic wine weekend for our anniversary. Then we got our dog and we decided to make it a family trip. I’m so glad we did. It ended up being such a perfect family weekend.

We walked into our very spacious room and the first thing Chuy did was check out the pink dog pillow while we looked at his dog welcome gift. It had a dog bowl with shampoo and dog spray.

dog bed and gifts from the Hofsas House

The hotel has a number of dog-friendly suites and ours was Family Suite was huge. The main room had two queen-size beds, a bathroom, a kitchen table, a microwave, and a refrigerator, and the other very large room had a king bed and bathroom.

The hotel is adorable, not fancy, but very comfortable. It had everything we needed including breakfast in the lobby and a heated pool. We didn’t think to bring bathing suits, but we did enjoy the continental breakfast that we could take back to the room with us.

Food and Wine

We had a lot to eat and drink in Carmel, and almost everywhere we went we could take Chuy with us. On our first night in Carmel, we were guests of Tarpy’s Roadhouse in Monterey, which is less than 10 minutes from Hofsas House. We were seated on an outdoor patio with heaters. Chuy sat with us and took a nap.

collage walking around Carmel

Tarpy’s had a delicious menu with interesting appetizers. We had a lovely salad with burrata and roasted persimmon, and spicy tuna deviled eggs (my favorite) as appetizers. I had the salmon with rice and Brussels sprouts for my entree and my husband had scallops with cocoa-rubbed bacon over creamy polenta with roasted cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. My salmon was good, but my husband’s scallops were excellent. What I was most impressed with were the kids’ meals. My son had ribs, watermelon, and steak-cut fries. I had to try his dinner and the ribs were perfectly cooked.

Hofsas House gave us wine-tasting passports to go wine tasting at the many tasting rooms in Carmel. We could take our dog into the tasting room with us because they don’t serve food. On our second day, after lunch on the beautiful patio at Jack London’s Bar & Grill, we went to Windy Oaks Winery’s tasting room.

We did a couple of wine tastings and Windy Oaks was our favorite, especially the sauvignon blanc. Later that evening, we were guests at The Grill on Ocean Avenue — without our dog this time. It was a cute and bustling restaurant with a nice menu. I had the duck with risotto and my husband had salmon with polenta. The duck was very good, but the risotto tasted more like plain rice than a risotto. My husband’s meal was tasty and the salmon was cooked very well. We shared a butterscotch pudding.

Exploring Carmel

Hofsas House is eight blocks from beautiful and dog-friendly Carmel Beach. It was our first trip to the beach with our dog so we kept him on leash. The weather was very unexpected — clear and about 70 degrees — gorgeous!

Chuy the dog on the beach on leash

Carmel is not only dog-friendly, but pedestrian-friendly. We walked everywhere including to the Carmel Mission. To get there we walked through town and looked at the beautiful buildings.

Carmel mission

We walked about a mile to the mission on a trail that starts in town.  It was a fun walk to get there (a little tough coming back). On our last day in Carmel, we went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. We especially loved the jellyfish exhibit.

spotted jellyfish at the Monterey Aquarium

We had a wonderful weekend at Hofsas House in Carmel. The staff at the hotel was very nice and we felt at home. The Family Suite we stayed in costs about $250 a night on the weekends depending on what time of year you go. There is a $25 fee for having a dog, which seemed reasonable. We’ll definitely go back there. In fact, my husband and I realized when we walked into our suite that we’d stayed at Hofsas House 11 years ago when I was pregnant with my oldest son. That time we were there with my parents and other relatives. We had a nice time then, too.

Disclosure: I was given a hotel stay, some meals, and wine walk tickets for review purposes. All opinions are my own. This post was first publish in 2014.

*We named our dog Chuy after the pig “Chuy” in the movie Book of Life. We met Chuy on the same day we went to the premiere of the movie.

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