Perfectly located and reasonably priced (for La Jolla), the La Jolla Inn (1110 Prospect St., 888/855-7829, www.lajollainn.com, $159–189) sits comfortably between the main shopping drag and the sloping sidewalk down to the beach. The brick facade with dark blue awnings stands out in an area of wood and adobe-style construction.
Inside, you’ll think you’ve found a boutique hotel on the Mediterranean, with small bright rooms that feature natural wood furniture and colorful homemade quilts. Upper rooms also offer the best art ever: a view out over the Pacific.
All guests get to take advantage of the free continental breakfast and the afternoon snack (served at 2 p.m.—perfect for a quick break from the beach).
Be sure to take advantage of the free underground parking as this area gets crowded in high season.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition