I’ve stayed in a lot of motels and hotels over the years. If somebody else picks up the tab, I don’t say no to $$$ places, but in general I opt for a reasonable balance between comfort and price. Typically I know what to do expect and am rarely surprised. But today I was.
We’re en route to San Diego and are spending our first night in the Santa Barbara area. Last time we were in Santa Barbara, in April 2013, we stayed at the Ramada Limited, which had a beautiful garden. This year rates at the Ramada Limited were more than I was willing to pay, so I picked the Best Western Carpinteria Inn in the town of Carpinteria, about 15 minutes south of Santa Barbara. Typically, Best Westerns are mid-priced, mid-level motels: clean, comfortable, but rarely exciting. That’s what we were expecting from the Capinteria Inn. Imagine our surprise when we found a lush oasis! Even the architecture is far beyond what you find at most Best Westerns.
Plants make all the difference, don’t they? I think an investment in landscaping pays big dividends, not only in guest comfort but also in word-of-mouth referrals.
I was pleased to that the lawn you see in some of the photos is artificial turf. A good choice considering the historic drought California is in. (Even in good years, Santa Barbara isn’t blessed with a lot of rain.)
I love staying at motels and hotels where I can spend an hour exploring and photographing plants. Beats sitting in the room and watching TV!
I think somebody should create an online directory of hospitality establishments that feature attractive landscaping. It would be a great resource for plant lovers like me and you!