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RESTAURANTS - CHEFS - HOTELS - REVIEWS & STORIES

 

The Cypress Inn****,
Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, USA

A Marvelous Doggie Friendly luxury inn in the center of the coastal village of Carmel, now with its own restaurant "Terry's"

Peter and Linda D'Aprix 2000-2014

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The Cypress Inn is one of those lovely establishments with one foot in the relaxing ambiance of the past and one foot tentatively reaching toward the present. There is an old world charm about this historic hotel that leads you toward letting down and taking a nap in one of the deep sofas or arm chairs in the high ceilinged, wooden beamed lounge with a book on your lap in front of the blazing fire. Sometime between 1:30 and 3:45 you may be gently awakened by a young lady bearing a silver tray of English tea and goodies, a flower in a small silver vase.

But while you are inside the hotel or in front of the other fireplace outside on the courtyard, you would never know you are in the center of things. The music is often that of Doris Day. Why not. She is co-owner of the establishment and her love of animals makes the hotel a happy destination for people who like to travel with their whole family. Dogs are welcome and made to feel at home with cookies and a big fuzzy spread that covers the bed or makes their own deep bed on the floor. They are all welcomed Exterior Hotelpersonally at the door on arrival. With the local streets lined with trees, public doggie loos abound. But please arrive with sandwich bags to pick up....well you know.

The suites and the rooms are not large, but this historic building still provides accommodations that are of an adequate size to sustain king sized beds, end tables, a round writing table and two arm chairs plus a wardrobe for the TV and a carafe of sherry with two glasses and well appointed bathrooms. Fresh fruit is attractively displayed on the table and lovely prints by local artists are on the walls. (see our "WalkThru" video - click here.)

A buffet breakfast is served in the "Terry's" bar/tea/breakfast room from 7:00 on. This room is a marvelous place to get to know your fellow guests. Since dogs are inclined to greet each other in an unrestrained manner, they break the ice that often keep shy people from making friendly overtures. Here everyone compares notes about traveling with their dogs, where they stayed, how they manage the food, airplanes etc. From there discussions on restaurants quickly follow and then the sky is the limit.

doris Day posterThe Cypress Inn is a part of Carmel's historic past. For over sixty years this part Moorish partMediterranean building with its terra cotta Roman tile roof set at different levels has been a part of the village. The July 1999 issue of "Architectural Digest"thought enough of the Cypress Inn that it did an impressive coverage of the hotel. While Doris Day is not often seen in person at the hotel, her influence permeates the establishment both in the posters from her films, her doggie friendly staff and the music that wafts into yesteryear. Apparently she fell in love with Carmel when she was stared in the film "Julie". She made Carmel her home in 1981. She has been instrumental in helping make Carmel village into one of the most doggie friendly towns in California. The hotel was so popular, a new wing was added at the end of 2004 offering more suites and rooms and "Terry's Restaurant/Bar/Patio" was also added at that time. (see our "WalkThru" video - click here.)

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"Terry's Restaurant and Bar"

The restaurant "Terry's" which lends its name both to the restaurant and the bar where breakfast is served, has brought a new and delightful dimension to the hotel. Serving both inside and on the patio, the chefowners brought in Executive Chef Jonathan Bagley to create a light and sustainable menu for lunch and dinner. Weather permitting, both are served on the patio where dogs are as welcome as their owners and a large stone watering hole is provided for them. Chef Bagley has created dishes that are lovely, simply prepared with a nice balance between meat, fish and salads all with a modern presentation and light touch. (see our interview with the chef and dinner on the patio video - click here.)

"Terry's" is the first and only restaurant in Carmel to join the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch program which encourages sustainable fishing practices. Chef Bagley purchases locally and organically produce and ingredients whenever possible and seeks to partner with businesses that share the Inn's environmental awareness. Wonderful fresh fruits and vegetables come from the nearby Salina Valley and the flavors of the Mediterranean and Morocco abound giving the menu a range of well balanced and interesting choices.

"Terry's" breakfast buffet is complementary. It is served starting at 7.00 AM and offers choices rich or light and nicely varied for every preference. One of the highlights are the piping hot "pop overs" to start the day right! Lunch and Dinner items are almost identical and include such dishes as Crab Cakes served with orange and cranberry chutney highlighted with Grand Marnier, Cypress Burger topped with Gruyere cheese served with garlic and herb fries, or Doris Day’s favorite Chicken Salad.

tunaOur dinner started with a tasty tomato soup with croutons for me while Peter had the Monterey Bay Calamari with a light addition of middle eastern spices. I can highly recommend the perfectly Grilled Salmon with seasonal vegetables while Peter had the Seared Sesame Tuna with julienne vegetables and a poignant citrus reduction sauce. Next visit we will try the "Moroccan Chicken" with honey cumin, baby carrots, Kalamata olives, dried apricots & a round cake of couscous. A light desert of fruit was followed with a good coffee to see us all to bed. All this was enriched by meeting other guests savoring their food as their dogs got to know each other and us. We all compared notes on traveling with our furry family and made friends for the evening eased along by our uninhibited pals. (see our interview with the chef and dinner on the patio video - click here.)

Afternoon tea is served on Fridays and Saturdays. The complete tea service features a selection of Homemade Scones and Tea Cookies, Tea Sandwiches, Petit Fours, Jam & Thickened Cream for Scones, and your choice of Mighty Leaf teas: African Nectar, Breakfast Americana, Darjeeling Choice Estate, Earl Gold, Green Tea Tropical, Ginger Twist, Chamomile Citrus Blossom, Rainforest Mint, and Vanilla Bean. Enjoy your afternoon tea in the “Day Room,” where Doris Day films may be viewed upon request. (Afternoon Tea reservations are essential and dogs are welcomed.)

The Cypress Inn*****
Lincoln & 7th. - PO Box Y
Carmel-by-the-Sea, California 93921
tel: +1 831-624-3871
fax: +1 831-624-8216
toll free USA: +1 800-443-7443
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All rights reserved peter d'aprix ©1985-2017.
No copying, reuse or partial reproduction permitted without written permission by the authors, Peter and Linda D'Aprix.


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