Best Boutique Hotels in California

U.S. News has identified top boutique hotels by taking into account amenities, reputation among... READ MORE
U.S. News has identified top boutique hotels by taking into account amenities, reputation among professional travel experts, guest reviews and hotel class ratings. Use the filters and settings below to help find the best boutique hotels for you.

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    Bardessono
    Yountville, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1393 reviewsTripAdvisor (1393)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Visitors are impressed with the Bardessono's environmental stewardship, daring architecture and exceptional service. This LEED Platinum Certified hotel in Yountville, California, is dedicated to protecting the environment while providing a luxury experience for guests. Accommodations are heated and cooled using an underground geothermal system, while rooftop solar panels keep the lights on. Visitors are certainly respectful of Bardessono's mission, but they're more vocal about the property's deluxe amenities, praising the guest rooms' huge bathrooms and modern technology. The on-site spa and outdoor pool are also popular features, and many visitors are quick to praise the personalized customer service. Don't miss eating at the traveler-recommended Lucy Restaurant & Bar, which serves up seasonal, locally sourced cuisine and an extensive list of wines.

    Yountville, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1393 reviewsTripAdvisor (1393)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Auberge du Soleil, Auberge Resorts Collection
    Rutherford, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 853 reviewsTripAdvisor (853)
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Situated in the quiet town of Rutherford in Napa Valley, Auberge du Soleil beautifully showcases the area's stunning vistas. But there's more than scenery to boast about here. This Auberge property also offers a well-equipped fitness center and spa, and you can arrange additional off-site activities, such as hot air balloon rides and golf outings, through the concierge. Should you prefer to stick around the resort, you can lounge away the hours by the pool, tour the Aerena Sculpture Garden or enjoy some private meditation in La Pagode. Foodies adore the gourmet meals served at the Restaurant at Auberge du Soleil, which specializes in Mediterranean cuisine and expert wine pairings. For a more relaxed atmosphere, you can grab a bite to eat at the Bistro & Bar. At the end of the day, luxury-seekers love the spacious guest rooms, which boast private balconies or terraces, fireplaces, as well as contemporary artwork and bath oils and candles for the room's soaking tubs. But keep in mind that a stay at this bit of heaven on earthas it is often described by visitorsdoesn't come cheap.

    Rutherford, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 853 reviewsTripAdvisor (853)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Excellent Critic Rating
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Calistoga Ranch, Auberge Resorts Collection
    Calistoga, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 845 reviewsTripAdvisor (845)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    When you can simply borrow a Mercedes-Benz for an afternoon drive through wine country at no extra cost, you know you're experiencing the epitome of luxury. Here at Calistoga Ranch in northern Napa Valley, guests rejoice in luxury amenities that include the Mercedes-Benz Drive Program, a private lake, a private wine cave and more. And when they need a little rest and relaxation, visitors head to Calistoga's spa for outdoor lakeside treatments or a dip in the on-site mineral pool. If your interests lie more in gastronomy, head to The Lakehouse where vino makes the perfect accompaniment to the restaurant's California cuisine. Travelers say they relish the privacy and comfort offered in this Auberge resort's free-standing guest accommodations, which feature fireplaces, private decks and outdoor rain showers, not to mention floor-to-ceiling windows and warm, wooden decor.

    Calistoga, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 845 reviewsTripAdvisor (845)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Excellent Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Montage Laguna Beach
    Laguna Beach, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1477 reviewsTripAdvisor (1477)
    Free WiFi

    The Montage Laguna Beach epitomizes the relaxed class and beauty for which Southern California is known. The property's location (right along the shore just south of downtown Laguna Beach) is a particularly popular perk among guests. Accommodations at the hotel also include feather-top beds and marble bathrooms, not to mention beautiful turn-of-the-century decor and private terraces or balconies that overlook the ocean. But don't plan on spending too much time in your room. In addition to enjoying the large beach area, you can lounge poolside, shop at the in-house boutiques, receive spa treatments and eat gourmet meals at one of three on-site restaurants. If you happen to be here for date night, recent guests say that the intimate atmosphere and the locally sourced California cuisine at Studio will set the tone for a romantic evening. There are also family programs for children, though previous visitors say that the upscale environment at Montage Laguna Beach is better suited for couples.

    Laguna Beach, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1477 reviewsTripAdvisor (1477)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Excellent Critic Rating
    Free WiFi
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    Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection
    Calistoga, CA
    4.5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1096 reviewsTripAdvisor (1096)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Solage hardly misses a step when it comes to pleasing guests. This Auberge Resorts outpost's 89 suites and studios are set on 22 acres of beautifully landscaped property and come equipped with amenities such as LCD televisions, iPod docking stations and high-speed internet access. And recent lodgers praise the quality of the beds and the extra large bathrooms. Guests also rave about the complimentary cruiser bikes that give personality to the resort. And the lodging decor –composed of neutral hues, expansive windows and fairly simple accents – makes for a relaxing respite. Meanwhile, the Michelin-starred Solbar restaurant garners rave reviews for its outdoor dining space and inventive "California soul food." The Spa Solage is also unique for its "mud bar" and on-site geothermal pools. You'll find this hotel on the northern fringes of Calistoga in northern Napa Valley.

    Calistoga, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1096 reviewsTripAdvisor (1096)
    4.5-star Hotel Class
    Excellent Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Post Ranch Inn
    Big Sur, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1248 reviewsTripAdvisor (1248)
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    A pristine retreat along the Pacific Ocean less than an hour south of Monterey in Big Sur, the Post Ranch Inn is renowned for its rustic atmosphere and indulgent comfort. Guests delight in the views from their guest rooms, gazing at either rising mountains or the expansive seas. The hotel's 39 rooms were designed for utter relaxation – you won't find TVs here, but rather wood-burning fireplaces, private hot tubs and binoculars to help you see more clearly from your personal deck. Should you need your fix of TV, you can head to the library, although the inn's activities should be enough to keep you busy. When visitors are not taking advantage of the on-site amenities – the pools (some of the world's most beautiful), spa, yoga classes and star-gazing excursions, to name a few – they are appreciating the great outdoors on local hikes or watching the sun set over nearby Pfeiffer Beach. No matter how you choose to spend your stay, previous visitors insist that a meal at Sierra Mar must work its way into your schedule. 

    Big Sur, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1248 reviewsTripAdvisor (1248)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Bernardus Lodge & Spa
    Carmel Valley, CA
    4.5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 485 reviewsTripAdvisor (485)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Unlike many of its Monterey Peninsula competitors, the Bernardus Lodge is situated away from the beach in the rugged hills and vineyards of Carmel Valley, California. With Nespresso coffee makers and a complimentary wine bar stocked with Bernardus wines, the guest rooms at this property aspire to a homey atmosphere that encourages you to indulge. Guests also appreciate the large tubs and the private balconies or terraces overlooking the property's gardens and the nearby mountains. The boutique resort's romantic side can be found at its restaurant and in the spa, which offers couples treatments. And despite the availability of wireless internet, guests find this the perfect place to disconnect from the outside world. Lastly, guests should not neglect exploring the Bernardus Winery, which offers daily tastings. Though this hotel charges a daily resort fee, it includes free parking and a 24-hour concierge service, among other amenities. 

    Carmel Valley, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 485 reviewsTripAdvisor (485)
    4.5-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Belmond El Encanto
    Santa Barbara, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1183 reviewsTripAdvisor (1183)
    Free WiFi

    Although it doesn't hug the Santa Barbara coast – you'll find this hotel on the northern fringes of the city – Belmond El Encanto earns praise for its beautiful setting and excellent views. The property's suites all feature private terraces or patios looking out toward the ocean, along with hardwood floors, marble bathrooms and, in some cases, fireplaces. Although the outpost's homey accommodations may be hard to leave, the property houses a number of amenities worth checking out, such as The Spa at El Encanto, an infinity-edge swimming pool and 7 acres of gardens to explore. And recent guests sing the praises of the California cuisine served at the Dining Room. Visitors can also opt for light American fare at The Lounge.

    Santa Barbara, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1183 reviewsTripAdvisor (1183)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free WiFi
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    Casa Palmero
    Pebble Beach, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 69 reviewsTripAdvisor (69)
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    The smallest and most intimate of the Pebble Beach Resorts, Casa Palmero is an exquisite, 24-room property along the fairways of Pebble Beach Golf Links. The attention to detail is evident throughout this Italian villa-inspired property: Guests claim that staff members bend over backward to make guests comfortable, including delivering breakfast baskets to your room each morning and replenishing flowers in your room daily. Not to mention, there are complimentary cocktails served at the hotel every evening. Should you want to explore beyond the premises, guests are allowed access to the Pebble Beach resort's Beach & Tennis Club, as well as the spa. Keep in mind that you need to stay at least two nights here, at The Inn at Spanish Bay or at The Lodge at Pebble Beach to get a reserved tee time on the course. And be sure to book the tee time when you reserve your room to ensure your spot. As a member of the Preferred portfolio, iPrefer members can earn and use points here.

    Pebble Beach, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 69 reviewsTripAdvisor (69)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Good Critic Rating
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Mr. C Beverly Hills
    Los Angeles, CA
    5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4 based on 869 reviewsTripAdvisor (869)
    Free WiFi

    "Fabulous," "classy" and "amazing" are just some of the words guests use to describe the Mr. C Beverly Hills, a boutique hotel located in one of L.A.'s trendiest neighborhoods. Those who stay here will find their rooms outfitted in cream and red decor, handcrafted Italian furniture, flat-screen TVs and Carrera marble bathrooms, as well as furnished balconies that provide great views of the City of Angels. However, some visitors note that even Mr. C's pillow-top mattresses and Casa Rovea linens don't ensure a good night's sleep – many guests cite late-night noise as their main qualm. Should you need a little extra refreshment, stake out a lounge chair by the pool. The Restaurant at Mr. C satisfies cravings for classic Italian fare with a menu stocked with pizza and pasta; book a table for Sunday brunch to enjoy live jazz alongside your mimosa. But be prepared to watch your bank account take a hit: Visitors say that a stay here cost them a pretty penny. Plus, the hotel charges an additional $24.95 daily resort feeBut Leaders Club members you're in luck – as part of the Leading Hotels of the World, this property grants perks like welcome gifts and complimentary upgrades.

    Los Angeles, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4 based on 869 reviewsTripAdvisor (869)
    5.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free WiFi
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    Hotel Drisco
    San Francisco, CA
    4-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1638 reviewsTripAdvisor (1638)
    Free Breakfast
    Free WiFi

    Only two blocks east of the Presidio, Hotel Drisco offers sightseers a convenient jumping-off point for exploring some of San Francisco's most famous sites, including the Golden Gate Bridge and the Palace of Fine Arts. Travelers say that the top-notch customer service here made them feel like royalty, adding that the intimate atmosphere made for a relaxing stay. Hotel Drisco's guest rooms feature bright pops of color and luxurious amenities, such as pillow menus, gourmet honor bars and a nightly turndown service (that includes chocolate shortbread cookies). Although there is no restaurant, Hotel Drisco serves a continental breakfast every morning, as well as wine and hors d'oeuvres every evening  both included in the room rate. The property also houses a fitness center and a DVD lending library. 

    San Francisco, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1638 reviewsTripAdvisor (1638)
    4.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Breakfast
    Free WiFi
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    Argonaut Hotel
    San Francisco, CA
    4.5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 6561 reviewsTripAdvisor (6561)
    Free WiFi

    Guests of this hotel in Fisherman's Wharf will feel as if they've just stepped aboard a cruise ship, even though the Argonaut Hotel sits firmly on solid ground. Guest rooms  which are decked out with nautical artifacts  offer spectacular views of San Francisco Bay. (Just note that these vistas don't come cheap, according to some travelers.) Meanwhile, common areas like the lobby and the in-house seafood restaurant, Blue Mermaid Restaurant, feature vibrant colors and fun, quirky furnishings. Visitors especially appreciate the excellent customer service and variety of amenities available, including a fitness center, spa and business center. Other guests, however, lamented the high price for parking. However, it's close proximity to the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Lombard Street earn high marks among travelers.

    San Francisco, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 6561 reviewsTripAdvisor (6561)
    4.5-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free WiFi
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    The Landing Resort & Spa
    South Lake Tahoe, CA
    4.5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1148 reviewsTripAdvisor (1148)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Located along the South Shore in Lake Tahoe, about 60 miles south of Reno, Nevada, the Landing Resort & Spa is a 77-room lakefront hotel. Guest rooms here boast heated bathroom floors, flat-screen TVs and fireplaces. The resort's location makes for a good spot for travelers craving outdoor pursuits, including skiing, snowmobiling, swimming at the nearby beach, fishing and golfing. Plus, the hotel puts guests within easy reach of Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course, South Tahoe's casinos and Heavenly Mountain Resort, a popular ski resort. Recent visitors praise the hotel's lakeside location and the California cuisine served on-site at Jimmy's Restaurant. Other on-site features include a spa, an outdoor pool and hot tub, a 2,000 wine vault. Overall, the Landing Resort & Spa makes for an upscale home base for those looking to enjoy the many outdoor activities in Lake Tahoe, though some guests lamented the $25 daily resort fee tacked onto their final bill.

    South Lake Tahoe, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1148 reviewsTripAdvisor (1148)
    4.5-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    Farmhouse Inn
    Forestville, CA
    4-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 752 reviewsTripAdvisor (752)
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Set in Forestville, California among the Sonoma vineyards and surrounded by gardens, the Farmhouse Inn is a quaint retreat. The inn's 25 rooms and suites feature varied amenities, but most include feather beds, flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi access and bathrooms with jetted tubs and steam showers. The property is also home to a spa with treatments that use ingredients harvested on-site, as well as a seasonal outdoor pool and a hot tub. The Michelin-starred restaurant at Farmhouse Inn is lauded for its tasty cuisine and excellent wine program. Many said dinner at the restaurant was the highlight of their stay (though note, you should book reservations several weeks in advance). And those with a sweet tooth can cap off their night with s'mores around the fire pit. While most enjoyed their stays, several noted that a vacation here will cost a pretty penny. As a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, Farmhouse Inn is part of the iPrefer rewards program, meaning members can earn points and redeem perks here.

    Forestville, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 752 reviewsTripAdvisor (752)
    4.0-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi
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    L'Auberge Carmel
    Carmel, CA
    4.5-star HOTEL CLASS
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 403 reviewsTripAdvisor (403)
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi

    Perfectly situated in the heart of Carmel, California, and just a 15-minute walk to Carmel Beach, L'Auberge Carmel, charms guests with its intimate luxury. With only 20 rooms, this Relais & Châteaux property appeals to travelers looking for an experience more akin to that provided by a bed-and-breakfast without sacrificing the amenities  like in-room spa services and the gourmet California cuisine served at Aubergine  found at a deluxe hotel. Guest rooms here all feature unique decor, but no matter which accommodation you occupy, you'll be treated to down bedding, soaking tubs and iPod docking stations. Previous visitors raved about the hotel's European influence, though some wished the small property had more on-site amenities.

    Carmel, CA
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 403 reviewsTripAdvisor (403)
    4.5-star Hotel Class
    Great Critic Rating
    Free Breakfast
    Free Parking
    Free WiFi