I have often stayed at this charming inn. It sounds strange, but

it was our weekend get-a-way from Carmel. Now, who would want to leave Carmel?

The inn is a warm and healing sanctuary. Filled with history, we loved returning for delicious food and local wines. Now I hear that it is even more exceptional. I was happy hibernating at the inn, yet the entire area has many charms. My only wish is to spend a week at this unique country haven.  –Brenda



I’ve not experienced Paso Robles Inn and Spa to date. However,rest, relaxation, restore, and revive are just what I need.  It sounds wonderful.–Maralyn

Please see the press release below and it will fill you in on all the fine points:

A Longtime Haven of Healing

Historic Paso Robles Inn natural mineral springs continue to restore and revive

March 28, 2011 – (Paso Robles, CA) With hundreds of award-winning wineries, boutique eateries, and specialty shops just outside its door, the Paso Robles Inn is still one of California’s oldest haven of healing and continues to invite road-weary travelers to indulge in the warm, curative power of its springs.  New Deluxe Spa Rooms with private hot springs mineral tubs in the room or on the patio overlook lush gardens, babbling brooks, and Koi ponds, while customized in-room spa services use essential oils, innovative spa products, and advanced spa therapies to provide peace and rejuvenation.

A perfect day in the spirit of the Inn’s history might include a bottle of fine Paso Robles wine and artisanal cheeses shared in a mineral spa tub on the balcony, followed by a couples’ massage and reflexology treatment.  Afterward, a tour of the area’s world-renowned wineries could warrant another soak in the spa before an indulgent meal at the Paso Robles Inn Steakhouse, which features gourmet locally-sourced wine country fare to reflect the abundance of the region’s fresh produce, meat, and seafood.

Paso Robles’ legacy of rest and relaxation began long before recorded history, when the Salinan people called it “Heaven’s Spot” referring to their curative powers of the hot sulfur springs.  In 1813, mission padre Juan Cabot had a rough shelter built over the hot springs, believing that hot mineral water relieved the suffering of many diseases including arthritis and rheumatism.  Not long after, the city of El Paso de Robles, or “The Pass of the Oaks,” began attracting the pioneer settlers who would become the founding members of the community.  As part of a 25,000-acre Spanish land grant in the days when California was still property of colonial Spain, the land inhabited by El Paso de Robles was eventually purchased by James and Daniel Blackburn in 1857.

Just seven years later, these brothers would build a hot mineral springs bathhouse, and by 1868, visitors were coming from as far away as Oregon, Nevada, Idaho, and Alabama to take in the waters.  One guest happened to be the notorious bandit Jesse James, who came to visit his uncle and soak in the hot springs to heal a bullet-shot wound.

Construction of a grand new hotel followed shortly thereafter, and in 1891, the three-story, full-service, exquisite El Paso de Robles Hotel opened for business.  With a hot springs plunge bath considered one of the finest for its time in the U.S., a seven-acre garden, nine-hole golf course, beauty salon, barber shop, Western Union telegraph office, Wells Fargo agency and various billiard and lounging rooms, the hotel soon became a fashionable destination for the well-heeled.  In the meantime, the early settlers of the burgeoning city had established the cattle ranches, apple and almond orchards, dairy farms, and vineyards that continue to flourish and make Paso Robles the bountiful agricultural treasure that it is today.

In 1906, a new hot springs bathhouse was completed at the hotel. Decorated with marble and ceramic tile, it was one of the most elegant in the nation, rivaled only by similar facilities in Europe.  Not long afterward, the most well-known concert pianist at the time, Ignace Paderweski, came to the hotel for three months of treatments in the hot springs for his arthritis.  His affection for the area compelled him to return to Paso Robles later and buy two beautiful ranches just west of the city.

Other famous guests would stay in the hotel over the next 30 years including boxing champion Jack Dempsy, President Theodore Roosevelt, Adela Rogers-St. John, Phoebe Apperson Hearst (mother of William Randolph Hearst), actors Douglas Fairbanks, Boris Karloff, Bob Hope, and Clark Gable.  And when Major League baseball teams used Paso Robles as a spring training home, the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago White Sox stayed at the hotel and soaked in the mineral hot springs to sooth tired muscles.

But in 1940, tragedy struck the exquisite Inn in the form of a ravenous fire.  While guests escaped unharmed, almost the entire property was destroyed.  The only structure remaining from the days of the old El Paso Robles Inn is the Grand Ballroom, where many weddings are held today and whose bygone sophistication gives an indication of the original hotel’s opulence.

Within months of the blaze, plans were drawn up to build a new hotel on the site of the healing springs, and this time the concept is entirely new: A quaint garden inn.  By 1942, construction was completed and the new Paso Robles Inn was open for business.  Since then, the Inn has been re-established as a place of rest, peace, and restorative waters, attracting thousands of visitors each year, while the city of Paso Robles has become one of the foremost wine country destinations in the world.

Since 1857, the Paso Robles Inn has offered a haven of comfort, pleasure and wellness, with natural hot springs that have refreshed travelers dating back to the Salinan people and California mission padres.  Today, the Inn continues this storied tradition in wine country, with elegantly furnished rooms, private mineral spa tubs, meticulously-tended grounds, a modern American steakhouse and a welcoming lounge – all just minutes from Paso Robles’ 200 wineries and the delights of City Park.  For more information on the Paso Robles Inn, please visit www.PasoRoblesInn.com, call 805.238.2660 or toll-free 800.676.1713.  The Paso Robles Inn is located at 1103 Spring Street in the heart of Paso Robles.

Maralyn D. Hill and Brenda C. Hill
International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association
Books By Hills Success with Writing Where&WhatInTheWorld;