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Staycation and Date Night in Downtown SLO and Where We Went

Posted by San Luis Obispo Mom on Sunday, December 11, 2022 Under: Romantic

My husband surprised me with an anniversary SLO staycation in Downtown San Luis Obispo!
Granada Bistro Date Night
He had presented me the reservation date and details on our actual anniversary day in an envelope as a gift but I had to wait a few weeks to experience it, when my mother-in-law was able to come to visit and watch our precious kids for us! It was a gift with big anticipation and he executed it well! Our staycation was extra unique as it was on a Monday night in December. It had rained earlier in the day but luckily, it didn't rain anymore by the time we started our celebration. 

Here is an itinerary of where we went and stayed for our date night and Downtown SLO staycation.

Checking In at Granada Hotel & Bistro

Before we started painting the town, my husband took us to the Granada Hotel to check into our staycation. The Granada Hotel is located in a very centralized area in Downtown San Luis Obispo. They also have their own parking lot on the property through a very narrow alley. Parking in this alley as a hotel guest was free. You just have to put a permit on your dashboard that the hotel provides for you upon check-in. After we parked at their complimentary parking lot, we entered around to the front to find the lobby.
Lobby of Granada Inn
While we were checking in, the front desk personnel asked if we would like a glass of wine. We said "yes". To our surprise, this welcome complimentary drink was offered and it started our evening wonderfully. After we finished our drink, the front desk personnel walked us to our room! It was amazing service. There is no magnetic card key as they used regular keys for all of their rooms, and I especially loved this as it's a reminder that the property is a hundred years old. We just had to remember to lock our door before we left as it does not automatically lock once we close the door like the newer hotels.
Granada Inn San Luis Obispo Inside
Once we entered our room, I was instantly wowed. There's a nice fireplace and a little balcony to watch the town, which I find out later that not all rooms have this. My husband also added a surprise array of chocolate, flowers and a bottle of wine that was already waiting in our room!
Romantic Hotel in San Luis Obispo
I was gushing like a teenager. It was all so fancy and romantic. We started to enjoy the chocolates and wine almost immediately and opened the balcony door to look at the view. See my video reel on instagram to get a better look at the chocolates that I enjoyed at our stay at Granada Hotel
Juliet balcony
It's a quieter work week this evening and it had rained earlier so we were able to see a slower downtown with some Christmas lights further along the street. It was so peaceful. I felt like a VIP.

After hanging out in the room for a little while, we were ready to head down for our dinner reservations that my husband had made through OpenTable for the Bistro at the Granada Hotel. All we had to do was walk downstairs from our room and then we were there. We were 15 minutes early but they were able to accommodate us.
Granada Bistro Tables Pictures
Upon sitting down, the server handed us the menus and then minutes after, surprised us with two complimentary glasses of champagne and said, "Happy Anniversary"! My husband was very surprised as well because he had made the reservation through OpenTable and did not mention that it was our anniversary celebration. Granada Hotel had went above and beyond and must have crossmatched our stay reservation with the bistro reservation list. I was so impressed at this point and it had only been an hour since we've arrived on this property. I ordered the soba noodles and ate everything. It was delicious! (First picture at the top of this post was the picture of my food from Granada Hotel & Bistro.) We skipped dessert and left to go to our first bar stop named Highwater SLO.

Granada Hotel & Bistro Address: 1126 Morro St, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Highwater SLO (now closed)

Lucky for us, Highwater SLO was highly rated and is open on Mondays! Many restaurants and bars close on Mondays in SLO County so we were grateful. Upon stepping into the bar, we knew that we were in for a really unique experience. We sat right at the bar. Menus offered to us used record covers as their menu book! Along the walls were black paintings on white (or maybe they were stencils) of famous rockers and singers. They were tastefully decorated.
Highwater SLO Bar in San Luis Obispo
Just the ambiance itself was enough to get me to come back. Fortunately, the drinks are art of a professional. I have confidence that whatever I decide to order here in the future will be excellent. They also serve food but because we already had dinner at Granada Bistro, we wanted to just stop in for a drink and maximize our date night experience to explore another place that we had never been to before.

Highwater SLO Address: 1127 Broad St., Suite B, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 [Update: Highwater is currently closed.]

S.Low Bar and High Bar at Hotel San Luis Obispo

As we were walking from Highwater SLO to S.Low Bar that's located inside Hotel San Luis Obispo, we enjoyed looking at all the Christmas decorations in Downtown San Luis Obispo. It felt like such a celebratory holiday stroll. See my instagram video reel of our walk by the Holiday Plaza in Downtown during this date night. As mentioned, it had rained earlier in the day so the air is still cold but it had stopped raining by the time we started our night so the peace and calm carried on throughout the night with our walks. We were thankful that it did not rain anymore.
Downtown San Luis Obispo for the Holidays
Once we sat down at S.Low Bar, we had a nice conversation with the bartender and ordered from their specialty list for S.Low Bar.
S.Low Bar in Hotel San Luis Obispo
We read on Yelp that the property also has a second bar called High Bar so after a drink, we went to the elevator and made our way up to the High Bar.

At High Bar, you can see the view of Downtown San Luis Obispo as it is a rooftop and it's all outdoors.
High Bar San Luis Obispo
We both ordered the blueberry mojito from their specialty list. Even though, S.Low Bar and High Bar are both located at the same hotel, their specialities are different. It was pretty cold as the night went on for this December night and we brought our mojitos with us and wandered back downstairs again to get some warmth by S.Low Bar's fireplace. S. Low Bar closes at 10PM. 

Hotel San Luis Obispo (S.Low Bar & High Bar) Address: 877 Palm Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

End of Date Night

After S.Low Bar closed, my husband and I went to the back door of Granada Hotel with our hotel key to get back to our room. The front desk closes and front door locks at 10PM. We were instructed to enter through the back with our key if we were coming back past 10PM. It felt like we were elites to an elite club as we did this. It was a cold walk and I couldn't wait to get back into our room. We also had some pieces of chocolates to finish in our room so we enjoyed a few more chocolate pieces on our balcony and then, went to sleep.

It was a lot of walking around town and it did not take long to drift to sleep with one of the best sleeps I've had in a really long time. We also walked by the Bubble Gum Alley in Downtown. It was nice to see it without a crowd. The collection has quite grown. See my video reel of my walk by the Bubble Gum Alley in Downtown San Luis Obispo during this date night to see the current culmination. 

I highly recommend all of the places that we went for our anniversary celebration in Downtown San Luis Obispo. Don't forget to bring a thick coat if you're wandering around here in December, and maybe an umbrella too (just in case).

Read about where we went for our date night in Pismo Beach (a famous beach town in San Luis Obispo County).
Read about our movie date night in downtown San Luis Obispo and The Movie Experience review.

My staycations at other hotels around San Luis Obispo County:

Some of my most favorite gifts from my husband are experiences, like a local hotel stay in a nice boutique hotel or a nice stress-free cruise. Read more blog entries to read about my local adventures. Read about my romantic adventures and dining experiences on the Central Coast.

In : Romantic 

Tags: date night in san luis obispo  best date places in downtown slo  romantic restaurants 

About Me

San Luis Obispo Mom Originally from San Diego, California, I'm a San Diego State University alumna, veteran's wife and mom of two kids who were born two years apart. After living on the East Coast for 6 years, we now reside in San Luis Obispo County and here, the exploration continues.
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