Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Madonna Inn

June 23, 1996

In response to "Our Night at Madonna's" by J.D. Crowe (Weekend Escape, May 5), some history: In 1958, my wife, Phyllis, and I contemplated building our vision of comfort and elegance. It was not our intention to compete with the few existing hotels in the area, so we set about designing rooms that would attract travelers who would not ordinarily stop in San Luis Obispo. Since we had an abundance of unusual indigenous rock on the property, we incorporated it into the exterior as well as some of the rooms and public areas. As a highway contractor, I had the equipment and expertise necessary to make this possible and built several all-rock rooms complete with waterfall showers and magnificent stone fireplaces.

Those " . . . fat, glossy, grinning cherubs, spray-painted gold," are part of a 28-foot-tall tree-fixture in the Gold Rush Dining Room that we hand-crafted on site from electrical conduit and copper remnants left over from building projects. And yes, the cherubs and orbs are imported from Italy and covered in real gold leaf.

Several years ago, we made our first trip to Hawaii, and among the many things that impressed us was the lavish use of pink. Hotels, restaurants and shops abounded with pink. When it came time to do the interiors of the inn, that beautiful hue was the color we decided to use. There is a group of decorators in New York City who have bestowed our name on our special shade, and now call it "Madonna Pink."

We regret Mr. Crowe's use of the words "garish," "tawdry temple of throbbing magenta," "Queasy pinks trimmed in cheap gold . . ." There are many facets of the inn that to replicate today would be cost-prohibitive, such as the leaded glass window panels, the European hand-carved doors and beams, the copper counter and tabletops, etched-glass picture windows and custom leather booths. Our inn may not suit everyone's taste, but from the number of pleased guests we've had from practically every country in the world . . . we feel that we have contributed to the joy of traveling.

ALEX MADONNA

Madonna Inn

San Luis Obispo

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|