If you’re driving from Los Angeles to San Francisco (or vice versa) and you suddenly have the urge to lounge on a pink couch that looks as though it belongs in Barbie’s living room, a stop in the charming city of San Luis Obispo, California is an absolute must. Located almost exactly between Los Angeles and San Francisco, San Luis Obispo is home to a handful of landmarks that are well worth exploring.
One of San Luis Obispo’s most curious landmarks is a stately stone pyramid that serves as a mausoleum. In the early 1900’s, prominent attorney Frederick Aldolphus Dorn had an Egyptian-style pyramid built as a final resting place for his deceased wife and son. The pyramid features several Masonic symbols, as Dorn was a devoted Mason. Dorn ultimately moved to San Francisco and was buried in the Bay Area, but the pyramid that he commissioned still stands in San Luis Obispo.
If a giant grey pyramid is a little drab for your taste, consider a visit to the Madonna Inn. The Madonna Inn was founded by an eccentric couple named Alex and Phyllis Madonna in the late 1950’s. If pink is your favorite color, the Madonna Inn is your dream hotel. Pink couches, pink chairs, and luscious pink cakes are just a small sampling of some of the many pink items that you may encounter while exploring the grounds of the Madonna Inn. The Madonna Inn is also home to a day spa, a swimming pool, and over 100 themed rooms, including the pinker than pink “Love Nest” which is ideal for a romantic weekend getaway.
San Luis Obispo is home to a series of bells that appear as though they are hanging from metal staffs. These bells commemorate El Camino Real, or “The King’s Road.” El Camino Real was a path that monks and priests followed to get from one settlement to the next during Spanish rule. In the early 1900’s, automobile enthusiasts seized upon this local lore and installed a series of bells to attract motorists and encourage the powers that be to pave more roads, The true historical path of El Camino Real remains a bit murky, but the bells of San Luis Obispo are certainly a lovely sight.
San Luis Obispo is a charming California town with plenty of whimsical offerings. Next time you’re craving cake with pink frosting, hop on Highway 101 and head to San Luis Obispo.