The Oaks Hotel is popular for its big, modern rooms, which are relatively bland in style but dwarf most other mid-range accommodations near downtown Paso Robles. The pool, the bar with free weekend tastings, and location within driving distance of wineries are highlights, and the hotel caters to a wide range of travelers, even families with pets and business travelers making use of the meeting space and work desks. The major drawback is its slightly industrial area, between the interstate and train tracks, which isn't appealing to walk around; none of the local wineries are reachable on foot. Guests looking for a more bucolic neighborhood should check rates at the pricier Paso Robles Inn, which is right downtown and has pools fed by mineral springs.
Modern, mid-range hotel with an urban setting and chain-like aesthetic
Built in 2012, the Oaks Hotel still feels modern and fresh. The three-story building, topped by terra-cotta tile roofs, has oak trees growing around its perimeter, but the industrial surroundings make it less picturesque. Indeed, the overall aesthetic (both inside and out) mimics that of mid-range chain hotels, despite the fact that this hotel is independently owned. Inside, the atmosphere is pleasantly modern, and the bright, high-ceilinged lobby has stone accents, marble floors, and a sitting area with sage-green sofas grouped around a gas fireplace. The outdoor patio area is rather basic, with just a couple white metal tables and chairs, although the furniture on the concrete pool deck is nicer, consisting of wooden loungers topped with red or striped cushions. The lobby bar -- liveliest on weekends when there are free wine tastings -- has the same aesthetic as the lobby, while the restaurant feels like an upscale cafeteria, with dark wood tables and chairs, a granite counter for the breakfast buffet, and a small outdoor terrace.
The Oaks Hotel is just outside downtown Paso Robles, near Interstate 101, in an area known for its wineries and hot springs. Paso Robles sits halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, amid picturesque California countryside. The immediate area around the hotel is unattractive and industrial, with an auto body shop and warehouses along the street and nothing within walking distance, but the the area's wineries are easily accessed by car -- some are just a five-minute drive away. The ocean is less than 40 minutes away, and it’s less than a two-hour drive to Fresno or Monterey. Paso Robles Municipal Airport is an 11-minute drive, but it's mostly used for private planes, as is the San Luis Obispo County Airport, which is about a 40-minute drive away.
Contemporary chain-style aesthetic, with large living areas and sofa beds
Each of the 90 rooms at the Oaks Hotel has a large siting area and a sofa bed, so even the smallest can sleep up to four people; either single king or double queen beds are available. The contemporary decor is reminiscent of a mid-range chain hotel, and has light textured wallpaper, patterned carpets, and dark wood furniture that includes either desks or small tables and a pair of chairs (depending on room type). All rooms have flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, microwaves, mini-fridges, and coffeemakers. The bathrooms have sinks with extra granite-topped vanity space and shower/tub combinations with modern fixtures.
Outdoor pool, restaurant and bar, free breakfast, free wine tastings on weekends
The Oaks Hotel has its own restaurant called Indulge, which serves American standards for dinner, as well as a free breakfast buffet with all the continental basics, plus eggs and omelets cooked to order. There's also an outdoor seating area. The lobby bar has a daily happy hour and hosts regular weekend tastings by local wineries, often with live entertainment. Guests taking a break from imbibing the local vintages can relax at the small outdoor pool or hot tub. This is a pet-friendly hotel (for a fee) with a grassy area outside for pets to play. There's also a 24-hour fitness center with modern cardio machines. A business corner in the lobby has a pair of computers and a printer, and the meeting room can be arranged to suit various types of events. Guests with electric cars should note that the free parking lot has six SemaConnect EV charging stations.