The historic and luxurious boutique hotel, Inn at the Mission San Juan Capistrano, Autograph Collection in San Juan Capistrano directly overlooks the 240-year-old Mission itself.
Its Spanish hacienda-style rooms and authentic cuisine served on-site pay homage to the area’s original roots as the inn serves as a timeless reminder of California’s past. This property seamlessly blends an appreciation for the culture and history of the Southern California region with the opportunities for a present-day adventure.
Metrolink connected with the property’s General Manager, Pam Ryan, who has been a part of the project from the ground up – and shares her thoughts on the inn, its connection to the area’s storied past, and its proximity to the train station for exploring Orange County via railway.
“There are many things that are very special about Inn at the Mission San Juan Capistrano,” says Ryan. “First, the hotel itself is absolutely stunning. It first opened last September of 2020 – in the middle of COVID. The hotel was built from the ground up, and it’s owned by a local San Juan Capistrano family.”
Ryan says what she appreciates most about the inn is its rich, authentic history and the idea of honoring the past while also celebrating the future. She says she enjoys making connections with visitors and locals who stop in.
“Our mission is about keeping the integrity of the history alive and honing the charm and the aesthetic of what many refer to as ‘the real California’ architecture here in San Juan Capistrano,” she says.
The hotel itself is located right next to the grounds of the Mission. Ryan recalls that while the team was digging and excavating the land to build the property, they found the pillars that were used to build the original Great Stone Church.
The team wanted to protect and preserve this historical artifact in its natural environment, so those very same pillars are still sitting on the El Camino Real walkway in front of the hotel between the mission and the hotel itself, for visitors to admire.
The property encompasses roughly four acres of space overall and features three unique architectural styles from different periods of Spanish architecture.
“My favorite part of the property is probably the villas, which are right across the street from Mission San Juan Capistrano,” says Ryan. “Each villa has its own fireplace and its own separate entrance.
Ryan says the villas are a popular option for hosting wedding parties, family reunions, and group activities. She also says not to miss the stunning swimming pool and large outdoor courtyard space on-site. Hotel guests can even enjoy complimentary tickets to the Mission next door.
Visitors can dine at Ysidora Restaurant and Lounge which was named after Ysidora Forester, who owned the mission with her husband back in the late 1700s.
“Ysidora was known for her welcoming hospitality and for feeding people and giving them a place to stay – just like we do nowadays with this hotel!” says Ryan. “The charm and the aesthetic are what drew me into this hotel. And I could tell how important it was to the family to position themselves as part of the community.”
“There’s a certain appreciation for being able to travel now, to explore and experience this beautiful spiritual connection we have with the mission,” says Ryan. “And I really appreciate our close proximity to the San Juan Capistrano train station – it feels so accessible to come to this walkable city from San Diego or Los Angeles via train with friends or family.”
*SoCal Explorer loyalty members can enjoy 10% Off Food, Beverage and Spa Services at Inn at the Mission San Juan Capistrano when they present their digital loyalty card on-site.