The Perfect Getaway

When Janice Lupien moved to South Pasadena from Beijing with her four children, she wanted a job with flexible hours that would allow her to be involved in her children’s various activities. In 2015, she purchased the Arroyo Vista Inn from its previous owner who had converted the 10-bedroom house into a bed-and-breakfast.

“Little did I know that I had taken on a 24/7 job, but the inn is a labor of love,” said Lupien. “In 2006, the previous owner transformed the house into a bed-and-breakfast which she ran until 2015. I’ve done a lot of maintenance and upkeep but kept most of the original décor because she did such a beautiful job renovating.”

Renowned architect Lester Moore built the 10-bedroom craftsman home in 1910 for Ezra and Ida Thompson, a wealthy couple. The inn is situated on a hillside that offers stunning views of the San Gabriel Mountains and the property includes an innkeeper’s cottage behind the main house.

“This place isn’t your typical hotel,” remarked Lupien. “Because we’re so close to everything, including downtown Los Angeles, we’re more like an urban bed-and-breakfast. We serve breakfast daily, but we’re not here all the time waiting for guests to check in. We provide everyone with instructions for self-check-in so they can arrive and leave at any time, and they pre-pay on our website with a credit card. We’re in and out during business hours, but we don’t want people to feel restricted. There’s always an innkeeper on duty in case they need anything.”

Each bedroom has its own bathroom (some feature luxurious bathtubs), a flat-screen television and unique design style. Rooms on the second floor have private balconies, while rooms on the third floor offer some of the most spectacular views of the Arroyo, Pasadena and San Gabriel Mountains. The living room includes a piano, which guests are welcome to use, along with a game table. Visitors also enjoy the outdoor a fountain garden and spacious veranda.

Guests love the freshly baked cookies that are served daily, along with a daily wine and cheese happy hour from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Once a month, Lupien hosts her popular wine tasting series led by an expert sommelier, which includes cheese, fruit and appetizers. The events, which cost $30 per person, can be booked directly via the website.

“I have never managed a bed-and-breakfast before, but I love to cook and entertain,” said Lupien. “During the week, we offer a continental breakfast, and on the weekend everyone sits down in the main dining room. We also offer afternoon tea for guests that contact us 24 hours in advance. I love to host and have people over, so this has been a lot of fun.”

Rooms can be conveniently booked online, with nightly rates starting at $180 during the week and $230 during the weekend. The price includes breakfast, wine happy hour and parking. Arroyo Vista Inn also offers discounts for AAA members, college students and those staying for longer periods of time. The inn is pet-friendly and charges a one-time fee of $50 per stay. Additional amenities include a mobile masseuse that guests can request, as well as a local bike guide to take them on tours of the area.

“We also host private events at the inn and have done everything from sit-down dinners and bridal showers to office Christmas parties,” Lupien pointed out. “Our guests have been very happy with the parties we’ve put on for them. I love meeting the different people that come and stay here. It’s fun serving people from around the world that sit at the breakfast table while they talk about their lives, jobs and experiences. It’s nice to hear guests interact with each other, because I know they’re having a good time and enjoying their stay with us. A lot of people say that this place feels like home—it’s a very cozy experience in a beautiful setting.”

Arroyo Vista Inn is located at 335 Monterey Road in South Pasadena. It is open 24 hours daily. For more information, call (323) 478-7300 or visit

Arroyo Vista Inn Business Spotlight appeared in the print edition of the South Pasadena Review on 5.17.19. Support Local Business.

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Kamala Kirk is a contributing writer for the South Pasadena Review, San Marino Tribune and The Quarterly Magazine. Kamala formerly served as Managing Editor of Beauty Launchpad Magazine, West Coast Editor of American Salon Magazine, and Digital Editor for E! Online. A native of Hermosa Beach, California, she is a proud USC Trojan and pug mom to Wrigley the Pug (@pugofpasadena).