The grand old house is from the Victorian era, but the kind owners were wise enough to eschew oppressive Victoriana for the interior decor. Instead they opted for an appealing mix of dark woodwork and cheerful floral fabrics in the common areas and a not-too-frilly femininity in most of the five bedrooms (the Prince Albert is a bit more masculine). The bedrooms are large, with sitting areas and excellent bathrooms, and the common areas—living room, a wonderful study with dark wood and old books, a pool, lush gardens—are extensive. A hearty breakfast (scones, fruit, sausage, eggs) is served either on the terrace or in the formal dining room. The house is located on the south end of stately Orange Grove, making it ideal for an after-breakfast stroll to explore Pasadena’s historic Arroyo neighborhoods; the shopping districts of South Pasadena and Old Pasadena are just a few minutes’ drive away. The Bissell House is pricey by B&B standards, but you get your money’s worth.
201 Orange Grove Ave., South Pasadena
626.441.3535, 800.441.3530, bissellhouse.com