Although it now has more than 430 locations in 28 countries, Hooters wasn’t always welcomed by the public. In fact, when it opened in October 1983 in Clearwater, Florida, the founders of the restaurant were “quickly detained for impersonating restaurateurs,” according to the company's website. But the restaurant was able to prove it was more than just a pretty face—that it was serious about serving tasty American food and frosty brews—and its popularity exploded in the decades to follow.
Amid its beach-themed vibe and flat-screen TVs, Hooters still fuels appetites with original chicken wings, burgers, sandwiches, and fresh salads. Of course, nobody carries those casual eats and icy pitchers better than the Hooters girls. To complement their friendly smiles, their uniforms harken back to the ones the original waitresses wore in 1983: orange hot shorts and white tank tops with the emblematic owl on the front—though that owl has lost its Lionel Richie perm.
Named as a favorite golf range in 2009 by Golf Digest, Mariners Point offers 64 well-manicured practice stalls, including natural grass and a challenging 9-hole, par 3 course. The double-decker driving range features on-site professionals, high-quality range balls, and power tees that automatically tee up the ball. Use the range card to purchase driving ammunition in small ($7 for 60 balls), medium ($11 for 105 balls), or large ($13 for 165 balls) baskets. Golfers receive 10 additional balls for visiting the range before 11 a.m. on weekdays. Clearly defined target greens and easy-to-read yardage markers make for far easier practice than aiming for the blowholes of passing belugas. When it’s game time, players can hit the course for a round of golf. Drivers, putters, and severely confused baseball players are treated to breathtaking San Francisco Bay views from each of the nine greens.
The friendly staff at Longboard Margarita Bar serves up savory eats and refreshing margaritas in a laid-back, beach-themed setting. Fingers can unearth jalapeños, onions, tomatoes, olives, and more from a heaping mound of nachos ($6) and complement the feast with fresh-squeezed fruit swirls with tequila in Longboard's singular cocktails, which include the Burrito mojito ($7.50) and Misdemeanor margarita ($9), electrified with green chartreuse and zesty jalapeño. Enjoy postfeast euphoria atop a plush couch in the bar's warmly lit interior, or prepare for a posteuphoria sock hop by shimmying to weekly live music while half smiling.
Once a bootleggers' haven frequented by the sister of Al Capone, today Cameron's Inn & Restaurant celebrates its 100-year history with old-fashioned hospitality and eclectic vintage décor. The restaurant harks back to English pub traditions with Inglenook-style seating crafted from old church pews and a menu that includes bangers and mash, shepherd's pie, and burgers flame-grilled over fragments of Big Ben. Near the bar, which touts 18 beers on tap and more than 60 bottled ales, walls are stacked to the ceiling with more than 2,000 beer cans, which owner Cameron Palmer began collecting at age 10. A functioning fireplace and five big-screen TVs cast a warm glow across the dining room, whose stage hosts occasional live music, karaoke contests, and shadow-puppet beauty pageants. Overnight guests snooze soundly within the rustic timber-lined walls of the inn’s three rooms, or at an RV park and campground near scenic ocean cliffs.
A turn-of-the-century hotel built in 1905, San Benito House welcomes visitors with 11 inviting guest rooms, a romantic suite, and a full-service bar and restaurant. Servers ferry pizza, pasta, and Niman Ranch hormone-free burgers to wooden booths as patrons converse in an airy atmosphere. On Wednesdays–Saturdays, live musicians enliven the bar as the audience sips imported beers and knits dentures, inspired by the building's old age. Queen-size beds await visitors amid flowing curtains and salmon- or eggshell-colored walls. The inn also hosts catered weddings replete with bar service, a garden reception area, and cannons for launching bouquets.