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The Intercontinental is the only hotel on Cannery Row that has a swimming pool, which could be a deal-maker for families. Never mind that it's actually a lap pool, no more than four feet wide. The kids I saw there, on my last visit, didn’t seem to mind the tight quarters. The pool is backed by a state-of-the-art fitness room and spa. The hotel also boasts a better-than-you-usually-get in this uber-touristy strip restaurant; and a lovely outdoor patio for watching the waves with a cocktail in hand. Rooms are what you’d expect at an Intercontinental: plush, with every convenience but no real feel for the setting they’re in (sigh). The hotel is about a three-minute walk from the Monterey Aquarium and many rooms feature lovely ocean views.

-Pauline Frommer