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Baker, CA isn't famous as a wold-class destination, nor is it famous for its five-star hotels, but it is famous as being the home to the World's Tallest Thermometer.  So if you're looking for a destination resort, you'd better continue east on the interstate until you reach Las Vegas, about three hours distant, but if you're looking for a clean, comfortable, reasonably priced motel, may I suggest Bun Boy Motel?

Photo:  That's my truck parked in front my room, near the palm tree.  To the left of the photo is the unused motel office.  You register for the motel at the Country Store, which is just across the parking lot from the motel.

Bun Boy Motel is located along Baker Boulevard, near the west end of town, on the main drag, that was in the pre-interstate days, the principal highway between Los Angeles and Las Vegas.  Those days are gone, along with the tumbling tumbleweeds and the desert wind, and the advent of the super slab has left Baker Boulevard a bastion of fast food restaurants, has-been motels, convenience stores, gas stations and liquor stores.  Speaking of motels, Baker Boulevard is home to motels with colorful names such as Willis Fargo Motel, and of course, Bun Boy Motel, next to Bob's Big Boy restaurant.

Photo:  Inside the motel room, looking toward the sliding glass door that opens to the back patio.  Note the tile floor, which is a rarity in United States motels, but very common in Mexico.

You'll find the office at the east end of the motel, but its been shuttered long ago, and a sign directs you to the Country Store, which is located on the other side of the 76 gas station.  You register at the desk in the store, and after filling out the registration for, and paying only about $50.00 for the night, you're handed a real key, you know, one of those relics that's made out of brass, and has a plastic "thingie" attached to it advising a finder to drop the key into the nearest mailbox.  Nostalgia at it's best!

Photo:  Using existing light, I snap my photo in the bathroom.  Note the hand-printed sign in the upper right corner of the photo that advises the water will take some time to get hot.  I never did get hot water, but since the weather was very mild, it really wasn't a problem.

I stayed at Bun Boy Motel for two nights in March, 2009, Monday the 16th, and Tuesday the 17th, and I found the motel clean, relaxing, and quite spacious.  The motel room has sliding glass doors that open to the rear, and the sidewalk doubles as a small patio, so it's quite relaxing to pull up a chair, sit outside, sip a beer, and watch traffic on the interstate roll by.  There is a bit of a caveat to such relaxation, as a sign advises that snakes have been seen in the vicinity, and knowing the Mojave Desert like I do, I'd bet a bottle of Jack Daniels that the snake was a rattlesnake.  Not exactly the sort of guest that I'd want to invite to dinner...

Photo:  The "patio" out the back door, and the "backyard," that faces busy Interstate 15.  A sign advises to watch out for snakes.

Both nights, I noted that my fellow guests were a rather jovial lot, as there seemed to be a lot of folks with motorcycles and A.T.V.s, enjoying the Mojave Desert during the spring.  Tuesday evening, I pulled up a chair in front of my room, along with other guests, and we had sort of an impromptu block party, Bun Boy Motel style.

Photo:  This photo was taken out the sliding glass door, with my chair to the right of the photo, and Interstate 15, and the Mojave Desert in the background.  The blue truck is headed west on the interstate.

But all is not perfect along beautiful Baker Boulevard, as the motel, like many other 1960's-era motels, has it's quirks, and Bun Boy's quirk is in the shower.  In the bathroom, a sign warns, (sic) "Attention.  Hot Water may take a few minutes to come.  Thank you for your Patience!" That's an understatement, as after twisting the knobs in every conceivable direction, and putting them in every possible position, after 20 minutes of my time, all I was rewarded with was lukewarm, tepid water.  You can't have it all...

Photo:  Later, I moved to the front of the motel, and exchanged pleasantries with other guests, who seemed to be members of the motorcycle and sand buggy crowd.  It was pleasant to sit outside, enjoy the mild, desert evening, and sip a beer.

Would I stay at Bun Boy Motel again?  You bet, as I like the funky little quirks, and it's close to fast food, booze at the Country Store, and its right across the street from Mad Greek.  Plus, where else can you sit on an impromptu patio, enjoy a cold beer, watch the interstate traffic, and watch out for rattlers?  Bun Boy Motel is my kind of place!

Bun Boy Motel
72139 Baker Blvd.
Baker, CA 92309
760 733-4252
760 733-4363


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