The Historic Twin Inn is located on the corner of the historic Pacific Coast Highway 101 and Carlsbad Village Drive, 33 miles north of San Diego, in Carlsbad, California. This landmark Victorian structure was built as a private residence in 1887 by Civil War veteran Gerhard Schutte. His role in the town’s development led to his being called the “Father of Carlsbad.”

Schutte and his partners, Samuel Church Smith and D.D. Wadsworth founded the Carlsbad Land and Mineral Water Company to create “a town of small farms and gracious homes.” To achieve this, they purchased 400 prime acres for $40 per acre for development into a community. They laid out a townsite, planted eucalyptus seedlings along the roads, and named the streets.

The South Coast Land Company later owned the inn, which turned it into a boarding house for their workers. In 1919, chef Eddie Kentner purchased the mansion, which became known as The Twin Inns because of its identical appearance to the nearby Wadsworth home. The inn was famous for its family-style chicken dinners, which were promoted by large plaster chickens displayed outside. Eddie Kentner had five children working at the inn, as did his wife, her parents, and her sister.

There was a call button on the back of the house for the bootleggers to use when they delivered. It’s probably still there.  –Ed “Bup” Kentner Jr. told Carlsbad Magazine for an article on The Twin Inns

In 1922, an immense octagonal dining room was added to the building during extensive renovations. Although the inn was not a hotel, it became a popular stop for Hollywood celebrities during Prohibition, as it also served liquor. The inn had its own colossal chicken farm and was known for its all-you-can-eat family-style chicken dinners, which included cream of tomato soup, salad with Thousand Island dressing, chicken served with gravy, hash browns, peas, biscuits, and corn fritters, ice cream, and coffee, all served in Blue Willow china.

The Wadsworth mansion was torn down in 1950, but the Twin Inns continued to operate for 60 years. It was sold in 1984 and became part of the Village Fair Shopping Center, becoming Neiman’s and then the Ocean House Restaurant. From 2003 to 2013, it was a bar and nightclub before becoming Chef Robert Ruiz’s signature restaurant, The Land and Water Company, in November 2013.

Today, the remaining “Schutte” mansion, known as “The Twin Inn,” houses Sun Diego Boardshops, Pedego Electric Bikes, Hay House Publishing, and SIMA Real Estate offices.