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“Good? Heck, it's adequate” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Americas Best Value Inn

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Americas Best Value Inn
2.0 of 5 Motel   |   1620 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 21 Hotels in Berkeley
Santa Barbara, California
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Good? Heck, it's adequate”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2013

This is a good value for Berkeley. We arrived very late -- almost 11:00 p.m. There was a sign on the office that said "closed." Dang, we hadn't made arrangements for this. But a smiling guy came to the door and greeted us warmly. We felt instantly welcome. We dragged our tired behinds into the room. We stocked the empty and clean mini-fridge and sought refuge on the bed. Says it's queen-sized but looks more like a double, which was okay. But the the mattress is a trhowback. It crinkles and squeaks and sounds like it's stuffed with newspaper. It even feels like that a little bit. But we lost consciousness anyway and found that the bed consistently offered a good night's sleep.

Now, temperature control is an issue. We were in Berzerkeley at the end of August. It was not terribly hot but it was warm - uppers 70s. The room was HOT. There is no AC. We noticed a fan on the wall in the corner of room. We turned it on low. It moved the warm air around and didn't help. We realized we needed to open the windows. The next day, when we returned to the room after walking around UC, the room was brutally hot. We put the fan on high and opened the windows and door. My wife estimates the noise level at 75 dbA. This procedure helped marginally. We were able to sleep soundly with the jet engine white noise.

The alarm clock was 48 minutes off - something we didn't notice in our arrival stupor. Easily remedied but weird. There is no stopper in the sink.

So, why do we give this place a three instead of a "run away!"? Well, it's clean. It was cheap on a Cal football weekend. And it's in this funky neighborhood with all these odd businesses. It's not an upscale neighborhood but we felt safe.

The room is of adequate size has lots of surfaces on which to place luggage and paraphernalia of travel and work out of it without putting anything on the floor. The microwave works - we used it to warm up the very good sweet potato pie from Everett & Jones. There is a "Murphy" ironing board. We didn't use it but enjoyed marveling at it. There are two directional lamps above the bed so you can read without blinding your sweetie.

Doncha hate it when you stand in the middle of a hotel with a dirty kleenex and think, where the heck is the wastebasket? Not here. There are two wastebaskets and they are not hidden.

The decor is dated and a little odd but pleasant. If you don't need to brag about the place you stayed and don't need to sleep in a cold room in the summer, this will work for your. Hey, it's adequate.

Room Tip: You might try a room that does not border on San Pablo.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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78 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    16
    28
    17
    4
    13
See reviews for
14
26
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19
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Dallas, Texas
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

If you are looking for a good place to crash for the night, this will work for you. We stayed here for 3 days while visiting SFO late aug and found it ok.
The room is spacious for SFO standards, but bathroom just has a shower cubicle no tub. The only real complaint we had was that the walls are very thin and the noise from outside work us up a couple of times each night. Also a dog in the next room kept barking every 10 mins in the afternoon and i just had a headache at the end of the day.

tip : No breakfast provided but you can head to La Misson for some awesome burritos and tacos.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stratford-upon-Avon, England, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2013

I stayed in this motel with my family. We were on a two week vacation in Californina, and had stayed in several other hotels/motels during the trip.
Initial impressions of the motel were that the room was shabby and needed renovating urgently. The smell of urine outside the room did not create a good impression. However, the position was handy for Berkeley city centre.
The big problem came the next morning. The toilet was blocked and when I reported this to the reception, I was offered a plunger to clear the blockage. I was amazed. The attitude of the staff member was dismissive and rude. He said that the blockage could be cleared at 1.30 in the afternoon, but there were four of us needing to get ready for the day! He flippantly said well I can offer you the keys to my apartment!
We checked out immediately and will not return to this motel. It was not cheap ($120 for room/night), and the guy on the reception was just plain rude. I thought customer service was supposed to be good in the US...

Room Tip: Don't chose this motel.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pescadero, California
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2013

I've stayed at this hotel for many years. Its always been a great place to stay. Its convenient, fairly central to most things in Berkeley (most have a car to get to Shattuck Ave locations).

Anyways, prices are always reasonable, way below the rest of the hotels on University Ave. And its always sold out at the end of every night. so that's a good sign, right?!

Plan ahead, make a reservation. You should be happy. And in the morning, Leila's cafe is two blocks away (easy walking distance) and is a great place to start your day.

Enjoy!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oakland, California
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2013

PROs
Total for Queen rooms $85 incl. tax etc.
Rooms are clean with newish microwave/refrigerator.
Beds comfortable with good reading lights.
Table/chairs for computer work or snacks.
Day and night mgrs always helpful and accomodating.
Almost all rooms on ground floor if stairs are a problem.
Good and moderately priced Japanese restaurant on premises.
Convenient on/off tfreeways to SF/Oakland/Marin
Berkeley BART station 8 blocks away.
Nearby Solano Avenue is an EastBay restaurant ghetto
Convenient parking.
Will arrange cots or Queen+single for children

CONs
No breakfast but several restaurants nearby.
Rooms have a 1960s decor but everything works.
Smokers sometimes have too loud conversations near rooms.
Good reading lights but one went out and was not fixed for 2 days.

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the ground floor if stairs are a problem. Also get a room not on San Pablo Ave th...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake Oswego. Oregon
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

The Golden Bear Inn also known as Americas Best Value Inn is located in Berkely, Ca. not far off the major freeway 880. The facility is a motel and I must say I have travelled a lot with my music so I encounter a lot of motels, hotels. The Golden Bear Inn is from the 60's! Of course it's been updated and the front desk hosts are AMAZING. The most accommodating staff!! Full of smiles and HELPFUL. The rooms are CLEAN, simple and the pillows OMGOODNESS, the most comfortable pillows I have ever experienced and I am picky when it comes to the pillow!! Each room has a small icebox which is nice for juices, soda's, leftover's from the multitude of delightful
restaurant's in the area! There is also a micro-wave in each room and the housekeeping staff - these ladies are so gosh darn sweet and helpful! There is plenty of parking within the hotel which is great so no need to worry about parking on the street. As you pull in the hotel is in a horseshoe style parking lot. PLENTY of ROOM even if booked full! The Golden Bear Inn is often sold out on the weekends I noticed. I stayed for 1 week and by Friday night at 6pm - the SOLD OUT sign was up! They accept Triple A for a discount! This is not the Ritz, as a friend described
The Golden Bear Inn "It reminds me of a country inn in the city". I did not see a room with a bath tub so you might want to check on this PRIOR to booking your room. The shower stalls are
small but the water is nice and HOT. On a scale of 1 - 10 I would give The Golden Bear Inn a 8+.
It's simple, affordable, centrally located and down home hospitality!!

Room Tip: Book in ADVANCE of a weekend! No A/C but there is fans that have a strong wind factor!! Rooms on th...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangalore, India
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

We stayed at this Inn for our visit to SFO & Berkeley last month. We booked this room through PriceLine and I can't really complain that I got a Queen Bed as I normally prefer a King bed. The price was ok.. Rooms were clean and decent. TV was fine as well as the wi-fi. Only issue was probably there was no Air Conditioning (or may be I couldn't find the switch) though there was separate heating unit and a small fan which was adequate for the cool weather. Guy on front desk was quite cheerful. Nothing specific to complain of and nothing special to boast about, but thats what I would look for while getting a property in SFO area for $75 a night. If I would have paid same amount in a cheaper city I might look for a hotel but not in SFO.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Americas Best Value Inn

Address: 1620 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Berkeley
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 21 Hotels in Berkeley
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Americas Best Value Inn 2*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our hotel was built around 1946 with classic Spanish architecture in mind. The Golden Bear Inn remains a part of the Berkeley landscape and is a well renowned place for travelers from all over the globe. With its unique style and comfortable facilities the Golden Bear Inn has kept guests returning year after year. Check in starts at 2 PM and ends at Midnight. For special arrangements please call the Front Desk. Check out is at 12 Noon on the day of departure. All cancellations must be made 24 hours prior to the check-in date to avoid penalties. We appreciate your understanding and we look forward to your stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Americas Best Value Hotel Berkeley
Golden Bear Hotel
Golden Bear Motel

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