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“Trip made wonderful but a great hotel.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay

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Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   2 Portola Plaza, Monterey, CA 93940   |  
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Breakfast for Two
Ranked #6 of 53 hotels in Monterey
GreenLeadersGold level
San Francisco, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Trip made wonderful but a great hotel.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2014

Loved this hotel. Clean, contemporary and good location. Expedia over booked and we were given a room with two double beds instead of a king. Hotel tried their best to compensate for this error - excellent customer service and I'll certainly be going back.

I also loved their breakfast and the fact that they had a duvet and not a blanket. Honestly, after traveling the world, that is a make or break for me.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (288)
Date | Rating
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English first
Corona, California
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2014 via mobile

PROs: friendly staff with kid-friendly attitude from the bellmen to the waiters; location to wharf and trail that heads to Cannery Row, breakfast buffet is high quality and good value for the money, artwork and nautical theme, Aquarium package is also nice, pet friendly. WARM COOKIES AT CHECK-IN!!

CONs: no air conditioning (even in low 70s weather the rooms are stuffy), small rooms compared to the Marriott which is next door, hallway noise easily comes into the room, decor is dark (again, compared to the Marriott, which seems so bright in color), definitely feels older.

We left the window open one afternoon to cool the room while we went to the aquarium. When we returned the room, it smelled like smoke! Someone must have been smoking in the courtyard and it drifted in. We asked for a fan to circulate the air and for housekeeping to spray the room; however we only got the fan and had to keep the window closed the rest of the night. This was frustrating because of how warm the room got, and my wife, who is pregnant, could not get comfortable.

Overall this is a quality hotel. Guests are treated well. I really can't complain that much.

However next time I will probably stay at the Marriott: the rooms there are larger, beds are more comfy, they gave my toddler a stuffed animal (made his day), the decor is brighter and windows larger, rooms have a/c and it essentially is the same distance to Cannery Row. Plus I will get my Marriott Rewards points.

Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
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PortolaHotelSpa, Manager at Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay, responded to this review, April 23, 2014
Congratulations to you and your wife with a new baby on the way!

We would like to thank you for taking the time to write a review on TripAdvisor. We appreciate your feedback and we share your comments with our team. We were happy to hear you enjoyed the homemade cookies and we hope you had a great time at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

We thank you again for taking the time to write a review and we hope to welcome you and your family back to Monterey soon!

Sincerely,
Portola Hotel & Spa Management Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2014

I come here once a year and stay for a few days on business. It is very centrally located but not in the "heart" of the touristy area, which I think is a plus. It is a short drive down to the warf, or a nice morning walk. But you are right in the heart of downtown, so there is plenty to do if you want to walk out the doors of the hotel and find some place tasty to eat.
The rooms are very comfortable. They do not have air conditioning, only heat, but that is often not needed. Open the door to your little balcony, and you will get all the cool breeze you need. It is truly wonderful to wake up to the sound of seagulls and sea lions. Don't try and feed them though as I have made that mistake, and they will never leave you alone (the seagulls I mean). The amenities are nice, with a good selection of places to eat, and an inhouse brewery. The workout center is serviceable. The beds comfy and clean. They have recently done some remodeling to the place and so the interior design of the rooms is even better than before. Really like this place.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
PortolaHotelSpa, Manager at Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay, responded to this review, April 23, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback and experience at the Portola Hotel & Spa on TripAdvisor. We were pleased to hear you enjoyed your stay and appreciate your feedback about the guest rooms. We are working on remodeling all of the bathrooms as well as recertification for U.S. Green Building Council LEED®-EB in support of our green efforts.

We look forward to welcoming you back to Monterey soon!

Sincerely,
Portola Hotel & Spa Management Team
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Saint Paul, Minnesota
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2014

I usually don't stay at the places in this price range, but it was the last night of my vacation, and I was ill, so needed pampering. Very nice property, spacious room, excellent service everywhere. Food at the main restaurant was also excellent. Great location to be in for a rainy day, as was a quick stroll to the wharf, but when it started to rain, an easy walk back. They have thought through everything, including that you can leave your car in the ramp until 3 on the day of checkout.

Green Features: I liked that the bathroom products were organic, but I can't say they are environmentally-friendly when there is a Keurig-type coffee thing. Least environment friendly product on the planet!
  • Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2014

From the front desk which Taylor was a 5 star employee to the entire cheerful staff and special thanks to the hotel for hiring the handicapped the young lady in wheelchair at registration was a true endorsement of the always upbeat employees.

Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, CA
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

We were pleasantly surprised by our visit to the Portola in January. It's in an excellent location - outside the south entrance is Downtown Monterey, and, outside the north side is the Fisherman's Wharf area. It's just about a 15-20 minute leisurely walk along the waterfront to Cannery Row and the Aquarium. It seems to be more of a conference hotel, but still has a lot to offer vacationers, and sometimes seems to offer really good deals on weekends outside of summer. One thing I appreciated from them is I was able to get guaranteed connecting rooms when I made my reservation for my family of 6.In fact, this one of many things that makes this a very family friendly hotel. The kids all enjoyed the free treasure map and game they got at check in, as well as the free cookies they give out. (I think this hotel was once a DoubleTree). The hotel also has bike and beach rentals available on property.

Our room was in the unattached wing of the hotel, across a public promenade area, and didn't really have much of a view. But the room itself was very comfortable, looks like it's just been renovated. It did have a refrigerator, which is important with kids. One annoying thing was the fact that wi-fi is not included in the price of the room. Parking was also additional, but that is expected in a city such as Monterey.

I usually avoid hotel restaurants, but Peter B's Brewery was actually pretty good - and it seemed to attract a lot of locals, a good sign. The breakfast buffet also had a clever arrangement - serve yourself continental items and omelette bar, but other items like waffles and pancakes and french toast are cooked to order and served at your table. It was also reasonably priced (for a hotel) with kids over age 6 $5.95, under 6 free.

All in all, an excellent stay. I would certainly consider the Portola again when we visit Monterey.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortolaHotelSpa, Manager at Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay, responded to this review, April 23, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review the Portola Hotel & Spa and share your family’s experience. You are right, the property was originally a Double Tree and we have carried on the tradition of homemade cookies with our very own Portola Chocolate Chip Cookie. We are always delighted to hear about children signing up for the Portola Pirate Program and we hope your children enjoyed the treasure hunt.

Peter B’s Brewpub was recently renovated and we launched a brand new menu, so we are happy to hear you enjoyed and would recommend the experience to others.

We thank you again for taking the time to write a review and we hope to welcome you and your family back soon!

Sincerely,
Portola Hotel & Spa Management Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vacaville, California, United States
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014

My wife and I had another great visit to the Portola Hotel. The customer service was excellent as per usual. Great restaurants inside the hotel and within walking distance. The room was clean and modern. The beach and wharf is literally a short walk from the hotel, hard to beat this place!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay

Address: 2 Portola Plaza, Monterey, CA 93940
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Monterey Peninsula > Monterey
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Monterey
#3 Spa Hotel in Monterey
#4 Family Hotel in Monterey
#5 Business Hotel in Monterey
#8 Romantic Hotel in Monterey
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Portola Hotel & Spa reflects the captivating spirit of a rich, historical setting surrounded by everything that the Monterey Peninsula has to offer. Your stay at the Portola Hotel begins with warm homemade chocolate chip cookies, provided at check-in. As the only Silver LEED(R)-EB certified hotel on the central coast of California, the hotel boasts 379 guestrooms and suites, an award winning full service day spa, two on site eateries, a craft brewery and more! Portola Hotel & Spa is one of California's premier family-friendly destinations offering easy access to Monterey's favorite attractions. The hotel is also pet friendly. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Portola Hotel And Spa At Monterey Bay
Portola Hotel Monterey Bay

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