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“You're paying for location with this hotel.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay

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Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   2 Portola Plaza, Monterey, CA 93940   |  
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Ranked #7 of 53 Hotels in Monterey
GreenLeadersGold level
Holladay, Utah
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“You're paying for location with this hotel.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

My family and I stayed here Thursday through a Saturday night, and overall it was nice. The rooms and hotel could use a bit of a modern makeover but the beds were very comfortable, and didn't have many complaints.
We stayed on the 4th floor and I would suggest requesting a room on the 5th floor or higher. Our room opened up onto a courtyard which was pretty much eye level to people standing out there. Just lacks a little privacy when you want to open the sliding glass door for a little air. There are plantation shutters but if someone's out there, they could probably listen to your conversation if they wanted.
I liked the hotel but you're definitely paying for the location here. You can walk pretty much anywhere you'd like as a tourist in Monterey. I'd probably stay here again as long as I was on a higher floor.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1,531 reviews from our community

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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 (326)
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English first
Houston
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

They were fantastic about helping us to get a romantic room with a view, and just very friendly staff (can't beat the chocolate chip cookies on check-in either). Great location by many restaurants as well as the FIsherman's Wharf and a waterfront bike/walking path where the seals lounge. Room was very modern with a large bathroom and shower, excellent bedding. Only downside was a little noise at night from the traffic driving in the tunnel below, conversations in the plaza, and even the seals nearby - but not too bad.

Room Tip: Ask to be away from the tunnel road if noise bothers you.
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

Birds, everywhere birds! Seriously, the seagulls were screaming all night. Between them, and the screaming baby close by, we really did not sleep. In all fairness, this is a very nice hotel, but I would not stay here again. I would choose a smaller property. The Portola Hotel is massive, and definitely caters to families with young children, conventions and large gatherings, so this is not a romantic or relaxing getaway. The rooms are clean, the rooms are beautifully decorated and well appointed. The bedding is outstanding, and the location is just off of Fisherman's Wharf and Downtown. I live in the heart of the city, so noise for me is usually not an issue. However, I wish I had brought ear plugs. I do not know if it is seasonal, or if the proximity to the wharf is the reason the birds are so loud, but do not plan on a good night's sleep without ear plugs. My guess is that the birds near the wharf are territorial due to the proximity of all of the restaurants and food. Because of all of the families with young children, noise is an issue inspite of the birds, especially in the inner courtyard as everyone has their patio doors open and you hear their conversation. We closed our door at night, but still, we did not sleep a wink.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
San Jose, California
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2014

Very nice hotel, have stayed here many times, and the location is excellent. It is within walking distance of downtown, the Wharf, and the beach. Nice, large, clean.... pretty good restaurants for a hotel. Used to be my favorite place to stay when I was in Monterey... now it is #2.

I now prefer the Plaza Hotel, but the Portola Hotel is excellent!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Warrenpoint
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2014

This is a sprawled out impersonal hotel suited for conventions and gatherings. The location is good for the centre of town and fishermans wharf and the museum.

Everything costs, even WIFI.

The pool area is small and may as well on the freeway it is so noisy. Our room 688 was right next to a very busy and noisy road. NO air conditioning meant you had to open the patio door to get cool.

Wouldn't go back if the rooms were free.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Phoenix, Arizona
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2014

This hotel is in the perfect location for a family trip to Monterey. It was so nice to just park the car and walk to everything. The room was a great size for a family with 11 and 14 year old kids - we all had enough space and didn't feel cramped. The beds were comfortable and the room was very clean. The Concierge was helpful in getting us tickets to the aquarium - we got to go for two days instead of just one - which made it much better. We had a view of the plaza and got to watch the local residents in the morning, but it was far enough away from the wharf that we didn't get disturbed by the late-night revelers. We did notice that the furniture in the lobby and the bar was very worn. We went to the bar at Jack's (their fancy restaurant/lobby bar) for happy hour one evening, and were pretty much ignored by the staff there. We got up and left after waiting a long time for service without as much as an acknowledgement. With that aside, it's the perfect place to stay for a few days exploring the Monterey area.

Green Features: They have a LEED certification posted proudly, they use recycling, and are very cautious about water usage.
  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2014

Super clean rooms and a beautiful lobby. The fresh chocolate chip cookies at check in was a nice touch! The buffet breakfast was delicious. The best feature of the hotel was the location. We brought bikes and were able to pick up the bike path right in front of the hotel and take them easily to cannery row (near the aquarium). Fisherman's wharf was close walking distance as well. Lots of fun for a family! My only complaint is there was no air conditioning, and the room was warm at night. We had to open our windows for fresh air but we had loud road noise because we were right on the street, so it wasn't easy to get a great nights rest. The fan in the room didn't cut it. For the price, we expected air conditioning. Otherwise we were very happy with our stay.

  • Stayed August 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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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 Business Hotel in Monterey
#3 Spa Hotel in Monterey
#3 Luxury Hotel in Monterey
#7 Family Hotel in Monterey
#10 Romantic Hotel in Monterey
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 379
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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