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“A treasure in Palo Alto” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Zen Hotel

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The Zen Hotel
2.5 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   4164 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306   |  
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Ranked #5 of 26 Hotels in Palo Alto
Maine
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“A treasure in Palo Alto”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2014

The Zen Hotel is close to my ideal for lodging. I have spent several
months out of the last three years there, and in a way which transcends
the cliche, it has been my home away from home. The esprit de corps of
the staff expresses both in their attention to detail in the maintenance
and running of the hotel, and in their kindness and willing attitude
toward their guests. The rooms are tastefully decorated, and the beds
are among the most comfortable anywhere. The breakfast room is lovely,
and the breakfast provided, even lovelier. They serve real food, not
prefabricated breakfast technology, and it is a very pleasant social
environment in which to eat it. The clientele which the Zen attracts is
another mark of how unusual and wonderful this place is. There are, of
course, some of the usual tech crowd who populate Palo Alto these days,
but there are also families and down to earth folks. I grew up in Palo
Alto in the 60's and I find that the Zen has discovered a way to blend
the kindness and humanity of the old Palo Alto with the aesthetics and
high functionality of its current dominant culture-- no mean feat. This
is not just a place I like to stay, this is a place I treasure.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ricberr, General Manager at The Zen Hotel, responded to this review, February 28, 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you so much for this candid, thoughtful and generous review. I do recognize you as one of our loyal guests we so much appreciate and enjoy having every time your travel plans bring you to Palo Alto. I and the rest of The Zen staff are always very glad to welcome you back and look forward to your next visit.

Thank you again for sharing your feedback with the Tripadvisor community. Take care and see you next time.

Warm regards,

Ricardo Berrospi
General Manager
THE ZEN HOTEL
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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166 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    11
    6
    1
See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (47)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Palo Alto
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2014

This place is a hoot - a perfectly ordinary motel, located handily on El Camino Real, but with Zen-inspired landscaping around the car parking and Zen themed decor in the rooms. Comfortable and convenient, and the Zen theme made it just that little bit nicer than a bog-standard motel. A motel right next to a busy street is never going to be a complete oasis of calm and peace, but this was a pretty good try.

Room Tip: Rooms on the ground floor with car parking spaces outside (and no rooms above) are handier than the...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Brooklyn, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2014

Just an 9rdinary motel. Room, two double beds. Noise from the sidewalk outside in the morning. You pay for what you get. Zen in the sense that you might want to meditate while you're there and picture staying in a really nice hotel. Nice mugs, though.. .

Room Tip: Just prepare for what you're going to get. Lower expectations.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 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.
ricberr, General Manager at The Zen Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you for your feedback. I am very sorry the location of your room was not as quiet as you would have preferred. I sincerely hope that other aspects of your stay were to your satisfaction. Should you decide to give us another opportunity in the future, we have rooms available that are located in specific sections of our building that we could recommend as being on the quieter side. Our Guest Services Agents are available 24/7 to assist with reservations and provide recommendations on our rooms.

Best regards,

Ricardo Berrospi
General Manager
THE ZEN HOTEL
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2014

A Palo Motel on the El Camino Real. Usually, that's the bottom of the market for Palo Alto - but the Zen seems to lift the standard for the rest. Nice toiletries, fresh bottled water every day, reasonable WiFi speeds, welcoming and helpful staff, a little pack of candy. Lots of detail - really does make the difference at this end of the market.

Room Tip: I stayed in room 109 - it's right in the far left hand corner - always got a parking space just...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Boston, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
171 reviews 171 reviews
164 hotel reviews
Reviews in 109 cities Reviews in 109 cities
568 helpful votes 568 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

I arrived at the hotel at 11 pm after a delayed flight and a $100 taxi fare from SFO. It didn't look promising. After checking in, I lugged my very heavy suitcase to the back of the property and then carried it up the stairs to my room. It isn't a hotel, so there's no one to help you.

My first impression wasn't positive, but that changed over the course of the next 24 hours, when I grew to appreciate everything this hotel does offer you. A jetted tub, for example. Bathrobes and slippers. Some welcome chocolates, fruit, and a complimentary bottle of water. A good breakfast. The list goes on. Oh -- and when I checked out, one of the cleaners saw me, and she insisted on carrying my suitcase for me down the stairs, despite my embarrassed protests. I was won over!

The only thing I continued to dislike was the overhead lighting, which was not bright enough. But I guess they're trying to be a trendy boutique hotel, where this sort of thing is par for the course.

And the bill was very reasonable for Palo Alto.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

I stayed here on New Years Eve for a couple of nights. Its a great little hotel that is comfortable, clean and very relaxing. The outside grounds are very well maintained with nice little waterfall and Buddha statues outside. The staff is very accommodating. I had asked Ryan to order pink roses for the room so I could surprise my girlfriend which she was. It was nice to know a hotel can make the little details happen. I highly recommend this hotel! The price is also super reasonable.

  • Stayed December 2013, 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.
ricberr, Front Office Manager at The Zen Hotel, responded to this review, January 23, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your kind words about our hotel. I am very pleased to hear that our attention to detail and commitment to guest satisfaction helped make your New Years Eve an enjoyable one. Comments such as yours help reinforce to the entire staff that our efforts do not go unnoticed.

I am thrilled to hear that you were able to take comfort in our Zen Garden. Hopefully the recent improvements we have made to this area helped you take a few minutes to relax during your transition to a new year.

It was also a pleasure to personally assist you with the flowers for your girlfriend. I am so happy that she was surprised.

Your feedback was greatly appreciated. I hope that we have another chance to welcome you back to The Zen Hotel in the future.

Thank you,

Ryan Aldridge
Front Office Manager
THE ZEN HOTEL
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2014

This small unassuming hotel was the gem of our 3 week vacation. We usually don't stay at hotels with doors that enter from outside. Don't let this small detail fool you - this hotel is quiet, safe and delightful. A quiet sitting area with several water features, overlooking balconies, bath salts, hot water maker with really nice teas. A nice breakfast topped off the stay. We would stay here again in a minute. Really - stay here!!!!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ricberr, General Manager at The Zen Hotel, responded to this review, January 22, 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you for this phenomenal review! Your kind comments about the way we run our operations are very much appreciated and reassuring to all our staff.

I was very excited to see you mentioning our Mighty Leaf organic teas, as this was an addition we made to our breakfast that received great positive response from our guests. We also find that offering both Peet's and Starbucks Coffee for breakfast was a decision that played very well with a number of coffee fans we welcome on a daily basis to The Zen Hotel.

Please rest assured that your feedback has been read by the entire Zen team, and that we all appreciate the time you took to leave your kind feedback on Tripadvisor.

Hope to see you back again soon.

Best regards,

Ricardo Berrospi
General Manager
THE ZEN HOTEL
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Zen Hotel

Address: 4164 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Palo Alto
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Palo Alto
#4 Family Hotel in Palo Alto
#5 Business Hotel in Palo Alto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — The Zen Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 37
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Townhouse Hotel Palo Alto

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