The Cowper Inn is not all that it's cracked-up to be.
I chose to stay in what is called a suite at the inn, since no rooms with private baths were available. But, what I ended-up with was no suite. At hotels and b & bs that I've stayed at across the U.S. and around the world, the term suite implies that the room will include a sitting area or some sort. This was not the case in room 26 at The Cowper Inn.
All I got was a large room with a queen size bed, a smallish bathroom and a small second bedroom with a twin bed.
I found the lack of a sitting area strange as I mentioned to the proprietor, several times, that I was meeting a group of friends and would like to socialize in the sitting area of the room. At no time did the proprietor tell me that there was no sitting area in the rooms. When I mentioned all of this to the proprietor, as I checked out, I was told that only the large suites have a sitting area. In my book, a suite is a suite and a bedroom with an adjoining smaller bedroom is just that.
Furthermore, the room was a bit shabby - wallpaper coming off of the walls, porcelain missing from the tub, a curtain rod that needed a lick of pain and a bathroom mirror that was in poor shape. Most importantly, the bedroom windows would not close properly. It was a cool autumnal night and I snuggled under the duvet to keep warm. I was annoyed but would have been more so on a colder night.
Speaking of the duvet, I was surprised to find that there was no duvet cover on the duvet itself. Furthermore, there was no top sheet on the bed. In Europe, when you have this type of set-up, the duvet cover is replaced with each guest. Since my bed didn't have a duvet cover, I can only hope that the duvet was cleaned for me.
On the plus side, the 1896 buildings are lovely on the outside and the gardens and patio are tranquil. The location is great - two blocks from University Ave., Palo Alto's main thoroughfare. And, the continental breakfast, which included French Toast during my one night stay was delicious. I was surprised by the Inn's request to bus my own table. I'd never been asked to do this before an thought it unusual considering the price of my room.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Cowper Inn is a beautifully restored Craftsman style house that recreates the comfort and elegance of the period's best homes. The parlor, with several conversation areas, a fireplace, and a piano, is a warm and gracious room for visiting or relaxing. Each uniquely shaped guest room is furnished with antiques, television, and telephone. Breakfast, featuring seasonal fruit and fresh-baked breads, is served daily in the paneled dining room. Guests may enjoy sitting outside on the two wicker-decorated porches or in the garden. There is parking on the grounds and easy access to public transportation to San Francisco and San Jose. The Inn is part of the quiet residential neighborhood of Professorville. Downtown Palo Alto's restaurants, shops, and people watching are a two minute walk from the Inn. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Cowper Hotel Palo Alto