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“Old California” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cardinal Hotel

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Cardinal Hotel
2.0 of 5 Hotel   |   235 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 26 Hotels in Palo Alto
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Melbourne
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Old California”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2013

Stayed a couple of nights at this old-style hotel in downtown Palo Alto. Very much enjoyed it. It is a mini-version of what you could call the "Barton Fink" style Californian hotel built, I am guessing, in the twenties or thirties. No horror stories here though, the management were just great (including shipping me the coat I had left behind) and the room quiet and roomy.

Stayed November 2013, traveled on business
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143 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    55
    14
    8
    7
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (40)
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English first
Georgetown, Maine
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2013

Stayed here three nights while attending a reunion. The room was very clean, quiet, newly painted and furnished. I got a cheap room without an attached bath or toilet (there was a sink). Served my purposes perfectly and saved a good bit of money. More expensive rooms have attached bathroom that are still cheaper than area hotels. The location is perfect for exploring PA; parking wasn't a problem; friendly staff. The lobby looks like I remember it 30 years ago, but not still nicely furnished and warm. Great location to find PA restaurants.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
Los Angeles, California
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2013

This was my first time staying at the Cardinal Hotel, as I was in town for a big football game. The Cardinal Hotel is located right in the middle of downtown Palo Alto. Restaurants, shops, and bars are all within walking distance. Stanford stadium is also a short 15 minute walk from the hotel. If you stay here, I recommend requesting a room with a private bath. Since this hotel is European style, I booked a room with a shared bath (which is located down the hall) and it was a little inconvenient. Although the shared bathrooms were clean, I'd prefer my own in-room bathroom on my next visit.

Room Tip: Choose a room with its own private bathroom even if it costs extra.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colorado
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2013

The "European" style room, which means a shared bathroom located in the hallway, allows you to stay in a very nice hotel in the heart of the shopping and dining area on University Ave. for a bargain price. The hotel has a great deal of character, the rooms are modern, clean, and comfortable, and the property is easily accessed via Caltrain.

There are two showers per floor, and two toilet rooms, all of which were very clean. Although one shower was a little dated in appearance, the other was nicely modernized. Both had excellent water pressure and hot water. Each room has a sink for added convenience.

If you are overly sensitive to noise, be aware that you can sometimes hear neighboring TVs through the wall, and that the noise from the large bar across the road can be heard on loud nights, even with the windows shut. Also, there is no parking associated with the hotel, leaving you to hunt for spots in the adjacent neighborhood.

Room Tip: For less noise, ask for a room not facing Ramona St.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
    • 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Houston, TX
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

First, I have to say I love this place because I accidentally booked the wrong date (off by one month) which they quickly rectified after I called them. I was supposed to stay 10/1 but accidentally booked for 9/1 (which was the next day from the day I was booking). I called at 5am local time (which was much later where I was) and they were able to quickly change it without any fee or penalty.

The hotel is in a classic old style and in a way reminded me of the hotel in the shining on a smaller scale (this is not a bad thing, I loved that movie!). I had a European style room with shared bathroom which was a first for me but the bathroom was very clean! The room was small but probably average for the area of Palo Alto. The bed was brand new with very clean and new high quality white down comforter. The room had a sink in it which I appreciated. I had a very sophisticated set up for tech connections to the tv (usb, firewire, etc, hdmi). The hotel uses old school metal keys which I found quaint.

The hotel had free coffee and tea 24 hours in the lobby - it was a high quality blend from a local coffee maker. The hotel was in a GREAT location. I didn't drive so can't comment on parking.

Overall, would definitely stay again, the hallways and public areas are older and classic but the room has all modern amenities which were higher quality than any other place in this price range.

  • Stayed October 2013, 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
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mesa az
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2013 via mobile

Good value, great location, nice large room and very clean and comfortable. Huge and charming lobby with fireplace! Our group used the library to pre-party before football game. Parking can be a bit difficult.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Charleston
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2013 via mobile

The Cardinal Hotel is a historic building very close to Stanford University and perfect for our college visit. The lobby was very warm and welcoming. Great to read the available papers or magazines with a cup of tea or coffee. Felt like Gramma's parlor from way back when. The rooms were very clean and spacious. Our particular room had a sink but no shower or toilet. We used a shared one down the hall. Interesting, took a time or two to get used to the idea but it put me back to my college days so it made it fun. Not all rooms have this configuration. Walking distance to Palo Alto's shopping strip and awesome eateries! We would stay here again.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Cardinal Hotel

Address: 235 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301
Location: United States > California > Palo Alto
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Suites
Hotel Style:
#8 Business Hotel in Palo Alto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2 star — Cardinal Hotel 2*
Number of rooms: 59
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience Old World charm in vibrant downtown Palo Alto. Built in 1924, the Cardinal was Palo Alto’s premiere Hotel. Today the ambiance remains; the gracious lobby still provides a delightful glimpse of Old Palo Alto. Enjoy the hotel’s warm atmosphere and proximity to world class dining, shopping and Stanford University. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cardinal Hotel Palo Alto

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