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“Down Hill Fast” 1 of 5 stars
Review of La Cantera Hill Country Resort

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La Cantera Hill Country Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   16641 La Cantera Parkway, San Antonio, TX 78256 (Northwest Side)   |  
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Ranked #51 of 352 Hotels in San Antonio
Certificate of Excellence 2014
houston
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Down Hill Fast”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2008

We have frequented the La Cantera since the summer of 2006. We truly fell in love with the facility when we stayed there the first few times. We loves it so much we have stayed there four to five times a year since we first found the resort. Our children love the pool and that seems to be the only thing that has NOT changed. The service has gone down hill. For example the towels (of all things) used to be plush and soft, but more recently the towels seem to have come from the sale rack at Walmart. If you are paying that much money for a room you really expect so much more. We let that slide because the service was still wonderful, but that too has fallen south. The food has gotten terrible while prices have continued to rise. We have given them chance after chance thinking it was a fluck. After our last stay in March 2008, I am sad to say we will not be returning and will be finding a new facility to stay at while visiting frim the Houston area. We had PLASTIC express hotel cups in our room instead of real glass on our visit in March 2008. It was like paying for first class to get coach ammenities. My hope is that the Gaylord Group will puchase the La Cantera and put it back on the right track.

My advise to anybody booking to The Westin La Cantera is that you will find somewhere else to stay.

Stayed March 2008
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1,286 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (255)
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English first
Olympia, WA
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2008

We stayed at the La Cantera for 4 nights while my wife attended a conference.

The Good: The hotel is impressive, the grounds are pretty, and it's a little bit out of the way, so it's relatively quiet. We ended up in one of the "casitas", which are separate from the hotel proper and are even quieter. In my opinion, a casita is the only way to go (except for, see The Bad). They are essentially one-story condos, minus the kitchen. Each has a separate living room complete with TV, gas fireplace, and wet bar. Each also has a back patio with a picnic table and 2 chaise lounges. The casita complex also has its own pool and spa. Because the casitas are separate from the hotel (about 100 yards) you're given a golf cart to drive back and forth (which is frankly overkill - the walk is easy and quite nice). We always had plenty of shampoo, etc. on hand and housekeeping did a generally good job of cleaning up after us. Our bed was also quite comfortable.

With a few exceptions, hotel staff was friendly, pleasant, and helpful.

We ate breakfast a Brannon's - the casual restaurant - a couple of times and found the food "hotel average". One high note was eggs Benedict prepared to order at the buffet.

The one dinner we ate at the hotel was a conference dinner catered by Francesca's (the hotel's swanky eatery). It was well above average - especially the clear tomato gazpacho.

There's also a Starbuck's adjacent to the hotel lobby that serves decent baked goods and better than expected coffee.

The weather was unusually cool, so we didn't have the opportunity to try the pools. But, as with the rest of the grounds, they looked nice and were well-maintained.

We're not golfers, so can't speak to that aspect.

The Bad: The first room we were given was in the hotel proper and as soon as our heads hit our pillows a mechanical something somewhere kicked in. Every twenty seconds or so, whoooosh, clunk, whoooooosh, clunk, right over our heads. Called down and asked for a new room. The clerk responded with an honest to gosh whine, "Oh, man!", followed by a long drawn out sigh of frustration. She came back and very unhappily announced, "I'm going to have to put you in the casitas" , as though we'd asked her to hand us her next paycheck. She told us to get our things together and someone would be up "In a few mniutes" to take us to our casita. Twenty minutes later my wife called down to ask where they were and was told, "Oh no, you have to come down here." Several other people we talked to also changed rooms for one reason or another and had similar experiences with front desk personnel.

As I said, the casitas are nice. But not so nice when you walk back to yours at 11 o'clock after a long day and your card key doesn't work. Then it's either a hike or golf cart ride back to the main building to get a new key. This happened to us 3 times in 4 days. And each time we were given the lame excuse that WE were probably at fault for "keeping the card key by your cell-phone - or something." My guess, though, is that improperly trained housekeepers were to blame. We heard from at least 2 other conference attendees whose keys mysteriously quit working as well. We were never asked for identification of any kind when demanding a new room key (even at 11:00 at night), although we rarely saw the same faces behind the front desk. I assume anyone reasonably well-dressed could walk up and get a room key if they wanted one.

There was no pen or paper in our room. Not a big deal, but c'mon, this is a Westin. I wanted to leave a note for housekeeping to leave the ironing board out and couldn't. So, I kept taking it out, they kept putting it away... It was one of those little things that just makes you think, why?

We didn't get our golf cart key until I went up and specifically asked for it the second afternoon. As with the new room keys, I wasn't asked for any ID - the clerk just handed me a key. I also wasn't given any instruction on using the golf cart or any direction on how or when or where I was or wasn't supposed to drive it.

We were told we'd get the newspaper every morning. We got it once.

Finally, we didn't experience this ourselves, but one other conference-goer was initially given a dirty room - as in dirty sheets, dirty clothes on the floor of the closet, and a used toothbrush left on the bathroom sink. She was then shuttled to what sounded to me more like a store room than a hotel room -no toiletries or anything like that - before finally gettting a decent room on the third try.

The hotel is in the process of changing hands from Westin to Gaylord's. Perhaps everyone is pre-occupied worrying about their jobs. Maybe some know they're on their way out and don't give a rip. For whatever reason, there were way too many service disconnects to get my recommendation. I say wait until the sale is complete and see what Gaylord's does with it.

  • Liked — It's a nice looking place all the way around.
  • Disliked — Staff don't have their collective act together.
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2008

I was at the resort for 3 days and 2 nights for a seminar. Check in and check out take FOREVER. Likewise with retrieving your bags from the bell cap and your car from the valet. Remember that if you have a plane to catch. I ate at their upscale restaurant, Francesco's as well as the grill downstairs. Both places were overpriced - especially Francesco's. Service was great - food was mediocre. All hat, no cattle. If you are not in to golf, go to another resort. La Cantera is pretty and the views are nice. But that's it. They don't have a clue as to how to make a guest feel as though he's getting what he's paying for.

  • Liked — The room
  • Disliked — check in/check out; valet
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2008

I have always rated Westin Hotels highly, but I must say that the Westin La Cantera fell below my expectations. I was here for five nights on business.

My greeting at the resort was less than polite from the young lady at the reception desk. She managed to yell across the foyer "Yes" and without any smile or welcome, processed my registration.

When I made it to my room, I found that there were no toiletries, so called down to have some brought up, which was managed very well.

Each day, I found that the House Keeping team forgot something in my room. The standard of bed making is atrocious and required me to straighten sheets etc each evening.

There are a number of restaurants in the resort and I had to use Bannans a few times. I did not manage to get a clean glass in any of the visits to this restaurant. Cutlery was disgraceful and on two occassions I had to ask for clean cutlery.

Francesca's restaurant was superb as was the grill restaurant.

I can say that I have been quite loyal to Westin for both private and business use in the past, but after this experience, I question my loyalty.

Stayed February 2008
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Beaumont, Texas
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2008

We recently stayed 2 nights at the La Canterra resort, our second visit.

Overall, it's a great place for people with small children. The pools have toys provided. Weather was only warm enough to use the pools on one day. The other day we just explored the grounds, which our small children also enjoyed.

The food is excellent . We attended a wine dinner that, by chance, was going on during our stay. It was excellent but perhaps not quite as good as top-flight "foodie" destinations. The breakfast buffet was good. We were lucky enough not to have the food poisoning mentioned by other reviewers.

We feel the La Canterra is an outstanding hotel in the area due to the friendliness of the staff, the beautiful grounds and overall experience and will definitely go again. It is a good place to go with or without kids. There are areas which are separate for adults or for adults with kids. For example, instead of steps, the pool had a ramp which worked great for our little guy. For older kids, there was a water slide and water volleyball. The water runs downhill to an adult pool with a hot tub. We haven't seen the pool at the Hyatt hill country resort yet, I should add.

The rooms were good and were serviced appropriately, although other reviewers apparently have had bad experiences with the housekeeping.

  • Liked — beautiful views of city
  • Disliked — 10 miles from downtown
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Texas
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
144 helpful votes 144 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2008

Stayed here for a few days for new years. Had to ask to move rooms as they put us in the room over the lobby drop off. Rooms were fairly clean but worn. Moved to another room - it was better than the first. Nothing special about the rooms or hotel.

Hotel does not validate the price they are asking for rooms. Plenty of other hotels in the area for better value. I will not go back again.

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — The crazy price charged for the room.
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Austin
1 review
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2008

I had some frequent-stayer points and decided to cash a chunk of them in to treat my family to a night at the La Cantera and a day at Sea World. Perhaps because we were redeeming points for our room, we were given a bottom-of-the-barrel first-floor room with no view -- despite the fact that the hotel seemed nearly empty. Guess I'll be more demanding next time, but why should I have to be?

We ate at the main restaurant and had a terrible experience. The food (and we're talking burgers, hotdogs, and a salad) took 45 minutes -- which is forever when you've got kids at the table. My son took one bite of his burger and quit eating it -- which is VERY unlike him. He said it tasted funny. My husband took a bite and immediately spit it out. The meat was rancid. We were appalled. I took my still-hungry kids back to the room while my husband talked to the manager. Of course, the meal was comped -- but spoiled meat, for goodness sakes? At around 9:30, when we were crawling into bed, they delivered a tray of milk and cookies to our room. A nice gesture, but... giving sugary cookies to kids at bedtime? And we would have saved the milk for breakfast, but there was no fridge in our room. It got to be laughable.

The staff was very nice. We got a great tour of the property from a long time employee. The kids really enjoyed that ride in the golf cart. The pool was okay, but there were a lot of leaves floating in it; it just seemed like we were there on an off day or something.

Looking at the normal rates that La Cantera charges, I wouldn't dream of paying that much to stay here.

  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about La Cantera Hill Country Resort

Address: 16641 La Cantera Parkway, San Antonio, TX 78256
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Texas > San Antonio > Northwest Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in San Antonio
#7 Spa Hotel in San Antonio
#13 Luxury Hotel in San Antonio
#29 Romantic Hotel in San Antonio
#35 Business Hotel in San Antonio
#45 Family Hotel in San Antonio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — La Cantera Hill Country Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 498
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
La Cantera Hill Country Resort is a distinctive retreat for business and leisure travelers alike atop one of the highest points in all of San Antonio. We're the ultimate blend of recreation and luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Westin La Cantera Hotel San Antonio
Westin Cantera Hotel
La Cantera San Antonio
Westin La Cantera Resort
Westin San Antonio
San Antonio Westin
The Westin La Cantera Resort San Antonio

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