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“California Garden Spot”

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Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa
Ranked #7 of 24 Hotels in La Jolla
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Level 6 Contributor
142 reviews
69 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 217 helpful votes
“California Garden Spot”
Reviewed February 14, 2008

Fourth time here. We had suite 124 - best yet. Quiet, clean, good breakfast. Gardens fabulous as usual.
The staff is young, good looking, and laid back, but service was adequate to good. This is, after all, southernmost California.
Relax, enjoy the garden, enjoy La Jolla, walk next door to the Salk Institute and then over to the glider port and watch the surfers hike up from the beach.

  • Liked — Gardens
  • Disliked — no CD player in room
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Njal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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USA
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2008

After reviewing hotels in the La Jolla area, we found a great travelzoo deal for this hotel. It had gotten so-so reviews on service, but all reviews said how beautiful the grounds were. We decided to take the plundge and go for it. It was a special occassion (sisters/mom retreat for my mom while she is going through chemo) and had my fingers crossed that it would all work out.

Not only did it "work out"...it totally exceeded my expectations! The service was so friendly and VERY accomodating. Our room was beautiful and the view was to the central courtyard where a HUGE christmas tree was lit up and decorated the hilt. We didn't eat at the hotel, but the options looked wonderful. We did sip hot chocolate in the beautiful lobby area by the fire in plush chairs and chatted.

We also used the spa and LOVED this experience as well. We only had time for the express head/neck/back treatment but it was HEAVENLY!!! The spa facilities were just beautiful and worth every minute we spent there. I kept taking mental notes so that I could recreate the enviroment in my home in the future. Our massuse was TOP NOTCH and we spa quite a lot throughout Asia, where they are really amazing.

We loved this hotel and can't wait to go back!!

  • Liked — service, facilities, spa
  • Disliked — distance from shopping/downtown...not a far drive but not in walking distance
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank travelmom13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed January 31, 2008

My girlfriend and I stayed at the Estancia Hotel in La Jolla for the Buick Invitational. We had booked the room through their deal with TravelZoo, where we had secured a King room with a free upgrade to their Veranda Suite. Our experience went like so:

Upon driving our car through self-parking, a sign informed us that it costs $20. I find the rate outrageous considering you have to nearly hike to the front desk after parking your car a mile away. We entered the hotel and were immediately comforted by the sweet smell of cinnamon candles burning. We checked in and went to find our room. When we got there, we discovered that it had two queen beds, rather than the king we had paid for. I immediately called the front desk to let them know about the mistake. But rather than accommodating us (or even apologizing for the mistake), we were met with attitude, backtalk and overall rudeness. I asked to speak with the manager and after waiting on hold for a few minutes, another girl picked up mentioning that she was the one who had just checked us in. However, she was not the manager. Oddly enough, the woman I first spoke with was the manager, yet failed to mention this when I asked to speak with the manager. I explained the situation to the girl who had checked us in, informing her that I have the confirmation printout in front of me which states that I paid for a King bed. Again, I was met with a complete lack of respect and was told that no hotel can guarantee a specific type of room (please tell that to guests staying at the Ritz). I was then told I was threatening her when I mentioned I will advise friends, colleagues and clients not to stay here due to their lack of customer service. How that is a threat, I don’t know, but I was soon re-transferred to the manager/original woman I spoke with and once again, met with a hard time. Finally, after ten minutes of arguing, they moved us to a room with a King bed.

The next morning, we checked out and spoke with the manager on staff. We explained everything that happened the night before and she seemed very understanding. She said she would speak with the two women and call me later in the day. When she did call, her attitude had changed completely and she too accused me of threatening her staff (this after I explained what her staff considered a “threat”). She ended up siding with her staff and that was that.

The room that we ended up staying in was very nice. The bed was quite comfy and the bathroom was spacious. We ate at Mustangs and Burrows, one of their restaurants, and the food was fairly good (albeit the service was so-so). It was too bad that it was raining so much because the grounds looked very nice. That said, I would never stay here again, nor would I recommend this hotel to my friends and colleagues. I am very big on customer service and the hotel staff here just does not have respect for their guests. In the end, I’d rather stay at the Hilton than here; at least I know the staff will be more than accommodating.

  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank andlikewhoa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarasota, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
64 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2008

I recently just spent 3 nights here for a business trip and had a hard time deciding what to rate it. Here is why...
The Good:
The grounds are stunning. It has a very "Tuscan" feel to it and is extremely well kept. It smelled delicious because of all of the candles lit throughout the property. We even got to witness a wedding one afternoon in the courtyard, which was lovely.
The rooms were spacious, especially the bathrooms, and were kept pretty clean. The beds were exceptionally comfortable, I slept like a rock. The staff did an excellent job keeping up with most of the demands of our group (I think we were close to 200) and it never felt crowded. The business services/accommodations were great.
The Bad:
The rooms were a bit outdated, especially the carpeting. I'm usually not picky about this kind of thing but for $250/night, I thought the rooms needed a little work. Housekeeping is a bit lazy. I saw TONS of service workers around but my room was "cleaned" very late in the day and not very well done. Not a huge deal, but again, I would expect top notch service at these rates.
The front desk staff was friendly but was very unhelpful when asked about local activities. My coworker and I wanted to do some local boutique shopping and they sent us to the mall, stating that was all that was around. We found out on the last night that downtown La Jolla had exactly what we described. The staff should be a little more knowledgeable about the area.
The Ugly:
The food was flat out gross. We had several meals included with our business meetings and I did not find anything good. Actually, one of the buffet lunches made several of us sick. They also ran out of several things in the dinner buffets that we had, before everyone ate. The continental breakfast before our meetings was a joke: stale muffins, apples and bananas and yogurt. We were lucky to get a cup of coffee, they ran out often and took quite a while to replace it (like an hour or so).
We ate at Adobe Restaurant one night and it was very disappointing.The best meal I had was a waffle for my last morning roomservice...for $15! Not to beat a dead horse, but for the cost of things, the food should be good!

All in all, Estancia was beautiful and relaxing but lacks in some very important areas. I won't be staying there again if I return to La Jolla.

  • Liked — The grounds, the beds, the ambiance.
  • Disliked — The food.
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank NoleGirl0923
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County, California
1 review
Reviewed January 21, 2008

My husband planned a weekend getaway to Estancia. The resort is beautiful, was my first impression. We were pleased with the front desk person that was helping us with our check in. We were a couple of hours early before our reservation so the front desk person directed us to the Adobe Restaurant. We decided to eat in the Bodega Wine Bar because the football playoffs was on television and we wanted a light and casual meal. Our server was on top of things and ourn light lunch was good. After lunch we checked in our room. The bellperson had a difficult time tracking our travel tote bag so it took them a while to deliver it to our room. Our room was clean, average size and overlooking a garden courtyard but the beds were a bit to firm for us.

We walked around the property and unfortuantely we didn't take advantage of the Spa because of our limited time. Estancia has beautiful landscaping, and the air was filled with aromas of cinnamon because of the candles that were lit throughout the resort.

We stopped in again at the Bodega Wine Bar to have a glass of wine and a few appetizers before we had our main dinner at Mustangs and Burros. We ordered foire gras, lobster bisque and Manchego cheese with crackers. It was excellent!! I was pleasantly surprised. The only thing that bothered me was one of the restaurant staff that was screaming, gesturing and jumping while watching the football game for 2 and half hours straight. I felt I was in a sports bar. I also felt sorry for the bartender who was working hard.

We then moved on to Mustangs and Burros. It was a chilly but beautiful night so we decided to dine outdoors next to the fireplace. We had the whole patio to ourselves. We ordered the spinach salad, crab mac n' cheese, and pork shank....once again, our meal was great!!!

Bottom line----Estancia is a beautiful property with excellent dining but the service needs help. The front desk person and our morning server showed us hospitalty. Although with the rest of the staff, I cannot say much. Service is friendly and pleasant, but they are slow, not that attentive and some don't pose professionalism. (i.e. watching television and uniforms that are worn sloppy).

  • Liked — food
  • Disliked — service
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank OCchef
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Palo Alto
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 13, 2008

We spent 5 nights at La Estancia between christmas and New Year 2007/2008 with grandparents, parents and two children. Our overall experience was pleasant and I would recommend the hotel for those who do not need or want to be in the middle of the action. This is a quiet and very beautifully landscaped resort about 10 minutes by car from downtown La Jolla.
The restaurants are good to very good. We were served delicious food at the Adobe restaurant as well as at their outdoor bar/pub place which is especially enchanting at night beside the fireplace or under one of the heater lamps.
The pool and jacuzzi area are nice (albeit the heater failed so it was too cold to swim for a couple of days...), the fitness room is adequate, the spa was nice, though they did not light the female outdoor jacuzzi at night which I thought to be hazardous and at the end of the day the showers were not 100% clean. I had a facial which was very relaxing, albeit not outstanding, but this applies to most hotel spas as they do not really genuinely "care" about passing guests.
Room service was prompt and very friendly.
The rooms are quiet at night and seem to be well insulated. We fell asleep nicely to the sound of crickets from the "ambiance" radio.
If I have to critique the place then it would only be for an occasional lack of details: since it was so cold during our stay the heaters in the restaurants blew at full speed and at the window side it is VERY drafty, the chairs in the restaurant look great but get uncomfortable in the back after a while, the heater in the room is not user-friendly to turn on, and neither is the terrace door lock in the "odd" rooms (lift instead of pressing down), for both we had to ask for a technician to explain it and he told us this was a common request.
If you have a walking disability, be forewarned: the property is very vast and you need to walk some distances to get to rooms, restaurants, leisure areas.

  • Liked — Landscaping, grounds
  • Stayed December 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Hamzi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed December 27, 2007

We just got back from a one-night stay at the Estancia. The property looked really quaint from the photos on their website, so I was excited to see what it was like.

Overall, the experience was okay. The grounds are the best part...it's a nice, quiet walk through the different courtyards and buildings. It seemed fairly vacant, as there were not many guests around the property, and there was only one table of patrons sitting down at the restaurant Adobe at 7pm.

There's much that could be improved upon. We had a basic king room, without a balcony. The bedroom and bathroom are a nice size and are nicely equipped with amenities, but it just didn't seem like it was thoroughly cleaned and serviced. I found part of a foil coffee-ground wrapper on the floor next to the dresser that holds the coffee machine. There was a used shower cap in the shower. There were some blond hairs on the bedspread (and I'm a brunette!) Less than 1/2 a roll of toliet paper remained in the bathroom.

Also the staff seemed aloof and just not helpful and friendly, from the valets to the front desk to the housekeeper. I was kinda shocked at the $9/night "hospitality fee" that is automatically charged, which includes gratuities. If it were voluntary, I would not pay that gratuity for this level of service.

Oh, and they charge $20/day for self-parking, which seems a litle steep as well.

It's just my impression that the hotel is aspiring to be more of a *resort* than the mid-level hotel that it's nightly rate (our room was $149) makes it...but its level of service doesn't live up to its aspirations.

  • Liked — the grounds
  • Disliked — service
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lruth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa

Property: Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa
Address: 9700 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, San Diego, CA 92037-1102
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego > La Jolla
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in La Jolla
#2 Spa Hotel in La Jolla
#4 Business Hotel in La Jolla
#4 Luxury Hotel in La Jolla
#5 Romantic Hotel in La Jolla
#6 Family Hotel in La Jolla
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 210
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A California-coastal rancho setting on 10 acres conveniently located between the two quaint seaside villages of La Jolla and Del Mar and adjacent to world-class Torrey Pines Golf Course, Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa offers a range of upscale accommodations from charming rancho style deluxe rooms to expansive suites with world-class facilities and exceptional service. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Estancia La Jolla Hotel And Spa
Estancia La Jolla Hotel La Jolla

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