After researching several hotels in the La Jolla area and making a few phone calls, I decided to stay at the Empress Hotel with my wife and 2 1/2 year old daughter. I spoke to a very sweet gal on the phone who could not have been nicer or more accommodating, answering all of my questions with the utmost enthusiasm. When I told her I was coming down from L.A. to see my Eagles play the Chargers, she responded by asking if that was some sort of sporting event. Suffice it to say by the end of our conversation, I converted another football fan. :)
This is a cute boutique hotel located only a short walk from downtown shopping, galleries, & restaurants. Although I had to track down the valet upon arrival, once found he was very helpful in helping with our luggage and showing us to our room. I was surprised to learn at check in that we had been upgraded to a suite...and the only piano suite to boot. I hadn't played in years but this was a nice bonus and my daughter got a kick out playing for the first time. The 2 room suite located on the 2nd floor was quite spacious with a nice flat screen tv in the living room and bedroom. The suite also had a wet bar, fridge, jacuzzi tub (we didn't use) and plenty of closet space. The king size bed was comfortable with soft sheets and blanket/comforter.
The only downsides to the room is the small shower could use an upgrade. A new shower head & tiles would do the trick. I also don't understand why hotels in general can't figure out how to prevent their guest room doors from slamming shut as most visitors are not considerate enough to quietly close their doors. It makes it quite difficult for a light sleeper like myself to have any chance of sleeping in. I understand the theory of not wanting people to accidentally leave their doors open and welcome uninvited intruders, but if they can manage to close their own doors at home, then I don't see the problem of doing it when traveling. I'll get off my high horse now. :)
The restaurant at the hotel (Manhattan's) was a nice back east style Italian eatery. The food was quite good (my wife went as far as saying the best fettucine Alfredo she's ever had.) While the beverage server was very attentive and our elderly waiter was nice enough, we couldn't seem to find him most of the night. I had just hoped it wasn't anything he ate. :) It took us almost an hour to track him down just to pay our bill. Not sure where he was hiding but I wasn't going to let that spoil an otherwise lovely evening.
All in all, I would say good location, nice hotel, very good customer service, & a good value. Would we stay there again...sure!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Experience California comfort at our charming boutique hotel in the scenic village of La Jolla, California. Situated just steps from the San Diego Area's famous sandy beaches and downtown La Jolla, while also being only minutes from popular attractions like SeaWorld and Torrey Pines golf course, our hotel is the perfect location to embark on an unforgettable vacation or business trip. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Empress Hotel La Jolla
- Empress La Jolla