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“Just Okay”

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Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay
Ranked #16 of 55 Hotels in Monterey
GreenLeadersGold level
California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Just Okay”
Reviewed August 3, 2008

We stayed here for our 5th wedding anniversary. We had expectations of a nice luxury hotel and spa. We found that the accomodations were average and the spa was disappointing. The spa was being renovated, but I was not informed that my treatment was not going to include the aromatherapy bath and water massage as expected. At checkout I inquired about it and they only gave me 10% off of my treatment. My whole purpose for booking the treatment was for the bath. I was very disappointed.

Our room was very noisy, I heard everything that was going on outside, I don't feel like we had a moment rest. Between the people outside and the seagulls it made for a very noisy vacation. They should have spent the extra money and purchased sound proof windows. The wall are really thin as well. When you pay luxury prices, you expect luxury accomodations. If I want to hear the noise outside, I could have open ed the sliding door that led to my balcony. With thin windows, they left you no option but to hear the noise outside. The funny thing is that they charge more for rooms where you can hear the sea life.....so if you choose that option, change your reservation. You can hear the sea life from any room.

The shower switches from hot to cold while bathing. You have to wait a while before the hot water kicks back in. Also beware, you can barely see in the bathrooms, the lighting is very poor.

The staff was very friendly and accommodating, but it was definitely not worth the over $300 a night price.

  • Liked — Clean
  • Disliked — Noise
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank tripreview8203
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
San Ramon, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 2, 2008

I've had better service at the Days Inn off I-94 in Sturtevant, WI.

The location is great. Close enough to Cannery Row, great walking or jogging just outside your door, nice down town area. Unfortunately, that's about all I can say that is good about this place.

The desk staff was rude and actually mocked me and my family (thinking we were out of earshot).

We could not get to sleep because of the proximity of our room (one of many I'm sure) that was near their bar Peter B's. When we called the front desk to complain they first tried to play dumb ("party? what party?"), then when I persisted they immediately asked if I wanted a new room. This really upset me because this is clearly a known issue. We declined due to having a baby, but wanted to move the next day.

When we went to the desk to move, they were quite rude. We chalked it up to a bad day, they here it from all the guests, and moved on.

The next day, we went to the desk and asked if we could possibly have more of their awesome cookies they give out upon check in. Without a response or smile, the person behind the desk handed me two cookies. As we waited in the lobby, the two staff behind the counter mocked us (thinking we could not hear them), mimicking my request and sarcastically asking if we "wanted some milk" as well.

Needless to say, that was all I needed to spur me to write this and suggest to you that you should not stay there.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Noise (people, not gulls)
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank semi-pro-traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southern California
Level Contributor
84 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2008

Attended a conference at this hotel. Very expensive even w/ a conference rate. Property is nice, front desk helpful, rooms nice, some ammenities like a free sea lion toy and free bottled watter - but nothing special.
We had the misfortune of being placed next to the street (by a tunnel where everyone going thru it feels the need to honk their horn during the day) and overlooking the 'under renovation' pool (construction noise started at 7am) and the parking structure - oh yes & next to the fitness room where the treadmill or something was heard thumping as early as 7am. If you intend to sleep during the day, definitely let them know you need a quiet spot. We were so tired at the end of the day that the too soft bed and any noise were not a big issue.
The Location is everything - right by the wharf, convenient to walk around the main town area with lots of great restaurants, live & movie theatres. On site lounge & restaurants were good.

  • Liked — Convenient location
  • Disliked — noise, price
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank OH2CA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County, CA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 8, 2008

I had high expectations of this hotel, given the price they charge as well as the way they present the hotel on their website. It is listed as a 3.5 to a 4 start hotel, but I was very disappointed once we arrived. Over all the hotel is nice, but it advertises itself as a luxury hotel which it is not. The rooms were decent, but nothing special and were somewhat out dated. I would say they were the equivalent of a holiday inn, maybe one step above.

One thing I was especially disappointed in was their "spa." I understand that the pool and spa are under renovation, but I think they should compensate spa guests in some way for the inconvenience. We booked a couples massage and were lead to a standard hotel room for our massages! If they are going to conduct all spa services in the hotel rooms themselves they should give some sort of a discount because we did not receive a true spa service. All they really did was remove the beds, add a few massage tables and plants, and called it a massage room. The room was brightly lit and we could hear all of the commotion outside during the massage. They also did not inform us that their spa was under renovation and that all spa services would be conducted in poorly converted standard rooms. If we had known this ahead of time we would have booked our massages elsewhere.

Overall, it is an OK hotel, but I believe they charge a 4 start price for more of a 3 star service. If you stay here and plan on booking spa services during your stay, ask them if their spa is still under construction. If so, I would recommend booking your spa services elsewhere or you will be very disappointed.

  • Liked — The location - Very close to the wharf, cannery row and the aquarium
  • Disliked — The price and the spa - not up to par!
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank cjwalker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
1 review
Reviewed June 17, 2008

Portola Hotel & Spa was a great place for my boyfriend and I to end our vacation. The area was convenient and beautiful. The hotel itself was very big, the rooms were cute and modern and the staff was incedibly kind and accommodating. During our stay, it was my boyfriends birthday and I wanted to do something Romanic for him. I found this place called Romantic Room Design and they put together a romantic scene with rose pedals, candles, balloons a birthday banner, and they even played love songs from our I-Pod to set the mood. It was a great surprise for him and they did a great job! I reccommend this place if you are looking for a great gift, room design or an intimate setting, they also can set up a bonfire for you on the beach close to the hotel. Portola Hotel and Romantic Room Design work well together to make your experience & stay one to remember!

Stayed June 2008
Helpful?
Thank 4everyours7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Akron, Ohio
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed June 8, 2008

Rooms were comfortable and nicely decorated. Hotel is in walking distance to all attractions. Staff was friendly and helpful. Parking was a bit overpriced, but otherwise, nice hotel.

Stayed April 2007
Helpful?
Thank cabes2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Level Contributor
174 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed June 3, 2008

I booked a non-holiday room to celebrate a birthday. Shortly before our stay, I called to upgrade the room only to be told that my reservation had been canceled, leaving me scrambllng to find other accommodations. I called the hotel GM who tracked down the name of the person who canceled -- nobody I knew, and I was the only one outside the hotel who knew of the booking. He had no explanation. Offered apologies. Is there a ghost in the machine? I've stayed here numerous times and, while it's nowhere near a great hotel, it's decent enough and well located. But never again.

Stayed May 2008
Helpful?
1 Thank Coastguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay

Property: Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay
Address: 2 Portola Plaza, Monterey, CA 93940-2419
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Monterey County > Monterey
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Monterey
#3 Luxury Hotel in Monterey
#4 Business Hotel in Monterey
#4 Spa Hotel in Monterey
#8 Family Hotel in Monterey
#9 Romantic Hotel in Monterey
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Portola Hotel & Spa at Monterey Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 379
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Portola Hotel & Spa reflects the captivating spirit of a rich, historical setting surrounded by everything that the Monterey Peninsula has to offer. Your stay at the Portola Hotel begins with warm homemade chocolate chip cookies, provided at check-in. As the only Silver LEED Certified hotel on the central coast of California, the hotel boasts 379 guestrooms and suites, an award winning full service day spa, three on-site restaurants including a craft brewery and more! Portola Hotel & Spa is one of California's premier family-friendly destinations offering easy access to Monterey's favorite attractions. The hotel is also pet friendly. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Portola Hotel And Spa At Monterey Bay
Portola Hotel Monterey Bay

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