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“It's a Westin, and it's in Palo Alto”

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The Westin Palo Alto
Ranked #9 of 27 Hotels in Palo Alto
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 22, 2008

The Westin Palo Alto is certainly every bit a Westin...heavenly bed, rosemary and mint, Starbucks, lots of marble, etc...however, this one sees its share of international guests and I found out they don't all get the part about the smoking ban...nor did the front desk staff think it was much of an issue when a level of cigarette smoke I hadn't experienced since, oh, Moscow came through the adjoining door...but so what, since one can always stick wet towels under the door. The staff did their best to compensate in the AM with a free breakfast. The location near Stanford is fine, staff is fine...not a standout but it's a Westin.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled on business
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Thank thelivingjuj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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584 - 590 of 659 reviews

Reviewed June 19, 2008

A dependably good hotel, close to Stanford University, downtown Palo Alto, and the Stanford shopping center (Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus . . .) If you like walking, all of them are reasonably close.

My room overlooked a quiet courtyard, but one side of the hotel looks out over a very ugly derelict building. Try not to get those rooms.

The bed, of course, is great. Bathrooms are fairly large. There's a separate tub, but it's shallow, and unless you're a child it's not great for a relaxing soak. The hotel brochure makes a big deal about the dual showerhead, but I couldn't get it to work. Speaking of things that didn't work, there's an "express service" button on the phone, which I pressed to request a pair of slippers. But it was disconnected.

The hotel has three computer terminals for checking e-mail, but two of them weren't connecting to the Internet for some reason. How ironic that in Silicon Valley I had trouble checking e-mail!

I had breakfast at the hotel restaurant, Soleil, all three mornings. Nice service, good food. It gets busy sometimes, so it's probably best to make a reservation.

My stay coincided with Stanford's graduation, so my bill was high. I think the hotel probably has better rates during quieter periods.

Despite the glitches, I would stay here again because of its location and dependably comfortable bed and rooms.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled solo
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Thank SkyeTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2008

This is a very nice hotel: clean, and typically Westin. It was mostly quiet, with discounted rates, when I stayed over Memorial Day weekend 2008.

Housekeeping was noisy with cleaning the neighboring room the first morning of my stay. Otherwise, service was truly excellent, all around, including at the hotel's restaurant, Soleil (buffet breakfast for $20). You can ask for an upgrade to a suite at a special rate - I get the feeling that the front desk staff is empowered to offer deals, and to make your stay wonderful.

The beds are wonderful and heavenly. Water pressure is acceptable.

Parking garage entry/exit is definitely very tight. Maneuver carefully.

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled with friends
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Thank BusterCT1K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 29, 2008

The Westin Palo Alto is a high-end hotel that looks pretty and has a good location, but is overrated for the price and the service.

(1) Location

The hotel is located directly on El Camino Real (the main street that runs through many cities in this part of the Bay Area) and is minutes from the Stanford campus. In other words, the location is fantastic. It's close to the freeway and easily accessible in about 20 minutes from San Francisco's airport.

(2) Check-In / Check-Out

Check-in and check-out were mostly smooth and the staff were generally friendly and helpful. Unfortunately, they were understaffed at night.

I checked in around 11:00 pm, and was offered porter service for all my luggage, but was told that nobody would be available for at least 15 minutes. After 10 hours of travel and jet lag, I just wanted to go to bed without waiting, so I carried my own luggage to my room -- only to find out that the check-in desk attendant had given me the wrong key. Since I didn't want to carry my luggage all the way back to reception (and it was a long, winding walk), I had to wait 15 minutes for somebody to come to my room with the new key.

Everybody was perfectly friendly throughout, but one would wish they were a little more attuned to the needs of exhausted business travelers.

(3) Price

I think that my company's travel agent booked the room for about $380/night. I suspect that it's possible to get better prices if you're traveling for leisure.

(4) Room

The bed and mattress were very good and I slept well. My room had a bed, a night stand, a desk, a TV, and a refreshment bar. It was not a business suite and would not have been appropriate for meetings of even 3 people.

I thought that the room was small for the value (not a big deal since I was only at the hotel to sleep). The hotel's literature about the room brags about it's amazing dual-headed shower. I was really unimpressed by this -- very little water pressure, and the second head was almost useless. The bathroom was stocked with the usual shampoo, soap, etc. but certainly wasn't up to "luxury" standards.

(5) Amenities

I think that Internet in the room was $10/day. There is valet service available.

Concierge service was lacking. I asked whether they could arrange for pickup or delivery of a special dietary request from a nearby store and was told that this wasn't a service that they provided, even though I was willing to pay for the service. I found this surprising, because if you're a hotel trying to attract business travelers for $380/night (and there were many business travelers there), I figure that they would provide services intended to make life easier.

(6) Conclusion

It's a nice hotel, but for the price, I wanted more. After a long day of travel, I really would have liked a shower with full pressure. Also, the Four Seasons Palo Alto had better overall service and happily provided food for special dietary requests that the Westin was unable to do, and provided a large business suite for just a little more money than the Westin. On the other hand, the Westin has a much better location if you want to be on the main strip and near Stanford. The next time I go out to Palo Alto on business, I'll have to make a choice on quality v. location.

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled on business
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Thank NooYawkuh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2008

I was in town doing work at Stanford, and the Westin was a great place to stay. It is walking distance to Stanford, but if you are not used to walking, you may be in trouble--it's 30 mins walking one way. But it's along Palm Drive, a lovely road that leads directly to campus. The hotel is also around the corner from CalTrain and easy to get to the main drag as well.

The hotel was very comfortable and the photos I took with my old digital camera don't do the room justice. The room looks dreary in the pics but it was in fact a cheerful and well done space. I had a corner room. Would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled on business
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Thank brooklynprof
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 23, 2008

this is a very nice, fancy westin near stanford. the workout room is the usual westin workout, which is nice, and the rooms are large, quiet and clean. the staff is very helpful and friendly. if you can get a good rate here, i highly recommend it.

Stayed: April 2008
Thank RobotX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 16, 2008

I've had mixed results at Westins - some are great, some fall short. This is one of the great ones. At check-in, as we had two young kids with us, they gave us a corner ground-floor room that opened onto a courtyard. Being able to have the door open, listen to the fountains and have the kids run around outside was great. It was also nice to order room service (excellent food and not very overpriced, by the way) and eat it in the courtyard. The room was very nice - no signs of wear and tear at all.

The staff is excellent. They were also quick to loan me a BlackBerry charger when I forgot mine. We used the front desk staff several times, both in person and via phone, and they were always quick, friendly and helpful. There were always apples for the taking at the front desk as well.

The hotel is well located - a 5-minute walk to the CalTrain station and a 15-minute walk to the Stanford Shopping Center. We took a train into SF for a day and it couldn't have been easier.

Only minor complaints: the lights in the room are either super-bright or off. For a diaper change in the middle of the night, a dimmer in the bathroom would be nice. Turning on the bathroom light at 3am was like walking into the sun. Also, the bathtub water pressure isn't adjustable. If you want warm water, you need to have full flow - not ideal for giving a toddler a bath, or letting the water run just a little for bath play-time.

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Thank TravelBabbo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Westin Palo Alto

Address: 675 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94301-2301
Location: United States > California > Palo Alto
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Business Hotel in Palo Alto
#4 Romantic Hotel in Palo Alto
#4 Luxury Hotel in Palo Alto
#7 Family Hotel in Palo Alto
Price Range: $255 - $793 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Westin Palo Alto 4*
Number of rooms: 184
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience California at The Westin Palo Alto hotel, adjacent to Stanford University, and within walking distance of some of the best restaurants, shops, and nightlife. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Westin Palo Alto Hotel Palo Alto
Westin Palo Alto
Palo Alto Westin

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