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“So wonderful experience and memoryable stay” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Zen Hotel

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The Zen Hotel
Ranked #6 of 27 Hotels in Palo Alto
Certificate of Excellence
Mountain View, California
1 review
“So wonderful experience and memoryable stay”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 9, 2013

We stayed the hotel many times. First time, In 2010 for my engagment in Bay area. From website, it's just a Motel style. But inside decoration is really nice and warm. The facilities are very new.

Have to say, I lived in different quality hotels in the world, including bay area and San Francisco. Though ZEN is not 5 star hotel, but their service has highest quality. I had to cancel my hotel booking for my pregancy. The GM is so kind and help me to do that, though the online booking can not be refunded. They returned the money to me. Is it a favorable offering?

I feel warm and defenitely ZEN is my first prority choice when i visit bay area.

I visited Palo Alto in Oct. 2012. We choose ZEN AGAIN. So amazing for the staffs and General manager. They offered great service and support to my husband and I. We stayed here for almost 3 months - even we knew the apartnment price is much cheaper than the hotel- But we reallly love this place.

I will check out tomorrow for my C-section. Thanks for all help from The ZEN. Defenitely the days i spent with them are memoryable. Of course, I made real valueable choices for my BIG DAYS.

Best luck for the business.

Lu ZHANG

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank lu z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ricberr, General Manager at The Zen Hotel, responded to this review, February 14, 2013
Dear Lu,

Thank you very much for sharing your experience at The Zen Hotel with the Tripadvisor community.

It was such a pleasure to have you as our guest. Every single one of our staff members got an opportunity to know you in the time that you stayed with us. It is with mixed feelings to see you depart after 3 months, but we know it is time for you to welcome your newborn.

On behalf of all The Zen team, we wish you the best and look forward to keeping in touch in the future.

Best regards and congratulations!

Ricardo.

Ricardo Berrospi
General Manager
THE ZEN HOTEL
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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320 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (86)
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English first
Washington
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2013

It's difficult sometimes finding a place for us and our two 20-something children and this was perfect! We had a suite with two beds in one room and one in the other with a living room where we could hang out and play games with a mini-kitchen. Yes, it's a converted motel, but very nicely done and everyone on the staff was as nice as could be. Not to mention the hot breakfast -- a vast improvement over the cereal and stale muffins we often encounter. The beds were a bit soft for my husband's bad back, but otherwise it was terrific. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Barbara E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2012 via mobile

This place exceeded our expectations for price, service and QUALITY! We initially had reservations made for us at the days inn down the road-we were in town for a funeral and all the extended family wanted to stay at the same place. After reading really nasty reviews on tripadvisor, we wisely asked to see the rooms before we checked in (there were 3 rooms for us, a small portion of the number of people coming. We were just the first to arrive).
The Days Inn was completely unacceptable. So we came to check out Zen. I really can't say enough about this hotel, I'd probably just live there if I could. Nicely modern, updated rooms, but comfy modern not like steel furniture or anything. My queen room was a fairly good size and had a desk and armchair with an ottoman. So we called the rest of the family and had them switch to Zen as well. The chair was so great my grandmother actually asked if they knew where she could purchase one. The breakfasts were simple but fantastic. They had eggs(REAL, not powdered!) some kind of meat aka bacon/sausage and some kind of potatoes everyday. Also very tasty oatmeal, fresh fruit, yogurt, several bread choices, and the muffins...words cannot describe the muffins. We stayed 4 nights and I was truly sad to go. I wil definitely be coming back next time I'm in the area. The rest of our family said the same. Whether its just an overnight stay or a few days time, Zen is worth every single penny.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Adrienewsom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Silver Spring, Maryland
Level Contributor
45 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 26, 2012

My husband had business meetings in Palo Alto on November 13 and 14 and we chose the Zen Hotel for our stay. I may have had unrealistic expectations from the hotel's Web site's pictures, and was somewhat disappointed when we arrived at what was basically a motel fitted with boutique hotel furniture. But I was completely won over by the end of our three-night stay.

The staff was friendly and helpful, and although the breakfast was served in a small area that was once the motel office, it was really quite pleasant. The breakfast was varied and wholesome and freshly-baked cookies and apples were offered the rest of the day. There really is a nice feeling to the hotel, and the free breakfast, beverages and snacks, together with the convenient, free parking, add up to a very good value for the area, especially compared to the expensive high-end chains in the Palo Alto area.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank EllenMD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkeley, California
Level Contributor
127 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 25, 2012

If the word "hotel" brings to mind a multi-story structure with a spacious lobby, with a coffee shop and bar near the reception desk, think again. The Zen Hotel is a remodeled motel. Nicely remodeled, with clean, attractive rooms, but nothing more. The staff is friendly, the location is convenient. A hot breakfast buffet is included in the price.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Grandpa284
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Near San Francisco
Level Contributor
55 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 21, 2012

This place was very pleasant and a great deal. We loved the beds, the showers and the breakfast in particular. This site was clearly once some sort of motor lodge. low square buildings have been made modern and up to date. The decor was nice and not at all like what we usually see at such modest prices. While close to El Camino Real, traffic noise was minimal and it was easy to get on and off this major blvd because the driveway leads you to a side street with a traffic light. also, I am very particular about smells and this place was great. the rooms smelled fresh and clean not like cleanser/chemicals. Room 211 is on the ground floor and has a back door that leads to a sweet (shared) garden space, great airflow. My mom stayed in a nearby room (201) and it was also nice but did not have a back door. We both rave about this place!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank cymbidian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Davis, Calif.
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 13, 2012

My husband and two teenage sons stayed two nights here one holiday weekend in order to visit Stanford University. The Zen Hotel was reasonably priced & very conveniently located for exploring the campus and the town. The front desk staff were friendly & helpful with suggestions & directions. The hotel was very quiet -- we could occasionally hear other guests coming and going in their cars, but otherwise no noise.

The room was a little crowded for four people, but we managed okay. If I stayed here again with my kids, I'd probably get two adjoining rooms & just splurge for some extra space. I'm not crazy about the design choice to put the sink out in the main room and have only the toilet & bathtub behind closed doors. It's handy if you have one person taking a shower, say, and another person brushing their teeth. But where it's not so great is the middle of the night (or in the morning when teenagers are trying to sleep in) -- there's no way to quietly use the bathroom then wash your hands if the sink is right off the main room with no partition.

This was a relatively minor complaint, however. The room was otherwise very comfortable. They do this strange thing with their pillows, where they sort of fold them in on themselves so they're more like squares than the traditional rectangles, but then you try to use them & you realize they're just regular pillows they've "origami-ed" into squares. (Maybe it's supposed to look more Japanese? I don't know -- I'm Japanese-American & have spent a lot of time in Japan & this doesn't strike me as particularly Japanese.) Whatever. The beds are very attractively appointed. In fact, everything in the room looks quite tasteful, as does the exterior.

Breakfast is served in the main lobby, which is a simple but comfortable space. The breakfast options were also simple but perfectly adequate: yogurt, cereal, toast, bagels, eggs, some kind of breakfast meat (sausages or bacon), oatmeal, fruit, coffee, juice. Also some kind of chocolate-marble muffins that my boys just LOVED. They provide a few different papers to read & CNN was on the TV most mornings, audible but not overwhelmingly loud.

All in all, a very pleasant stay. If either of my kids gets into Stanford, I could see spending the night here again!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank WritingRetreater
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Zen Hotel

Property: The Zen Hotel
Address: 4164 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306-4075
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Palo Alto
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Palo Alto
#5 Family Hotel in Palo Alto
#5 Business Hotel in Palo Alto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Zen Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 37
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the heart of Silicon Valley, The Zen Hotel offers daily full hot breakfast buffet that includes freshly made smoothies, Peet's and Santa Cruz Organic coffees, Mighty Leaf teas, sausages, bacon, scrambled eggs and much more. L'occitane toiletries and free true high speed Internet are standard in all guestrooms. Minutes away from Stanford University, Shoreline Amphitheater and tech companies such as HP, Facebook and Google; The Zen Hotel offers great value and is a fantastic choice for business and leisure travelers. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Townhouse Hotel Palo Alto

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