I stayed in Santa Barbara for 4 nights on business and chose to stay at the Holiday Inn Express again after a previous good experience. I'm happy to report that the hotel is still a good choice!
I arrived on a Friday evening. The parking lots of the hotel were stuffed, so I was pleased that there was a valet on-hand to help out. The valet gave great service on both Friday and Saturday night (it was back to self-parking on Sunday and Monday). Check-in was welcoming and efficient; I was assigned the room type I had reserved, with my room preferences for floor & location honored by the hotel.
The hotel is in a charming historic building, so it has a lot more character than your typical Holiday Inn Express. The rooms are on the small side, but my room was well-appointed with a comfortable king bed, a small desk, a dresser (flat-screen TV with excellent channel selection on-top), and an armoire. The room had exposed brick walls and pleasant decor. Internet was free and worked well. The only flaw came when the room didn't have a do-not-distrub sign. I asked the front desk to provide one, and it was promised that the staff would deliver one; they never did. My other negative comment was that the hotel's hallway carpet could use replacement; it was fading.
The free breakfast isn't much--it could use a few more healthy options. But, it is free, and the coffee was acceptable.
Service throughout the stay was solid--free water, helpful staff, good housekeeping. The front desk staff was helpful with the few requests that I had.
The biggest attraction of this hotel was its location--right off of State Street, in the heart of Santa Barbara. It's a few blocks from the beach (including a great running/biking trail) and within walking distance of tons of shopping and numerous restaurants.
One recommendation: if you make your reservation far in advance (as I did), it might be worth continuing to monitor rates on the website. I'd reserved a couple of months in advance, and the rate dropped pretty substantially between my original reservation and when I checked again. So, I ended up saving a lot of money by altering my reservation.
I'll be back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Just a half block from State Street in historic Old Town Santa Barbara, the Holiday Inn Express Santa Barbara provides luxury and convenience for the sophisticated traveler. Downtown shopping and restaurants are steps from your door, and the beach and Stearns Wharf are four blocks away. Enjoy a complimentary hot breakfast served weekly from 6:30AM-9:30 am and from 7 am to noon on weekends as well as free WIFI throughout the hotel. As a pet-friendly hotel, we welcome furry companions for $45/stay (up to 2 pets under 50 lbs.). We offer affordable parking to our guests at a rate of $14/day for 2016 and $16/day as of January 1, 2017 as well as complimentary bike rentals, and nearby, off-site swimming pool and 24-hour fitness facility access. Stay with us in the heart of Santa Barbara, where you are steps from all the city has to offer! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Express Santa Barbara Hotel Santa Barbara
- Holiday Inn Santa Barbara
- Santa Barbara Holiday Inn
- Santa Barbara Hotel