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The Westgate Hotel
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Reviewed February 28, 2012

I won a bid on Priceline and got this hotel. I spent time reading the reviews so the parking fees and hotel fees did not surprise me. Checking was super fast, less than 3 minutes. Hotel is 1 block from Westgate. Room was spacious. We really loved the water pressure. Overall, I would hope to go to this hotel again. Btw our room had a mini fridge, coffee maker, hair blower and an iron.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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Thank newbees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2012

I found my stay to be fine but nothing spectacular.

I have a few minor complaints. First, the front staff didn't know that there was a mailbox directly outside the doors when I asked where I could mail some letters. Second, I like strong water pressure but the pressure in the shower was too strong. Maintenance staff adjusted the shower head but it didn't make that much of a difference. Third, the hotel website needs to be updated about the opening of the new fitness center as it currently says it will be completed in "early 2012". Fourth, I was upset by the lack of recycling in the hotel. There were no recycling bins in the rooms or even the business center. Fifth, I wasn't a huge fan of the decor/style (but I realize that's a personal thing).

My biggest complaint, however, has to do with the daily "facility fee" for guests who booked a room via Hotwire or Priceline. There is no need for a $15 daily fee for water bottles (which isn't environmentally friendly), internet (many hotels offer this for free) or the turn-down service.

On a positive note, the room was extremely large and it's in a great location (close to a bus stop and a tram stop, as well as the Gaslight Quarter).

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank TorontoLeesar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheGrandAmerica, Employee at The Westgate Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2012

Dear TorontoLeesar,

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us. Your thoughtful remarks are very helpful in allowing us to continue to deliver the most excellent in guest experiences. I wanted to offer my apologies for your recent experience with us. I have discussed your concerns with the appropriate employees, and can assure you that the issues you encountered will be addressed.

I wanted to speak personally on two of the issues you mentioned.

The hotel does participate in a recycling program. All recyclable material is separated in the service areas of the hotel. This program includes the following cardboard, paper products, plastics as allowed under the City of San Diego’s program, Glass bottles and aluminum / tin cans. The success of our participation has enabled the hotel to reduce our waste service by an entire day per week. Additionally the hotel offers all of our guests the option of participation in our water and power conservation program.

Regarding the hotels facilities fee we do list this fee and the services provided through all channels we make the hotel available for purchase online. Due to the nature of the fee certain online providers do not include the fee at the time they complete a sale; however the guest is advised of the fee prior to completing the transaction. Some providers only make their customer aware that hotels (generic) may have additional fees. They do not make a specific reference before or after a transaction is complete with regards to the selected property. Additionally these companies do not make your personal contact information available to the hotel, thereby leaving the hotel no means of communicating information regarding the hotel, or other travel information relevant to your stay. The hotel does include the facilities fee on transactions on our website and our own reservation center.

Again thank you for sharing your experience with us.

Richard Cox
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2012

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the Westgate. The staff is friendly and helpful, the room was beautiful, and the location is tough to beat. We booked directly from the hotel, so had no surprise fee, and didn't mind paying what they charged. We would definitely stay there for future San Diego trips.

We took the train to San Diego, and the ~5 block walk to the train station was quite nice. We didn't miss having a car at all.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank knight2244
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 13, 2012

A very nice property, and conveniently located on the border of the gas-lamp quarter of San Diego. The hotel presents "a European elegance" and the rooms are more than spacious.

The front desk personnel are quite helpful, and very pleasant. They know good restaurants, and provide excellent directions.

I only had one disappointment, the annoying "resort fee." For what did I pay an extra $ 15.00 a day (after being successful with a priceline bid)? No one could tell me why I was charged this fee!

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled on business
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5  Thank saolsen11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 7, 2012

I found the Westgate online by accident...which was serendipitous. As it is not part of a chain, the property has its own website, but often does not appear in lists of hotels in downtown San Diego where it is located. Nor is it particularly visible from the street, where the entrance is recessed inside an arcade-like entrance, almost hidden by large urns of tropical plants. Given that the building, built in the 70s, has 19 stories of rooms, a large underground parking garage, a main-level floor of shops, and a second-floor ballroom, this is all the more unsusal.

The hotel is unique in other ways as well. Modeled after an anti-room in the Palace of Versailles, the lobby and adjoining rooms are decorated in a resplendent fashion reminiscent of the great halls of Europe: giant chandeliers, antique furniture uphostered with period tapestries, chinoiserie, grand mirrors and paintings...and huge displays for fresh-cut flowers arranged in over-sized bowls, urns and vases. Even more remarkable, there is no signage whatsoever: no post-card racks, no magazines, no tourist displays--indeed, nothing that would indicate that his is a hotel in a busy urban locale.

Check-in was fast, polite and professional. When I explained that I hoped for plenty of sunlight in my room, the young woman at the desk quietly up-graded me to a higher floor where she assured me there was lots of light and a view as well. Indeed, the room was lovely, once the bell-man ushered me through the small anti-chamber that disquised its entrance. He had appeared curbside when my taxi arrived from the airport, and had spirited my luggage to the row of elevators in the looby where he waited until I had received my key. After showing me around my spacious room, opening the heavy drapes to reveal the stunning view, he disappeared as unobtrusively as he a materialized--all the more astonishing given than he looked like a Thirties moviestar.

The room was large, with pale striped wallpaper, brocade drapery, reproduction Louis X1V furniture, fine bedding, and no artwork other than a gilded mirror. The bathroom, which consisted of two rooms, along with a large closet, almost formed its own "wing," with a long vanity and stool in front of the room-wide mirror. The WC included a sit-down shower large enough for two. The Gilchrist and Soames toiletries were in bottles twice the size of most hotel amenities, and they were replenished daily.

The hotel's turn-down service is excellent--which I found surprising, given that I don't particularly appreciate the ritual. My first night there, I went to bed early, and missed it. My second night, I came home to find the lights in the room dimmed, environmental sounds playing from the radio, the heavy damask quilt and throw pillows removed from the bed and piled neatly on a stool that must have been hidden in the closet, the bed "remade" with down duvet and three sheets, and two discreet chocolates adorning a breakfast menu on the coverlet. The effect was peaceful and relaxing, and most appreciated after a hectic day.

I have never stayed in hotel (and I have stayed in many) where I felt both valued and ignored...in just the right ways. From the moment I arrived, I felt so welcome that I considered myself priveleged; yet, simultaneoulsly, no one approached me during my stay, or interupted me when I worked in my room on the wireless internet, as I did two afternoons Housekeeping was immaculate, but invisible. On the one day when I stayed in all day to work, the head of housekeeping phoned me late in the afternoon to ask if I wanted my room cleaned, and to avail myself of the turn-down service. Somehow, she knew that I had been in my room all day, and had left me alone until she felt obliged to enquire about my wishes.

My wish is to be able to stay here again. The dining-room is one of the loveliest I have seen. The food, judging by the two breakfasts I enjoyed there, was original and delicious, the service, once again, impeccable. The small bar is elegant yet intimate...which perhaps summarizes my experience of the whole hotel, where I stayed for one week. How a property of this size manages to run a complicated facility with such attention to detail amazes me...and makes it very rare in my experience of American hotels. And I paid less than I would have if I had booked a Holiday Inn. Go figure.

My only quibble about my experience is entirely personal. The Saturday night that I visited the bar to listen to live music, almost everyone there was dressed in gowns and tuxedos ... attending the opera, no doubt, which is near-by, or the wedding reception that was being held on the third floor. These patrons all looked appropriately dressed for their surroundings. In my jeans and sweater, I felt so out-of-place that I left which, no doubt, was unecessary. But I wish I had brought some fancy clothes--which I will do next time I visit.

The Westgate is such a fine hotel that it qualifies as a destination in itself.

Room Tip: When you book, make sure that the daily "resort fee" is included in your cost. This allows you wireless access, US telephone calls, admittance to the gym, and to the pool, which was under construction while I was there. Don't be intimidated by the grandeur of the dining-room. The prices on the menu, at least for breakfast, are comparable to near-by restaurants, and the food is far superior--not to mention the service and surroundings.
  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank robert43218
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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