After a 4 day cruise, we planned to stay 5 days at the Hotel La Jolla. In the past, we've always had good experiences with Kimpton, whether it be ordering gift baskets for friends, planning a conference or staying as a hotel guest. When planning a trip, we always check to see if a Kimpton Hotel is in the vicinity. But, our recent experience at Hotel La Jolla has changed our impression of Kimpton. We wish we had done more homework and stayed elsewhere. Our vacation days are precious and we want an opportunity to rest and relax. This was not possible at this hotel.
The valet and front desk staff were pleasant enough. The problems began with the room. We were originally assigned a 10th floor room. We read on trip advisor that the 10th floor rooms were noisy, but people have different tolerances for noise so we thought we would give the room a try. Within minutes, we knew what people were talking about. We went to the 11th floor to check out the source of the noise, expecting to find a room full of people. Instead, we found a group of 10-12 people having lunch. Whenever someone moved their chair, we got to hear it in our room. I phoned the front desk and requested a quieter room. I was told that I would get a call back - which did not happen. Fifteen minutes later, one of the valet staff knocked on the door and said we could move to the 8th floor. We scrambled to load our luggage onto the cart, thankful that we were moving.
The 8th floor room was the same layout as the 10th floor room. The rooms are relatively small and dark, with a glass wall separating the shower from the sleeping area. However, there is a blind that can be lowered if one doesn't want to share their showering experience with others in the room. On the 8th floor, we did not hear chairs scraping across the floor above, but we did get to hear the noise from the lounge below. Sitting on the teeny, tiny deck was not a pleasant experience due to the noise coming from the lounge below. We knew our desires and expectation for quiet, relaxing vacation would not be possible if we continued to stay at this hotel. Thus, we checked out earlier than planned. (Thankfully we were able to find superior accommodation with a great view, large deck, for the same rate. And, it was quiet!)
While in La Jolla, we met some friends for dinner. Originally, we thought of meeting our friends at the hotel's restaurant. However, the parking rates our outrageous. For non-hotel guests, the rate is $7 for the first hour and $4/hr thereafter. Our friends would have had to pay at least $15 to park while eating at the hotel's restaurant. We opted to dine at another restaurant in town. The parking rate for hotel guests is also a rip-off ($28/day). The parking lot isn't secure and more often than not, our car was parked 50 feet from the front door of the hotel. Waiting for the valet to get our car was crazy when we could walk to it ourselves.
Our other issue was the lounge. When travelling, we love to have a glass of wine before dinner. From 5-6 pm, Kimpton provides complimentary wine for hotel guests. At other Kimptons, we've been able to enjoy the wine in the lounge. However, this was not the case at La Jolla Hotel. The first night, a private event was held in the lounge. Granted, we were able to sit off in the corner, but it was very noisy. The second night - same thing. A large party overtook the lounge and again it was very noisy. The noise carried to our 8th floor room.
Given the price we paid and the experience we had, I would strongly suggest other travellers consider staying elsewhere. Also, the hotel is located very close to a major road so one can also expect to hear traffic noise. On a positive note, being a member of Kimpton Loyalty allows for free internet access. This was helpful in finding new accommodation.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Boutique hotel with upscale decor and high end bedding and amenities. All non-smoking rooms, glass balconies, small gym, heated pool, walking distance to beach and La Jolla Shores shops and restaurants. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel La Jolla Shores
- At The Shores La Jolla