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“Good but not great”

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The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort
Ranked #30 of 52 Hotels in Santa Barbara
Sammamish, Washington
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Good but not great”
Reviewed 11 June 2014

For many years we have traveled to Santa Barbara to visit our two boys to went to Westmont College there. We never stayed at the Fess Parker due to price but on this last trip which concluded 13 years of visits, we decided to stay there since our boys were moving back to Seattle. While the grounds are nice, the pool area very nice and the room average but slightly larger than a Marriott, the additional costs for Wi-Fi and parking were excessive. For a luxury hotel to charge nearly $40 a day for these two "free" services at most every other hotel we stayed in over the years in Santa Barbara it was quite frustrating. We had problems with our tv, movies on demand fialed 3 out of 4 nights, 3 engineer visits. In the end it worked but the quality of the HD was mediocre. We don't go to hotels to watch movies but after long days in the area and my wife's health we relax in the room and movies are a part of that. So again, high quality hotel, low quality experience with the TV and the Internet was slow, for an extra $5 a day you could buy higher speeds. Ridiculous. What made me write this review was that the engineer had told us he would "comp" us two movies due to our problems. When we checked out, there was no comp and when I addressed this with the person at the check out, she was not very friendly at all. WE had about 4 movies, only 1 of which actually worked. She said I see a note to comp 2 movies, not 4. I couldn't believe she was challenging me on how many movies to comp. I stood firm on all 4 and she grudgingly gave in. Last complaint was you had to use your room card to get in and out of the parking lot. one morning it didn't work, I was at the gate 5 minutes pressing the help button, nobody answered. I had to drive back to the lobby to get my card redone. So at check out again I asked for a parking comp due to this lack of their monitoring the gate. After debating, she grudgingly gave me a day. So, good location, clean, pleasant room but nothing to write home about. Good excercise room. I wouldn't recommend spending the extra money, other nice non-chain hotels along the beach area for less price and as good of service as the Fess Parker.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Review collected in partnership with DoubleTree by Hilton

Helpful?
1 Thank Paul F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, 12 June 2014
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you and for your very positive coments about the grounds, pool area and spacious guestrooms. We were sorry to see that you were not aware of the parking and internet fee and certainly want to apologize if during the reservation process we failed to advise you of these fees. We also apologize for the miscommunication regarding the adjustments for movies and the challenge with the parking gate. If your plans include a return trip to Santa Barbara, please call our Reservations office direct. Our reservations agents would be pleased to provide you with information regarding any special packages with the best rate and may include these fees. Your business is important to us and we hope you will return to enjoy a better experience.
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Corona del Mar, California
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 June 2014

I am so glad my friends chose this hotel! I am a total hotel snob. I have stayed in some of the best hotels in the world and the Bacara in Santa Barbara. I spent the weekend at the Fess Parker for a bachelorette party. The rooms are immaculate, the amenities are great, and the ocean view was unbeatable. What made this stay so special was how the staff treated me, from check in to the valet -- from the warm chocolate chip cookie at check in to the valet who remembered my name when I handed him the claim ticket for him to retrieve my car. For a quarter of the cost of Bacara, I got a great room with a view and warm hospitatlity.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank SKS949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, 11 June 2014
This is wonderful news. It will mean a great deal to our team to know that you selected us for this special outing with friends and that your time with us was enjoyable. Thank you for taking the time to let us know. We appreciate your business and certainly hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back real soon!
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Lake Forest, California
2 reviews
Reviewed 9 June 2014

I took a weekend trip to the Fess Parker a few weekends ago with a group of girlfriends and could not have been more pleased with our stay at the resort. The grounds were beautiful, clean, and was in an amazing location. Our room was spacious enough to comfortably fit four people which was nice and our ocean view could not be beat. The staff was incredibly kind, helpful, and really went out of their way to accommodate our group and make it special. I was also very impressed by the hotel's Director of Rooms, Alex Yi, as he was really willing to make our stay special and was incredibly professional and knowledgeable about the resort and it's surroundings to help make our weekend perfect. I would highly recommend the Fess Parker to anyone and look forward to visiting again!

Room Tip: Loved our ocean view room. Spacious enough for four people and amazing view.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Leah E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, 11 June 2014
Our team members will be thrilled to know they helped make your visit special. We are very grateful for your very kind compliments. Thank you for selecting our resort for your stay in Santa Barbara.
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Flanders, NJ, United States
1 review
Reviewed 9 June 2014

The hotel is clean and nicely organized. The staff is very helpful. The location is prime. My son and I enjoyed the food and the pool. I would recommend this hotel in this area. The hotel set up is nice for variety of rooms and styles.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with DoubleTree by Hilton

Helpful?
Thank Phyllis M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Safety Harbor, Florida, United States
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2014

I have stayed here twice for sales meetings. It is a very nice property and is well maintained. The staff is very good, with the possible exception of the wait staff in the breakfast buffet. We were practically finished by the time we were offered coffee and water on both our arrival and departure days. The food that was served during our conference was excellent for meeting fare. Nothing was over cooked or dried out. The rooms are very comfortable and the bedding is exceptional. The fitness center is nicely furnished and the equipment pretty well maintained for hotel equipment. The property is beautiful and the location could not be better. You do have to walk across a pretty busy street to get to the beach, but that is a minor inconvenience. Since we were there for a sales meeting and the company covered our room, I do not know the going rate. The rate posted on the back of the door in the room was $720, which is ridiculous, but I am sure that is probably a CYA on their part. It is an excellent place to stay if the rate is affordable for you.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Steve C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
Reviewed 8 June 2014

Was a nice hotel and centrally located. Our room was a nice size. It is a very large facility so we did lots of walking to the lobby and back to our room. Great landscaping, self parking is available for a fee. Pool was very busy when we visited at the end of May. Really could use more than one pool at this large a hotel. Bar was nice and the food we ate was all good.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with DoubleTree by Hilton

Helpful?
Thank C3645VVhelens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, 11 June 2014
Thank you for reviewing your stay at our resort. We appreciate your suggestion regarding a second pool which happens to be a project being discussed by resort management. We are pleased you enjoyed your stay and thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2014

The grounds and location of The Fess Parker are great, which is why I am at least giving this place a two. But, the interiors of the buildings and the rooms are awful and outdated. The hall ways are dirty and run down. The first room they tried to give us smelled like wet dogs. The second room was marginally better but still smelled bad. The carpet is old and dirty. The furniture and bathrooms are very very outdated. The place does not look like it has been updated since the 90s. Overall, the rooms were very disappointing. I am sure there are nicer places in the same area that are more charming and clean. Also, I never could understand why a place like this feels the need to charge for parking. The parking is not a premium. The lot was never full and this is something that should be the cost of doing business.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank minou270
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, 9 June 2014
We thank you for your comment regarding our location. The resort's easy access to the beach, Stearns Wharf, the Santa Barbara Zoo and downtown Santa Barbara is a convenience so many of our guests enjoy. We are sorry that the interior of our guestrooms did not meet your expectations and I apologize if you were not made aware of our parking fee at the time you made the reservation. The maintenance and monitoring required to maintain the parking lot is extensive and we do check regularly to make certain our prices are comparable to other beach front hotel parking fees. We hope you understand our position and thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you.
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Additional Information about The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort

Property: The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort
Address: 633 East Cabrillo Boulevard, Santa Barbara, CA 93103-3611
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > Santa Barbara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 Business Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 Luxury Hotel in Santa Barbara
#25 Romantic Hotel in Santa Barbara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 360
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort is steps from the beach and convenient to Santa Barbara's waterfront and downtown. Oversized rooms all feature balconies or patios; families and pets are warmly welcomed. Amenities include a year round heated Olympic sized pool, Spa, fitness center, salon, tennis courts, bike rentals, putting green, shuffle board, weekend wine tasting, 2 restaurants, ocean-view bar and 24 acres of grounds. Complimentary airport/Amtrak shuttle service available daily. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fess Parker`s Doubletree Hotel Santa Barbara
Doubletree Santa Barbara
Doubletree Fess Parkers
Fess Parkers Doubletree Resort

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