Overall, I had a good stay and thought the place was quite reasonable for the price (using the online AAA rate). From what I gathered, the Palm Garden was acquired by new management who is renovating basically the entire facility. This has some pros and cons.
- Grounds: The courtyard gardens, gazebo, and pool area is very pretty. It's also very quiet, despite being close to the highway. The original architect must have been pretty good at his job.
- Staff: Management was responsive and friendly. They were apologetic for problems, even if they couldn't currently fix them.
- Food/Drink: They give you daily breakfast and drink coupons for the hotel bar. The breakfast was tasty and had bacon, oatmeal, yogurt, and fruit. How can you go wrong with those? It's also walking distance to a good Indian place.
- Room Amenities: While older, I actually found the rooms quite nice. They had a large minifridge, microwave, and coffee maker. All told, I found them quite spacious and comfy. The AC was also very effective. The beds were comfy too and I slept well.
- Piano Keyboard: My wife needed to practice some piano in the lobby and they were very nice about letting her work on her pieces that she needed to play later that week.
- Internet: Ugg. The number one con. They actually have two problems with the internet: too few routers and a server problem. The routers is the issue we saw in our first room, before we requested to change. The signal strength was just terrible. They nicely moved us to a new room where the connection was solid, but the internet still had problems. Chrome seemed to work better than other browsers on this, for some reason. Basically, their server that connects to the web is misconfigured and drops the ball every minutes when you try to request a page. Liveable for email, maps, and searching, but useless for entertainment (e.g. streaming), telecommunications (e.g. Skype), or advanced stuff (e.g. version control, file transfers, etc). Thankfully there's a Starbucks a short walk down the road or I would have missed a Skype meeting. They were aware of the server issue and had a tech guy scheduled to look at it, but internet issues should be a same-day fix, not a "someday" fix. To note, this problem not only affects the customers but the staff as well (their office internet also drops its connections).
- Printing: They don't have a business center area for printing due to the renovations. They'll print out things for you at the front desk, but I'd recommend finding a Fedex if you need anything more than a boarding pass (their printer was not exactly high quality).
- Renovation: The Palm Garden was going under some pretty extensive renovations when I stayed there for almost a week. No less than a dozen rooms were actively being modernized. On the bright side, it means they'll have renovated rooms available soon (one near us had just been painted and carpeted, so it's probably fairly close). On the dark side, it means that there will be some occasional work noise if you're around during the afternoon.
All told, while it was a bit of a mixed bag, I'd definitely recommend the place unless you need advanced internet in your room. Given the prices of hotels in area, it's better than anything else you'll get in the vicinity. The renovations are a mixed bag, however. Once they're done, the place will probably target mid-sized conferences and resort-type stays and their rates will probably increase significantly.
So for right now, it's a good budget option in the region.
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- Also Known As:
- Palm Garden Thousand Oaks
- Hotel Palm Garden