In a nutshell: Although the Hotel de Anza San Jose has comfortable rooms and a decent breakfast, a few problems really detracted from the stay, including nearly inoperable WiFi, shower problems, and general wear and tear that is topped off with a ludicrous $14.95 “amenity fee”. I’d not stay here again.
I stayed at the Hotel de Anza, a Destination Hotel property in San Jose, California for a night back in November. The hotel is in downtown, in close proximity to the airport, to Diridon train station, and to major companies located in San Jose. Trying out one of the new hotels within the Destination Hotel brand sounded pretty cool, even though there are a number of other options in the area.
Booking the Hotel de Anza
I booked the Hotel de Anza using a newly deposited free night certificate. It is an award category 4 property, requiring 15,000 points per night. Typically rates are $200+ per night, but things were pretty reasonable that weekend. The going rate for a standard king room was $181 after taxes.
I’m not keen on shelling out Hyatt points at that value, but I’ll happily use a certificate for a stay. The annual free night costs me $95, and I keep the World of Hyatt card for far more than that, so getting just 2x the fee in value is fine by me. Not everything needs to be maximized to the utmost. Plus, the stay would help me earn a free night at the 10-brand mark and I’d also earn an additional 2,000 points for my first Destination Hotels stay in 2019.
Arrival in San Jose
I arrived into San Jose via the Caltrain, stepping off at San Jose Diridon Station and walking the few blocks to the Hotel de Anza. It’s maybe 10-15 minutes by foot. My initial impression of the hotel lobby was that it is rather nice. The area out toward the street corner is certainly inviting.
However, further inspection revealed lots of scuffs on the floor and walls. As there wasn’t an attendant at the front desk when arrived, I wandered a bit down the hall. With some major gouges on the floor and a few spots that need paint, I could tell that the place needs a little help. I generally don’t mind older hotels, but given the rates and Hyatt’s reputation, the Hotel de Anza San Jose could use some attention.
Once the lady at the front desk arrived about 5 minutes later, check in was super quick. The Hotel de Anza has been integrated into World of Hyatt of about 2 months now, and the lady noted my Explorist status.
I was also handed a paper that provided a rundown on the hotel amenities and dining. I’d later see the $14.95 per night “hotel amenity fee” is included on the sheet. Sure, it was highlighted. But if you’re going to try to pull these fees on guest, at least have the courtesy to straight up explain it to them at check-in.
Corner King Room
The Hotel de Anza San Jose honored my request for a corner king room, although there was no mention of this upgrade at the desk. I was happy that I’d included that note, as the corner rooms at the Hotel de Anza San Jose are far more spacious. I was given room 816.
The room is in good shape for an older hotel, and there was not much visible wear like what I’d noticed in the public spaces in the lobby.
The desk is excellent, glass-topped and plenty comfortable for working for a couple more hours, which was on the agenda.
It even has built-in power and USB plugs in the corner. Super convenient.
The bathroom is very nice as well, with a nice sink and plenty of space on the counter above.
The bath amenities were still small bottles. Hyatt will be eliminating these across the chain, and California has passed a law banning them as well. Expect to see larger bottles or wall-mounted units in the future.
There earplugs included with the bath amenities are a tell regarding the noise at the hotel. Aircraft and street noise were very noticeable. My room was on the west side of the building, facing the flight path for planes landing and taking off at SJC. One of the windows in particular seemed like it let all the sound in.
The final amenities include an Illy espresso machine and a mini-fridge in the cabinet under the TV.
And finally, the view isn’t bad. This is my shot of downtown San Jose in the morning.
Overall, the room was spacious and comfortable, but rather noisy. Even the corner AC unit made a decent hum. My initial impressions were good, but things rapidly went downhill.
Hotel de Anza Signature Amenities??
I sat down at the desk to work and pulled out the sheet the lady at the front desk had handed me. This is when I noticed the $14.95 per night “hotel amenity fee” listed. I’d not expected this fee, and I was curious what it covered at a downtown hotel in the business district.
The list of “signature amenities” is pretty lame. The only thing unique on the list is the late night snack box.
The real kicker on the list of Hotel de Anza Signature Amenities is the “work desk equipped with power outlets and USB outlets”. I’d already noticed how nice the stylish desk is with its glass top and built-in power. This is an excellent feature for business travelers.
But to lump this into the $14.95 per night charge? That’s insulting. I wrote about this part of the experience previously, noting that it might be the most ludicrous resort fee “amenity” I’ve seen.
At this point, I figured that I’d try the late night snack box, just because it’s offered. It’d keep me from needing to head out again to grab a bit to eat, hopefully.
This turned out to be pretty lame as well. I expected this to be a handful of packaged snack options that you might enjoy while watching a movie. This is what I received:
Yes, that is a plain ham and cheese sandwich, a rather sour green apple, string cheese and a small cookie. The sandwich is what killed the appeal. The hotel could literally spend a few dollars more on these and come up with something far better.
At this point, my impressions were quickly headed downhill. Two more problems sealed the Hotel de Anza San Jose as one of my worst hotel stays in a while.
Other Problems at the Hotel de Anza San Jose
The internet signal in the room showed as fairly poor when I connected to the WiFi. I figured I’d give Speedtest a spin to see what it’s really like. Looks pretty good, no?
Nope. The internet connection was abysmal. The WiFi signal strength is the corner room is likely the problem. I struggled to upload files to both Dropbox and Wordpess. Downloading files and streaming also proved extremely challenging. Not a good look for a hotel in the Silicon Valley. The WiFi speed in the lobby was far better.
Then I was in for a rude awakening when I took a shower. The shower itself is nice in terms of design, water pressure, and temperature. But the thing leaks all over the floor. This isn’t actually the worst leak I’ve seen, but it is pretty close. Definitely a good way to ensure all the towels get used each day.
In the morning I headed downstairs for the breakfast, deciding to eat at the Hedley Club, the hotel restaurant at the Hotel de Anza San Jose. It’d be nice to then just check out and hit the road.
The restaurant is a bar and lounge in the evening, and it very much still carries that feel for breakfast. There were two staff intermittently present.
In the room, the hotel information sheet noted that the buffet costs $18. However, the sign in front of the restaurant said $15. When the check came, it was just $13.70. I have no idea which it supposed to be, but the Hotel de Anza can’t really get their price consistent. As it ended up being over $4 less than I expected, I had no complaints. You can also order a la carte options instead of the buffet.
I was the only one in the restaurant when it opened at 6:30 AM. The breakfast selection is fairly small, but there are some decent options, including salmon frittata, bacon, sausage, casaba fries, fruit salad, pastries, cereal, oatmeal and bread.
Overall, it isn’t a bad breakfast. I don’t like paying over $10 for breakfast, but the salmon frittata was quite good, and I though the charge entirely reasonable. I ate mostly these.
There is also coffee in the lobby. Most hotels offer this for free, but remember, this is lumped into the “amenity fee” charged by the Hotel de Anza.
I discussed the amenity fee situation with the front desk at check out. Since this was an award stay, it was waived. However, if this had not been the case, I would have asked for it to be removed, as the amenities it covers are pretty ridiculous. So many are provided by other hotels for no extra charge. I mean, the fitness center is nothing to write home about.
Hotel de Anza San Jose: The Verdict
Overall, I wasn’t impressed by my stay at the Hotel de Anza in San Jose. I hoped that it would be a unique stay as one of their Destination Hotels properties, but it leaves a lot to be desired. From the need for some cosmetic work in the lobby, to the very poor WiFi and shower issues, to the amenity fee, I was left a bit sour after my stay.
I don’t want to discount the decent breakfast and the comfortable room, but these aren’t enough to carry the rest of the hotel experience. If I head back to the Silicon Valley, I’ll be looking elsewhere. There are other standard Hyatt options in the vicinity. I do hope to try other Destination Hotels as Hyatt adds more.