Comfortable 13 night (very long!) stay, fabulous location, very clean hotel, wonderfully convenient parking.
The hotel was a little tricky to find, google maps took us straight there from our hotel in Monterey down coast. But as the hotel is situated in the middle of Downtown, and it's low level (no high rise in Davis), you just don't see it driving past. As the hotel is directly amongst the restaurants and coffee shops, and consists of a small sign and a two door street corner entrance, it just doesn't look like a hotel. I guess when approaching a hotel you look for a large branding sign, or a carpark, DON'T as you won't see a large conspicuous sign and the car park is underground.
The car park entrance is to the side of the hotel, and is accessible by going down a ramp to the car park underneath the hotel on D street (across the road from the side of El Toro Bravo Mexican restaurant). There looks to be around 25 parking spaces. Be mindful about the height of your vehicle being to high to access the car park, most full size cars including SUV's will be fine, but I noticed a chap carrying bikes on the roof of his SUV, who had to remove the bikes before entering. Having stayed for 13 nights, I experienced no problems obtaining a parking space and I left in the morning and returned late afternoon on a daily basis. Weekends are a little busier than weekdays. The car park has a large elevator to take you to reception and also has convenient access to all the hotels three floors. I found the car park to be an excellent feature of this hotel. It makes life very easy, particularly in a town like Davis, which has restricted parking in many downtown areas.
At reception we received a lovely warm welcome from Briana and the hotels facilities were explained. We were also given plenty of advice and information about Davis.
The reception staff are all friendly, approachable and helpful. Briana particularly!
The hotel is right in the middle of downtown, if you want to be near everything, particularly the cafes, bars and restaurants, there is no better location in Davis, than this hotel. We were told that this is where the professors from EC Davis stay, so if you see anyone wandering around looking like Magnus Pyke, you'll know why!
EC Davis is a 15 minute walk (20 if you like a leisurely stroll). We walked down to the Arboretum daily, its a lovey place, plenty of birds, wildlife, flora and fauna in a peaceful relaxing location.
Sacramento downtown and the big mall is about 25 minutes drive.
I like wildlife photography and found Lake Solano county park, just past a town called Winters to be a good location for wildlife.
Davis has bus and rail connections, although we didn't use them.
We shopped and ate many times at the Davis Food Cooperative about half a mile walk from the hotel. They do great healthy food, much cheaper and better than the expensive and sometimes mediocre cafe and restaurants in Davis and they also provide outdoor seating and cutlery. The coop also have a wide range of very healthy organic products and a deli. It's fabulous food with lovely helpful staff.
Davis has many restaurants and cafes. We tried many, However, Burgers and Brew was always the busiest and consistently good, although not the choice for the health conscious, we used it occasionally. Cafe Bernard which is next door to the hotel also has good healthy food, but we found it quite expensive. Stir fry chicken noodle dish for two and one bottle of sparkling water to share came to $40.00, a lot for a simple evening meal for two. A two egg breakfast with bacon and two orange juice drinks came to $30. This is a good cafe with 'a la carte' prices. But the foods ok and it's next door.
We were given a choice of 3 king rooms on arrival. We had 7 days on the second floor, with a view onto the front of the hotel. However my wife found it a little noisy, so our second week was spent in a room at the rear of the hotel, not a great view, but a little less noisy. Noise didn't concern me, However, my wife is a light sleeper.
Bare in mind you are in the centre of the action, so town noise can be heard. Air conditioning fans are all over the hotels exterior and surrounding buildings, which generate noise. Additionally freight trains run right through the town all night! Honking their horn, reminiscent of an old western movie. You'll hear the train, for sure, unless you're a very heavy sleeper. Weekends can result in a little more town noise, usually revelling students or perhaps locals. The towns leaf blower operator also makes his regular rounds about 6.30 every morning except Sundays, which is a little early! I personally wasn't bothered by the noise at all. But bare it in mind, if you're a very light sleeper. They do supply earplugs on the bedside table. Noise shouldn't put you off, I only alert in case noise is a cause of anxiety or frustration to you.
The room is well equipped with two 32" big flat screen TV's one in the lounge area of the room and one in the main bedroom. US TV provided by Comcast, was not great. Surprisingly few channels and mostly advertising of useful products, then disclaimers that they'll make you chronically ill 😮 There is no "on demand" access to movies, which would have been nice.
Room facilities include: Iron and board, decent hairdryer, free toiletries, shoe shine kit, disposable shower cap, ice bucket, bottle opener and a very useful fridge. There are plenty of power points.
The room has air conditioning, which can be easily controlled. Bare in mind that in some rooms the fan is very close to the bed side.
Tea/coffee making is via a Keurig coffee machine. These feature in many California hotels. I personally don't like them, as the water doesn't taste right when boiled. Any coffee machine of this design is only as good as the cleaning it gets. I would much prefer a kettle.
However, bare in mind there is free Starbucks coffee (including decaf), hot chocolate and herbal teas and hot water by way of thermos flasks in reception at all times. We used the hot water from the flasks and made our own tea.
Reception also has a small shop with essentials. They also have free fruit for guests, mostly apples.
The room has a comfy large king bed and pillows. A sofa and tv area is also provided. The TV area is nice, it feels like you're going to bed, after watching TV. A nice alternative to watching TV in bed, which happens in most hotel rooms.
The room and bathroom are tastefully decorated, lots of lamps for mood lighting.
Good blackout blinds and net curtains were also provided and were very helpful. The window opens, and has a net to keep out bugs. We always like to leave a window open at night to allow fresh air to circulate and felt safe doing so.
A clock radio is also provided.
The hotel has a laundry service, but not dry cleaning. We used the laundry service once, drop off at reception before 9.00 am and pick up next day if you wish. It's reasonably priced excellent service, so don't pack too much, get it washed here!
There is an excellent dry cleaners a short walk away called Swanson's they offer a superb service. I put a white cotton shirt in that came back cleaner than I purchased it!
Fast and stable wifi is also provided. I found the wifi adequate for my needs. FaceTime to the UK and large jpeg uploads to Flickr worked fine. However, the wifi can be prone to dropping out for no reason. In addition I feel it may fluctuate from room to room. Our second room on the rear of the hotel, had a weaker signal, it hardly worked at all in the bedroom.
There is also a dressing table/desk area. The room was large, which makes staying in the room to chill and storage more tolerable.
Wardrobe space is good, hangers are provided.
There was no large safety deposit box in the room. I felt there was adequate space for one, and it would have been a valuable feature. The hotel has a safety deposit box at reception for guests to use. Although we didn't utilise it.
Food and drink:
Free water is provided in the rooms daily, as we're Keurig machine supplies.
The hotel has no food service. Although it is connected to the Cafe Bernard next door, who rent the space from the hotel.
Staff service the room daily, and replenish everything.
There is a small gym, which also houses an ice making machine.
There is no pool, hot tub or any outside seating/patio area.
In summary: it's a comfortable hotel in a superb location.
I was happy with the stay. It's a good hub to explore all of Davis. While I was out working in nearby Woodland, my wife remained in Davis through the day. She enjoyed it in the main, but felt the hotel lacked a guest outdoor seating area. Being alone through the day, she often sat in Central Park gardens and read her kindle. She did remark that she felt like the homeless persons who also use the park area seating through the day! The homeless weren't intimidating, but she sometimes felt uncomfortable when alone.
No hotel is ever perfect, and tastes do differ. However, I have high standards, particularly for a two week stop over. So I can safely say, I doubt you would be dissatisfied with your stay at the Palm Court hotel. You'll be fine here. less