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“Good value and location in Santa Monica”

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Cal Mar Hotel Suites
Ranked #27 of 36 Hotels in Santa Monica
Melbourne. Australia
Level Contributor
53 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Good value and location in Santa Monica”
Reviewed 25 April 2012

Our friends live in a small flat on Ocean Avenue and this was a great place to stay while visiting for a few days. The price was great and the location was ideal. It is a block away from both the beach (and the Fairmont resort!) and a block away from the 3rd street promenade shops.

Clean and comfortable bed. Kitchenette with coffee and fridge was also handy. No brekkie but very close to starbucks and supermarket etc so you can sort yourself out easily.

The front desk was also very helpful and organised a car rental for us at a great rate so that we could visit Disneyland.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank XtoA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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422 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (75)
Date | Rating
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English first
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Level Contributor
79 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2012

This is a great location, 1 minute walking to ocean or third street promenade. Pool is very nice and warm. Staff is very helpful and friendly. You have to pay for internet $10 per day and parking $15 per day but it is still a good deal considering the location. The hotel is extremely dated, think 50's but very clean and well kept up. It was the perfect place EXCEPT I was in one of the rooms that I have listed below to avoid. Reason being is these rooms all are on an alley with garbage trucks and delivery trucks coming at all hours. Garbage and deliveries started at 530 every morning-I kid you not even on the weekends!!!! At 3 am on a sunday, someone had a truck doing something.. This wouldnt be so bad if the windows were soundproof but guess what: Original windows from 50s which actually do not even latch shut and when they do it still seems as if they are open-the thinnest sheet of glass you can imagine. That being said, everything else was perfect. Nice and spacious for a family. Kitchen well stocked so you can have breakfast and make a meal if you want. No cheap grocery store nearby however. Pick up things at Ralphs before you come

Room Tip: Unless you want to be up all night, do not accept any of these rooms: 203-207 and 303-307
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mmtmrb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 April 2012 via mobile

Stayed here for three days location excellent one block from third st. Easy walk to beach. Rooms large and clean with kitchen. Pool was soooo warm children lived in it. Could be a little noisy at night but acceptable. Only niggle $9 for wi-fi not really on nowadays. Starbucks on corner of third has free wi-fi. We would definitely go back.

Stayed April 2012
Helpful?
Thank simon1151
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Hampshire
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2012

Overall, we enjoyed this retro hotel. We arrived late in the afternoon and were greeted by a very friendly, helpful staff. Check in process was a breeze. Found the suites to be spacious and, though somewhat dated, they are immaculate. The place was spotless and everything was in good working condition. Amenities: full kitchen (gas stove), full size fridge, toaster, microwave, 2 cup coffee maker (with coffee/tea provided), dish detergent, paper towels, 2 TVs, hair dryer, iron/ironing board, and body/hair wash dispensers near bathroom sink and in shower. Big bedroom, lots of closet space, very comfortable bed. Once in the room for a short while, the front desk called to make sure everything was alright. Shortly thereafter, a staff member knocked on the door with a vase of flowers. Staff was very responsive to any questions/requests we had. Internet is not actually through the hotel. It is through Netrisen for $12.50/day or $49.00/week. Log in was easy. Pay with a credit card. Had no problem with the internet all. Was able to get on line easily every time.
Very convenient location - a block south to 3rd St Promenade, 2 blocks north to Montana St with a number of small cafes/restaurants, 1 block west to the ocean. The area seems to be very safe and we had no issues walking around at night.
What others have said about the walls being thin is true. Could easily hear too much from the adjacent rooms as well as outside street noises. The only other thing I would classify as somewhat negative is the parking fee. It seems that when one is paying close to or over $200 per night, a $15.20 per day parking charge is a bit over the top. Overall, this was a nice place to stay and we would go back.

Room Tip: Second floor room toward the back may be a bit better for the noise issue.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank dez36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

As a couple traveling with a toddler (2 1/2 yrs) and a baby (6 months) we found the Cal Mar suited us very well. A spacious suite with its own kitchen and a bedroom separate to the loung meant that we could nap the children independently so they didn't wake each other up - very important. The pool looked inviting, though we ran out of time and didn't actually get to try it. Friendly and helpful staff. Great location - an easy walk to the shops, an excellent supermarket, the beach and pier. Car parking onsite. We'll definitely go there again.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Applemoth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 April 2012

Stayed here last Summer whilst my son was living their for 3 Months from the UK

Staff very friend;y and helpful. Very very good value for Santa Monica and in walking distance of 3rd street and beach etc. Car parking space. ~Rooms big and very clean. well stocked of all basics. I am a light sleeper and the noise kept me awake and woke me early morning Noise nothing to do with the Calmar is the streets next to it.. My son was happy there for 3 months as had everything he needed- good well stocked kitsch, dvd player, tea/coffee etc Pool area very good for Santa Monica- adequate sunbeds and towels. No tea/coffee available but machine for cold drinks.Starbucks a couple of mins away so not a problem!. If on a budget would definitely stay there again.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sue A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2012

We have completed our trip having had a wonderful time in Santa Monica.

We stayed at the Cal Mar Hotel located at 220 California Street, which is on the corner of 3rd and California Street. Although our room wasn’t ready upon our arrival ‘Holly’ was nice enough to inform us about the surroundings, and offered us a seat in their lovely pool area while waiting.

There are three carport areas surrounding this hotel which are open, you are free to choose which stall you wish and have… unlimited in/out privileges. We have a Tahoe and although it looks like clearance is low, we fit under with no problem. In the three days we spent there we never had an issue finding a spot to park. Parking was 13.82 per night plus tax 1.38 bringing daily parking to 15.20. Quite a bit more affordable than the 32. - 36. a day valet parking with limited in/out privileges we saw at other local hotels. This was a consideration for us since we were paying for two cars… bringing parking total alone just under 100. for the three days.

The area is residential, a bit away from the crowds. Quiet and safe.

As always I did extensive research before we left. Cal Mar is a refurbished apartment building offering a lot more space than conventional hotel rooms. A full kitchen completely supplied with silverware/dishes/pots and pans/etc. A dinning room table area and full living room with sleeper sofa. Two TVs. A separated bedroom with door, and a detached bathroom. We were given a choice of top or bottom floor, but recalling other posters comments of thin walls we chose top floor room 311. Top floor has carpeting. Bottom floor has hardwood floors. We were not disturbed by noise, and could never hear other patrons conversations unless they were walking by kitchen’s open window. The room is dated, carpet older, and if you look hard enough you will find wear-n-tear, so if you are accustomed to ‘high end’ comforts only… you might consider another place. BUT all things considered… it is clean and comfortable having everything you need in place, with location being their greatest plus.

Room rate was 249. plus 34.86 tax per night… totaling 283.86 each for a Friday night and a Saturday night, and 219. plus 30.66 tax... totaling 249.66 for a Sunday night. *This does not include parking charges. A hefty final total of 908.58 for a three day weekend March 23, 24, 25 including the parking of two vehicles for those three days.

Although we brought some supplies with us we did venture out to the well advertised Whole Foods store located two blocks away to buy perishables. Going down Third Street toward Promenade one block, and up one block on Wilshire Blvd. it was within easy walking distance. Be prepared… two small bags of breakfast and lunch items totaled 80.

Seeing OVO Cirque du Soleil show located at Santa Monica Pier was the highlight of our visit, which we all enjoyed very much. Seating was excellent… 659. for four. Parking was a nightmare! We left at 3pm for 4pm show thinking it was just down the street, not a problem. HA! Traffic and walking people jams everywhere. All parking areas were full but one, which took your vehicle to another spot leaving you with a little piece of paper and directions to go to ‘pink building’ across the street to retrieve your vehicle. A word to the wise LEAVE EARLY to avoid this as your only choice to park! These people were ‘very rude’ and young guys were seen racing around enclosed parking garage with other people’s fancy cars. One family was disputing damage to their auto as we were leaving. Parking cost: 24. for a few hours.

Ate a nice dinner at Marisol’s at end of Santa Monica Pier after OVO show. Good Mexican food with Mariachi band going from table to table singing requests. Place was packed! Service was good. Fancy drinks were great. Cost: Just under 100. for four adults.

Also, all took Ferris Wheel ride to finish off our evening.

There is an older man who paints with oils using only his fingernail, located around the pier. He wishes to remain unnamed for whatever reason. His work is ‘phenomenally beautiful’ and he will paint anything you request. He lets you set the price.

SMOKING
Cal Mar Hotel allows smoking around pool patio area, and they have chairs with a little table outside each room with an ashtray for smokers. Additionally our room 311 was a smoking room and smoking was allowed inside. For a considerate smoker - smoking wasn’t an issue at all in Santa Monica, and we did see people smoking while walking down the streets. Other hotels which allow smoking:
Holiday Inn (designated areas)
Doubletree (designated areas)

We have traveled the US extensively, as well as the world to such places as England and India, but the level of homeless people in Santa Monica was quite disturbing to our daughter… she believes this issue should take precedence in being addressed over any other public issues Santa Monica may view as important.

Husband thought bed was hard and uncomfortable. Daughter and fiancé thought sleeper sofa was uncomfortable.

All in all... had a wonderful time!

Room Tip: 311 if you are a smoker
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank baylover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cal Mar Hotel Suites

Property: Cal Mar Hotel Suites
Address: 220 California Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90403-3606
Region: United States > California > Santa Monica > Santa Monica
Amenities:
Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#19 Business Hotel in Santa Monica
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Cal Mar Hotel Suites 3*
Number of rooms: 36
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Also Known As:
Cal Mar Hotel Santa Monica
Cal Mar Santa Monica

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