Posted by Ric Garrido

Santa Monica is the beach city of Los Angeles about eight to ten miles and 15 minutes or 45 minutes or an hour from Beverly Hills or West Hollywood or LAX airport, depending on traffic.

I stopped by the Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica on my last trip to Southern California. I had not posted about the visit before. Today I came across a review of the Sheraton Delfina hotel in the New York Times.

The first line of the review, “Rooms from $260.”  is sufficient deterrent to my hotel stay plans. Fortunately there are better deals to be found at this SPG category 5 hotel. Cash & Points for $110 + 6,000 points can be quite a savings on spending 12,000 or 16,000 points per night or lots of cash.

This week’s rates are over $400 per night (before tax) for an ocean view room. AAA discount brings the rate for an ocean view room down to $369. The room available for 16,000 points is not an ocean view room.

That is one expensive hotel room.

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Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica.

The day I visited Santa Monica in late April 2013 was overcast with high fog and clouds over the beach and city. The fog had been so heavy driving Pacific Coast Highway 1 through Malibu that my windshield wipers were set to regular speed.

Santa Monica is a place where weekend travel in summer can mean 30 minutes crawling through town to find a parking space as thousands of beach visitors crowd the city.

Sheraton Delfina is several blocks off the beach and across the street from Santa Monica High School.

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The hotel lobby and lounge were empty on a foggy Wednesday when I visited.

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Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica lobby.

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Hotel bar in open space lobby. Doors to pool are seen on left.

“The bar has tiers of glass shelves backed by a clear glass window, which allows natural light to stream through the nearly 200 bottles and give them a warm glow.” are the kinds of sentences that keep my hotel reviews out of the NYT.

I’ll tell you that the bar had 4-7pm Happy Hour Daily Specials like $3 domestic beer and $9 for three beef sliders on Monday or $7 margaritas and $7 fish tacos on Saturday.

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Restaurant/bar seating in lobby.

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Another lobby view to the front doors of the hotel.

The outside pool is accessed through doors adjacent to the bar.

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The pool is not that large for a 310-room hotel in a beach town.

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Another angle.

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And another angle showing the bar window in background.

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Ocean view rooms with patio seen from pool deck.

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Poolside Sheraton Club. Fitness center is also located off pool deck.

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There are nice touches at the hotel like tables with wooden legs that look like beach driftwood design.

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This hotel used to be one of the bargain Starwood Hotels for weeknight stays, but these days the allure of a beach city in Los Angeles keeps the rates sky high nearly all the time. The price is beyond my comfort zone.

There are hotels right on the beach in many southern California locations including Santa Monica, like historic Casa Del Mar with a view of the Santa Monica Pier. Rates at Casa del Mar or adjacent Shutters at the Beach price in the $500 to $600 range.

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Casa Del Mar is situated directly adjacent to the Santa Monica beach.

Like my home base in Monterey, the California coastal weather can be gorgeous and warm in mid-winter and hotel rates can be found at half the price of summer. That is my recommendation if being at the beach and not in the Pacific Ocean water is more your vacation style.

Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica is located in a historic California beach city, but the hotel is not on the beach. The hotel is about a ten minute walk from the beach. The best point is Starpoints can get you into the Sheraton Delfina hotel without needing to spend a lot of cash.

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Sheraton Delfina entry drive seating and heat lamps.

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Cyclist on Santa Monica Beach.

I have not stayed at the Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica. This was just a drop-by visit while I was in town for the day before heading farther south to Disneyland in April 2013.

Have you stayed at Sheraton Delfina? What was your experience and opinion of the hotel?

 

Ric Garrido, writer and owner of Loyalty Traveler, shares news and views on hotels, hotel loyalty programs and vacation destinations for frequent guests.

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5 Responses

  1. I have stayed at the Sheraton Delfina multiple times. I’ve never been really happy with any of my stays. One thing to keep in mind is that in general Santa Monica hotel prices are outrageously high for what you get. So if you have to stay in Santa Monica expect to pay exorbitant prices and likely be disappointed at what you get for the money.

    Specifically regarding the Sheraton, the location is really rather poor for being in Santa Monica. Most of the pricey hotels are either along the beach (like the Loews, Casa del Mar and Shutters), or else closer to downtown and the pier. The Sheraton is reasonably far from the beach, and even farther from downtown – almost too far to walk.

    Second, it’s clearly an older building, and it’s also clear that the remodel to make it into a Sheraton was done on the cheap – slap a coat of paint on everything, and try to minimize spending on HVAC and bathrooms. It doesn’t feel high quality and things don’t always work properly. At the price points, I would generally expect a better experience.

    Then why have I stayed multiple times? LA traffic meant I needed to stay in/near Santa Monica and I can save a few hundred dollars vs. the nicer places. But note that there is a Ritz Carlton 10 minutes away in Marina del Rey which can often be had for a similar price, and if you have a car, you can easily head to Santa Monica.

  2. that’s an expensive hotel even on spg points. From the pictures and Carl’s comments I think I’ll pass on this hotel. Was looking at it for an upcoming stay. The W westwood looks better.

    LA is a difficult hotel market. Rates are not cheap but not high enough to justify the high points rates. Dec. should be low season so I might just priceline.

    Comment by andreas on July 17th, 2013 at 8:06 pm
  3. After reading mixed reviews I decided to give this property a try a few years ago. Big mistake. The place needs major help regarding the physical plant, service, housekeeping. Also, agree… terrible location… and pricey. I won’t be back.

  4. Carls assessment is spot on
    The property is wildly overpriced for lipstick on a pig
    Its Starwood and the property gouging the public
    Having said that it would make a nice 199 per night property at best
    Unfortunately the owners think they are selling rooms at the Peninsula in Beverly Hills.
    its a ratty old holiday Inn now trying to be converted into a Le Meridien.Good luck
    It made more sense as a 4 Points property at least from the value perspective

    Comment by D Wonderment on July 26th, 2013 at 11:31 pm
  5. This is the worst Starwood property I have ever stayed at. I was suppose to do 5 nights here in 2009… The first room didn’t have a working A/C, Second room had a defective tv, and the third room… Someone had clearly smoked in the third room. To make this all worse, the front desk manager called me a liar and picky, until she went to the room and verified the horrid cigarette smoke. Needless to say we moved to the W Westwood for the entire stay (I love that hotel)! I’ve been an SPG Platinum since 2007 and I have never complained, nor experienced something like this place. One word AVOID.

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