Park James Hotel
Bay Area locals and travelers alike can rejoice at the 2018 opening of the Park James Hotel in Menlo Park, in the heart of Silicon Valley about 30 miles south of San Francisco
. For overnight guests, the 61-room luxury boutique hotel offers a homey yet high-tech experience: in rooms, find tablets that will cast your own Netflix or Hulu accounts to the television, or allow you to turn out the lights or lower the temperature without even getting out of bed. The well-stocked mini-fridge offers a wide selection of snacks, and business travelers in particular will appreciate the ample desk space. Design touches include high ceilings and wood floors, and the lobby, with its wall of orchids, is an Instagrammable delight. Guests can take the hotel’s location as a plus or a minus: located on a main street, it’s close to shops, eateries, and the train (allowing for easy, car-less access to San Francisco), but that means parking is a little trickier (overnight valet is $25) and the noise from the train or the traffic may bother light sleepers. A highlight of the hotel is its trendy restaurant, Oak & Violet, and outdoor courtyard, replete with heaters for the rare chilly Peninsula evening. On a Saturday night, expect to see area residents as well as guests enjoying cocktails and local, seasonal fare from a menu that changes three times a year (menu highlights include crispy, flavorful brussels sprouts, melt-in-your-mouth steak, and donut bread pudding). Regional purveyors feature heavily on the food menu, and the wine list reflects California’s renowned terroir.