Hilton San Jose Downtown, Hotel Review

We had a bad Hilton experience a few months back. It isn’t worth repeating and isn’t very blog worthy, however, we did get a free night certificate anywhere in the Hilton portfolio of hotels as compensation. Because Hilton is not our main hotel chain, we were perplexed on where and how to use it.

For our recent trip to Hawaii, we couldn’t find any decent upgrade space on Alaska out of Seattle. Because of that, we were forced to overnight in San Jose and then take the SJC-HNL flight in the morning. Our upgrade cleared without incident and we were riding high. The downside? We would need a hotel for the night. This seemed like the perfect opportunity to burn our free night certificate, given that midweek this hotel runs around $300/night.

We arrived fairly late to San Jose airport (around 930pm) and grabbed an uber to the airport. Thanks to their current promotion we got a $4 kickback on the way there and another kickback on the way back.

Once we got to the hotel, we were informed by a very nice gentleman at check in that we were upgraded to a suite. Our first night as a diamond member at Hilton so we’re 1 for 1 on upgrades!

We headed up to the room and opened the door… wow, this was a BIG suite. Just to the right when you entered was the kitchenette, including a coffee maker, small washing sink, fridge, microwave, and table for two.

Hilton San Jose Suite

Just down past the living room was a seating area with a kidney shaped couch and ridiculously low coffee table. Also, very interesting that they just threw the vacuum cleaner on top of the sofa. It looks really tacky, IMO.


Apparently we were given the accessible suite because this shower had more grab bars than a city bus. Perhaps they pulled too hard on one of those grab bars because the shower was coming out of the wall.


Grab on tight!

The bedroom was clean, crisp, and modern. It was also one of the more comfortable hotel beds that I’ve slept in. Most are so soft that you feel like the hotdog in a bun, but this one was firm and the sheets were packed in tight. Yessss pleeeeease.

Bedroom Design


The next morning we headed to the Executive Lounge. As a Diamond member you’re given access to the lounge. If you’re there at night (as their hours at 6a-8p) you can have evening hors d’ouevers, and in the morning you’ve got a full breakfast. The spread was OK, but what really impressed me was the freshly baked pastries brought in from a local bakery.

Executive Lounge


Was the hotel worth $350 a night? Hell no. Was it a great option if you’re in the area? Absolutely! The only reason that I would head back to the hotel is if someone else was paying OR I had another certificate. Although that bed was really comfortable…

Have you stayed at this hotel before? What was your experience?

Author: Jon Nickel-D'Andrea

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  1. I like SJ, so thanks for the review. What’s your method for finding upgrade space on Alaska?

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  2. It’s a passable hotel. I work right across the street from that property so the Hilton is often a crash pad if I have one of those times when I put in multiple 16 hour work days in a row and I just need to sleep close to the office. Nothing flashy but gets the job done and the service has always been solid.

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    • I could see that… you’re right. It does get the job done. Mind you, we weren’t expecting anything too red carpet so it worked 🙂

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  3. San Jose is not known for high value hotels… so I think you did well. And, yes freshly baked pastries make or break a high end hotel breakfast spread.

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