EDITOR'S NOTE: Patch paid for the room. Editor Sarah de Crescenzo went undercover --literally -- the very first night the Residence Inn opened to give you this report.
, the Residence Inn in San Juan Capistrano has three floors with a total of 130 suites. Visitors appear to be mainly business travelers and families, who come into town for an extended stay. The lobby has area to mingle with other guests, as well as decorative brick floors that extend into the elevators. Staff was friendly and attentive.
The hotel is a few miles south of downtown San Juan, at 33711 Camino Capistrano, at the intersection of Camino Capistrano and Stonehill Drive. Traveling west of the hotel will get you to Dana Point within minutes, even on foot. The hotel is about 1 mile from the coast.
My boyfriend and I stayed in the smallest studio offered on the top floor of the hotel, which cost $159 (before taxes). The room was pristine—especially so since we visited the first night it opened—and included a kitchen, living area, work desk, king-size bed and bathroom.
Decor in the room was nature-inspired, from prints of palm trees mirroring those visible from our window to artsy pillows printed with leaves. Our bed was roomy, comfortable and accompanied by a slew of plush pillows. Wired and wireless Internet connections were available. While the room had shades that shut out the light completely, sound insulation wasn't perfect as we could hear vehicles driving past on Camino Capistrano and Stonehill Drive. No sounds reached us from nearby rooms, however.
In the kitchen, we found everything you'd need to make a meal (minus the food); utensils, a coffee maker, paper towels, plates, bowls. A buttery surprise—a bag of popcorn—was tucked in with the coffee packets stored on top of the small, rectangular table near the refrigerator. We snacked on it while browsing the television positioned at the foot of the bed, between the sleeping and work/ living areas.
Our bathroom had a glass-enclosed shower and toilet, with the sink and mirror in a small hallway linking the bathroom and bed area. The large shower head had a generous spray, with multiple settings, and shot forth hot water almost immediately. Towels were soft and plentiful. Bath products provided—soap, lotion, shampoo and conditioner—were Davies Gate brand. A hair dryer was tucked in a drawer under the sink.
A complimentary buffet is available each morning, though if you're staying for the weekend or longer there's the option of taking advantage of the kitchen in your suite. Next to the check-in desk, an assortment of refrigerated foods and drinks are available for purchase from an area dubbed "The Market." During warm weather, guests can sit outside by the pool or play in a sport court, or on a small putting green. A circle of chairs surround a fire pit in the same area, overlooking a .
The Residence Inn is comfortable and welcoming. Families will enjoy relaxing in the spacious suites and using the kitchen's amenities. Its proximity to downtown San Juan means that visiting the during the day, then swinging by for dinner, is an easy (and recommended) proposition.
Residence Inn, 33711 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675; (949) 443-3600