San Francisco Bay view with sofa, coffee table, cheese plate, bottle of French wine & wine glasses await hotel guests.

In planning a trip to Berkeley, California images of hippies, peace signs and student life at UC Berkeley come to mind. Yet there is so much more to Berkeley than the sweet smell of marijuana, incense and Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto wafting in the air. If you want to be camped in the center of the action when you explore this beatnik city, stay at Hotel Shattuck Plaza when you visit Berkeley, California. The price is right and the location next to the campus can’t be beat.

Check out my YouTube video of Hotel Shattuck Plaza hotel review

 

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Hotel Shattuck Plaza when you visit Berkeley

With San Francisco Bay views and the perfect downtown Berkeley location, this 1910 family-friendly hotel is a great fit for UC Berkeley parents, alumni and visitors to Berkeley. I was invited to the historic property to see the recent renovations and dine at Zino, a mediterranean-inspired restaurant. A stay in the Shattuck Bayside suite brought back fond memories for me, as our daughter attended UC Berkeley and many sporting events at California Memorial Stadium.

Of course, my husband and I have watched our share of music concerts at the Greek Theater, including the late Tom Petty. There are so many things to see and do in Berkeley. Hotel Shattuck doesn’t have a pool on site, but if you need more exercise than walking the streets of Berkeley or you are interested in a spa day, the Claremont Hotel is nearby and offers day passes to the pool.

A crystal chandelier suspends from the ceiling at the Hotel Shattuck Plaza.

Enjoy a cocktail under a crystal chandelier when you visit Berkeley. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

We had never stayed at the Hotel Shattuck Plaza but were impressed with the recent renovations on the 199 room property. The hallways are brighter, with new carpet and paint, but the classic touches such as the stunning crystal chandelier in the lobby bar with its long blue sofa and oval cocktail tables are where you’ll find the locals. I’m told the happy hour is quite good. It takes place Monday – Friday from 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Personally, my happy hour starts with room service.

Cheese, crackers, strawberries, olives, nuts and honey are served on a plate, along with a French bottle of red wine at Hotel Shattuck Plaza.

Room service photo © Nancy D. Brown

National Register of Historic Places

The Hotel Shattuck Plaza is on the National Register of Historic Places and is actually older than the Claremont Hotel. Taking up an entire city block, the 5 story Mediterranean Renaissance Revival style building was designed by architect Benjamin McDougall,  The historic hotel combines old-world elegance with modern conveniences. It’s also safe. I appreciated that the elevator required a key card to start for extra security. The hallways were well lit and the rooms well-sound proofed.

No two guest rooms are alike in the hotel. I stayed in room #510, the Shattuck Bay Suite. Composed of two rooms, the living room looked out to the San Francisco Bay and the bedroom featured a king bed with a separate shower/tub bathroom. Each room included flat screen HDTVs, complimentary WiFi, hairdryer, robe and slippers, in room safe and Essential Elements bath amenities. It also included a Keurig coffee maker and complimentary bottles of water.

King bed with floral pillow and headboard at Bay Suite in Hotel Shattuck Plaza.

Two-room Bay Suite photo © Nancy D. Brown

Zino restaurant

After a day of wondering around Berkeley it was time for dinner. Zino lounge offers wines, local craft beers and cocktails inspired by the Mediterranean. Zino restaurant features Mediterranean cuisine. We started off our dinner sharing the Dungeness Crab Louie, with plenty of chunks of crab meat and creamy avocado, perched on a bed of butter lettuce. I ordered the perfectly cooked New York strip steak with baby carrots, cipollini onions and pressed potatoes, while my husband enjoyed the pickled ramp crusted halibut with fresh asparagus, morels and English peas.

Hotel Shattuck Plaza dessert gets rave review

My husband finished with the chocolate tart, topped with Turkish coffee gelato. I, however, was highly encouraged from a neighboring diner to order the butterscotch pudding with almond financier. She and her husband were staying at the hotel for three nights and she couldn’t stop raving about the pudding. Perhaps she should write the Hotel Shattuck Plaza review? I’m glad that I took her advice. Order the pudding!

“If you like butterscotch pudding, this is the best I’ve ever tasted,” said a hotel guest visiting from Florida.

Breakfast is served at Zino or may be ordered through room service.

 

Dungeness Crab Louie with avocado, tomatoes, cucumbers on a bed of baby lettuce at ZINO restaurant.

Dungeness Crab Louie from ZINO restaurant. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

Need to know:

Room categories include deluxe double, deluxe king, business class and suites. Rates range from $225 – $300 depending on availability. Always check the website for current pricing and specials. The hotel offers guests an AAA discount.

There is no parking offered on-site. Secured parking garage available across the street. If you are arriving on a Saturday, note that Sunday street parking is free!

All rooms are pet-friendly, accepting both dogs and cats. Dogs must under 60 pounds. So much for bringing our Labrador Retriever. Cats are provided with a food dish, litter box (with litter) cat bed and a scratch pad.

Dog dish, dog bed and a kennel or crate with bedding are provided. Three different kennel sizes are offered depending on the weight of the dog.

One pet is allowed per room with a $75 deposit required. Ten dollars of the deposit will be donated to the Berkeley Humane Society.

Check in: 3:00 p.m.

Check out: 12:00 p.m.

Zino lounge photo © Nancy D. Brown

 

Insider tip:

Hotel Shattuck Plaza is conveniently located around the corner from Downtown Berkeley BART; ideal for visitors traveling from San Francisco International Airport or Oakland International Airport. The hotel is a few blocks to UC Berkeley, Zellerbach Hall, the Greek Theater, Fox Theater and Berkeley Rep Theater. For additional insider tips follow luxury travel writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter or Instagram @Nancydbrown and Hotel Shattuck Plaza on Instagram.

Flags of the United States, California and UC Berkeley hang from the front entrance of Hotel Shattuck Plaza.

On the National Register of Historic Places. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

If You Go:

Hotel Shattuck Plaza (510) 845-7300 [email protected]

2086 Allston Way

Berkeley, California 94704

Hotel Shattuck Plaza review, YouTube video and all photography by travel writer Nancy D. Brown. Note: thank you to Hotel Shattuck Plaza for your hospitality. All views above are, as always, my own.