The Best Hotels to Book in Berkeley, California

The Claremont Club & Spa is just one of many Berkeley stays that offer rest and relaxation
The Claremont Club & Spa is just one of many Berkeley stays that offer rest and relaxation | Courtesy of The Claremont Club & Spa, A Fairmont Hotel /
Photo of Nick Dauk
29 November 2021

It may be just a short drive away from San Francisco, but there are more reasons to stay at Berkeley than for visits to the city or the university. Bayside parks, biking trails, and unique museums specializing in film, anthropology, and paleontology line the streets. When you’re not sipping coffee by the water or shopping for souvenirs, a walk through the city’s historic neighborhoods and green spaces will make you wish you were a local. Stay in one of the best hotels in Berkeley and you’ll feel like one, too – all bookable via Culture Trip.

Claremont Club & Spa - A Fairmont Hotel, for a spa-studded stay

A double bed, seating and a television in a room at The Claremont Club & Spa
Courtesy of The Claremont Club & Spa / | Courtesy of The Claremont Club & Spa /
The true meaning of “California dreaming” can be unlocked with a little pampering at one of the best hotels in Berkeley: Claremont Club & Spa. The Fairmont Spa will steal every ounce of stress from your body, leaving you feeling lighter than air when you float in one of the three outdoor heated pools. Don’t leave your eyes out of the sensory experience – reserve a bay view suite and fall asleep as the skyline outside begins to awaken in the distance.

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Berkeley Marina, for waterfront finesse

A double bed in a room at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Berkeley Marina
Courtesy of DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Berkeley Marina /
We don’t know exactly why, but the free cookie DoubleTree gives out at check-in just tastes so much better when gazing out at the yachts in the marina. Right on the San Francisco Bay and ready to wow you with waterfront dining, DoubleTree delivers a quiet vacation near the city and the university. If for some reason you get your fill of the waterfront views, you can request a lovely courtyard suite with a patio built for relaxation.

Hotel Shattuck Plaza, for Golden Gate gazing

A large seating area in the bar at Hotel Shattuck Plaza
Courtesy of Hotel Shattuck Plaza /
Now that your UC Berkeley student is paying their own bills, spoil yourself when you visit them with a stay in Hotel Shattuck Plaza’s Presidential Suite. The views of the Golden Gate Bridge from this corner unit are worth every penny. The only time you won’t be standing on the balcony admiring the structure is when you’re having a nightcap in your jacuzzi bathtub. Feel free to brag to your undergrad about your private bathroom and bed as they tuck themselves into a four-person dorm room.

Graduate Berkeley, for students of life

A room with two double beds at Graduate Berkeley
Courtesy of Graduate Berkeley /
If you’re feeling a bit cheeky, you can tell your friends that you “graduated at Berkeley” when you stay at this collegiate-themed hotel. You can spin a yarn that boasts of your room’s view of the iconic Campanile clock tower and that your digs were basically beside Greek Row. Go on and on about waiting in the cafeteria line at Crossroads and how you were always fortunate that the second bed in your double-double room was basically empty the entire time you stayed.

La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Berkeley, for a wallet-friendly weekend

A double room with bed, deskchair and television at La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Berkeley
Courtesy of La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Berkeley /
Spend a night near the Berkeley Marina on a college student’s budget at La Quinta Inn. This basic abode is ideal for travelers planning to sleep, shower and speed out of the hotel as quickly as possible after a free breakfast. La Quinta doesn’t blame you for jolting out; its location near the Berkeley train station offers fast access to San Fran. If you do fancy a slower stay, feel free to dive into the outdoor pool before you leave.

Rose Garden Inn, for cottagey cuteness

A double bed with a red and silver patterned quilt at Rose Garden Inn
Courtesy of Rose Garden Inn /
Walk one mile away from UC Berkeley and you’ll be shocked to find the Rose Garden Inn in a charming historic neighborhood. Balcony rooms mean morning coffee with the summer breeze while the fireplace rooms are best reserved in the cooler months. No matter the forecast, a quiet sit in the inn’s garden will have you calling real estate agents in hopes that you can find a permanent place near this antique-filled B&B.

Aiden by Best Western @ Berkeley, for a Bay stay on a budget

Two double beds in a room with a large window at Aiden by Best Western @ Berkeley
Courtesy of Aiden by Best Western @ Berkeley /
Aiden by Best Western was seemingly built to comfort your budget. Affordable nightly rates so close to downtown mean not wasting a cent on gas. You won’t mind the stroll either; wake up in your queen bed and mosey down to cafes and restaurants in seconds. The Downtown Berkeley and North Berkeley subway stations are each within two-minute walk from the hotel if you want to venture farther than your trainers allow.

Residence Inn by Marriott Berkeley, for seeing the big picture

A suite at Residence Inn by Marriott Berkeley with separate bedroom and living space
Courtesy of Residence Inn by Marriott Berkeley /
A relaxing evening of film and art awaits you if you stay at Residence Inn. Your night begins when you rush up to your room to drop your luggage, playfully curious if your suite has bay or city views. Either way, the 12th-floor rooftop lounge will give you an eyeful (and mouthful) of Berkeley. When you’re ready to fill the rest of your night with culture, walk next door to the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.

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