USA: Hotel de Anza, San Jose, California

Rhodri Marsden
02 November 2016

It may be in the city’s business district but thanks to its Art Deco heritage, this boutique number stands out from the crowd. Jazz hands at the ready, says Rhodri Marsden

With its huge neon sign standing proud on the roof and striking Zigzag Moderne Art Deco exterior, the De Anza is hard to miss. Set in San Jose’s palm tree-lined central business district, this hotel feels as far away from a corporate establishment as it’s possible to be. For starters, there’s the 25-foot painting of a diving lady on the outside wall (she was originally painted to promote the hotel’s heated pool, which has long gone but the ‘De Anza Dame’ remains).

Thanks to a recent refurbishment, the interior decor has more than a few nods towards the Roaring Twenties, when this hotel was originally conceived. The beautiful hand-painted ceiling of the Hedley Club Lounge is a faithful reproduction of the original; it’s here we find a well-heeled crowd sipping cocktails and toe-tapping to the decent live jazz. The 100 rooms pay further homage to the era with pieces of deco-style furniture and rich purple, silver and cream furnishings.

Not emulating the Art Deco vibe, perhaps because it was a later addition to the hotel, is Italian eatery La Pastaia where diners feast on everything from pizzas to big bowls of pasta, all washed down with an award-winning wine list.

If you’re still feeling peckish (doubtful, but you might) take advantage of the hotel’s Midnight Snack Box programme: hungry guests can head to the front desk in the wee small hours where they will receive a box of nibbles, all complimentary. Which brings me on to the service. It is exemplary. The front desk is always happy to go the extra mile and, with the lack of parking in the area and valet effectively mandatory, the service is super-swift and efficient.

The hotel is near the SAP Centre, where you can see a host of big name music concerts or catch the San Jose Sharks in action.

It also offers swift access to both the airport and Route 101, effectively the backbone of Silicon Valley.

A mere stroll away is the lively San Pedro district with its restaurants, outdoor cinema and farmers’ market.

Breakfast service at La Pastaia is jolly but can be slightly erratic and slow; on our visit, several items were unavailable from the (already small) menu.

A uniquely stylish base, which is ideally located for exploring San Jose and Silicon Valley. And it’s good value, too.

A double room starts from £104 per night. Hotel De Anza, 233 W Santa Clara Street, San Jose, CA 91553 (+408 286 1000;