A Taste of Wine Country in the Heart of Silicon Valley

For foodies and wine lovers, few things are as thrilling as uncovering a local gem to share with others. Life in the South Bay is hectic; we often daydream of escaping to Napa or Sonoma. So how wonderful to happen upon a soothing courtyard that echoes California wine country minus the two hour drive? Along the stretch of El Camino Real east of Stanford Campus is the latest boutique hotel from the Shashi Group, The Nest Palo Alto.

Ample parking gives way to a wide courtyard filled with multiple seating areas, mature olive trees and the genuine ambiance of a Napa Valley residence. Adjacent to the courtyard is the sleek hotel lobby and bar. The check-in desk doubles as the wine bar, giving a whole new meaning to the term hotel minibar! Both inside and out are ideal areas for gathering with friends or colleagues for a drink or a bite. The warm and welcoming space can easily accommodate a group work project or meeting as well as intimate dinners for two.


The cuisine, by Executive Chef Jim Carey, is an elegant riff on the California-Mediterranean lifestyle. Inspired by the sun and earth of these coastal regions as well as stints in such celebrated kitchens as Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s JG Grill at the St. Regis Hotel in Park City and Bick’s Broadview Grill in Seattle, Chef Carey has created an eclectic menu of artisanal flat bread pizzas, cheeses and charcuterie, simple garden salads and sharable sandwiches.


The Nest offers a vintage wine selection featuring varietals for every palate from adventurous neophyte to true connoisseur. Sample the best wines from California and around the globe, even just a two ounce mini taste (without having to spring for the whole bottle) via the hotel’s high-end wine dispensing system. The Wine Emotion dispenser keeps each bottle at just the right temperature and uses inert gas to prevent oxidation once the bottle has been opened. The scents and aromas that are paramount in the wine-tasting experience are perfectly preserved, glass after glass. And the curated beer list offers a wide range of California’s small-label craft brews including Iron Fist IPA, The Elemental Pilsner and Desert Swarm Amber Ale.


Fifty-four guest rooms offer extraordinarily comfortable pillow-top beds, ultra modern bathrooms featuring artisan Beekman 1802 toiletries, and dedicated tech-ready work spaces, creating an artful balance of comfort and function. State-of-the-art amenities include complimentary 100 Mbps Wi-Fi and a 55-inch LG flat screen television equipped with Apple TV. The Nest also offers a 15” in-room laptop safe to secure valuables and table-top charging stations on both sides of the bed. All necessary converters are available for international travelers as well.

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A 24-hour fitness center is equipped with Life Fitness Machines and The Nest also offers an eco-friendly alternative to getting around Palo Alto: bicycle rentals right at the front desk. The helpful front office team will happy provide guests with a personalized map of local trails canvassing the beautiful local landscape. The hotel’s convenient location allows visitors to quickly zip to local attractions such as Stanford Shopping Mall, Baylands Park and downtown Palo Alto. And the hotel’s European-style breakfast selection provides a nutritious start to the day with an emphasis on fresh, organic ingredients. In-season fruits, baked goods and protein-rich meats are available every weekday from 6:00 am to 10:00 am and on weekends from 7:00 am to 11:00 am. Morning coffee and newspapers are available in the lobby daily.

Evening, however, is when the ambiance truly comes alive. The courtyard’s intimate atmosphere is ideal for chatting around the two-sided fire pit or enjoying a glass of wine at the bar. The hotel even provides cozy throw blankets to help ward off the evening chill.

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Lobby photo courtesy of The Nest Palo Alto. All other photos by Kathryn Holland Besser.

NOTE: The Nest will be closed November 21-24 for a PG&E electrical grid upgrade.