Hotel Review: Hyatt Place Pasadena

We booked a stay using our free night with our Chase Hyatt credit card. We had an option to go all the way to San Diego, but this holiday season had been quite busy that we just needed a staycation and opted to drive no more than one hour from home. The Hyatt Place in Pasadena was our choice.

Why Pasadena?

We’ve always liked the vibe of the area. There are lots of outdoor stores, restaurants, and shops to visit. While we had no particular items to shop for, it was great to have the option to browse and hop from one store to the next.

Check-in Process

We arrived at the Hyatt Place shortly after 2pm. I didn’t realize how close it was to Colorado Blvd (where many of the shops and restaurants were located). It was also very near the Pasadena Auditorium. I remember watching Les Miserables in that theatre for the very first time in the early 90’s.


I didn’t know what to expect. I had this idea that it was just a teeny weeny little Hyatt somewhere in Pasadena. But to my surprise, it was a large hotel, with a drive up entry, underground parking, and very spacious lobby.


Alma and Paola assisted me during the check in process. I had booked a room with two double beds (thinking we’d have some of the kids with us. But since it was just me and Nancy, we were given a King Room with sofa bed, and a balcony. Their keycard machine was not working at the time, so we had to be escorted to our room.

I learned that this Hyatt Place in Pasadena just opened in December 2018, and at the time of our check in, they were just two days away from their first year anniversary.

What you need to know

Cost of our stay – we used our FREE night as offered by our World of Hyatt Card. If we paid cash, it would cost us $224 plus taxes (close to $260). If we used points, this Category 3 Hotel costs 12,000 points.

Image courtesy of Hyatt

Complimentary Hot Breakfast – we are World of Hyatt members, we booked online, and we were given two free hot breakfast.

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Onsite Parking – the cost to park onsite was $24 (with in and out privilege). As an alternative, you can park directly across the street (a parking structure), and pay $9. That’s what we did. It worked out well for us. The parking across the street offered free electric vehicle charging, perfect for our Tesla.


City of Pasadena Parking Structure right across the street

Swimming Pool & Gym – both were located onsite. I didn’t get to try them but it’s good to know they’re available for us.

Walking distance to many shopping and dining amenities – once you get out of the hotel, you are within a few blocks of many, many shops. I’m a foodie and focused on anything and everything that’s Japanese. We went to Motto Cafe for Japanese Fluffy Pancakes, Ramen Tatsunoya, and Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ – it was an evening loaded with lots of strolling around Colorado Blvd.

Our room

As I mentioned earlier, we were given a King Room (corner room with pool view, and a balcony). You could really tell that the hotel was still new. The room was in tip top shop. Typical features included:

  • TV
  • Alarm Clock
  • Coffee Maker
  • Safe
  • Office desk space
  • Sofa bed

Other things worth noting? At 3pm, the hotel served chocolate chip cookies, coffee, and tea. This was located near the front desk. They also have a happy hour were the drinks and appetizers were at a discount, I believe it was half-off. I didn’t get to try this. The lobby was extremely roomy. There was a big workspace for anyone to do some last-minute work. I also saw a printer available for use.

Overall impression

I have to say that the staff made a big difference. Although there was an issue with the keycard machine, the staff (Alberto, Talin, and Paola) made an effort to walk us to our and show us the pool area (which was only accessible via a keycard. They made sure to take care of us during the time when we couldn’t get our keys. The situation was fixed within a couple of hours.

Anyone staying here would be glad to know that there are lots of of shopping and restaurants down Colorado Blvd. It’s also very close to Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena Playhouse, and Pasadena Auditorium. I would stay here again, perhaps find a way to book here in time for the Rose Parade.

How you could you stay here for free

There are many credit cards out there. For this particular stay at the Hyatt Place, we used our FREE night, a perk of the World of Hyatt by Chase. This was the card that got us FREE rooms:

  • Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome
  • Park Hyatt Paris
  • Park Hyatt Sydney
  • Park Hyatt New York
  • Hyatt Regency Mission Bay
  • Presidential Suite upgrade at the Grand Hyatt Washington DC

What you need to know about this World of Hyatt card

  • Annual Fee – $95 Annual Fee.
  • Earn up to 50,000 Bonus PointsEarn the first 25,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
    • Earn an additional 25,000 Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 total on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening
      • That’s up to 50,000 Bonus points – enough for 10 free nights at Category 1 hotels or 2 free nights at Category 7 hotel
      • Get a free night every anniversary year at any Hyatt that is between Category 1-4.

This one is a keeper for me. Earn an extra free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year.

To apply for World of Hyatt card, click here.

We have many other cards that we use to help supplement our travels. The points earned with Chase have been my favorite for many years. These Ultimate Rewards points could be used with different partner airlines (see below), hotel, car rentals. Here are the Chase Cards that I, myself, use on a regular basis which can earn you these Ultimate Rewards.The cards listed below also offers flexibility in transferring to other airlines and hotels (see below).

a. Chase Sapphire Preferred (click here)– earn 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards.  

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a perfect starter card. With its current 60,000 bonus points, those points alone have gotten us two tickets to Hawaii, have gotten us to many countries and cities in Europe and Asia, just as an example. The sign up bonus alone can be worth as much as $1,000 or more in travel.

– 60,000 Ultimate Rewards sign up bonus after $4,000 in spend in the first three months
– Points are transferable to:

  • Hotel Partners
    • Hyatt
    • Marriott
    • IHG
    • Ritz-Carlton
  • Airline travel partners
    • JetBlue
    • United Airlines
    • British Airways
    • Southwest Airlines
    • Singapore Airlines
    • Flying Blue
    • Virgin Atlantic
    • Aer Lingus
    • Iberia

– Points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal
– Primary rental car collision damage waiver
– Earn 2X points on all travel and dining
– $95 annual fee

If I were just starting out in earning miles and points, I suggest starting out with this card,  the Chase Sapphire Preferred

b. Chase Sapphire Reserve – earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards (I don’t have an active link at the time this was published, feel free to search on the net for a recent link, or check with me). Here’s a write up that I wrote on both Sapphire cards.

c. Chase Ink Business Preferred– earn 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards, perfect for those with small business.

I value my points earned with Chase. Here’s a write-up I wrote last year as to how we travel for nearly free (click here) with points earned with these credit cards.

For other cards that have helped us travel for nearly free, I recently I updated my favorite travel credit cards. I’ve also written this recently:

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Lastly, here Reader Success Tales that I featured on my site.



Author: Jason

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