on November 9, 2006
Hidden away behind residential housing sits the Hayes Mansion, a California historic site. This beautiful, two-storey, white mansion acts as a full-service conference center. Our company decided to hold its annual conference in San Jose for its proximity to the Silicon Valley. Hot and reminiscent of a typical, unassuming suburban community, San Jose does not seem to offer much in terms of unique, luxury resort destinations. However, the Hayes Mansion compensates, with character to spare.The actual mansion, with over twenty rooms, serves as the meeting center, complete with break out areas and a business center. It also houses the main dining room, the Silver Creek Dining Room, as well as the gym and spa. A swimming pool adorns the grounds, along with manicured gardens. Behind the parking lot lies a fenced in lot with tennis courts and a children’s playground. This area needs some attention as it resembles an overlooked campground, and does not blend in well with the well-tended grounds of the mansion itself.I found my room in the main ballroom building. Two buildings adjacent to the mansion provide well-appointed guest rooms for conference attendees. While the noise from the ballroom below permeated the lobby, the rooms’ insulation protected my sensitive ears from the revelry. Request a room on the third floor to avoid the footsteps overhead. However, on the second floor, I barely heard much stomping from above.A comfortable king sized bed greeted me upon my entry, as well as a small alcove with a coffee maker to the right of the doorway. A refrigerator would come in handy for all of the leftovers that I planned to accumulate. The bathroom, clean and bright, featured a large enough tub for soaking after a long day of meetings. The hotel provided Internet access. However, the connection did not work properly and jammed up my laptop. I opted to use the business center instead. Beware of the complicated room connections.After our meetings, my need to work off the calories I ingested during the lavish meals propelled me to the gym. The size of the facilities impressed me. I hopped onto an elliptical trainer and proceeded to work my way through 40 minutes of cardio agony.The Spa At Hayes Mansion connects to the gym through the restrooms. Inside, a quiet room, complete with lush fabrics and exotic accessories, invites spa guests to wait for their treatments. I also found the sauna and steam room in the restroom. I recommend this property to anyone planning a conference. Brace yourself for the cost. The Hayes Mansion does a superb job of hosting business events but the price will overwhelm those who do not expect it. While it might not be appropriate to say that I was pampered during a business trip, I must admit that the Hayes Mansion provided for my every need during my stay. Just don’t tell my boss of the Hayes Mansion’s attributes. He might get the idea that I didn’t work.
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