Try Something Different in Silicon Valley….


Silicon Valley has become synonymous with achievement, prestige and wealth. The area located at the south of the Bay Area is home to some of the most valuable brands in technology—Apple, Google, Facebook all reside in the cities that comprise Silicon Valley. Some of our most brilliant minds, which are responsible for ushering us into the 21st century, live and work in the area. 

Located just under 30 miles south of San Francisco, Redwood City is a scenic and clean suburb which boasts one of the world’s best climates (honestly, the city’s motto is “Climate Best by Government Test,” a distinction determined by a U.S. climatological survey after WWI and a good destination for young families who work in the technology field.

La Casita Chilanga is an example of Mexican food done right, but instead of focusing on the usual fare—burritos, tacos, etc. (Although those are not ignored)—this joint places its authentic tortas, the Mexican sandwich. Customers love the huge portions; each sandwich is roughly the size of a hardcover book and can easily feed two adults. The staple ingredients for these tasty treats includes avocado, tomatoes, cheese, jalapeños and spicy aioli, but specialty sandwiches involve a variety of meats. Ever wanted a pork leg on your torta? La Casita Chilanga is the place to try it. Plus, just because the restaurant is located in one of the most affluent parts of Silicon Valley doesn’t mean customers have to pay exorbitant prices—hungry patrons pay between $3.50 and $5.50 for main entrées.

Another quaint city in Silicon Valley is Campbell. Although the tech-influence isn’t as prominent as other cities in the area, Campbell is the birthplace of eBay and its founder, Pierre Omidyar. These days, the Pruneyard Shopping Center remains one of the city’s main attractions—a massive outdoor retail center that also serves as the home for the South Bay division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Orchard City Kitchen has been named one of the area’s best new restaurants by various publications and boasts an eclectic menu. The food is distinctly American with a twist; how else does one describe beet home-fries or lobster dumplings? The tater-tot poutine is also a fan-favorite. The cocktail menu is the product of very talented bartenders. Each dish is big enough to share, which makes this an ideal destination for a romantic date, although you may do better by ordering a bunch of tiny plates to try more of OCK’s selection.

Palo Alto has many claims to fame. Leland Stanford Sr. founded the city when he established Stanford University, one of America’s most prestigious schools. Now, it is the home to many high-powered tech companies, including Hewlett-Packard, Skype and Tesla Motors. Facebook and Google also have campuses in Palo Alto.

Tamarine caters to the prestige found in this part of Silicon Valley. The established Vietnamese restaurant has offered classy dining for decades, giving patrons the feeling of walking into old-fashioned Manhattan restaurant. The relaxed and elegant atmosphere stands in welcome contrast to the go-go-go hustle that has come to define the technology industry. Customers should expect to spend between $30 and $60 a plate, but with options that include a Lemon-grass Sea Bass coated in garlic, the price is worth it. The shaking beef sautéed with soy, garlic and onions will also make you forget about your wallet. Simply, Tamarine is old-world flavor served with contemporary class and an attention to luxury.

When people think of Silicon Valley, San Jose is probably what they’re thinking about. As the third largest city in California in terms of population, it has rightfully earned its title as “the capital of Silicon Valley.” Multiple tech companies have headquarters in San Jose, such as IBM, Adobe and Cisco Systems.

As with any large city, there are going to be many dining options, but Le Papillon stands out. The French steakhouse specializes in indulgent cuts of meat: Pan roasted beef tenderloin, braised duck breast, and slow poached lobster are just some of the delicacies that adorn the menu. This isn’t just a treat for carnivores—snap pea soup with shiitake mushrooms is a favorite, as well as the peach hibiscus gazpacho. Perhaps the most extravagant restaurant on this list, a dinner at Le Papillon is a fine-dining experience that everyone should try at least once.

Mountain View earns its name by its proximity to the beautiful Santa Cruz Mountains. This scenery serves as both a backdrop and inspiration for the hard work that goes on at companies like Google, Intuit and Mozilla. Certainly, if you want to be mountainous in your aspirations, you need a visual guide to follow.

But it’s not all work in Mountain View, as patrons of the easy-going Steins Beer Garden can attest to. The massive gastropub offers over 31 beers on tap—many of which are delectable micro-brews from across the country. Bratwurst corn dogs, summer squash and corn are all make for a low-key and delicious dining experience. Plus, the outdoor patio area is straight out of a German beer garden and offers customers a chance to chill in the sun while they drink a frosty beer.


Top Five Secret Spots in San Diego

If you’ve recently moved to the San Diego area for a new job, school or an internship, you’ll want to stop sightseeing like a tourist and start living like a local. Get off the beaten path and discover a whole new world of possibilities with the best secret spots in San Diego. From hush-hush restaurants to the underground art scene, we’ve compiled a list of everything to do and see in the San Diego area that’s not on every tourist’s to-do list.

#5. Cave Swimming at Luscomb’s Point – Have you ever dreamed of taking a dip in a gorgeous coastal cave? Well now you can at San Diego’s Sunset Cliffs at Luscomb’s Point. Head west on Interstate 8 until you come to the end. The southern end of Luscomb’s point is located parallel to Sunset Cliffs Boulevard. You’ll see a narrow passage on your left near Monaco Street. Inside, you’ll find a massive cave with shallow waters and a stunning view of the local sunset. Ahhh, paradise.Cave Swimming at Luscomb’s Point#4. Talking Trees at UC San Diego – Artist Terry Allen created an art installation on the University of California’s San Diego campus. Made with three historic eucalyptus trees, Allen’s piece, appropriately titled Trees, creates a cacophony of sound for viewers to appreciate. You’ll hear musical chants, ducks quacking, and spoken poems. Find them near the Geisel Library. Magic is real, folks.Talking Trees at UC San Diego#3. Free Pork at S & M’s – As one of the city’s best butcheries, Sausage and Meat’s serves delicious carnivorous grub of all varieties. Check out their twitter page to get the “Safe Word of the Week.” It gets you two free servings of their featured meaty dish. Travel to the East Village to get your weekly supply of succulent pork, bacon and sausage.

Free Pork at S & M’s

#2. Brews at the Zoo – Yes, you can enjoy a range of scrumptious craft beers at the world-famous San Diego Zoo. Located in the Lost Forrest, Albert’s is serving some refined culinary creations paired with an unbeatable selection of international and local brews. You’ll find dozens of offerings that will please any beer aficionado. Hanging out with the animals is better with a drink in your hand.

Brews at the Zoo#1. Old Fashioned R & R – Are you suffering from screen overload? Maybe it’s time to go back to another time. At the Old Town Cosmopolitan Hotel, you’ll find 18th Century-style bedrooms, furnishings and dining rooms. Marvel in the building’s antique architectural design. Built in 1827, this historic monument transports its guests to a world free of texts, calls, and pay-per-view. Plus, you’ll find some of the most surprising dishes and cocktails at their restaurant and bar. Take a load off by turning your screen off.

Old Fashioned R & R

Intern Relocation – Part 2: Things to do, Places to see while in Portland

Our series for intern relocation continues with more great information on things to do and places to see during your relocation to Portland, OR. We hope you enjoy your stay!

Portland, Oregon has a little bit of everything for anyone looking to get away. Unique art, music, and food scenes distinguish this Northwest adventure from any other city in America, while trips to the ocean and mountain views make Portland a must see travel destination across the world. The following are just a few reasons why Portland should be your next stop across the continental US.

  • Bikes Rule. Portland is a pedal powered city. Almost every street is equipped with a bike lane, which has supported a thriving cyclist community. Bikes are available to rent at Portland Bike Tours.
  • Food A La Carte. Portland is littered with food trucks, each serving up their own brand of culinary magic. One walk down the street and you can experience a world of cuisines from deep fried chimichangas to classic Italian spaghetti.

Continue reading

Intern Relocation – Part 1: 3 of the Best Craft Brew Bars in Portland

Relocating to Portland? Or are you helping with the process of relocating a group of interns to Portland, Oregon? At US Suites we’re launching a series focused on intern relocation and all the great places available for them to visit while they’re visiting Portland during their internship.

Between San Diego and Portland, the West Coast has established itself as one of the best places for craft brews. Whether you’re a local, staying in one of our furnished apartments, or just spending the day in town, a cool drink is much more than a beverage when in Portland. Here are a few of our favorite places to grab a brew, relax with friends, and enjoy the art of craft beers.

Belmont Station in Portland

Belmont Station

Nearly 21 years old itself, this Portland fixture carries over 1,200 beers to suit your every need. Pick up goodies for your night with friends or grab some cold ones at the Beircafe. There is always something new going on at Belmont Station, so be sure to check their site for the latest news.

Continue reading