Having done quite a bit of travel in the last two years, I've geniunely been impressed with the vast majority of Marriott properties, but this is the first time I feel like I have to make a comment that some definite improvements need to be made. As as matter of fairness, I try to judge a JW by a JW, and a Fairfield by a Fairfield. I just left the Courtyard San Diego Mission Valley/Hotel Circle after a two-night stay, and while most things - check-in/check-out, room, room quality, etc was fine and as expected, the morning's - both mornings - Bistro experience was downright awful.
Even though the menu isn't extravagant, I actually like the Bistro selections - as long as you're not planning on partaking several days in a row due to lack of variety. I had prior never had a bad experience. But it occurs to me that of all these times, there is rarely more than 2-3 folks in the Bistro at once. In this case, there were 7 or more tables being served at the time. It wasn't my any means crowded, but everything still just fell apart. My experience was as follows:
1) It took 45 minutes to order and receive my food - 10:15am to 11:00. I was second in line ordering. During the wait, they brought over someone else's food (two plates for one person?), which was fine, but when I finally received my breakfast, it was in a to-go tray with plastic utensils in a bag. I was confused. They weren't out of plates as everyone else had them, and the only reason I could possibly think they brought my order 'to-go' was because I was standing. I'd been sitting the entire previous day so I felt like standing, and I had no intention of going anywhere. It was probably an incorrect although well-meaning assumption.
2) No condiments (salt, pepper, ketchup, butter, jelly, etc) on the tables. Other Courtyards bring you a little tray on the side. It was only after two pieces of dry toast that I figured out a small amount of butter and grape jelly was included in the bag. Which I spread with a spoon, because there was no knife. The fork pretty much broke immediately. That's $16 well spent.
3) The 'mild/breakfast blend' coffee was out, and the kiosk was a absolute mess. I'm a single guy at present, and even I wouldn't let my kitchen get this bad. This is probably an issue of staffing, as there were only 2 or 3 people working the register and bussing tables. The picture below may not fully capture the damage.
3a) The coffee is out in the open, so there's no reason to order a medium or large. Why did I even bother?
4) On day two (this morning), I saw 6-7 people in line for the Bistro upon leaving the elevator, and checked Yelp. I immediately headed for the 'Bunz' restaurant in a neighboring Days Inn, just 100 yards away. For the same price, I got a huge ham and cheese omelette, potatoes, biscuits and gravy and a coffee. And it took 45 minutes room-to-room. I would have rather eaten at the Courtyard, but just couldn't.
I don't mean to be a Debbie Downer with this review, but having stayed at many, many other properties - I know that it can be done better, and in my opinion it needs to be. By contrast, the late-night bar service provided by Todd was fantastic. Just stellar. Unfortunately, since the official online 'reviews' are by invitation and I don't see a way to easily contact the hotel directly, this is my go-to option.
PS - When someone asks about walking to Qualcomm Stadium (which, unfortunately may not be a going concern) instead of saying it's a 90-min walk, please inform them that it's 10 minutes to the tram and $6 for an all-day pass.