On most of my visits to the middle of the country I spend most nights in Hampton Inns and if I’m lucky a Four Points Sheraton or Hilton, if they’re cheap. This week even though I was in a city of 115,000 people the “best” mid-price option was the Hampton Inn and Suites Springfield North.
When I look for a hotel for work, I look for something well priced, convenient to the client and safe. Sites like trip advisor help out review wise, because in some cases and this week was not an exception there were some 5 hotels to pick from all within 20 bucks of each other. Of all the options, this looked like the newest and also most convenient to where I needed to be. There were plenty of motels too pick from too, but they were scary at least for me. For me it’s about consistency, and in the case of a Hampton Inn , you know what you’re going to get/not.
When I checked in bleary eyed from a 1/2 work day, and hours’ drive to the airport and a 6 1/2 hour plane trip with connection, I was ready for bed. This place was only 10 minutes from the airport, and looked newish from the outside. Once I walked in I was happy, and knew I pick the right place. The newer Hamptons and ones recently remodeled have a really nice central lobby. Usually a dual central fireplace, gathering table with side tables and sofas, plus wood grain tile floors. This hotel fit that description and I have to say it just works. I like the style and feel, it’s not sterile, and you feel like you might be in a lodge or someone’s great room. For me it’s the comfort of being in a place familiar too me, which means I spend too much time at hotels.
The receptionist thanked me for my diamond loyalty, and said I’d been upgraded to a suite. Sweet. I paid $107 with tax, and got a room they sell for $150-170, not bad. Since most Hampton Inns aren’t suites this was a nice surprise. In general the only options they usually have are rooms with one king or two queens, but when you get a suite you can really score. No this is not the Maldives, but hey more space is always good. It means I can stretch out on the sofa when I want to work or watch TV and not have to lie on the bed to relax.
The hotel had a separate living space with a work desk, 3/4 fridge and microwave a pull out sofa bed and 30″ flat screen TV. The bedroom was the standard size for most hotel rooms like this, and also had its own TV and attached bathroom. I know I don’t need an extra room, but on a trip of three or more nights, it’s just nice to have the space.
I’ve got to say for a three night stay I was impressed. The rooms and open space were clean, staff were friendly, the free breakfast was not bad. Lots of fresh fruit like oranges, melon, strawberries plus the usual apples and bananas. They also had oatmeal, cereal, yoghurt, assorted breads, eggs, omelets and waffles. Most of this is the usual fare, but the addition of good fresh fruit was a good touch.