Last week I stayed at the Sheraton Downtown Phoenix hotel. I got a steal of a deal at $59 plus tax per night. It was the cheapest mid-level hotel in town and was just close enough to where I had to work that I decided to stay there. In the summer most hotels in the metroplex drop their rates, but this one was at least $30 less than the competition. Forget that the competition I was looking at, although decent hotels, were of the Four Points, Hampton Inn or Aloft variety. Definitely not bad hotels, in fact in most cases pretty good, but none were a full service hotel like this. So how could I not stay there? As an added bonus, it was four blocks from a really really great pizza place and three blocks from Chase Field, home of The Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team.
Sure just like anyone else when I saw this really low rate I had to check out the travel sites to make sure I was not staying at a dump. I’ve been burned before and didn’t want to stay someplace not so savory, low rates as we all know can be an indicator of a bad hotel. Thankfully, Tripadvisor rated it a 4 star and that’s more than good enough for me.
The hotel is huge it’s 30 floors and offers underground parking ($19 per day), has an onsite restaurant, lobby bar and gym whatever that is. Additionally if you book an executive floor room, or have status with Starwood, you get access to this floor and lounge.
The lobby was pretty large and spacious, there were several seating areas, and a pretty well stocked bar to boot. If the lobby bar was not your cup of tea there’s a Hooters and AMC theater across the street for more entertainment.
I was quickly checked in and was given a king room on the 28th floor, I joked with the receptionist about getting the Presidential Suite, and he said it was booked, I guess I’ll have to try again for the killer upgrade. If nothing else, I was upgraded to the executive level due to my status, and a short walk from the lounge.
The lounge was open 24 hours a day, which was great. For breakfast they offered a complimentary continental breakfast. This can vary from hotel to hotel, and in this case besides the usual cereals, coffee, tea, juices and yoghurt. They had a nice fresh cut fruit platter, granola, scrambled eggs and an espresso machine. Presentation also goes a long way, and in this case they had most of the items in large ceramic serving dishes or trays, so instead of getting a Yoplait in a plastic cup or granola in a box having it plated nicely made it feel more luxurious. Did it taste better? No, but it made for a nice quick breakfast. Also they offered afternoon appetizers, again complimentary and self-service bar (sadly not free). I went there both nights and each night the hot items were different. One night it was chicken quiche and chicken wellington’s and the second night veggie quiche and beef wellingtons. They also had a really great fruit, nut and cheese platter, with a ton of fancy cheeses, that I would not dare try and spell. I also must mention that the quantities were not limited, they had a lot of food to go around, whereas at some hotels once the first round is gone, they don’t restock. In this case they did a great job of making sure there was plenty to go around. Kudos go to this hotel for making sure this amenity, that some do and don’t pay for actually worth it. Lastly I would be remiss if I didn’t mention one other really nice perk, free bottled water, sodas and Tazo hot teas all day long. It was great to stroll in at 10 PM and grab some cold water before bed, and to take to the office in the morning.
Lastly, my room. As you can see from the pictures, it’s perfectly fine. It’s not palatial or tiny for that matter, but it was great. The king size bed had a perfectly comfortable mattress and the pillows were “down” or something like that, and were just what I wanted. The room as I look at the pictures looks plain and Spartan, but it had a large writing desk and chair, a club chair, a magazine table and two small ottomans that could sub as extra seating. Also there was a smallish yet decent closet and tea/coffee maker with mini fridge (I forgot to take pictures of this stuff). So that being said, the pictures didn’t do the room justice. Additionally, the bathroom was not large but big enough for lonely old me. Basically what I’m trying to say is that this room was perfect for a business traveler, and would be great for a couple looking to enjoy downtown Phoenix or a sporting event. In my case it was good enough that’s I’ve already booked my next trip there in July and yes the rate is still $59 bucks.
Bottom line if you need to go to Phoenix and are looking for a budget priced hotel but want to pretend you’re at the Ritz without spending that kind of money, this is a good option. If you’re looking for a hotel that has waterslides, golf courses and spa facilities in house or on property this is not your hotel, but frankly for the dough you’ll save this summer staying here, I’d just drive to the Ritz for lunch and a massage.