Review: Starwood Element DFW

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I’m always excited to try out a new hotel brand, so when I’m in a city that has one I’ll do my best to check it out. On a recent trip to Dallas, Texas I was able to do just that and stayed at the Element DFW. Element Hotel is one of the new/hip extended stay brands made for the 20-40 something traveler. It offers rooms with full kitchens, separate sleeping/sitting areas and modern lobbies with a communal vibe and a nod towards environmentally friendly building supplies and green hotel habits.

 

 

 

 

The lobby was very modern and homey at the same time. It had three or four sitting areas inside and one outside plus an indoor fireplace to hang out at. I found the space to be welcoming and inviting. Over the past few years the hotel brands I frequent (Hilton, SPG and Hyatt) have really tried to up there game in the Lifestyle category, and hotels like this are ones I will now look forward to staying at. Between Hilton’s Canopy, Curio and Home2Suites Hyatt’s Hyatt Place, House and Andaz and finally SPG’s W, Element and aLoft there are a lot of new(er) brands to try and lots of similarities and differences between them. Can I call this exciting times in the hotel industry? No. But definitely a time of lots of new hotels which means that wonderful new car smell when walking in the door. Plus with the hotel taking a thoughtful approach to how the hotel was built and what products they use in the hotel makes some of us feel good too. From Energy Star Appliances, to glass and metal dish wear and Low VOC paints, plus flooring that’s up to 100% recycled. It’s a nice touch.

 

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Above:Lobby Reception Below: Hallway from elevator to lobby

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They did offer a complimentary breakfast, of a few hot items. Breakfast sandwiches, eggs and then the usual cereals and breads. Plus a nice touch mini-smoothies (I’m not a smoothie fan, so I passed). The food was good, not great, but these days a hotel spread has to be really really good for me to rave about it. Think Hong Kong Conrad or Conrad Maldives. It also offers an evening reception, but I missed out.

Below: Sitting area for breakfast

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Above: Modern glass and wood writing desk Below: Sitting area, with fold out couch plus TV and entertainment system

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Below: Full kitchen with dish wear for 4, 3/4 fridge, 2 burner stove, microwave and dishwasher

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Below: View from kitchen to bathroom and bedroom, take note of the storage to the left (4 cabinets), plus a roll out folding dining table

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The bathroom like the rest of the room was very clean and modern. I appreciate the nice touches like the above counter sink and goose neck faucet. Plus the very very large rain shower. Elements and features that are not at your usual Doubletree or Sheraton.

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Finally the bedroom, which there’s not much to say about. The room was a few feet bigger then the King bed and also had a closet, TV and sliding door to separate it from the rest of the room. It was comfortable but was not much else. Frankly I have no beef here, the rest of the room was GREAT. Lots of space to sit relax and hang out. Just because you couldn’t really do that in the bedroom, doesn’t make for a bad hotel. I did have a 1-bedroom suite (450 SF), and they do offer studios, which are a bit smaller, and I’m not sure how spacious I’d feel in one big room.

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CONCLUSION: As a new interpretation of the extended stay hotel I liked it. I’d stay here any day before most Homewood Suites or Residence Inns. I loved ho much space it had and the features are right up my alley.  I loved the modern and stylish finishes plus the design. If I was needing a place to stay for a few days that had more space so I could entertain or just feel like I was at home, this would suit me just fine. If I wanted a hotel with tons of amenities and offering a Luxe vacation, this would not be for me. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s not my idea of a Luxe vacation, but it IS my idea of a decent business or extended stay hotel.

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Categories: Hotels, Starwood Hotels, Travel, Travel Blog | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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