The Hilton Garden Inn Charlotte/SouthPark is located down the road from the SouthPark Business area and across the street from the SouthPark shopping center, just south of Charlotte. There are a Ruth’s Chris, Palm and DelFrisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse just minutes away, so it’s clear hotels in this area are catering to those visiting the many surrounding office complexes. As I was visiting for my first work trip ever, it was nice to have many restaurants in the area that were open late and accustomed to solo diners showing up to catch a bite at the bar just before closing time (and with expense account that allowed me to eat at them).
The Hilton Garden Inn shares a building with a Homewood Suites but for my entire stay, I managed to stay in “my” side of the hotel. The Hilton Garden Inn side of the hotel consists of 160 rooms spread over seven floors. Parking for the hotel is located in a (usually full) small lot across from the entrance and a two-story parking garage. There’s no charge for parking or any type of hotel fee charged at this hotel.
Continue reading “Hotel Review: Hilton Garden Inn Charlotte/SouthPark”
Ever since hotel chains started offering multiple brands with different personalities, there have been times where several hotels from the same parent company have shared the same development. The first one I ever saw was when the Marriott Village opened just outside Walt Disney World in 2000. At this property, Marriott built three separate hotels around a central plaza.
While this was an innovative idea 20 years ago, it’s now a very common practice. The Hilton Garden Inn I stayed at in Tampa had a Homewood Suites and Hampton Inn in the same complex. We just finished a stay in New York where a Courtyard and Residence Inn were in the same skyscraper, with Courtyard rooms on the lower floors and Residence Inn rooms on the upper levels. In this case, the front desk shared duties for both hotels.
So when I noticed that the Hilton Garden Inn I was booked into for my first business trip ever shared an address with a Homewood Suites, it wasn’t even worth a shrug. Until I got to the hotel.
Continue reading “This Hotel Has A Serious Identity Problem”
Here we are, at the end of 2018. When looking back at our hotel stays from the past year, I get a sense of how we traveled and how it compared to previous years. I make travel decisions based on how I think we travel but if those trends are changing, I’ll need to adapt the methods I use when looking at the best way to maximize our points usage and out of pocket spending. When I look back at 2018, I’m really happy how everything turned out. Going into the year, due to some work changes, I knew that saving cash on hotel stays would be a priority. I never really focused on earning hotel points before but I’m a quick study and I set a goal to not pay for a hotel room if I could help it.
I did really good in achieving my goal. We stayed in hotels for 37 nights and only paid $1000. When I paid cash for a room there was a specific reason I did so. The rest of our hotel stays were paid for by points or free nights earned by having certain hotel credit cards. Here’s a breakdown of our stays for the year:
Continue reading “A Look Back At Our Hotel Stays Of 2018”
For as long as I’ve been reading travel websites, one of the biggest advantages of having status with a hotel chain was getting free breakfast. At first, I wondered what all the fuss was about. I mean, I’d received free breakfast at hotels before. They consisted of some stale bagels, bread and pastries, powered eggs, flimsy bacon, one flavor of yogurt, a vat of oatmeal and maybe some unripe bananas. Oh, don’t forget the really bad coffee.
The breakfast rooms were usually packed at the normal eating times and the food wasn’t refreshed nearly enough. Why were people so excited with this benefit? Continue reading “What’s The Big Deal About Getting A Free Breakfast?”
I recently traveled to Washington D.C. and needed a place to stay close to Reagan National Airport. Looking at the map, there are plenty of hotels just outside the airport, in the Crystal City area of Arlington, VA. Since I needed a Hilton stay to keep my points alive, I found a good rate at a Hilton Garden Inn that was perfect for my needs. Turns out besides being a great hotel near my conference, this is a great place to stay if doing some sightseeing in Washington D.C. and the surrounding areas.
Continue reading “Hotel Review: Hilton Garden Inn Reagan National Airport – Arlington, VA”