We usually spend Thanksgivings with Mike’s family in Vancouver, WA. Sometimes we stay with his mother, but more often we stay at a hotel. This year there were 8 kids 12 and under for the holiday, which I’m sure makes the reason self-explanatory.
We’ve stayed in several hotels in the area, and the Holiday Inn Express is definitely one of my favorites. It’s closer to the house than the ones near downtown Vancouver, it’s clean, comfortable and hassle free. We stayed for three nights in November, 2014.
The room we got was clean and comfortable. It had two queen beds, a single desk with a chair, and a dresser with a flat-screened TV, a hidden fridge and a microwave. The room was large enough so that our family of four didn’t feel crowded. The bathroom was fairly large, as was the closet. And there was a little area for coffee, out of the way.
At first I thought the mattresses were lumpy and would be uncomfortable, but I slept very well. The mattress wasn’t too soft, but not terribly hard either. The pillows were great.
My two complaints with the room were relatively minor. Our first night, it was impossible to log into the hotel’s internet. I’m not sure if it was down or too crowded, but I couldn’t get a connection until after midnight. It worked well after that, though I had to re-authenticate at least twice a day.
The hotel was also pretty tight with the toiletries. We got a tiny bottle of shampoo and conditioner each day, sufficient for one person with long hair or two with short, but definitely not for a family of 4. Yes, I could have asked for more, but I never remembered to do so until it was too late. We also could have used more towels. On the plus side, the toiletries are from Bath & Body Works and smelled great.
The hotel itself is nicely appointed and functional. It has a large lobby with elegant but serviceable furniture, we used it for breakfast when the dining room was full, and to read the newspaper (available for free) while our room was cleaned. The breakfast area remains open during the day, so if you need a table and chairs to work, you can go down there. The pool and gym are open 24-7 (you get in with your room key), and my kids enjoyed them. The water in the pool looked murky, but the kids didn’t complain. There is a small business office, but I didn’t use.
Breakfast was very good for a hotel at this price point. It had the usual continental breakfast items: fruit, yogurt, cereal/oatmeal, bagels, bread as well as a few hot items seating under a heat lamp. These were generally turkey sausage patties and biscuits with sausage gravy (didn’t try them). A couple of the days they had omelets (didn’t try them either) and one day they had bacon (very crispy, but not too bad). They have a pancake machine too. The best part, however, were the hot cinnamon rolls. In the drink department, they had all the usual stuff – except for hot chocolate.
Check in and check out was hassle free. Traveling in November, I appreciated staying in a hotel rather than a motel (we’ve done the Shilo Inn before), as we didn’t have to face the cold to reach the hotel amenities.
I paid $77 a night + tax in November, by buying it through a Priceline express deal.
Two months after our one-night stay at the Best Western Arcata Inn, I have trouble remembering what the hotel looked like. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. We arrived late on a Tuesday night during Thanksgiving week, and left early the following morning. What we wanted and needed was a clean, comfortable, hassle-free place to sleep – and that’s what we got.
The beds were comfortable, the pillows, in particular, were great. The beds didn’t have ugly, unsanitary comforters, which is a big plus for me. There was basic furniture and a large flat-screen TV. The bathroom could probably have used more towels, and it was on the small side, but there was good water pressure.
Breakfast was adequate, with a waffle machine, toasters and cereals. The breakfast area was tiny and crowded, however.
I paid $77 through a TripAdvisor deal. We stayed mid-week in November, 2014.
Holiday Inn Express Vancouver North – Salmon Creek
13101 NE 27th Avenue
Vancouver, WA 98686