I’ve debated doing hotel reviews on this blog for some time. Having stayed everywhere from all-inclusive resorts to executive business suites to super-cheap old-era roadside motels over the course of my entire 30 years, I think I’m as well-equipped for this as any other Jane Schmoe with a blog. And now that I’ve experienced a spike in readership, I think now is as good a time as any. I’m not being paid or asked to do this by anyone, and I’ll let you know if this ever changes.
To be fair, my reviews will only cover recent stays.
Please be cognizant that this reflects my personal experience (duh), and no two stays are exactly the same.
QUALITY INN HISTORIC AREA
AAA Rating: 3 diamonds
600 Bypass Road, Williamsburg, VA
Hotel website here
Date of Stay: Saturday-Monday, October 29-31, 2011
This four-story brick hotel is located on Bypass Road, a very convenient route to popular Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA theme parks as well as a host of restaurants and the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum. In fact, if traffic conditions are ideal, you could be on the road for well under 15 minutes to reach the parks, and 5-10 minutes for Ripley’s museum and theater, some small businesses, and the large restaurant selection along Richmond Road. Jamestown, the College of William and Mary, and Colonial Williamsburg are also close by.
Part of Choice Hotels International, this Quality Inn is spacious, well-lit, and boasts a large lobby with very friendly and chatty front desk staff. Grounds are clean with decent open parking and an attractive fountain out front. Rooms are clean and well-maintained. Mattress quality is iffy, but not uncomfortable. Some guests may find them a bit too firm, but I didn’t think they were firm enough. (Please note I normally sleep on a Laura Ashley extra-firm
board mattress.) Sheets and pillows were clean and I fell asleep easily. The bathroom included a modest selection of toiletries, including shampoo, bar soap, body wash, and hand & body lotion, which, remarkably, were unscented. We found the noise level low, but the number of cars in the parking lot indicated there weren’t a ton of visitors that weekend.
You may be able to find an economical package deal through the Busch Gardens or Water Country USA websites. Microwaves and mini-fridge not included in basic rate; expect to pay $10 extra. Small coffee-maker, hairdryer, and iron/ironing board are included in room rate. Guests can enter hotel through main door as well as through a side door closer to the parking lot and directly across from the Corner Cafe. This door remains unlocked, so those concerned about security may not wish to stay on the first floor for this reason.
Outdoor pool. Closed for season.
Hot drinks. Coffee, tea, and tisanes (herbal tea – I like to be all proper with my terminology sometimes) are available 24-7 on the first floor in a tiny cafe area with tables and chairs. Hot water is available in the vending machine room around the corner on the same floor.
Newspapers. Virginia Gazette and USA Today are available in the hotel lobby.
High-speed Wi-Fi. Available in all rooms; no surcharge.
Continental breakfast. Held in the Corner Cafe, an unusually large breakfast room with many tables and chairs and a TV at one end. Breakfast options include a waffle-maker, bagels, pastries, hard-boiled eggs, yogurt, dry cereal, fruit, and of course, coffee, tea, milk, and juices. Multiple tables and chairs of varying sizes available and the room has a TV set up at one end. Hours are 6-9 AM.
Fitness center. Small room with one mirrored wall and a water cooler, located in the basement (level L2). Includes just three machines: an elliptical with broken display, a treadmill that appeared to be flat-out broken, and a stationery bike. Is not the best for someone like me looking for a quick and easy workout, let alone a real gym rat on a week-long business trip. I also have to mention that I found a somewhat large dead black spider as well as what appeared to be a dead centipede (too smushed to be sure) on the carpet. These could simply be products of a well-done extermination job – creatures often come out and die after poison is applied – but were not particularly welcome company for even the brief workout I was able to eek out in this room.
Arcade. This gaming center is located in a larger room than the gym, yet contains only five machines. (The size of the room, along with the two separate entrances with adjoining bathrooms, makes me think the gym and the arcade room switched places once upon a time.) But what’s there is awesome. My boyfriend, an avid gamer, was immediately thrilled to see the extremely rare Jr. Pac-Man arcade game and spent a couple of hours down in the arcade room taking himself back to his 1980s South Bronx upbringing! The other games were NBA Jam, Mortal Kombat II, Terminator 2 pinball, and an old racing game (“F-1 something” says Eric). In all seriousness, this is an 80s/90s arcade fan’s mini-dream and we hope it is not updated any time soon.
Overall: This is an economical stay option with a good bang for your buck, especially with many restaurants and entertainment choices a very quick drive away.
What would you like to see in future hotel and resort reviews? Let me know and I’ll incorporate that info in future posts.