Cedar Fair Tour: Off Campus Motels

One other part of our tour of Cedar Fair parks was the nighttime accommodations. We did web searches for “inexpensive” motels, made reservations online, and then took our chances. Despite similar ratings, we had drastically mixed results in the places we selected.

Our first stop was actually for LibertyCon in Chattanooga, TN. We had originally booked a room at the Choo Choo Hotel, but they overbooked and we agreed to take a room at the Marriott Hotel Downtown in exchange for one free night out of our four nights there. We ended up with a room on the 14th floor of a 4-star hotel. It was a nice room, but we actually enjoyed several other rooms along the way better.

One of which was NOT the Days Inn we stayed at in Ruther Glen, VA. We booked 2 nights there for our visit to King’s Dominion. Breakfast was included. When we got to the room the air wasn’t on, so we turned it on, quickly unpacked, and went to the park. The room was barely cool by the time we got back.

The evening we checked in the door to the breakfast room was open, so we went in to look it over, and got told we weren’t supposed to go in except during breakfast.  And we got coupons each night for breakfast the next morning, to choose bacon or ham, eggs, etc.  It was so underwhelming that the second morning we preferred paying extra to eat a real meal at McDonalds.

Our third stop was the surprise find. The Holiday Inn Express in Selinsgrove, PA. Had these wonderful high ceilings that gave it a real “wow” factor that we missed in the 4-star Marriott in Chattanooga. We followed that with two nights at the Holiday Inn Express in Buffalo. Just as nice, but not as much of a wow factor as Selinsgrove.

Canada has a lot of wonderful places to stay. One of them is not the Pearson Hotel and Conference Centre. We booked the hotel as what looked like the best economy place. But we got there late, and the room wasn’t ready. Then they checked in a whole bunch of people ahead of us. This was also the place where we lost Nathan’s wallet. We discovered that after our arrival at the next place and called. When we finally got them to understand, they said they would check with housekeeping and call us back. We called three different times, got a new person each time, and no one ever contacted us back after checking  with housekeeping.

That original call was made from the Travelodge in Muskegon, MI. A definite improvement over the Pearson, but no wow like the Holiday Inn Expresses. An okay breakfast, temperature that regulated nicely.

The Budget Host Inn, Sandusky, was a nice enough room, but its touted free wifi just didn’t work very well unless you were on the side of the room near the office, which was in the other building of the two that made up the Inn.

So we started with a decent motel at the convention, disappointment in Virginia, wow in Pennsylvania and pleasant in Buffalo. Then we had disappointment in Toronto, slight relief in Michigan and modest frustration in Sandusky.

So it was nice to end the trip at the La Quinta in Mason, OH (outside Cincinnati. My understanding is that La Quinta is economy business travel style. But this one was another well done hotel. Roomy, comfy beds, high ceilings. We ended on a fairly decent note.

So Holiday Inn Express and La Quinta got on our list of preferred hotels.

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