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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Socorro, New Mexico -- Holiday Inn Express

Status perks and check-in
I was recognized as a Platinum member at check-in, and my key pack and room were both ready even though we arrived before check-in time. I had reserved this room with points and was upgraded to a king executive room.

Guestroom #335
We stayed in room 335, which is on the top floor. The spacious bedroom area contained a desk and chair, chair with footstool, and suitcase bench. I like the suitcase benches because they are much easier to use than the fold out luggage racks. There was a sitting area with a round dining table with two chairs, and a couch with end tables and a coffee table. There was a good sized fridge and microwave, and spacious bathroom. The furniture was all comfortable, although the bed was slightly hard. The only noise we could hear from our room was the occasional drive-thru traffic at Burger King next door. There was an occasional sewage and smoke odor in the bathroom. The hotel is 100% non-smoking, so I would guess someone was smoking in their bathroom. I'm not sure what the sewage odor was from; it only happened briefly a couple times during the night.

Breakfast was the standard HIX fare: cheesy omelets, biscuits and sausage gravy, sausage, yogurt, juices, milk, cereal, cinnamon rolls, and breads. At check-in, we were told breakfast opened at 7:00 AM; however, employees did not turn on the lights and bring the hot food out until 7:30.

Fitness center
The fitness center was adequate with three cardio machines and one weight machine. There was a portable fan in the room, which I wish I had turned on when I first arrived because it quickly got warm in the room. The fan did a good job after I stopped to turn it on.

The pool area is the standard HIX pool area with a basic pool and hot tub. There were comfortable mesh lounge chairs around the pool, and there was an outside sitting area. There were lounge chairs in the sun outside, as well as tables with sitting chairs in a shaded area. The outside area faces south, and there is a roof over the tables.

Staff members were friendly, although not forthcoming with information. When I specifically asked if they offered any dining coupons or discounts at area restaurants, I found out we could get a free appetizer at Socorro Springs, which is a restaurant and brewery next door to the hotel. We were happy with the food and beverages at the restaurant.

If you need a place to stay in this area, the HIX is the nicest hotel in town, although I thought the rate of over $100 was high before I decided to use points for this stay. Some of the other hotel choices were Motel 6, Super 8, Days Inn, and EconoLodge, none of which looked nice from the outside.