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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Dearborn, Michigan/The Henry Autograph Collection (Marriott)

November 2011, Weekend, Guestroom #1027

Status perks
We were upgraded to a concierge floor room. I had Silver status and redeemed a category 4 free night certificate for this stay. I had requested a concierge room when I made the reservation, and this was noted as an upgrade request. I'm not sure if we would have received the upgrade, if I had not requested it, or, if we had been staying on a weeknight.

Guestroom
Our guestroom was on the same floor as the concierge lounge, and there was one more floor of guestrooms above us. Our room was comfortable and clean. It looked pretty much exactly like the photo on the Marriott website. There was a spot for a small fridge in the beverage center outside the bathroom; however, there was not a fridge inside. A mini-fridge was plugged in on top of the counter. Since my Marriott profile preferences are set to include a fridge, it looked as though someone had brought the mini-fridge before our arrival, and plugged it in on the counter. I appreciated that employees had read my profile, although I thought it would have been nicer, if the fridge had been located inside the beverage center where it was intended. Since this is a concierge floor room with space for a fridge in the beverage center, I was surprised it was not automatically included in the room. Two 16 oz. bottles of water were included on the counter, in addition to the coffee setup.

The sitting area contained a plush chair and footstool, second straight back chair, and a desk and chair. The bed was comfortable, the room was soundproof, and we slept very well. I usually have to pay for Internet access when staying at a Marriott, when my status is less than Gold. I was glad that there was not a charge at this hotel, because the connection speed in the guestroom was terrible. I tried several different hotel wireless connections, and none of them worked any faster than the others. The Internet connection speed was spotty the entire time. 

Food & Beverage
We visited the lobby lounge in the evening. The atmosphere was inviting, and the seating was comfortable. We did not order any food, although the small plate items on the menu sounded appealing. A guest seated beside us recommended the Smoked Salmon Flatbread. He said he had that the night before, and it was excellent. The food and beverage prices were fair, and the beverage quality was good. 

Concierge lounge
I was disappointed that the concierge lounge was not open the evening of our stay. I know that the lounge is often closed on weekend nights; however, I thought I had read on the website that it was open at this hotel on Friday nights. I must have been mistaken, or the hours had recently changed, because when I checked the hotel website a few days after our stay, it did not say that the lounge is open Friday evenings.

Even though the lounge was not staffed, a few self-serve items were available. The fridge was stocked with bottled water and assorted sodas. I was surprised to see that this included Coke, because Coke products are not usually available at Marriott properties. Once, when I was searching for a diet Coke (in the hotel gift shop, vending machines, etc.), an employee told me that I would never find Coke products at a Marriott. There was no diet Coke at this hotel, although they did have regular Coke. A couple different blends of Starbucks coffee were available in the fresh brew machine. Available snacks included potato chips, trail mix, Nutri-Grain bars, and a fresh fruit bowl.

Overall
This was my first experience at an Autograph Collection hotel. I chose this hotel after looking on the Marriott site for a category 4 hotel in the area. I was glad I had recalled that it is called The Henry, because the GPS location was slightly off, and I did not see Marriott on any of the outside signs or building exterior when we arrived. We pulled into the valet area to ask the employee if the hotel was the Marriott before we parked. Self-parking is complimentary. The website lists valet parking as $15 a night, although no one asked if I had valet parked at check-in. Other than our Marriott Elite guestroom key cards, I did not see the Marriott name inside the hotel either.

I thought this stay was a great value for a category 4 hotel.