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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Madison, Georgia / Hampton Inn

May 2013, Weekday, 2-nights, king guestroom #302

Status perks and check-in

When I checked in, the front desk agent pointed to a display with a couple of items, and said I could choose one for being a Gold member. I chose a bottle of water.

guestroom wall
Guestroom #302
guestroom wall
This guestroon is located at the end of the hall on the top floor. The bed was comfortable and clean; however, the hotel building is old and dated. I thought many areas needed to be updated and cleaned. 

There were several scuff and dirt marks on the guestroom walls. The scuff marks in the photos here do not show the dirt as well as it was actually visible. The building also smelled musty. Fortunately, this guestroom, and the hallway outside the guestroom, smelled fresh. 

It is possible that hotel personnel were aware of the moisture problem and had tried to rid the hotel of the dampness. The HVAC unit in the hall outside this guestroom was always on high (it was very cold in the hall!), and the smell in the hallway was as if air freshener had been used each day. I was glad about the air freshener scent because it did not smell like a cheap perfume that masked the odor; it made the hallway smell fresh. It had not been used in the stairways, and the musty odor was very strong when I used the stairs.

The guestroom bathroom near the entrance door was a decent size. It contained the standard Hampton Inn amenities and a tub/shower combination with a shower curtain on a curved rod. A single serve coffee maker with supplies was on the bathroom vanity.

What I think is one of the most infuriating hotel experiences happened to me at this hotel--finding out that the tub does not drain properly until after I have disrobed and stepped inside! Yuck! Fortunately, it was not completely stopped up. I called the front desk before I left for the day, and someone fixed it before I returned. One reason I find this so annoying (apart from the grossness of it), is that I do not see how housekeeping could not have known this when the guestroom was cleaned. It seems like hotels would have checklists for this kind of thing.

The guestroom area contained a suitcase bench, flatscreen TV on an armoire, microwave, fridge, king size bed, nightstands with lamps and an alarm clock, desk and chair, and soft chair. I thought both chairs looked old and not very comfortable. I sat on a towel when I used the desk chair. I did not use the lap pad on the bed because it looked like it needed to be cleaned.

I did not hear any guests or outside noise while in the guestroom, although the hallway HVAC unit was very loud. I could easily hear it after I went to bed at night. 

Food & Beverage
Breakfast is included at Hampton Inn, and it included the following items: coffee, tea, milk, juices, cold cereal, instant oatmeal, yogurt, fruit, and breads. Cheesy omelets were included the first day, and sausage biscuits with gravy were out the second morning.

Business center
One computer and a printer were located next to the front desk. I printed a document after I got assistance from the employee at the front desk because the computer was not connected to the Internet when I first sat down. Apparently something had to be reset the day before. The employee had to call someone to ask how to reset the computer.

Fitness center
I do not recall much about the fitness center except that it contained a couple of cardio machines, and a flatscreen TV. The TV worked well; however, it kind of echoed in the room.

Misc. and Overall
The address for this hotel does not quite match where it is located because you cannot turn into the hotel from Eatonton Rd. There is a road off Eatonton called Hampton Lane, and you need to turn down that road to get to the hotel. The hotel is somewhat visible from Eatonton Rd; however, since there is not a Hampton Inn sign on that road, I could not figure out where to pull in when I first arrived.

If you are arriving via I-20, Hampton Lane is located right next to the interstate, before McDonalds. The Hampton Inn is located behind McDonalds.

This hotel is in a convenient location next to I-20 and 441, if you need to travel to a few nearby towns, like I did. There are not many dining choices nearby. Other than fast food and Cracker Barrel, I saw only two other restaurants nearby: Hong Kong Chinese Restaurant and Pacho's Mexican Grill. The photo below is sushi from Hong Kong, which was pretty good.

I got the Lady-in-Red at Hong Kong Chinese restaurant to-go, and then took the photo back in the hotel room. I could not find a webpage for the restaurant, although I did find a recent review from someone else who thought the sushi was good too: Yelp review. I did not dine at Pacho's, although I thought the food and menu on their webpage looked good when I found it. Since I could not find any menu information for Hong Kong Chinese Restaurant, I probably would have chosen Pacho's, if I had looked online first. I called the hotel before I arrived, and the front desk agent only mentioned Cracker Barrel, Pizza Hut, and the fast food choices. Both Hong Kong Chinese restaurant and Pacho's Mexican Grill are less than one mile down the road.

After the impressive apology and bill adjustment that I received from the Hampton Inn in Dickinson, ND when I encountered problems in the guestroom, I was quite disappointed with the way this hotel handled the clogged bathtub/shower drain. I did not expect an entire bill adjustment; however, I did not even receive a note in the guestroom telling me that this had been fixed. I found out because I checked the drain by running the water when I returned to my hotel that day.