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Thursday, June 13, 2013

New Windsor, New York - SWF airport / Homewood Suites by Hilton Newburgh-Stewart Airport

June 2013, Weekend & Weekday, 2 separate nights, King studio #431 & King bedroom #203

I stayed at this airport hotel when I arrived, and again the night before I left. 

Status perks and check-in
I did not arrive at the Homewood Suites by Hilton Newburgh-Stewart airport until after midnight for my first stay, on a Sunday evening. When I got to the guestroom that evening, two bottles of water and a package of Milano cookies were waiting for me. I have bonus points chosen as my extra perk amenity, so I was plesantly surprised to see this. It appeared that I had received this by mistake, because I did not receive this the second time that I checked in.

King studio #431
This guestroom is on the top floor at the end of the hall. It was spacious, clean, and comfortable. The kitchen area contained a full size fridge, stovetop, microwave, dishwasher, coffee maker with supplies, tea bags, a package of microwave popcorn, a table with two chairs, and cupboards filled with dishes and utensils.

The living room area contained a couch, soft coffee table/footstool, end table, and floor lamp.

A flatscreen TV on an armoire, and a desk and chair, were located between the living and bedroom area. There was an ethernet cable, telephone, and notepad with pen on the desk. 

A king size bed, nightstands, lamps, lighted alarm clock, second telephone, and notepad with pen, were in the sleeping area. The pens at this hotel were good quality.

There was a ceiling fan at the foot of the bed. The bed was super comfy with soft, high quality sheets. I was so impressed with the bedsheets, that I was going to check the thread count; however, I forgot to do this.

The bathroom vanity was located outside the shower area. A high quality hairdryer with a cool setting and diffuser was in a bag in one of the drawers. A mirrored closet was also located in this area.

I really liked the walk-in shower in the tiled bathroom area. The towels were good quality.

King bedroom #203
Room 203
This guestroom is located at the end of the hall on the second floor. I have labeled the photos in this section that are from this guestroom to avoid confusion.

Room 203
There is an elevator located around the corner from the entrance, outside the bedroom wall. I could not hear guests in that area, nor did I hear the elevator. I thought that was impressive, since this hotel was pretty full the second night of my stay. There is more than one elevator in this hotel, and the elevator by this guestroom is not the main elevator. This guestroom is in an excellent quiet area location, and the room is well soundproofed. The sleep quality was superb. The only thing I found mildly annoying, was that I could occasionally smell cigarette smoke--from the vent system, I assume. This was not consistent, and the smell was not real strong, so it was not too bothersome.
Room 203

Room 203
I ended up with a guestroom on this floor instead of the top floor, because I had arrived about an hour before check-in time, and there were not any king bedded rooms available on the top floor at that time. Also, I had somehow mistakenly made my reservation for a smoking room, rather than non-smoking. I think that a guestroom had not yet been set aside for me because my profile preference is for a non-smoking guestroom. Fortunately, the front desk agent had noticed this, and she asked me if I wanted a smoking guestroom when I checked in.

This bedroom suite contained most of the same furnishings at the king studio guestroom. There were a few minor difference, which I have listed below.

Room 203
  • This guestroom did not have a desk and chair, like the studio suite. An ethernet cord was on the kitchen table.
  • This guestroom has a separate bedroom with a door, which I suppose is why there was not room for the desk and chair. I think the area allocated to both guestrooms was the same.
  • There was a soft chair in the living room, and the studio suite only had a couch for seating in that area.
  • There was a second flatscreen TV on an armoire in the bedroom.
  • The shower in this guestroom was a tub/shower combination with a shower curtain on a curved rod, rather than a walk-in shower.
Room 203

Other than the items listed above, this guestroom had the same furnishings, including the same style bedcover, coffee table, and sofa. The room was comfortable and clean. 
Room 203

Before this stay, I tended to think that there would be less noise in a bedroom guestroom than a studio suite, since the bedroom area is separate. At this hotel, where I did not hear any noise from outside the guestroom, I would choose a studio suite next time. I preferred having the desk work area and the walk-in shower more than a separate bedroom. I have stayed in some hotels like this, that have a desk in the bedroom, when the bedroom is larger.

Food & Beverage
I was present for the evening reception on my weekday stay. I do not think there was an evening reception before I arrived on Sunday evening, although I did not check the calendar posted on the refrigerator to confirm this. In hindsight, I wished I had taken a picture of it, so that I would have known what was going to be served on the evening of my second stay.

I did not try many of the food items that evening since I had had a late lunch. The items I did try were good quality. Even the red wine was better than I often have at hotels like this. It was slightly sweeter than I prefer; however, it was still not too bad. White wine, beer, lemonade, and coffee were also available. I believe that soda pop was available too, although I am not 100% certain of this. Food items included fresh tossed salad, egg rolls, some kind of sesame asian chicken with rice, and brownies.

I was gone before breakfast after the second night that I stayed in this hotel, and I do not recall all of the food items the first morning. I do recall that I had oatmeal that morning.

Business center
Everything in the business center was in good working condition, and I did not have a trouble printing a couple of documents.

This hotel is less than one mile from the airport, and it only took the shuttle a couple of minutes to get there when I called after I arrived. The airport is not very big, so the shuttle just pulls up alongside the curb outside baggage claim with the other vehicles.

When I departed, the front desk agent told me I did not need to sign up for the shuttle when I asked the day before. She told me to just call down a few minutes before I needed to leave. I did that the next morning, and the front desk agent told me that the driver had gone to Wal-Mart, and would not be back for 10 or 15 minutes! I was initially somewhat worried, although everything worked out okay. The driver was back in 10 minutes, and I arrived at the airport in plenty of time.

There is a sidewalk along the road between the airport and the hotel, and there are no roads to cross, so I walked between the two buildings twice--the first morning to get my rental car, and the day before I left, after I had returned the car.

Overall and misc.
I can not say enough good things about this hotel. I would definitely stay here again. Everything in the hotel was good quality. Every employee I spoke with was professional and helpful. The service was even more impressive after I dined at nearby Cosimo's on Union, and did not receive good service. I have found that sometimes service experiences are relative to the area, rather than the type of business, and that was not the case this time.

The food at Cosimo's was good quality, and the flavor was excellent. I had the Seafood Fra Diavolo with whole wheat pasta, which I would definitely order again. The service was not something I complained to the manager about; however, by the end of my meal, it added up. I was not greeted for over five minutes after I was seated, it was longer than that before someone checked on me after I received my food, my water glass was not refilled until I caught someone's attention after it was empty, and I waited for my check at the end of the meal. The restaurant was mildly busy when I arrived near the end of the lunchtime rush, around 1:30 p.m. Staff members were not overwhelmed though. I observed over five different employees working in the area where I was seated, and most of the other patrons were finished and gone shortly after my arrival. More than one staff member had opportunity to acknowledge and/or check on me during my visit. This restaurant is located less than three miles from the hotel. There is a gas station next door, so it was convenient to eat here, and then fill the rental car before returning to the airport.