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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Morton, Illinois / Holiday Inn Express & Suites Morton Peoria Area

April 2014, Weekday, 3-nights, King guestroom #301

Status perks and check-in
At check-in, the agent offered me a choice of Platinum perks: 500 points or a goody bag. I took the points! I did not receive a guestroom upgrade, although staff members did meet my guestroom location requests. When I made the reservation, I had requested a quiet location, as I usually do--top floor, corner. Since I was going to be staying at this property for three nights, I decided to call the afternoon of my arrival to inquire about an upgrade and guestroom location. The agent on the telephone told me that my room was not next to the elevator, although it was not at the end of the hall either. When I arrived a few hours later, I was happy to learn that they had changed my room assignment to a corner guestroom on the top floor. The agent said that a suite upgrade was not available for all three nights of my stay.
Not having a suite was not a big deal, because this guestroom is a large room. The only thing I missed not having was a refrigerator. I was glad that I had called and that I had been assigned an end guestroom, though. 

This guestroom is located at the north end of the hall on the top floor. This is a newer hotel, and it was nicer than some Holiday Inn Express hotels I have stayed it. The guestroom doors have a soundproof sweeper on the bottom of the doors to reduce hallway noise, and the window was soundproof, too. I could not hear much traffic noise when the window was shut.

The bathroom near the entrance contained a large vanity with amenities and a hairdryer. It had a tub/shower combination, and the shower curtain was hung on a curved rod. Bath amenities were also placed on the tub, and the towels were good quality.

A closet and full length mirror were located in the entry area outside of the bathroom. The closet contained an iron and ironing board. I do not recall if there was a folding luggage rack, although it was not needed, because there was a suitcase bench next to the armoire.

A large flatscreen TV was on the armoire across from the king size bed. The 
bed was against the stairway wall, so there was not a guestroom at the head of the bed, which is always nice. There was a nightstand with lamps and alarm clock on each side of the bed. A soft chair and foot stool were located in the corner. A desk with a drawer and lamps was located near the window on the other side of the armoire. 

The HVAC unit was located under the window. It was quiet and non-drying. There were plenty of outlets in the guestoom. Although there were several lamps in the guestroom, the bulbs were not very bright. The Internet connection speed was slow, and I had a difficult time connecting at the start. After I connected the first time, I did not have any trouble connecting again, although I had to sign back in every time that I reopened my browser, even if it was only a few hours later.

Food & Beverage
Breakfast included the basic Holiday Inn Express food items: cinnamon rolls, small donuts, milks, hard boiled eggs, yogurts, breads, cereals, and juices. Two mornings the hot items were scrambled eggs, sausage, and sausage gravy and biscuits. One morning, the scrambled eggs had been replaced with cheesy omelets.

This hotel offers Happy Hour Monday through Thursday from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The sign said that guests were allowed two beverages. The beer brand was Coors Light, and the wine was Coastal Vines. Not expensive brands, although the Cabernet Sauvignon was not too bad--I was glad it was not sweet! Small packages of snacks were also available--Gardettos or Chex Mix.

Business center
Two computers and a printer were located in an area near the front desk. Everything worked great. A stapler, paper clips, and pens were provided.

Fitness center
The fitness center contained three cardio machines--a treadmill, bicycler, and stair stepper, a flatscreen TV, water cooler, sani-wipes, and towels. It was very stuffy and hot the first time that I visited, and I did not realize until after my second visit, that the HVAC controls were on the wall unit, and I had looked on the wall for a control.

All of the staff members at this hotel were cheerful and helpful. There were a couple of restaurants within walking distance, although not many good choices, in my opinion. Ruby Tuesday, Pizza Ranch, and Paddy O'Flaherty's inside the Best Western, were all located across the street. I walked to the Best Western one evening to get a turkey wrap, and from what I saw of the public areas in this hotel, I would not suggest staying there. The hallways were nasty looking, and everything smelled musty.