Articles in Checking In

Aloft Raleigh, North Carolina – Hotel Review

If I hadn’t known the Aloft Raleigh is located on a college campus, my arrival there surely would have confirmed it. Throngs of red graduation-robe wearing graduates of North Carolina State University were posing for photos beneath the school’s famed bell tower, which is located directly across the street from the hotel.
Resisting my urge to travel back in time and join them, I entered the hotel’s ay its lower level …

Four Seasons Hualalai, Kona, Hawaii – Hotel Review

After a long day of travel that included the world’s longest non-stop domestic flight (from New York to Honolulu, before continuing onto Kona), we knew we had arrived as we were welcomed by hotel staff at the airport with a traditional and beautiful lei and oshibori towel, the latter to wipe away the hectic pace resulting from spending the better part of a day in transit. Yet there we were, …

Raleigh Marriott City Center – Hotel Review

After purchasing a cup of coffee at the only Starbucks in downtown Raleigh, I strolled into the lobby of the Raleigh Marriott City Center without missing a step as it is directly connected to the coffee emporium. Guests were lounging on cushioned chairs and couches, some were watching TV.
The lobby offered tables facing floor-to-ceiling windows with views of downtown, a pleasant setting to take in a sunny late spring day.
Cup …

Hotel Lucia, Portland, Oregon – Review

I actually missed the hotel entrance on my first go around the block. Then I saw the unassuming black awning with “Hotel Lucia” and I pulled my rental car up to the front doors. Two doormen were beside my car before it came to a stop and immediately (and warmly) helped with my luggage and parked my car in a nearby lot. After four grueling hours on the road from …

Short Stay: W Seattle – Hotel Review

On a rainy Seattle afternoon, a doorman smilingly held the door for me as I walked into the W Seattle, glad to be out of the infamous Pacific Northwest weather, and I immediately found refuge from the dreary outdoors and was warmed by the lobby’s ambiance.
A large, circular fireplace was at the center of the Living Room, as W calls it, and guests were enjoying its warmth and the comforts …

Short Stay: Aloft BWI Baltimore Washington International Airport – Hotel Review

I arrived at the somewhat redundantly named Aloft BWI Baltimore Washington International Airport after a quick train ride from Washington, D.C., to the BWI Marshall Rail Station followed by a five-minute Uber ride. The hotel is located in close proximity to the airport – a mere 2.7 miles (4.3 kilometers) – and the BWI Rail station. The Aloft BWI offers its own complimentary shuttle service to the airport, beginning at …

Hyatt at the Bellevue Hotel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – Review

The Hyatt at the Bellevue is a 172-room hotel situated in a building replete with history, both good and bad. Construction of the structure began over a century ago, in 1902. Two years and $8 million (in 1904 dollars) later, the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel opened its doors and quickly became Philadelphia’s “it” hotel, achieving landmark status soon thereafter.
While Thomas Edison designed the building’s lighting fixtures, he wasn’t the only distinguished personality …