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mbstone

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Everything posted by mbstone

  1. $42 for 3* in the zone, counter offer at $15 extra, went to 2.5* and $45, wound up with this ($58 total) plus probably $13 for parking and $13 for internet. I would have rather gotten a property without parking or internet charges (you never know with Doubletree).
  2. $43 3* Norwalk, nada, added Monrovia I think at $45, nope, what is wrong with the zone? Went down to 2* Norwalk and $35. $47 with tax and additional overcharge. I could have gone to any area Motel 6 without a reservation for about the same deal. See review.
  3. Down here at the low, motel end of PL bidding the PL surcharge starts to eat away at any savings over a motel's track rate. In this case a successful PL bid of $35 resulted in an all in price of $47, which is about $5 less than the all-in price of a Motel 6 in this area. I am old enough to remember when Howard Johnson's owned 100% of the chain restaurant and highway-rest-stop market in the U.S. Maybe there is a business-school case that says how they ran their restaurant business into the ground. Nevertheless, HoJo still exists as an operator, more probably a franchisor, of motels. This 2* property is about the same as a Motel 6, outdoor corridors, 2 stories, except it has bathtubs, microwaves, fridges, and in-room irons/ironing boards. This property is also supposed to have an outdoor pool and free non-protein breakfast, all untried. Everything and everyone on the TV was purple. No CC requested at check-in. 11 AM checkout. Free internet.
  4. Now a Doubletree (but still pay internet, unlike many DT properties). $43 on PL. Jacuzzi was open this time.
  5. More accurately, there is no whining if you pursued a PL/HW strategy designed to cherrypick a hotel and you came up short. To say flatly that it impossible to increase the odds of getting a particular hotel is fatuous. The information you get from BB is supposed to, and often does, increase the odds of your getting a particular hotel, or one of two preferred hotels. What you meant to say is that it is impossible to ever be certain what you are going to get.
  6. I am also looking to stay at the LGB Residence Inn. Historically this has been a difficult hotel to cherrypick on PL because LGB Airport is just a crappy zone. Often as not you'll get zonked with the Holiday Inn, the big cylindrical one, or even the Ghastly House. Holiday Inn has been remodeling their properties and maybe the LGB HI has improved. Anyway, I need to stay at a Residence Inn because I need a kitchen, and I have just now realized that any old Residence Inn anywhere near LAX or LGB will do fine. If you can tell me a "surefire way" of getting a Residence Inn anywhere near LGB please let me know. Also historically the Manhattan Beach Residence Inn has been easy and cheap on weekends via PL.
  7. The Doubletree Club for your dates is $42 on HW, and it also comes out to about $49 all in even though your successful PL bid was at $37. Go figure.
  8. One sour note, at checkout we had been billed for an extra night's stay, we thought we ironed it out but our CC remained overcharged by $150 or so. After many phone calls and emails they eventually refunded money to the CC so that we were only overcharged $40 or so, and they would not provide an itemized bill. This is under my dispute threshhold, which is probably what they figure. Advice: Offer a cash deposit and don't give them a CC if possible.
  9. $40 successful PL bid including weekend days. Rack rate is maybe $10 more. This high-rise hotel-casino, rated 3.5* by PL, soldiers on despite the very adverse local economy. $10 resort fee includes 2 free bottles of water/day and wi-fi for all your laptops. Valet parking; bell service. Coffee shop claimed as 24H but was closed at dinnertime one evening during our stay. Room service. Other restaurants incl buffet, steakhouse, Asian, Round Table Pizza, Port'O'Subs, Johnny Rockets (24H), Starbucks Coffee. Shops; tour desk; lounges; full casino; pool/jacuzzi; exercise room; convention facilities; golf driving range. Airport shuttle. Possibly other services; no hotel information book available in room or from front desk, only a small map of the property. While the property as a whole could use a coat of paint, our room was clean and comfortable; we enjoyed our stay; and we extended our stay through PL.
  10. We stayed at this hotel on the same exact dates as the OP, we bid $40 through PL, and we paid a $10 resort fee/night. We had a very pleasant stay; our room on the 16th floor was clean and everything worked. The food was good and we did not experience any problems at all, let alone anything similar to the very negative experiences recited by the OP. I am surprised to find I haven't yet posted a review to Hotel Reviews, which is where this thread belongs.
  11. Your Offer Price Per Room, Per Night: $47.00 Subtotal: $47.00 Taxes & Fees: $13.46 Total Charges*: $60.46
  12. I fill up at the end of every rental and always always always get and save the receipt.
  13. This property is located near VA-28 about 3 mi N of the unmarked back entrance to IAD on Old Ox Rd. It's also just N of the Dulles North zone, where similar properties go for about $20 more on PL. We got this one for $35 on a Monday night, easily the best deal I've ever had on PL. And get this, they threw in a coupon for a free breakfast buffet for 2 (served 6A-10A weekdays, 7A-11A weekends), when does that ever happen? If you're familiar with the Courtyard brand, you know they have interior corridors, comfortable beds, free internet, desk, chair, coffeemaker/iron, free parking, guest laundromat, free airport shuttle, exercise room 24H, indoor pool and jacuzzi 6A-11P. This is one of the newer, cleaner ones. Ask the front desk for local food delivery menus. Restaurants within 1-2 miles include Chili's, Subway, Red Robin, McDs, Asian buffet, pho, other usual suburban fare.
  14. Property is located at S end of Boardwalk ("Downbeach" area). Steps from beach and boardwalk; 1 blk to Tropicana Casino and its restaurants (e.g. Palm Steakhouse, Hooters, P.F. Chang's Chinese Bistro). Beautifully remodeled and elegantly designed public areas and rooms. Our tower room featured swivel HDTV, minibar, king bed, well-upholstered chair with ottoman, desk, glassed-in stall shower w/large ceiling-mount shower head. Valet parking, bell service. Metered street parking. 2 pools, 1 with food/bar service We-Su 12P-4P. Coffee shop, steakhouse (Tu-Sa) and room service, hours vary by day of week. Bars/lounges/DJ/karaoke. Day spa. Game room w/ pool table/board games/library. Business center 24H. Gift shop. Beach service incl towels/chairs/umbrellas/cabanas 6A-6P in season. Liquor and convenience stores adj to property. Wife: "Love, love, love the chair. Room very clean. Desk staff very pleasant and helpful and gave us tower view room. Exceeded my expectations."
  15. So it's 3 or 4 miles up the VA-28 from the North IAD airport zone hotels. It's still a straight shot to the secret back entrance to IAD (go west on VA-606 Old Ox Rd), and it doesn't get any cheaper than this for a 3* in the USA (AFAIK). $35 + $11.07 = $46.07
  16. 4 mi S of National Airport (DCA). Free airport shuttle; also serves Old Town & Braddock Rd Metro. Priceline reservation. At check-in we were offered 2 double beds and desk clerk graciously gave us nonsmoking king. But we forgot to specify "unoccupied." Room we were given was occupied -- as were the guests we surprised! Room service 6A-11P (dinner entrees 6P-10P), $2+18% mandatory tip. WiFi $9.95/day (not free as listed on hotel website). Work desk w/ leather chair, TV swivels so as to be visible from desk (extra credit). Working blackout curtains with clip to hold drapes together (also extra credit). Some ice machines broken. Coffeemaker, ironing board/iron. Business center, computer use $35.40/hr plus 0.50/page. Restaurant 6A-10A, 6P-10P (you'd rather eat in Old Town, right?); lounge 3P-12M. Exercise room 24H. Meeting and banquet facilities. Parking $20/day.
  17. Started $60 3* Alexandria East looking to get the Holiday Inn. Counteroffer at $75. Started new bid at $63, included 2.5* which appears to be a free re-bid for the zone. Accepted and upgraded to 3.5*. Sweet. $63 x 3 = $189 $35.55 tax/fee $224.55 total
  18. All is cool here (see my 6/7/10 post to the LAS-HW forum; and my review of the Silverton, not previously reviewed here).
  19. Room bought via HW for $39 ++ (Monday night). $7.50 resort fee, no added value. Rated 3* by HW. See Las Vegas HW forum post for listed amenities. Property is a full-service Las Vegas resort featuring full casino 24H with daily 6p $50 poker tournaments, $5 table minimums, 10x craps odds, sports book, buffet, coffee shop 24H, steakhouse Tu-Sa, Mexican & Italian restaurants, Johnny Rocket's burgers, lounges, Starbucks coffee. Billards; duckpin bowling (2 lanes, out of order); smallish pool/jacuzzi 8A-10P, exercise room 24H. Poolside entertainment many weekends. Numerous large, make that huge, waterfalls/aquariums, 117,000 gallon main aquarium claimed to be largest in US. Valet parking & bell service. Places to sit down. Shuttles to Strip and local outlet mall. Massively huge (165,000 SF) Bass Pro Shop on site with apparel, hunting/fishing/boating/camping gear, rifle/pistol range (NV residents with own firearms); laser rifle shooting arcade. Room features wood/leather loveseat, king bed (HW told them smoking, but NS preference accommodated at check-in), work desk, comfortable chairs. Was able to check-in early. Minibar, very reasonable, make that unbelievably cheap ($1.25 soda/$2.50 liquor miniatures). Room service 24H, reasonable +$5+$18% incl Italian, Starbucks (Sa-Su AM only). Wired & wireless internet, $11/day/machine. PPV movies. Why this place has a resort fee escapes me given the very reasonable minibar and room service prices.
  20. Wanted to extend my stay at the 3* Doubletree Club -- for some reason HW does not have an extend-your-stay feature like PL does -- so I gambled and lost, in the sense I didn't get the hotel I was already in and had to move, but I won in the sense that this is a very pleasant property. Serendipity, or karma if you will. 2 rooms @ $39 = $78 + $17.61 = $95.61 Monday night. ----------------------------------------------- 3-star hotel in Near Strip South - 65% favorable This hotel features the following amenities: Fitness Center Guests have access to exercise equipment; an additional charge may apply. Pool(s) Property offers at least one pool area; hours and dates of operation may be seasonal. Restaurant(s) Property offers at least one restaurant on the premises; hours and days of operation may vary.http://www.betterbidding.com/index.php?showforum=114 High-speed Internet Access Guestrooms are equipped with high-speed Internet access; an extra charge may apply. Golf Nearby Property is located within walking distance or a short drive of at least one golf course; an extra charge typically applies.
  21. So why doesn't HOTWIRE offer extend-your-stay?
  22. I've never heard of the M coming up on PRICELINE / HOTWIRE, but if it did, you'd be lucky to get it.
  23. I'd like to extend my stay at a certain LAS property, and unlike PL, HW has no extend-a-stay option. You can (presumably) rebook if you get the property right -- but the property I'm in doesn't exist anymore, at least with the exact amenities. There is a property in the same location and star level that's $3 cheaper (makes sense since the original booking was for a weekend), with one less amenity ("tennis nearby") and a lower "satisfaction rate." Does HW change these factors from day to day? Update: I answered my own question, I think, by reading the HW hotel list: 3* Doubletree Club Near Strip South Amenities: Restaurant, Pool, Fitness, Hi-Speed Internet, Business, Golf, Tennis OR Amenities: Restaurant, Pool, Fitness, Hi-Speed Internet, Business, Golf Update 2: Nope, we have to move to the Silverton tomorrow (or else negotiate with the hotel we're at, and forfeit what we paid HW). My track record on cherry-picking blind-bid hotels is pretty good, so chalk it up to the law of averages.
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