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Aprilmay

AL Birmingham Sheraton

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My husband and I stayed at the Sheraton for only one night, but we really enjoyed the hotel. I was nervous after reading the reviews on TripAdvisor.com, but I took into account that most of those reviewers paid rack rate for their room. I paid less than half that, so I can look past a few flaws.

LOCATION: The location of the Sheraton is very downtown. It is located literally steps from the interstate. Attached to the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Center, it is primarly a business hotel. The parking is a bit odd and a little difficult to figure out. You must park across the street in the Convention Center parking deck, and at $5 a pop, no in-and-out, it would seem to get pricey. After our second five dollars, I went to the desk to complain (read: vent) about the excessive charges, when they told me that I could have bought an unlimited parking card at Guest Services desk for $10/day. Thanks a lot! No one bothered to tell us this at check-in, nor did they tell the other two couples we were there with when they checked in. Anyhow, after parking in the deck, you must follow the maze to the hotel lobby. It's about a ten minute walk.

ROOMS: We actually saw five different rooms. It took three tries to get the king room we requested. The first time we were sent to a double/double in the tower building. It was small, especially the bathroom. But it was nice, clean, and modern. The bathroom had a very small counter, barely big enough to hold a small make-up bag. I went back to the desk and requested a king room. We were then assigned another room on the seventh floor, again, tower building. Guess what?! Again, this was a double/double. Third time we were finally assigned a room on the sixteenth club floor in the atrium building. This room was twice the size of the first two. A huge desk with fax/printer/copier, bottled water, coffee maker, couch, chair with ottoman, and a great bed. Great bed linens, triple sheets with a down blanket and down duvet with cover. The bathroom was gigantic, compared to the other rooms. Nice bath amenities, Pantene Pro-V shampoo and conditioner, Vaseline lotion, and Jergens soaps. A lighted make-up mirror and hair dryer were also mounted.

I took a peak at the other two rooms on our reservation. They were also in the atrium building, eighth floor. One double/double and one king, and upon their request, connected rooms. They were as big as our club level room, but without the fax and a smaller desk.

SERVICE: The service was good to great. The first front desk clerk we met with was great. He checked us in without mention of Priceline. He only said that we had gotten "an internet rate." The lady that I dealt with while changing rooms was less than excited about helping me, though I wouldn't say she was rude. Just not friendly. However, I do appreciate that they honored our room requests without reminding me of my Priceline rate. Each and every bellman we passed throughout the hotel spoke to us, and asked us if we needed anything. Though we didn't require the help of a bellman, one family with us did, and they reported that he was extremely kind and helpful.

FOOD: We did not partake in any food from the restaurants, but I did see a little cafe in the atrium, as well as some sort of Grill that served burgers and such. There is not much choice outside near the hotel when it comes to food, but we were into town for a wedding, so we ate with family. If you choose not to eat at the expensive hotel restaurants, go down the interstate a couple of exits where there are lots of restaurants, fast food, etc.

OVERALL: We enjoyed our stay at the Sheraton. I bid for a three star when I won the Sheraton, and I would say that that rating is accurate, perhaps even low. The beds are the Westin Heavenly beds, which I always love, anyway. And for $51, who can complain?!?!

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We last stayed in the Birmingham Sheraton in June of 2007. Our rooms were in the Atrium and were clean and comfortable. No maintenance or housekeeping problems. This is a solid 3*, if you get one of the renovated rooms. Be sure to ask for one. We never eat at the hotel, so can not comment on the restaurants. This is a big convention hotel and they are usually busy. We always use valet parking and have never had a problem. This is a good location for most anything in Birmingham as it is next to a major interstate. It can be a little impersonal but that is just due to its size. We always find the staff to be pleasant and professional. Not much to do in the immediate area but it is hard to complain for $50 a night!

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We stayed here August 2008. It was a strange place. Big property, and we never saw another guest. Kind of like a ghost town. Very few staff around. It was difficult to find someone to valet the car or help with baggage. The restaurant was closed. The room was large, clean, comfortable. While downtown, I would say I thought it was a bad location. You really can not walk to anything. It sits at the edge of the interstate, so easy access, but no restaurants around. No room service. The phone rang mysteriously throughout the night.

The check in was fine. There were a few mentions of priceline, but not in a negative way. We received our requested room type.

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Stayed here 9/13/08 for one night. Likewise, there was very little traffic in the hotel, as I guess no conventions were planned for that time. Room was clean and comfortable and I would rate very good. We stayed in an atrium king room. I would say the only negative was the bathroom had no vent fans and the steam from the shower fogged the mirriors. Minor inconvenience, though. Parking is across the street in a garage for $7/day. Not sure if it's each time or unlimited in/out per day. Would stay here again

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