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VA Northern VA Holiday Inn Dulles

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This is the Holiday Inn on 1000 Sully Road on the northeast side of IAD. Stayed here 8/18 - 8/20 2006, Pricelined for $40 per night. I was a little apprehensive based on reviews I had read. A friend of mine had stayed here for several weeks for airline training, and had told me to request a room in the 'new wing.'

My mother and I arrived here at 4pm on Friday, and the parking lot was fairly empty. No line at all for check-in, and we made a request for a two double-bed room in the new wing. The hotel rooms are laid out in a rectangle shape, with an outside courtyard in the middle, and I'm unsure which part(s) is the new one. The entire hotel looked very nice, the lobby area spotless. There is free ice water and cups in a dispenser next to the check-in counter. A nice lounging area is nearby with a lot of chairs and I believe a TV. Also, a gift shop/convenience store, an Irish pub and another room for the breakfast buffet, and of course the Holidome with a large pool, video games, hot tub and sauna.

At any rate, we got to the room to find a very nice, clean room with our requested bed choice. There is a good sized TV (25" maybe), desk, chair, and large sitting chair. Bathroom was very spacious and clean, however the tub drained very poorly. We noted this on a maintanence card the first day, but it was not fixed. A/C unit was loud and did a mediocre job of cooling, but that's ok. There is free wireless internet throughout the hotel/rooms, and wired internet also available in the rooms.

Aside from the plumbling, this hotel was very nicely done. For $40 this is a great value, although judging by the review, other hotels in this zone are a bit better and more consistent.

To follow up: my friend tells me the rectanglular portion furthest from the Holidome is the new wing of the hotel. So upon check-in, ask for the new wing.

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Relatively new rooms (at least the one I got). 2 mi N of IAD. Hard to find, not visible from main road (SR 28). After taking the exit from SR 28 take two immediate right turns (there is a very tiny sign that says, Hotels). Airport shuttle. Gift shop. Free wired & wireless internet, RJ45 cable provided. Indoor pool, jacuzzi, sauna, 7A-10P, 9A-10P weekends. Exercise room 24H. Guest laundry. Restaurant 630A-1030A, 5P-1030P. Breakfast buffet. Room service, 630A-12M (limited menu after 1030P), can order from hotel internet home page. Bar/lounge, 1130A-1A. Rooms have desks, lounge chairs, iron/board, coffeemaker. 25" TV, local+basic cable+HBO. Business center. Free parking. Banquet/meeting facilities. Pillow concierge. Near local restaurants incl Chinese/Italian/Indian/Pho. Take a lap around the airport on your way to town thereby avoiding the toll road.

As a PL guest I was told only smoking rooms are available (this seems to be a nationwide policy of HI) but I kept asking nicely and was accommodated in a NS room.

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Beetles, bed bugs, extreme humidity, non-working keys, cold room service...if these make you happy, this is the place for you. While the lobby looks nice, this is the worst room I have had in at least 5 years, with my hotel nights averaging 350 a year. So bad that I took photos of the conditions, captured bugs in jars and required a doctor visit with prescription medicine. This is just not a 3* property no matter who claims it is. What it is is an aging 2* property with exterior entrances that are bolted shut, "for your security".

There is a business center, as long as you do not mind if the equipment is "out of order". Order their holiday inn classic Cinnamon Roll French Toast from room service, and you may be lucky enough to receive refrigerator cold french toast on warm plates, like I did. Butter or margarine are not included at this fine establishment. There is no microwave in the room, so you will not be able to rectify the french toast on your own. You might not even be able to reach room service. They do not answer their phone reliably during the hours listed on their menu or at the hours stated by the front desk. You will need to have a second choice available when you order. They run out of high demand items like potato skins. Do you like a cold drink in the evening? Bring lots of change with you. There is no in-room mini fridge. The ice machine does not drain effectively and there are warning signs for the wet floor with towels and sheets wadded up along the base. The vending machine will not accept bills, and the front desk does not always have change available. Yet, you leave your room at your own risk. Keys do not always work to let you back in. After another lengthy trek to the front desk, your key is only re-worked after the desk clerk dissappears into some back office for awhile.

I stay in a variety of star-level properties all the time. I don't always need to be in 4* properties. I stay in plenty of 2* and even 1* properties. I'm not that fussy. I understand that my priceline bid might not get me their most desirable room, and I am fine with that. I am not, however, fine with properties that are negligently unsafe or unhealthy to stay in.

There is no possible way that competent hotel management is not aware of the situation. As you walk through the halls to get to the room, there is a point where the building has an extension, and the climate suddenly changes. I noticed it upon checking in to the room, but rather assumed that by adjusting the room air conditioner and giving it an hour or so, the situation would be acceptable. Not the case. After spending close to an hour unloading and setting up business supplies, I left for errands to allow the room to adjust. It improved only slightly. The air conditioner has to be run at max constantly to avoid extreme humidity. You will wake up at night sweating. A trip to the bathroom and turning on the light revealed a beetle struggling for life. (Amazingly, I am even ok with the idea of occasionally finding a random bug. Things happen and all that.) Waking up in the morning, we realize that we have plenty of itchy bug bites. Not sure if it was just a few very hungry mosquitos, we leave for the day. Returning late the next night, we repeat the same thing, only this time there are smaller bugs on the sheets. Yep, you guessed it, bed bugs. I have stayed in many different properties within this priceline zone, and properties at this and all other star levels have been very nice. I rather doubt I will ever take a chance of getting this property again. It would be worth driving to adjacent Fairfax.

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