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About mapsmith

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  1. Unfortunately, there are a bunch of Hotels that could be called 2* in the area. Many more are probably listed as 2* but are really 1 or 1.5* along the Freeway heading South you have the Quality Inn, it has a restaurant. Then there is the Ramada Ltd. Denny's next door. Then a Days Inn with Carl's Jr. Next door. Riverpark is next but it is listed as 3*. Then a Motel 6, a Howard Johnson. and La Quinta. Across the Starr Pass is yet another Motel 6 and a Super 8. Heading Northbound there is an Inn Suites at 6th Ave. Away from the Freeway, I really cannot think of a 2* (or anything remotely considered a 2*) that I would want to stay in. My best Guess based on only a laundry showing as amenity. Is probably the Days Inn or the Ramada. The La Quinta is nice but not really up to normal La Quinta Standards as yet. (Formerly a Holiday Inn) of all of the hotels, I would probably go with the Riverpark at 3*. or Book directly with any of the others that fits your fancy. (Most have a single at about $50 this time of year. Oh, yeah. I-10 thru Tucson is undergoing major construction. all of the hotels listed will have construction traffic. So call the hotel of your choice and ask for a discount because of the construction. Or look to the Airport for slightly better properties. You might also check Visittucson.org. That is the Visitor's Bureau website, and often they will have really good deals at some of the Resorts during the summer. (i.e. Last year they had Westin La Paloma at $79 per night.
  2. Could not find anything really good for Anchorage for the Saturday and Sunday before Labor Day. Hotwire just had a few 2* at about $100. So tried the old "Tried and True" method of bidding Priceline at 40% of Best Available Rate. Came out at $90. Got it for both nights at the Sheraton Anchorage. Much better than the Econo Lodge at $95 on Expedia. But still wondering if I could have gotten it cheaper?? Oh. Well. I still consider it a deal for Anchorage.
  3. Going to Detroit for wife's 30th HS Reunion. Got the Westin on a AAA rate of $89 for Aug 4-6. She wanted to stay longer. Westin said the best rate they could find was $219. Website came up with $189 on AAA rate. Hotwire said $86 (Westin is only Hotwire 4* in Southfield) Tried Priceline at $70 and got it on the first try. Decent price for any Westin. Though I feel that since I got it on the first try, I may have overbid. But if I did, I doubt it was more than $5 overbid. Now have to convince Westin to connect the two reservations so I don't have to check out then back in. :)
  4. If I may step in with a suggestion. Since it is a College Trip, you might want to check with the Kellogg Convention Center and Hotel at Galluadet University. The Hotel has fairly reasonable prices and may even have cheaper rates for a student Trip. Althoug I have heard that the University is in a less than desirable part of town, it does have decent security and a shuttle to Union Station. I was considering their hotel but it really wasn't the right choice for my trip.
  5. After two weeks of bidding was able to finally get a decent price for a Hotel for Book Expo America. Started at about $80 for CC/Cap about a week ago. Last night started at $110 for 4* CC/Cap denied. tried $120 for 4* and 3* not expecting to get it but success. Check-In Date: Wednesday, May 17, 2006 Check-Out Date: Monday, May 22, 2006 Priceline Hotel Request Number: 299-731-241-02 Priceline Customer Service Number: 1-800-657-9168 Hotel Name: L'enfant Plaza Hotel 480 Lenfant Plaza, Sw Washington, District Of Columbia 20024 202-484-1000 Your Offer Price: $120.00 Number of Rooms: 1 Number of Nights: 5 Travel Insurance: $25.00 Subtotal: $625.00 Taxes and Service Fees: $97.40 Total Charges: $722.40 Satisfied because not only is the Book Expo on that weekend but also several collegiate graduations and it is DC after all. Most other hotels in DC appear to be sold out or only have rooms in excess of $350 per night so it seems like a decent deal. Thanks for having this site up. It is much friendlier than that "Other Site" :)
  6. Stayed here on two successive 3day Priceline bids of $94/night from Feb 17-23, 2004. This was my true expectation of what a 4* hotel should be. The Melia White House is located 100 yards north of the Great Portland Street Tube Stop. However, getting to Great Portland involves changing at another station to get on the Circle Line Tube. However, two blocks west is the Regent Park Tube Stop which is on the Bakerloo line which will take you quickly to Oxford Circus, Picadilly, and Westminster. Two blocks east is Warren Street which also connects to "downtown". The Hotel itself is in a fairly quiet area, although the Great Portland Hospital is nearby, we only heard one or two sirens. The room was fairly roomy. (it was mentioned as 9'x27') we had two twins made up as twins but pushed together as a king. Arrangement was okay for a couple but if two business people staying in the same room, you might want to push them apart a little. Plenty of mirrors to make the room feel larger. Few unusual features. First you must put a room key into the slot inside the door to work the lights, (this also provides a small light on the outside to let employees know the room is occupied) Also even though the hotel is on 220v electric, it appeared that there were also outlets for USA 115v and Euro and possibly Australian 220v. Did not try any of the USA 115 because did not want to fry my phone. Might want to ask at the desk before you do. Also US phone jack, but appeared that the two line phone might also be hooked to the room next door. Again ask at desk. The most amusing thing is the elevators (lifts) are computer controlled. You enter your floor number and it tells you which lift to go to (A,B,C, D). You proceed to that elevator and it takes you to your floor. No buttons to push in the lift. (Was fun watching people trying to figure it out the first time.) Good 4* hotel and would stay here again. (However, rack rate is 250GBP and internet rates run 175GBP) Good location and quiet.
  7. We stayed here on Feb 23 after staying at the Melia White House for 6 days. My first view of the exterior gave the impression of a Russian Apartment Building. Although the interior was pleasant enough. The front desk staff were nice and helpful. The location was very good for Kensington. We were given room 521 with two twin beds that were adequate for the single night stay. Although the comforter was kind of small for the bed, it did provide warmth, since it did not appear that the window heating unit was working (It was about 25F outside) I had been warned that the tube noise would be a problem on an east facing room, but we had no problems. Decent room for $75US but not for the rack rate or even the internet rate of 104 GBP. Rating should be 3* rather than the 4* that Priceline rates it.
  8. Finally got my last day of my trip. Could not swing the White House and was considering using points at either Sheraton Belgravia or Sheraton Heathrow. Tried one last time and figured that what the heck, try Kensington. Got it on the first try for $75 Although historically the Copthorne Tara has had a few negative reviews on TOBB and on Trip Advisor, lately seems to be much better.
  9. Well, I was not having luck with 2-20 to 2-24. From what I had seen on other sites, the problem was that School Break in the UK is 2-23 for about a week. So I tried to break the trip up even more. Figured another 3day and then maybe the last night at the Airport. Started with Westminster at $87, Added Bloomsbury at $90 and then added the Southwark Free Bid since there are no 4* in Soutwark at $94 which is what I got the White House for 2-14/20. And got the White House AGAIN at $94. Now I just have to get the last day. Since I now have the White House for two consecutive 3 day stays, I think my luck has run out. But I will try the single day and see if it works. The main part of my trip is covered. If all else fails, I'll use a few points at Sheraton for the last day. Hope my bidding strategy will help others.
  10. I split the bid by looking at business vs. weekend. Since I was trying for 7 days Tuesday to Tuesday, I figured the first half should end with a Friday Checkout for the Bloomsbury area, since it is usually considered more of a weekend (at least according to the rates shown on most booking sites) Figured the second half would be the weekend at one of the more common business areas that would have more openings on the weekend (and maybe stretch to include Monday night.) So far have had no luck on the second half, but may try the City for potential Weekend bid.
  11. After trying for a 7 day stay from 2-17/24 with no luck in Bloomsbury, Mayfair, Westminster, SouthBank, and London Bridge up to $105, for the last two weeks, I decided to split the stay and see if two stays would help. Got the Melia White House for $94 for 2-17/20. With a little guidance from the board (Thanks for the info WillTravel about looking at "spot on" UK Pounds) I realized that a previous Holiday Inn Regents Park Deal at $52.50 might catch a Priceline bid. First tried $89. (=50GBP) second was the $94 and worked. Now to get the second half covered.
  12. To the OP, you can register at Priceline UK. On a similar note, looking at a board similar to TOBB but for PricelineUK, I was wondering if any US people have had luck registering on Priceline UK and Priceline HK. Like this board, it seems as though some good hotels come up on Priceline UK that don't show up on Priceline US. I was also wondering if there is an advantage to Priceline UK and bidding in Pounds rather than using Priceline US and bidding in Dollars. I am finding the moderator on Better Bidding is a mich nicer moderator than the one on TOBB. Keep up the good work.
  13. Following in Thereuares steps to "go Local" here are some suggestions for Tucson, Arizona. Don't fight the crouwds at Mi Nidito. The most popular Mexican restaurant in South Tucson is Mi Nidito. It usually requires a wait of between 15 minutes and one hour. However, if you walk south 1/2 block you will find an equally good Mexican Restaurant calle El Dorado. We have never been disappointed with the food and our guest like it as well. It DOES have a Cantina like feel (including a bar with a pool table that is part of the restaurant.) Or you can go east two blocks and south about foru blocks to La Cazuelitas. Another very good Mexican Restaruant on 6th Avenue. HIke on the other Trails Tucson is know for its outdoor Recreation. Most tourists will day hike either in Sabino Canyon or in Pima Canyon. Split the difference between the two and try Pontotoc Canyon. This is a relatively shourt and easy trail at the North end of Alvernon Way. (Access tol North Alvernon Way is off Skyline at the MDA Headquarters.) Pontotoc Canyon trail starts at the same trailhead as the Finger Rock Trail but turns right immediately. Pontotoc Trail separates you from the view of Tucson by a 1000 rock wall on the south. There appears to be at least one group of Peregrine Falcons that live in the wall. So keep a look out for spectacular Flights. Pontotoc Canyon Trail is very doable for anyone in even minimal Physical Condition. Ask the Locals Everyone in Tucson, whether they have been here two years or fifty have their "secret" restaurants or stores or hikes or clubs. We are not afraid to tell visitors about them. Ask the clerk in a Convenience Store or Grocery where an interesting place is and they will give you a laundry list of places to see. Just Ask. Thanks Thereuare for the chance to share.
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