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About irobot

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  1. That is actually a good win for that area, which is one of my favorites. Parking, however.... That's a tough area. You're close to a University and to the Fox Theater. I've always had to suck it up and pay what they asked. Probably the most expensive parking in Atlanta, where a lot of places offer free parking. Glad to see somebody still having good luck with an opaque bidding site. Property managers have gotten smarter about gauging their rates, and maybe doing directly through their own websites. And maybe the economy had turned up a bit and business travelers are moving around more. Remember, that's the break and butter of most brands that use PL. That, and sadly I don't think people share their experiences as much as they used to. Frankly don't do as much PL as I used to myself.
  2. Sorry for the delay in responding. Like I said; I don't frequent these sites much anymore. Fortunately, my PL itinerary email was still in my trashcan and I confirmed PL's rating of this property. It is in fact listed as 2.5 stars. Don't know why they downgraded it, but they did. BTW, it was sold out on the night we were there (my brother and I). I was lucky that I arrived early enough to get a room with a sofa bed. Otherwise, one of us would have been on the couch. Don't know why, but every time that I'm alone I seem to get defaulted to a double and every time that I'm with a buddy I get a single. Not complaining, though; I know the drill.
  3. Don't frequent the boards much anymore (or use PL as much as I used to), but I have tickets to an upcoming show at the University in Gainesville, so I experimented around for a few days and ultimately got the Marriott Courtyard for $56. I started bidding a 3 star in the University zone at $51, failed, but was counter-offered for about $14 more. Since there were no 2.5 properties listed in that zone I added the 2.5 and raised my offer by $5, and was accepted. Not disappointed, since the rack rate for that night is $149 and the downside of most Marriott properties is pretty limited, although thee were some reviews on TripAdvisor talking about the need to renovate their rooms (which is supposed to happen this year). I'm sure it'll be fine.
  4. Accepted on my first bid at $35/night for three nights. Total with fees and tax was $128.26. Includes one weekday (Thursday) and is on the weekend of Dragon*Con, which is why I'll be there. Very unusual to see the Marriott throw itself out there for this price. I actually prefer the Hyatt Suites in this same zone, by that's mostly because my company has a relationship with them, so I get free breakfast, etc. Still a bunch of value at this price.
  5. Ironic. I just stopped by to post my winning bid for this same property at $35/night. Times must really be tough in the hospitality biz. I bid this zone all the time because my company has their HQ there, and it's VERY unusual to see the Marriott hit at this level. You'll almost always get the Hyatt Suites (also a fine property) or, less frequently, the Crowne Plaza (decent, but not up to the other two).
  6. ?? So what's the minimum acceptable bid amount now? It seems like that would be below the minimum for a 3.5 star.
  7. I'm pretty familiar with this market, since my company has an office here. I started out at $42 for a 2.5* in the NW, which was declined. Bumped to $45 and added downtown, I was "upgraded" to a 3* for the Marriott Courtyard, which has been a 2.5 for like forever. I find this new PL re-rating scheme to move the business class hotels like Courtyard and Hyatt Place (and I assume Garden Inn, although I haven't won one of those lately) to 3*, is a VERY bad and misleading move. This makes the 3* rating so broad that it's virtually meaningless. I mean, look, saying that (for instance) the Hyatt Suites is a comparable property to the Marriott Courtyard in Columbia is laughable. This TOTALLY undermines the credibility of PL <end rant>.
  8. I don't know if it's across the board, but I've seen wins for Courtyards in different locations coming in as 3*, when they have always been listed as 2.5 in the past. I just won a Courtyard in NW Columbia that I've gotten MANY times in the past as a 2.5, and they're calling it a 3* now. I'm here now, and nothing looks different to me. Wonder if this has something to do with the new 3.5* rating? (or did that just replace the Botique category?
  9. I just recently saw wording like this for a US property (Columbia, SC, specifically). It was when I had used the "extend your stay" option. PL didn't accept the original accepted price, but came back with a higher one - with that wording.
  10. Wanted to post a warning of a new hotel showing up in the 2.5* Louisville East zone. It's the Best Western Envoy Inn and Suites. It doesn't get bad reviews at Tripadvisor, but the rack rate for the day that I bid, August 11, was $59. With the PL fee, I probably paid basically retail. Needless to say, my PL bid of $39 was accepted immediately. I guess that I can say goodbye to the Marriott Courtyard and Hyatt Place in this zone. Too bad.
  11. I wanted to share a possible PL hotel in the San Juan area that I hadn't seen posted anywhere yet. It's the La Concha, a Renaissance resort down the street (Ashford Avenue) from the Marriott resort already listed. Just got back from 4 days there. Although I was in San Juan on business, and reserved directly through their website for $179/night (since my company was picking up the tab), I overheard the lady at recpetion say to a couple standing next to me, "I see that you reserved your room directly through Priceline." Rather than give a full rundown, I'll just say that it was ok, although pretty pricey for what you got. Guess that I'm spoiled by PL. I posted a full review over at TripAdvisor, if anyone is interensted. Anyway, heads up.
  12. Springhill Suites Chesapeake Suffolk (Gum Road) Didn't see this property listed. Regardless, was bidding for June 20-23 in the VB area (this weekend). Bid all around, since this area seemed to be playing hard to get. Started at $45 for the Norfolk Airport and moved up in $2 increments. Not actually sure where this property falls within PL zones, since I had bid various zones up to $57, where my offer was accepted. Never stayed at a Springhill before, but it get decent TA reviews and its a Marriott property, so the downside potential is probably limited. I'll post a review when I return. FYI, this place is listed on their site as Chesapeake Suffolk on Gum Road.
  13. Noticed that this property hasn't been reviewed here in about 4 years. I stayed here a couple of weeks ago for three nights (Dec 29-31). There has been a remodel since the previous review and it helped the the overall condition of the rooms, etc. I agree with the previous poster's description with these additional comments. I'm a Diamond member and had an upgrade certificate so I was given a suite on the 10th floor (the 11th being the highest floor and Club level). Also received the welcome plate of wine and cheese/fruit, which was nice, along with complimentary breakfast buffet passes for myself and my brother. The buffet, by the way was very good, but VERY crowded; long lines both days we ate there. Service was clearly strained to keep up. The club lounge also had excellent evening hors d'oeuvers. That actually saved us an night out when it was raining and cold. All in all, I thought that we were treated very well. Some of that was clearly because of the fact that I'm a Diamond member though. Also used the fitness facility which is on the 2nd floor. very nice with treadmills and bikes with TV screens and headsets available when you come in the door. Layout is a little unusual, though. It's in the same aread as the pool, in two seperate areas. Also closes early for my needs, at 9:00 PM. My BIG complaint is their parking; only valet is available for $41/night (!!). I've stayed in a lot of places and this the the highest parking fee that I've ever seen. Really over the top. The other thing that I'd mention is that one side of the hotel faces a firestation, which got a bit of a workout during our stay. There are a lot of sirens in DC anyway, and if you are a light sleeper, you might want to avoid that side. My last comment is that there was a general lack of attention to details here. For instance, our welcome tray stayed in the hallway outside our door for two days before it was picked up.
  14. Started DT 3* at 40 and went up starting with the East and Airport (which, BTW, shows a 3* property now, although I haven't seen any listed either here or at TOBB) in $2 increments. Got a hit at $46, so the minimum couldn't be any lower than $45. Hopefully this joint won't charge extra for the use of their fitness facility. I just reserved for the following night a Hyatt at the ORD airport (Chicago) - 4*, no less - that supposedly charges exttra for EVERYTHING: parking, internet, breakfast AND use of the fitness facility. Hyatt card holders get a "discounted" rate of only $5/night. And all of that stuff is free at a humble La Quinta! Jeez, some luxury!
  15. Another thing about Hyatt Place properties - AFAIK, all of these should be the old Amerisuite Hotels, which Hyatt bought last year. I don't know whether or not it applied to all of them, but I recently stayed at one in Tampa, FL which was completing a major rennovation (I think that I already left a review here on it). All rooms had 42" Plasma TV's, new carpet, etc. Very nice. The only warning I would give is the place in Tampa (non-PL stay) was that the rennovation was still going on in a pretty major way downstairs. Bare sheetrock on all the walls, exposed metal studs, etc. They had nice but small exercise room - no weights though, just cardio, and were talking about have some sort of "shared kitchen facility." (??) Don't know what that meant, but it sounds vaguely communist to me.