My very first job out of college was working as a college recruiter for a small college in New Hampshire. My territory was actually Connecticut so I would head out early Monday morning and spend the week living out of hotels. Needless to say, I developed some pretty strong opinions about what makes a good hotel! I was recently invited to visit the Country Inns & Suites in Minneapolis, Minnesota to experience first hand some of the new initiatives they are rolling out throughout their many locations. Because most Country Inns & Suites are franchised, the changes will be happening on a schedule that works best for the owners, but they will definitely be worth the wait!
For as long as I can remember, Country Inns & Suites has been known for making your hotel stay a little more like home, or at least like staying at a friend’s house. This is achieved by practicing their “Be Our Guest” service philosophy and providing extensive training for all employees and also providing recognition for those employees who are identified by guests as exemplifying this ideal. It was evident to me right from check-in that customer service is a top priority at Country Inns & Suites.
The feeling of being at home starts as soon as you walk in the door with the new design. I arrived on a chilly, rainy October morning and was greeted by a warm fire and comfy chairs. I was really tempted to grab a book from the Read It & Return It Lending Library and curl up for a nap!
Once I got up to my room, I was struck by the little details that were throughout that made it feel less like a hotel room and more like a guest room. The decor had the feel of something curated – like someone had gone to an antique store and picked out pictures for the walls and furniture that didn’t look like a matched set that had been mass ordered. The wall behind the bed had the look of reclaimed wood. The room had the perfect feel of modern convenience coupled with homey charm.
The suite I was in had all the comforts of home I could ask for – complimentary WiFi, a microwave, a mini fridge and even a Keurig with a selection of different K-cups to choose from. As I looked through the literature provided, I was thrilled to see that the hotels offer a Be Our Guest Breakfast every morning.
The Be Our Guest Breakfast goes beyond the cold cereal complimentary offerings you might have experienced at other hotels. The breakfast offers hot selections like omelets, hot waffles, and breakfast burritos as well as easy to grab on-the-go options if you are in a rush. If you are able to sit and enjoy breakfast, I recommend that you do. Everything is served on real plates and silverware just like at home (except you don’t have to do the dishes) and the food was delicious.
Just outside the main hallway, there is an outdoor sitting area with a fire pit. Guests can pick up a S’mores kit at the front desk and make their delicious fireside treats while they enjoy the gorgeous fall decor. Unfortunately, it rained during my entire stay, but luckily the S’mores kit included microwave instructions!
With its comfortable charm and modern day conveniences, Country Inns & Suites is definitely on the top of my list of favorite places to stay. Factor in the Club Carlson Rewards Program and how easy it is to earn free stays at Country Inns & Suites, Radisson properties, and any other Carlson hotels, and you can’t lose!
And if you have an American Girl fan at home, you’ll want to be sure and check out the special American Girl Dream Package the Bloomington, MN Country Inns & Suites is offering:
For a comprehensive walk through of the different suites offered at Country Inn & Suites, check out my video!
To hear about more fun things to do in Minneapolis, check out these posts.