You want to stay on Meridian Ave. Just south of I-40. There is a water Taxi that will take you down the Oklahoma River to Downtown OKC/Bricktown. There is lots to see and do there.
Thanks Jason for taking the time to post - really appreciate the advice. We will check out Meridian Avenue. :)
The OK River Water Taxi
stop on Meridian is at SW 15th street, so you might check hotels in that vicinity.
Pick a few and check them out on TA. Also, ask here. I haven't been in any of them in a long time, but I'm sure someone will be able to comment.
Modcon has good info there, I know the Holiday Inn Express is pretty new and walking distance to the Taxi stop.
I would recommend you stay at a downtown hotel, inside or outside of Bricktown. It will make sightseeing much easier and they all have free shuttle service to the airport. Any hotel downtown is a good pick - they are all new or newly remodeled - just pick based on your price and specifications. It is a 5 minute drive from the Meridian district to downtown.
I would stay in Bricktown over the Meridian area (although that's not a bad suggestion especially since they have the water taxi that will take you from that area to Bricktown). If you're not going to rent a car, you can do A LOT in the downtown area. Water taxis, Museum of Art, Myriad Gardens, OKC National Memorial and Museum and quite a few restaurants that aren't major chains (that's what you'll find in the Meridian area).
The best way to use the river cruise to get from Meridan to Bricktown is get off at the Regatta Park stop (Boathouses) and grab a bus/trolley to Bricktown. There isn't a connection to the canal yet and no easy way to cross the river or I-40 at this time except for the Skydance bridge, which is not a short walk. I'm not 100% sure, but it looks like you can get a round trip for $12/ person, $6/person if you are 60 or older, 6-12 years or disabled.
Lou, is it safe to say you will not have a car? If that is the case, I would recommend the downtown/bricktown area to stay in and have a shuttle or cab take you to the airport. If you are only there for a few days and you stay downtown, everything you will want to do will be within walking distance. I would recommend the Colcord or the Skirvin. They are a little more expensive than some of the others, but they are both great hotels with amazing service. The Colcord has a free shuttle to the surrounding area. You might call and see if they have that shuttle for trips to the airport. If you are looking for places to eat, Bricktown is a short walk from both of those.