I needed to find a room that was under the Federal government daily lodging rate, but also close to where my colleague was staying (supposedly nothing in Alexandria that was FEMA approved and under that rate; I don't know ... just what he said). My stay was for two nights.
The curb appeal is pretty good, particularly with the Cajun Landing restaurant nearly attached. The common areas are fairly well kept for as large a property as it is, with multiple meeting areas, as well as the whole Atrium set up. My room keys said “Ramada,” and the Atrium had that Holiday Inn Holidome feel to it, so I am not certain as to the lineage of the property.
The folks behind the check-in counter lacked personality, but did answer basic questions without elaboration. Those folks that came on duty later that evening, and the next day, were much more personable and made multiple recommendations for places to eat (Cajun Landing, SwampDaddy’s, Copeland’s New Orleans, and Diamond Grill) in response to certain restaurant cuisine and location-type questions).
My room was #139, at the rear of the Atrium, next to the exercise room. The exercise room is basic … stepper, treadmill, & multi-station “home gym.” The room itself was a little rough. In no particular order: I had to fix the toilet to keep it from running non-stop (not filling the tank); it took a LONG time to get hot water in the shower, and then it constantly had to be adjusted down in temperature; need to periodically CLEAN the whole room and not just clean up after the previous guest; white socks were black on the bottom, as was also evident on bare feet when stepping into the damp bathtub; WiFi worked great; and there was love seat and coffee table in my queen bed room (to give an indication of size). The room also contained a microwave and larger than normal mini refrigerator.
The breakfast was average for a free “hot” breakfast, but did have the option of “real” eggs made to order in addition to the chaffing dishes of grits, sausage links, biscuits, “SOS” gravy, and scrambled eggs.
I believe that the property has potential; it just needs some TLC, but not certain that the rates that the property can command will lead to the funding necessary to do so. As another guest has already stated, the whole area needs an update. The Clarion next door appears to be in worse shape. The newer Candlewood Suites and Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, which are newer and a higher rate, cut back on size and all the meeting space/restaurants that some of the other shells of hotels on that stretch of road saw as necessary at the time that they were built.
I would stay there again for the same reason as this visit (government/work travel), as well as a stop for the night during vacation or other travel.