I am a Club Carlson member and I have stayed at five Country Inn & Suites and so far this one was the worst of the lot. The best one was in Effingham, Illinois. Compared to other Country Inn & Suites, the check-in was very fast and the rooms were well-sized and in good condition. But, here is what ruined the stay for us.
BREAKFAST: Because I had stayed at several Country Inn & Suites, I know what to expect for breakfast. The breakfast experience was extremely bad. The orange juice smelled bad. The cranberry juice was water with a pink coloring. The breakfast attendant was running around complaining about things not working. The line for make-your-own waffles was extremely long. Here is what could be done to improve this experience:
(1) Have a better beverage dispenser with good (properly defrosted) orange juice and cranberry juice. I suspect the orange juice and cranberry juice was partially frozen in the dispenser and that the tap on the orange juice had not been cleaned properly in some time.
(2) Add a second waffle maker to reduce the waffle lines. Include no-stick spray for the waffle iron and a proper way to put waffle batter into the cups. We had a bowl with a SLOTTED DRAINING SPOON to try to put the batter into the cups. Talk about frustrating!
(3) BACON! There is no breakfast without it. Instead of bacon there was a rubber chicken-like patty.
I did not try to approach the breakfast attendant about this because she seemed one step away from a nervous breakdown. We should have left immediately and went somewhere else for breakfast.
I understand that this particular Country Inn & Suites is complying with a State of Florida standard for environmentally-friendly lodging and I am all for improving the environment. But, there is a line that you can cross in this area where providing "environmentally-friendly lodging" actually harms the occupants or lodgers. The main part of this "environmentally-friendly lodging" standard is to turn off the AC entirely when their is no occupant in a room. So, when a new occupant arrives to a room, the room is HOT and smells like someone's old dirty sneakers. Only after you run the AC for some time does the room become liveable. Then, there are other concerns. If the AC is off for long periods of time, you have created a very warm, dark, moist environment. This "environmentally-friendly lodging" standard also provides the perfect environment for viruses and bacteria to thrive. I do not care how much you clean the room, this is the case. Here is how you can improve this:
(1) It is much better to leave the AC on and set the thermostat to a higher temperature when the rooms have no occupants. In this case, even an occasional cycle of AC will reduce the humidity and temperature and cut down on the musty smell (less ability for bacteria to grow that produce that smell). It will also reduce viruses and other bacteria in the room.
(2) If you do not do want to do this, you could have the staff turn on the AC in ONLY the rooms you are expecting occupants at around 2PM each day or make some sort of attempt to cover up the "old sneaker" smell.
I love Country Inn and Suites as a general rule, but this one hits far below the mark.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
March 20, 2012
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our hotel on TripAdivsor! We sincerely apologize that your experience here was less than satisfactory. We appreciate any comments or suggestions you may have to improve our property and graciously invite you back to stay so that we may have another opportunity to change any negative opinions you may have about our hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.