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“Small urban hotel, with big aspirations” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Modern Hotel and Bar

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Modern Hotel and Bar
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1314 Grove Street, Boise, ID 83702   |  
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Ranked #15 of 55 Hotels in Boise
Salem, OR.
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Small urban hotel, with big aspirations”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2012

We stayed here one night on our way home to Oregon, and found this unexpected oasis tucked in amongst the culture core of downtown Boise, Idaho. We read that it was a 50-60's motel remodeled into a quaint boutique urban hotel. Well, they hit the nail on the head. From the outside, it would be very easy to drive right past the hotel - with its quirky, two-story throwback architecture and subtle monochromatic paint scheme. But once you park (in their limited parking lot) and make your way into the lobby/bar area, you know immediately that the "don't judge a book by its cover" adage holds true. The bar area is minimalistic and modern without being overly sterile and antiseptic. It is inviting and tastefully decorated with a small bar and a dozen smaller tables filling in the rest of the space. The front desk staff was friendly and very helpful. They told us about the bar, food menu and room service (that uses the same menu and prices!). The room was a very spacious king room with a balcony. The bed and chairs were comfy. However, the room smelled a bit strong of contact adhesive or cleaner of some kind. Each time into the room, WHAM! It wasn't so strong that a new room was needed, but I'm not as sensitive to these things as others might be. The bathroom was chic, classy and highly modernized, maybe too much. The sink was a huge flat porcelain basin that held your waste water (from brushing teeth) a bit too long before making it to the drain. The shower was a very cool walk-in (no door needed) design, but with an overhead, "waterfall" style head in the ceiling, if you only wanted a rinse shower and did not want to wet your hair, it would be difficult. The room decor was again quasi-George Jetson, but functional and not displeasing to the eye. The large flatscreen TV was easily visible from the spacious king bed. We ordered room service from the simple, but varied menu of starters and entrees. We were surprised by the speed in delivering our order, as well as the perfect temperature and high quality of the food. They had an excellent selection of bottled beers (even two Belgians!).
A complimentary continental breakfast (in the bar area) is included. Fresh bagels and brewed coffee (catered by local downtown bakery) along with fresh OJ and homemade raspberry jam, was a nice touch - and better than a spend trip to Starbucks.
For a bit over $100 per night, a bargain, despite the other minor comments made. I would return and perhaps stay a bit longer - to take in the local restaurants and sights downtown.

Room Tip: Room service is same price as in the Hotel bar. Food quality is excellent, portions a bit undersize...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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332 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    34
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (89)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

We stayed at "The Modern" for three nights and found the king bed and room to be very comfortable. The hotel has been completely remodeled and each room had its own decor. Our room, #118, was right off the patio/common area and just a few steps from the breakfast room. They offered a continental breakfast which included bagels, toast, juices, coffee, tea and was very nice. My only negative was that the room did not offer much storage space for your clothes. The bath was nice with a modern walk-in rain shower. The staff was very helpful and friendly and our room was clean upon daily return. The location is very convenient in downtown Boise.

Room Tip: No elevators for the second floor.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Ken Caryl, Colorado
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

We stayed five nights at the Modern on a recent trip to Idaho. They've done a really nice job of repurposing an old Travelodge on the outskirts of downtown Boise in what's called the Linen District. Our deluxe king room on the second floor had interior access with a small balcony facing the front of the hotel which I thought best for a quieter room away from the bar/restaurant. No problems with the bed as others have noted but agree there is not much closet storage and no drawers (only some open small shelves) for unpacking. This wasn't a problem for us on this trip but could be for some I imagine. We did use cruiser bikes available from the hotel to bike the river greenbelt and North End one day which was very convenient. We had dinner twice at the Modern and really liked it both times. The heirloom tomato and grilled haloumi salad, Hagerman sturgeon, and the morel/short rib ravioli were nice. My wife especially liked their signature Estelle Royale cocktail. The bar patio has three gas firepits that make the space really charming at night. Staff is super-friendly and helpful. Continental breakfast was fine and no real problem asking for the fresh-sqeezed juice and hot water for tea. It's an easy walk from the hotel to the 8th St restaurants or the Basque Block and other sites from the hotel. Closeby the hotel is Big City Coffee which is a good place for breakfast or lunch. Only small annoyance was that the hotel asks you to reuse towels but only provides one small hook in the bathroom so the towels don't really dry well overnight. Since we had the balcony we could dry them in the sun but in other rooms you wouldn't have that option. We would definitely stay at the Modern again if going to Boise.

Room Tip: Balcony rooms on second floor that face front of hotel
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Out West
Top Contributor
135 reviews 135 reviews
80 hotel reviews
Reviews in 83 cities Reviews in 83 cities
136 helpful votes 136 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2012

We stayed at the Modern based upon its premiere ranking in Tripadvisor, and I think that top rating is well deserved. But I wouldn't stay there again and here's why.

First, a bit about the property. The hotel Modern first opened in Boise during the Depression Era. So right away you can figure that the basic structure is old. It's been through a number of renovations to the point where it is today. Our room had a queen size bed and a walk-in rain-style shower. The airconditioning/heat is provided by a wall mount unit similar to what you'd find a Hilton Garden Inn. The room was quiet - despite having a window that overlooked the back alley. Some of the Motel is inside corridor (as was my room) and some are motel-style in that the door is exposed to the elements.

Free WiFi helps but there is no real work surface to speak of except for a strip of wood about 12 inches deep. A better way to describe it would be laptop depth but no place to rest your wrist.

The bed was comfortable and the room was spotlessly clean. Upper quality soap and shampoo is provided. Where the place starting racking up some negatives for me was the location itself: in Boise's up and coming Linentown district, as the motel likes to call it, but there is no up and coming around it, yet. To old downtown Boise is too far to walk.

Parking is provided a few spaces up front, but the rest of the motel must park in the Alley, and even though well lit, I would be reluctant to stroll alone. Breakfast was coffee from a pump dispenser, granola, and bagels. Juice was kept in a fridge that's part of the bar and you must ask for it. Flys were rampant, attacking my food at every moment.

If you are a Boise State alum and there on gameday, or more of a younger hipper crowd, then this place may fit you well. However, if you wish to get some work done and start the day right, and say move East into Downtown Boise.

Room Tip: Odd number inside rooms have their window fronting the busy main drag, even numbers have their wind...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2012

We stayed here for 5 days in a suite with our 11 month old son. It's not the best place for kids, but the suites do have a fridge, mini bar and microwave, so you can bring a portable high chair and get by. Beds are comfortable, staff is friendly, have a basic continental breakfast, free parking, and it is a convenient location. Also, it is one block from Big City Coffee, which has the best breakfast in town. Love the quiche, muffins, and chai tea lattes!


Cons are there is no gym, but lots of places to work out close by.

Room Tip: Rooms away from the bar and upstairs are quieter.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stayton, Oregon
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2012

We stayed four nights at this hotel and greatly enjoyed it. The room was comfortable and well maintained. The staff was very hospitable, helpful and gracious. The restaurant and bar exhibited a strong commitment to the very freshest of ingredients. The menu, while limited, was very well executed. The cocktails were creative and delicious.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2012

The higlight of the hotel for me is their outdoor patio bar. I was in Idaho visiting family and after a long day out it was great that my hotel was also my nightlife destination. I looked forward to getting back to the hotel and hanging out at the bar/restaurant. A good cocktail and good atmosphere is all I need. The rooms were also very comfortable and calming. I loved the clean simple decor with cool colors and beautiful warm wood cabinetry. "Modern" hotels run the risk of being too kitschy but this hotel was very tasteful and understated in it's modern design. Front desk was very warm, relaxed and welcoming and added to the cool comfortable vibe. Breakfast was standard fair, but the host offering to make specialty coffee drinks with soy milk as an option was above par.

Thanks for a great experience!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Modern Hotel and Bar

Address: 1314 Grove Street, Boise, ID 83702
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Idaho > Boise
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Best Value Hotel in Boise
#7 Business Hotel in Boise
#13 Romantic Hotel in Boise
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Modern Hotel and Bar 3*
Number of rooms: 39
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience this intimate boutique hotel, where architecture and design live in harmony. ADA-compliant. Free parking for walk-up comfort and convenience. Adjacent to the Linen Building Event Center, The Modern Hotel is the ideal spot for meetings and creative professionals taking care of business. Onsite, our business center has all the hook-ups you need to tie up loose ends while you're away. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Modern Hotel Boise

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