My husband and I are frequent visitors to the Pacific Northwest and we *always* make a point of staying at the Cedarbrook Lodge, sometimes more than once!
The hotel itself is perfect when it comes to blissful tranquility and amenities. From the sweetly appointed rooms to the considerate "family lounges"...there is nothing, absolutely nothing, that has been overlooked. As someone who stays in A LOT of hotels, it's very easy to see the amount of future-planning and guest-consideration that went into the all encompassing travel experience environment that Cedarbrook wanted to create.
Love, love, love, love, love the family room. Did I mention that I love it? I really mean it. It's very nice to see a hotel that goes above and beyond for their guests. It's just really something special to go grab a bottle of water or a scoop of chocolate-covered raisins sometimes (my husband has discovered coffee ice-cream which is now a staple in his diet). Everything is meant to refuel and recharge you.
The breakfast is top-notch. As I mentioned, my husband and I usually stay at least twice during our trip west (once at the start, once at the end) ... we always look forward to breakfast. It's perfect. (Offerings include: Hard boiled eggs, oatmeal with an assortment of garnishes, smoked fish, bagels, local preserves, danishes/sweets, dry cereals, fresh fruits, juices, hot cocoa, coffee, tea and more!)
The grounds are meticulously kept. The only eek is the spiders that nest by the over-hanging lights and the covered pass-through between buildings. Eek on that. (This girl hates spiders! And I probably look certifiable based on the way I literally RUN past them).
The beds, OH THE BEDS. Super comfortable inducing the best night(s) sleep. The hotel, despite being close to the airport and sprawling and pretty much nestled into a neighborhood is exceptionally quiet.
The bathrooms -- okay, the bathrooms... I always look forward to taking a long bath at the Cedarbrook. It's a real treat. The tubs are soaker tubs, extra deep and the hot water is inexhaustible. They provide guests with bath salts and it's really quite lovely.
But, very few places are without issues and Cedarbrook has its fair share of faults.
During our trip this past spring (April 2014) we stayed in an "accessible" queen room (the only one available when we booked in the Dogwood) and it was kind of a mess. I mean, the chair blew feathers all over the room, and all over us. We were covered -- and it's a good thing neither my husband nor I are allergic. When I called the desk to let them know they "thanked" me and asked if we were allergic, I said "no" and that was pretty much the end of it ... no offer to come get the chair or clean up the feather-storm. While we may not be physically offended by the feathers, it's still not cool to pay over $200.00 a night to stay in what basically amounted to a chicken coop. That was pretty disappointing. (However, when we stayed there this July 2014 we were in another room --not an accessible-- with a new chair, no feathers)
When we asked the manager (?) at the front desk what local beaches were great for walking he sort of "hemmed" over it and eventually told us Alki Beach -- but it was mostly for "cruising" and "being seen".... Come again? Not exactly the most professional choice of words, and we're young enough to know what that means... Ultimately we skipped the beach and headed to Pike Place and the Pier ... but I guess if you want to be seen or cruise, Alki is the spot to go.
The room service menu is limited to fancy-pants options and sometimes a girl just doesn't want fancy pants. We like room service, especially when we're coming in off the road -- which is either the night after we flew in or the night before we fly out after doing the Peninsula for 10+ days. I'm not a big carnivore, but sometimes I just want a simple cheeseburger -- you can't really get that. I tried the crab cakes one -- they were GREASY as all get out. Yick. No.
Parking. Let's talk about parking. I don't know if this is mentioned on their website...maybe? But, here's the deal... You have to pay to park. It wasn't always that way -- I believe on our first trip a handful of years ago, parking was free... but now it's not. It's $20.00 per night for self and a bit more for valet. Okay, it's really not the end of the world, but as a hotel guest (with a reservation, and an overnight guaranteed stay) it just feels like gouging (I know other hotels roll parking into room rates, but what I don't know can't bother me). Now, don't get me wrong, I appreciate all the free perks which consistently makes staying with Cedarbrook an easy choice, all which I've talked about at length, but parking is parking... I understand that Cedarbrook does cater to a particular cliental (the business world) but if you're a guest at the hotel, paying upwards of $150.00 per night... well. Really?
And since we're talking about parking ... The lot is small, there are times when it is filled to max capacity. It's not always easy to find a spot, especially at peak hours. Just and FYI.
Okay, and selfishly I have a small wish list, too:
Can we please get a gift shop? I know you have the little quarter wall by the reception desk and all -- but how awesome would it be to get a Cedarbrook sweatshirt? Pretty awesome. I know you're an airport hotel, and I know you cater to the "comings and goings" ... but for me, you're a destination resort, the same as any other. I'd proudly walk around wearing your name.
And, in coming soon news -- A SPA WILL BE THERE SOON.
I cannot begin to put into words how pumped I am. I can just picture it -- 10 days of hiking, capped off with an hour long massage right on the property. Someone pinch me. And there will be a hot-tub and it's all going to be amazing.
Long story short: I love the Cedarbrook. My husband loves the Cedarbrook. You can stay at a Marriott in just about any city in just about any country and in many instances a hotel is just a hotel, but if you want an authentic PacNoWe experience, this is the place to get it. So, yeah, treat yourself and your family, even if it's just for one night.