First, the good news. This Comfort Inn definitely is geared toward the business traveler, which is an added plus for the vacationer who still requires a reliable Internet connection and other amenities. We arrived after an all-day drive from Carlsbad Caverns and the Guadalupe Mountains National Park (two major highlights of our trip) at 5:15PM and were delighted to find out there would be *free* Papa John's pizza in the third floor breakfast room at 5:30PM. We finished unpacking the car and arrived in the correct location at 5:40PM and the pizza was brought up five minutes later, so we were able to take advantage of this meal (choice of sausage or pepperoni) while it was hot. Free Coca-Cola was also provided and the juice machine was working, providing additional choices of Cranberry, Orange and Apple juice. The result was a savings of $30 on dinner. Nice. Then, it was discovered that chocolate chip cookies were available at the front desk. That took care of dessert. Nice again. The room had a quiet GE air conditioner, a 32-inch flat-panel television monitor and firm queen beds with the Comfort Inn's signature almost-square pillows. These beds were less plush than those at the Comfort Inn in Santa Rosa NM, while the pillows seemed a bit less resilient. But the room was very clean and the second floor was quiet. The glitch appeared at 6:00 on Tuesday morning, when the complimentary hot breakfast was 17 minutes late. This was due to several factors. The first was that the new server (with only two days on the job) had not realized the stove-top burners were weak and incapable of cooking scrambled eggs in a reasonable amount of time. The second was that management apparently had not scheduled her to start early enough to have everything laid out by 6AM in a large breakfast room which is set up to hold 44 guests and one server at the same time. Because this is an airport location, where flights are taking off at least from 8:23AM forward (with a 90-minute minimum airline check-in requirement in some cases) you can readily do the calculation and see that 6AM is the bare minimum for a breakfast start time. I almost literally inhaled that scrambled egg and toast in less than five minutes and we made it to the baggage check-in with just a few minutes to spare for an 8:23AM departure. Huge credit goes to the rental car company which had an agent in the parking lot to process our return and the fact that the El Paso airport is in the same place (no shuttle required). So, the bottom line is that if you have an early flight, let the front desk know upon arrival and see what they say. Otherwise, don't count on a hot breakfast if you are in a similar situation to the one we experienced.
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