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“Not a smoker friendly hotel anymore”

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Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Albertville
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed August 8, 2012

We have stayed at this hotel every year for the past 5 years both at the beginning of our road trip and again at the end. The common areas are clean, and the rooms are always immaculate. The staff is always very helpful and friendly. On all our previous visits, my husband, who likes the occasional cigar in the evening has thoroughly enjoyed sitting on the front, 'porch', area with his cigar and a beer. He has met many other guests on these occasions and has enjoyed some friendly, interesting and sometimes lively conversations. The porch area became a gathering place, where groups of people could sit and socialize due to the number of chairs and tables. This year however, we noticed that the front porch, both sides, have been designated non smoking. Any guests who wish to smoke have been banished to the side of the hotel, where there is very poor lighting, which is a real safety and security issue, and no comfortable seating areas, and no tables. Forget any socializing or conversation. There is one small bench that will only accommodate 2 people comfortably. Because of this people do not want to stay outside and enjoy others company, they just finish their smoke and go back inside. Before we left the hotel at the beginning of our road trip, we asked Kim the manager why the smoking area had been moved and she told us it was a company wide policy. Throughout the next 3 weeks we stayed at 5 other Country Inn & Suites, and every one of them had a designated smoking area on one side of the front porch, and non smoking on the other side, so clearly not a company wide policy. During a conversation with several of the housekeeping staff at the Albertville location, we were told that the reason Kim had moved the smoking area was because her office is located beside one side of the porch, and she didn't like the smell. They also told us that when they first saw the bench outside the side door, they thought it was for their use, not the hotel guests. My husband has worked in the customer service industry for 30 years, and a few years ago actually taught a customer service program. Because of his experience and background, he understands that it is important to make all customers and/or guests feel welcome and to show them respect. He also knows how important truth and integrity are, when dealing with customers questions and complaints. We both feel that we were lied to by the manager of the Albertville hotel, and the decision to banish smokers to the side of the hotel was, in fact, a personal decision and not a company policy. We were also told by Kim that she was going to provide a patio area on the side, with more seating and tables, but when we returned to the hotel 3 weeks later nothing had changed, she had not even installed a bug light. Needless to say, our stay at this hotel was no where near as enjoyable as in previous years. As a non smoker myself, I do understand that for many people smoking is offensive, but hotels cannot treat smokers like lepers.

Room Tip: Request a room with a lake view on the third floor. Much quieter.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Debbie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MNALBCTY, Manager at Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville, responded to this reviewResponded July 26, 2013

We appreciate that you took the time to post your review on Trip Advisor. Your feedback is very important to us. Guest reviews help us to fine tune our operations to better serve our guests. We are glad that you enjoyed our and clean, comfortable rooms and friendly staff. We are sad to hear that you do not like the location of our designated smoking area and we hope that you will give us another try in the future. Your patronage is definitely appreciated!
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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347 - 353 of 404 reviews

Reviewed July 16, 2012

I stayed at this hotel for business in June of 2012. I was working only about 15 minutes from the hotel, which was an excellent commute. From the moment I arrived I was greeted and helped by the most friendly staff, with no wait, and no problems. The room was clean, and met my expectation 100%. The breakfast was very good, vice nice that it wasn't just a continental breakfast of bagels and donuts, but had substantial food too. It changed every day, and I was offered eggs, french toast, waffles, oatmeal, etc. The breakfast staff was excellent. Also, the cookies served every day in the lobby were a nice touch. And finally- the location next to the outlet mall was absolutely perfect. I chose this place because I had read other reviews about how close the outlet mall was, and it couldnt have been better. In the evenings after work I had plenty of time to shop around. My only trouble was fitting everything back into my suitcase! Overall this was a great stay, and I'd stay here again no question.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled on business
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Thank ollipop87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MNALBCTY, Manager at Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville, responded to this reviewResponded July 24, 2013

Thanks you for sharing your positive comments and glowing recommendation of our hotel. It’s nice to hear that our rooms and service exceeded your expectations. We are pleased to hear how convenient our hotel was for you. We are so glad you enjoyed the wide variety of delicious and healthy options on our “Be Our Guest” breakfast buffet. Thank you for your kind words. We value your loyalty and look forward to your return.
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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Reviewed July 11, 2012

This hotel is clean, has accommodating staff a family suite and cots (which was important for 6 of us travelling together).
The breakfast was good and the pool is small but a good break for the kids. It is a bit pricier than other hotels but being a walk away from the outlet was best for us as the purpose for our stop was to shop.
This was our second stay there .

  • Stayed: July 2012
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1  Thank Roothey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 12, 2012

Thanks for the wonderful 5 star rating and glowing review! We’re so glad you took the time to post your rating and positive comments about our hotel. We never get tired hearing how much our guests appreciate our clean rooms and amazing breakfast. We appreciate your patronage and look forward to seeing you next time your travels bring you to Albertville.
Kim Van Winkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2012

We stayed here again, with friends that had never had this experience. We had bragged about the fabulous service and amenities at our favourite CI&S, and we were not disappointed, nor were our friends. I could not believe that Kim V recognized us; she must see hundreds/thousands of clients in between our annual visits, but recognize us she did. Once again we were treated like 5 star clients. Keep up the excellent work; the pride in your jobs and your hotel once again surpasses every other hotel in the area. Can't wait to get back again.

Room Tip: All the rooms are excellent and super quiet.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank ThePeggers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 12, 2012

We appreciate your terrific Trip Advisor review and top notch 5 star rating. We’re happy to see that you feel our hotel surpasses every other hotel in the area – what a great compliment! We understand that there are many hotels to choose from, and we are glad that you decided to “Be Our Guest”. Our staff strives to provide a clean and comfortable stay along with superior customer service. We appreciate your business and look forward to your return next summer!
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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Reviewed June 26, 2012

We stayed here for 1 night on our road trip to Minneapolis and Wisconsin Dells. We chose this hotel because of its proximity to the outlet stores, and it was great. We just walked to the stores from the hotel and went back when kids got tired which was so convenient. The staffs were nice and we felt they want our business. Mattresses were nice, the room is huge for us, me and my wife and 3 kids ages 9,4, and 2. Kids loved it here, A/C is very good, our room is overlooking a lake, very quiet hotel, pool is adequate for us just to relax after a long day shopping, hot tub is great. The breakfast is fantastic, YUM! Lots of choices, waffle-maker works really well, really good, the lady that attends to the breakfast area was so nice and greeted everybody sincerely not just because she needs to greet us. As a whole, very warm and homey place to stay. I only have positive things to say at this place. Will definitely stay here again and will definitely recommend this place to friends and family.

Room Tip: Choose top floor with a lake view, very relaxing.
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  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank bherting
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MNALBCTY, Manager at Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville, responded to this reviewResponded July 26, 2013

Thank you for the very impressive 5 star rating and glowing recommendation on Trip Advisor. A delighted guest is our ultimate goal! We are very pleased that you enjoyed easy access to Albertville Premium Outlet Mall and your quiet lake view room. We appreciate your business and kind words and look forward to seeing you when your travels bring you back to Albertville!
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2012

We stayed here at the end of Spring Break for a couple of nights in 2012. I thought it was good. I think most people stay there because the Albertville Premium Outlet Mall is right across the street and is so convenient. Nice hotel.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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Thank LucyGeek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MNALBCTY, Manager at Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville, responded to this reviewResponded May 21, 2012

Thanks for taking the time to rate your recent stay at our hotel and share your experience on Trip Advisor. We are happy to know that you enjoyed staying with us and we appreciate your recommendation of our hotel. We thank you for your business and hope you choose to stay with us when you return to the area!
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2012

We are a family of 4 including 2 teenage daughets. We shared 2 queen beds. NONE of us slept through the night. It wasn't noisy at all. The mattresses were just bad - no support. We all woke up several times during the night - 3 of them. We all woke up stiff and sore.

To help with the bed, hey lets use the pool (small) and hot tub. HOWEVER, no heat in the hot tub. NONE. Bubbling cool water. No thanks.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank 4frtravelling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MNALBCTY, Manager at Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville, responded to this reviewResponded May 14, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to rate and review our hotel on Trip Advisor. Your feedback is very important to us. Guest reviews help us to fine tune our operations to better serve our guests. We recognize that the hot tub was not working properly during your stay and we apologize for any trouble this may have caused you. We understand how frustrating this must have been and we hope that you will give us another try in the future.
Kim VanWinkle, General Manager
Catherine Reller, Sales Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville

Address: 6554 Lamplight Dr, Albertville, MN 55301-4504
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Minnesota > Albertville
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Albertville
Price Range: $102 - $154 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Albertville 2.5*
Number of rooms: 66
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A comfortable stay in award-winning accommodations awaits you at the Country Inn & Suites Albertville. The hotel is located next door to the Albertville Premium Outlets and close to Cedar Creek Golf Course, Lake Maria State Park and Ellingson Car Museum. This hotel offers a convenient location near the area's major attractions and businesses. You can also spend your day on site, splashing around the indoor pool and wading pool, relaxing in the whirlpool tub, surfing the free high-speed Internet and reading books from the lending library. This hotel's affordable rates also include top services such as free hot breakfast buffet, a fitness center and business services, so don't wait another minute to reserve your hotel room or suite at this outstanding property. 100% Non-smoking facility ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Country Inn And Suites By Carlson _ Albertville
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson _ Albertville Hotel Albertville
Country Inn Albertville
Albertville Country Inn

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