First of all, don’t let the scary images of the neighborhood on Google Maps scare you—those pictures are dated. The area is undergoing urban renewal, with lower-end motel chains taking the place of by-the-hour sleazy dumps. Neighbors to the Rodeway include Motel 6, Super 8, and Days Inn.
The best way to describe this property is “very, very ordinary,” which is obviously not stellar, but not bad either. In fact, our experience was far from bad. The room was clean, and staffers were very friendly and helpful. Room décor was borderline tacky, but not gaudy, with art deco headboards, 1980’s looking TVcabinet/dresser, and nondescript artwork. Strangely the coffeemaker had no supply of coffee, and part of the cabinet (where one would expect to find a mini-bar) was locked shut. A small dorm fridge was located in the roomy clothes closet. The bathroom was bright and clean, with glass-doored stand-up shower only (no bathtub).
We stayed on a Wednesday night, and experienced none of the previously reported homeless, prostitution, or party noise. (Whether there are differences on the weekend I couldn’t say.) We kept the ever-present Highway 99 freeway sounds muffled by keeping the heater on; the same could be done by using the air conditioner or just the fan (all these in the same under-window unit operated by a wall thermostat).
Apparently the property used to have a pool and restaurant, as indicated by the older of the two tall, visible-from-the-freeway signs. Evidence indicates that the restoration of the restaurant may be in the works, but there are no signs of the pool—I think it was filled in and paved over at some point.
The free breakfast was basic, but good, including cold cereal (corn flakes), mini-muffins, coffee, and orange and apple juices—just enough to get us started on our journey.
We were looking for a cheap “crash pad” about half way between San Fran and Los Angeles, and that’s what we found at the Rodeway Inn.
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