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Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel
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Reviews (636)
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Reviewed June 26, 2014

Frankly, I was hesitating even considering staying at the Avatar based on all the significant number negative comments. We were lodged in room 142. It truly IS a Motel......not a Hotel as the name of this establishment suggests. My particular room had all the basic amenities. Nothing fancy or surprising. The furniture is certainly "different" but not so bad as to consider staying somewhere else. We were attending a American Legion Convention and the Motel was, in essence, sold out, however, as far as disturbing "noise" and thin wall is concerned.......we had several nights of peaceful sleep without any problems. The room was clean and the staff were professional. We were greeted with a smile and frankly I would consider staying here again. Maybe we got lucky?

We did not, however, eat at the iHop for breakfast, or any other meal for that matter. Turns out that the bad reviews were correct. All my friends told me that the Wait Time was horrible and not to bother going. That was good enough for me.

Room Tip: We stayed at Room 142, first floor, facing the pool.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Henry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jamie L, Front Office Manager at Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 11, 2014

Thank you Henry for taking the time to write this review! I am glad to hear that you were pleasantly surprised by the professional staff and cleanliness standards of our property. I'm also happy to hear that your stay was a peaceful one allowing for a good nights rest as well.

Thank you again! We hope to see you in the future!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2014

After spending a LONG day at Great America, we were ready to unwind and relax. We were not disappointed.

We checked in around 8:30 on Thursday, and were greeted by a wonderful friendly face behind the counter. I explained that I wanted to check the room completely for bed bugs or anything else BEFORE we brought anything into the room and she was completely accommodating. We went up to the room and tore it apart, and I mean A-PART! Lifted the mattresses, pulled the sheeting and bedspreads from the bed and looked at EVERYTHING to guarantee that there were no bugs of any kind roaming around. This place was clean! No stains on the bed, frame, sheets, or bedspreads. The carpet was a little stained and worn, but so what? There weren't any bed bugs! That is HUGE!!!!

Next it was time for our twelve year old daughter to take a shower. She came out and mentioned that the shower felt like a thousand bees stinging her, so my husband adjusted the shower head and then he took a shower. He said it was better, but still hits you hard. The next morning when I took my shower, I felt what they were talking about - it was definitely like the water was stinging you, but I can only imagine what it must have been like for our daughter before he adjusted it. SUGGESTION TO MANAGEMENT: get a water restrictor for each shower head from Lowe's at the cost of $1.30ish and not only will it reduce your water usage, but it will make the shower less of a stinging sensation for your guests.

The room was quiet, and dark enough. (My husband is like a vampire - he needs COMPLETE and TOTAL darkness and he didn't complain about it, so it must have been okay!) We got a good night's sleep, and woke up the next morning feeling refreshed.

We then went down to IHOP for breakfast and the service there was very good. It's nice to get a 10% discount for guests, so we can't complain about the savings there! :)

We checked out at 11:30/11:45 (ask for late check-out - it's totally worth it to not have to rush in the morning instead of the usual 11:00 check-out time), and again were greeted by friendly staff.

We would definitely recommend this place to other travelers, and will stay there again if we're down that way.

By the way, in case you're wondering which room we can guarantee as being bed-bug free - it's room 215.

Room Tip: Ask for a room in the back if you need darkness and quiet. The front rooms run the risks of hearing the noise on Great America Parkway.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Caroline C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jamie L, Front Office Manager at Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 11, 2014

Thank you for your review Caroline! I am so glad to hear that you had a pleasant experience with us and enjoyed the friendly service of our front desk team!

Thank you for the heads-up about the water pressure issue. I will be sure to look into option in getting this addressed for our guests!

We hope to see you again!

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Reviewed June 17, 2014

So no matter how much you try to disguise it, a motel is still a motel - the absence of a corridor gives it away. If you open you door in the morning and you see sunlight, its a motel, despite what the name say. It has nice bright colors and my room was clean, small but clean but it's expensive for what you get. One of my colleagues could not say the same about his room wing clean.

If you're a light sleeper, you will get woken up all the time. The trolleys start early in the morning around 5:30. If the person next door uses the bathroom, you will hear exactly what they are doing to the point you can hear if they are standing or seated never minding flushing toilets. The walls must be made of paper or something. Early risers seem to have no problem talking to each other from different floors when leaving, so I was listening to a conversation at 4am, but of course I'd already been woken up at that point.

I simply don't understand how people can sleep here.

The iHop is really slow with their service. The only highlight is the free beer at happy hour!

Room Tip: Go as high up as you can - but even that won't shield you from the noise.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Michael F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jamie L, Front Office Manager at Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 11, 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write this review Michael. We believe that hearing your feedback about how we can improve is one of the best ways that we can continue to grow and improve the level of service we provide for our guests.

My sincerest apologies on your less than desirable experience.

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Reviewed June 14, 2014

I made reservations being familiar with branch in Sunnyvale,CA. No comparison!
Avatar was under construction, which front desk will deny if asked, & no prior warning. Outside my door were exposed plumbing, dirt & wood pallets as a fence, wheel barrels lying around. Orange cones. The room was dirty, bathtub dirty or grossly stained.
I immediately tried to resolve matter & switch hotels with extra fee or try another room. Front desk was rude & didn't try to accommodate or attempt to call another hotel for us. I left & went to Sunnyvale Domain, for less money.
I would never go near hotel again.

  • Stayed: June 2014
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Thank Mccoyj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adam F, Manager at Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this reviewResponded June 16, 2014

Hello Mccoyj,

Thank you for contacting us about your stay. I am incredibly sorry about your experience! Yes we are under going construction and in the process of the a large refresh around the pool area. I apologize that this was on going through your stay. As it mentions on our website we will be continuing with the refresh until July 1st around the pool. The majority of the work is complete now and only have some planting left to do. We have cemented the area where you saw the piping to expand our pool deck and have laid brand new turf in other areas around the pool. I would like to invite you to contact me directly at your most convenient time so I can personally invite you back once everything is complete so you can experience our property for what we truly stand for.

Again I apologize we were not up to par during your stay and we are working as fast as we can to get everything in better condition than before we started for all of our guests to experience.

I look forward to speaking with you soon,

Adam Finch
Operations Manager
408-454-6884
afinch@jdvhotels.com

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Reviewed May 31, 2014

Joie de Vivre brand promises classy property, but it's not. The entire hotel setup is still in its motel origins. Yes, the rooms were upgraded, but you still don't feel the comfort (motel-type front entrance with little privacy, thin walls, no curtains, just shades, lots of noise from around). Big disappointment for JdV branded hotel.

Rooms are spacious and comfortable. New bed. But again motel-style bathroom split with the sink outside (in the corner of the room). At least the bathtub and shower are upgraded. Still, you hear the neighbors snoring and see the people walking across your window to their rooms. Added value - 5-6am wakeup service provided by the IHOP deliveries or trash collectors. WiFi free, but rather slow. Very little security - the potential thief has only thin doors to cross to reach your room; and they can get to the property unnoticed from any angle.

Breakfast "served" in the adjacent IHOP (extremely slow service, 30 minutes waiting for the order to be received, then another 20 minutes waiting for the omelet). And you get only 10 USD voucher for the breakfast, so you will need to pay the unavoidable difference even if the rate says "breakfast included".

Talking about the rate - if it would be at 100 USD level, then this place would be a no-brainer for cost conscious travelers. But it's much more, easily getting to twice this value, which renders the offers of nearby Marriott and Hyatt much more attractive.

Room Tip: a room at the end of the corridor will limit the guest traffic in from of your window
  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Miramaks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jamie L, Front Office Manager at Avatar Hotel, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 11, 2014

Thank you Miramaks for your time to complete this review. I'm so sorry to hear that you did not enjoy your experience with us. Please know that we read and take these reviews very seriously when considering ways in which we can improve our guests stay and our customer satisfaction.

Thank you again. I truly appreciate your feedback.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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