My children (ages 4 & 3) and I stayed at here for two nights on October 22 & 23, 2010. We had an absolute blast!
The hotel is a little dated (it used to be a Holiday Inn) so not everything is crisp and new but that didn't concern any of us one bit.
Every single member of the staff that we interacted with was great - from the front desk to the dining area to the maintenance guys to the cleaning ladies.
Our room was nice and clean and we all slept great.
Behind the hotel is a small pond surrounded by a wonderful boardwalk with a gazebo and a beautiful garden. There is an old paddle boat that was converted into a restaurant in the pond which was packed Saturday night (not sure if that is rented for special occasions or if it is open all the time). All of us enjoyed watching the fish and turtles swimming in the pond. There was also a friendly cat roaming around the boardwalk that my kids tried and tried to catch but the cat simply had too many places to hide!
My kids and I walked all around the pond and at the back of the grounds was a pasture with a couple of friendly cows in it that came up to greet us.
Although I wouldn't rave about quality of the inclusive breakfast buffet, all of us were satisfied with what we ate. (Note: I typically stay at Holiday Inn Express and if for comparison sake I were to rate their breakfast as a 10, the breakfast at this Best Western would about an 8). One very nice thing about the breakfast is that it is served in the hotel restaurant - not in the lobby like at most hotels. The view from the dining room was great as it overlooked the pond/boardwalk/paddle boat.
I've been saving the best for last........THE POOL IS AWESOME! This was the warmest hotel swimming pool that I have ever been in - the temperature of the water was perfect! The kids and I swam for 2.5 hours one night and 2 hours one morning. Before we checked out they asked me "dad, can we come back here to swim again tomorrow?" I wish that we could have but Monday awaited us the next day.
Overall, this hotel was a great experience. As with many things, it is what you make of it. If you want a five star hotel, stay at the Crown Plaza in nearby Springfield. If you want a pleasant experience in a safe rural setting at a very reasonable rate, stay at this Best Western!
We will definitely be going back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- "Elegance in a country setting" The Magnuson Grand Hotel & Conference Center is located just 30 miles south of Springfield, IL and 60 miles north of St. Louis, MO. Each well-appointed room features free high speed internet access, which was all newly installed the first of June 2012. Visitors are encouraged enjoy a meal in the Captain's Table Restaurant or Yacht Club Lounge, take a relaxing stroll through the rock and flower garden, enjoy the sundeck, fishing pond, and experience the Carlin-Belle riverboat used for business meeting and small special events. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Best Western Carlinville Hotel Carlinville
- Carlinville Best Western