I stay at Hilton properties for work and Hamptons for family travel because I'm used to a consistent, quality product. This property is clearly not that product. Attached to a casino complex, the brand's usual calm parking area is a crazy, bustling mish-mash of people, many of whom you wouldn't want to encounter in a dark alley. There were men arguing loudly out front, and the lobby was packed with a roudy group of nearly 100, despite the late hour. One front desk person was all I could see.....he was giving it a valiant effort, but the situation was too overwhelming.
I struggled to get to the elevator because a visibly intoxicated man with an open beer was blocking the doorway. When I arrived at my room on the 5th floor, it was stuffy after a nearly 100 degree, oppressively humid day. The light switch at the bed was broken, and the phone next to the bed didn't work. I went to turn up the air conditioning, only to be greeted by an error code. I called to the front desk, and he quickly attempted to get me a new room, but found that there was only a smoking single. With a 6 week old baby, that wasn't going to work. He said he'd send someone up.
After more than 30 minutes in the stuffy room with no help, I googled the error code myself and determined it wasn't going to be fixed tonight. I called Hilton's 800 number, which was worthless...they told me I had to deal with the front desk. I called back down and the front desk guy found me a spot in the company's Hilton Garden Inn down the road, again he did a great job trying to make it right. So, I packed my kids and all our stuff back out through the crazy throng of people in the lobby and searched for the other property. After nearly 12 hours on the road and an hour wasted at the Hampton it was well past midnight before we got situated in a room that was less than 90 degrees. Then that property had soiled linens......
It has the usual amenities you would expect from Hampton....free Breakfast, wifi, parking, with the typical americana-photo branding inside. Unfortunately, I never got that free breakfast. Parking might be free, but it's shared with trucks, casino traffic, and the competitor's customers. Features you might find at other Hampton properties such as a fridge are nowhere to be found.
Hopefully, the poor condition of the room was an anomaly. However, this property has proven both visits to be far less family-friendly than other Hilton Properties due to its proximity to the casino. Make no mistake, this isn't a glitzy and well-kept casino you might see on TV. These are older looking brown-box casinos interspersed with light-industrial and heavy commercial properties. Replace the high-rollers you might imagine with guys you might expect to see in the rough part of town. I was seriously concerned for the contents of my car after a couple repeatedly strolled up and down the parking aisle staring at the contents of my open car while I tried to unload. If you're out to get ripped and roll some dice, you might feel right at home. That's certainly not the situation the brand communicates, however.
My strong recommendation--stay at the Hampton in La Vista, NE just a few minutes down the road. I've had nothing but great experiences there.
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- Also Known As:
- Hampton Inn Council Bluffs Hotel Council Bluffs
- Council Bluffs Hampton Inn