The Howard Johnson's Pikesville Hotel is the epitome of Average, Three Stars, nothing more, nothing less. This was my second stay at this motel. Both times, I needed a reasonably priced place to crash for one night as major maintenance was done in my apartment. It has a convenient location on Reisterstown Road just northwest of Baltimore City and over the line in Baltimore County in the Southern portion of Pikesville propper. This motel was built in the late 1950's or early 1960's which has its pros and cons.
1. No elevator/lift (2 story motel) Not a problem for me but could be an issue for some.
2. Not enough electrical outlets. Back in the 50's there were no such things as cell phones that need charging, personal computers and CPAP machines which I use for Apnea. I had to unplug the little clock radio and plug it under the window air conditioner.
3. Quirky electrical wiring. One of the light switches as you enter the room switches the plugs by the window side of the bed and the outlet under the A/C unit which shut off the little clock radio which I had to reset because I kept forgetting about that light switch.
4. Little clock radio wasn't working on the alarm mode. No big deal, I used my smart phone as a handy dandy alarm clock.
5. The biggest drawback of them all: The aged GE through the wall under the window A/C unit was quiet but, undersized for a room this size on the second floor. For most, that unit would do a good enough job. I'm guessing the room on it's coldest setting was between 72 and 75 degrees. When I stay in a hotel or motel, I want the air conditioning to get the room cold enough to hang a side of beef.
6. TV is a 1980's old school tube affair 25 to 27" with a medicore at best picture. Flat screens have come down in price, get with the 21st. Century!
7. Common areas such as hallways and main lobby were hot. Around 80 degrees. I understand the owners wanting to save money but, stuffy hallways just make the room air conditioners have to work harder to cool the room. These areas don't have to be meat locker cold but 75 degrees is not too much to ask even at this price point.
8. 1100 hour checkout. I know many other hotels have it but they are usually your resort and upmarket properties.
9. Room was a bit dated and showed signs of wear and tear. Check out my pictures and you shall see what I meant.
Others have downrated this motel because of cleanliness issues and creepy crawlers. I saw no roaches, mice or other vermin. The front desk is shielded by a plexiglass window. Though the neighborhood is not at all bad, thirty years ago a couple employees were viciously gunned down in the lobby because they were witnesses in a court case against a nasty drug dealer who now languishes on death row. In the state of Maryland, the death penalty has been eliminated so the needle and "Old Sparky" were put out to pasture. The drug dealing was not on this property.
1. 1950's era hotels have that old school charm I like; the rooms are generous sized especially for $55 a night. Even with a King bed there's plenty of room and I didn't feel claustrophobic.
2. Staff I encountered (Indian family) always smiled and were very courteous with me.
3 Room itself was 4 stars for cleanliness and the bathroom was spotless 5 stars.
4. Tub was sparkling white, the shower worked and temperature was even and easy to regulate.
5. There is a small swimming pool but it's hours are 1300 to 1900. I was there one night and checked out at 1100.
6. Brightly lit parking lot.
7. Though the TV was decrepit, there are plenty of channel choices including HBO.
8. The price. This hotel is almost $10.00 cheaper than the Econo Lodge a couple miles down Reisterstown Road in Baltimore City in the Hood. And that hood hotel does not have a pool to drop the kids at.
9. Comfortable enough bed. Towel ls and washcloths were clean and had that hotel smell I liked.
10. Soaps were halfway decent especially for a low to moderate priced lodging establishment.
11. Because of it's 1950's origins, walls were not paper thin and I had no trouble sleeping and noise was not an issue.
Would I recommend this motel? Yes I would. For $55 a night, you get what you pay for. Next go around I'd opt for a first floor room. Chances are the air conditioner would better be able to handle cooling a ground floor room as heat rises. They have a continental breakfast which runs from 0600 to 0900 which I did not partake. I don't like getting up early unless it's for work, an early flight or getting away from a one night stand.
If you are not fussy about the latest interior decorating styles and don't mind a TV from the era of mullets you should be satisfied at this Ho Jo's. It's 25 minutes Northwest of BWI and about 20 to 25 minutes Northwest of downtown Baltimore.
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- Also Known As:
- Howard Johnson Pikesville Hotel Pikesville
- Pikesville Howard Johnson