I traveled to St. Louis with one of my college roommates to visit our third roommate (her boyfriend), who lives there. We couldn't actually stay with him, though, so I went looking for a nice hotel near where he lives. My criteria were pretty basic: indoor pool and whirlpool, positive reviews, and a reasonable rate. Originally, I was planning on using rewards points for my stay; I had enough Priority Club and Marriott Rewards points for a 2-night stay at basically any InterContinental or Marriott property in the area. But I noticed that all Crowne Plazas, regardless of date, location, rates, etc., are 25,000 points per night. I'm a AAA member, and the AAA rate at this Crowne Plaza was only $69/night for the dates we were staying (December 28-30, 2010). I knew this was too good to pass up; I decided to save the points for a more otherwise-expensive hotel some other time and just pay the AAA rate for this stay.
What made me choose the Crowne Plaza, other than the fantastic rate, was the enormous indoor pool and adjacent hot tub situated at the bottom of an 8-story atrium. The architecture here is really amazing. You can tell it's an older hotel (though kept up remarkably well) by how solidly everything is constructed; it's obvious they didn't cut any corners here or use the cheap construction that most hotels now seem to be using.
The hotel was easy to find, though the right turn onto Lone Eagle Dr is rather sudden, so watch out for that on the way in. Parking was plentiful; we found a space right up front and brought our luggage in. We were greeted at the front desk by a really friendly guy who seemed eager to do whatever he could to make our stay as enjoyable as possible. I first asked for a room on the 8th (top) floor, which is normally considered an upgrade as it's the concierge level; however, he was more than happy to say yes (granted the hotel had extremely low occupancy that week, so the concierge lounge was closed anyway). I then asked for a room with a balcony looking out onto the atrium and was told that the balconies only go up to floor 7, so we decided to go for the 7th floor instead. He even asked us what side of the atrium we'd prefer to be on; we asked for the pool side and got it. He asked if there was anything else he could do for us. I asked him if the rooms have mini-fridges or microwaves in them and was told no, but we could rent them for $10 each for the duration of our stay; I thought about it for a second but then said no thanks. To my surprise, he offered to comp us one or the other since I'm a Priority Club member; we opted for the mini-fridge, which was really nice to have. It was brought up within about 30 minutes of our check-in. We were also asked if we needed any help with our bags, but we said no (we were only staying 2 nights, so we didn't have much). The whole time, I could honestly feel that the hotel wasn't just going through the motions; they sincerely cared to make sure the guest had the absolute best stay possible.
We took the elevator up to our floor (the glass elevators offer a really nice view of the atrium and the pool) and found a sign saying that we were in the "Quiet Zone"; no housekeeping activity would occur before 10 AM, and no large, potentially noisy groups would be put on that floor, but in exchange, guests staying here are asked to refrain from being noisy, turning the volume on their TVs/radios up too loud, singing too loud in the shower (a problem for me sometimes!), etc. - a pretty cool idea, if you ask me. Our room was extremely clean, though a little dim; we got used to it quickly, though. I loved the balcony! It was amazing to be able to look down 7 floors to the lower levels, pool, hot tub, and other common areas. We joked that you could do a 7-story cannonball from the balcony into the pool. It was also fantastic to be able to leave the balcony door cracked while we were in the room, and let the sound of the waterfall and the clean smell of the pool water enter our room.
I put my laptop on the work desk and connected to the hotel's high-speed internet. Stupidly, I just plugged in the hard-wired internet and paid their $9.99 internet charge. My roommate was smarter; she looked at the available networks and found that she could access the free lobby wireless network even from our 7th-floor room. (That's what I did the second day, so at least I only had to pay the $9.99 once.) It bothers me that hotels still charge extra for high-speed internet, but that's a policy I knew about going into it, so I can't really complain about that too much here. I will say that the free lobby wireless was much slower than the hard-wired internet, but I can take slower if it's free!
After getting situated (and after the fridge was delivered and set up for us), we went to the Walgreens down the street and bought some snacks and soft drinks, which we were able to keep cold thanks to our comped fridge. Then we just killed some time until our other roommate was free; when he was, he came to visit us at the hotel. He met us in our room, and we talked and hung out for a bit before going down to Friday's (on the lower level) to eat dinner. It was delicious as always (I love Friday's!), though they lost one of our dinners and had to remake it - but they gave him 50% off his meal for the trouble, so that worked out nicely. After dinner, we went back up to the room and hung out a little more, then changed into our swimsuits and went swimming in the pool. Now, I'm extremely picky when it comes to pool temperatures; it's got to be extremely warm (upper 80's to lower 90's) before I'm happy. That said, the Crowne Plaza's pool made me extremely happy! We hung out there for a while, then tried the hot tub, which was perfect as well.
We went back upstairs, and I took a shower. That's when I discovered that maybe it was just because we were on the 7th floor, but it took literally 5-6 minutes for the water to warm up. At first, I was afraid there was no hot water at all, but I just kept waiting, and eventually it finally ran hot. Once it started, though, it didn't stop; there was definitely no shortage (and I take looong showers), it just took a while to get there. No complaints about water pressure or anything else, either; the shower was awesome. Shortly after that, we said goodbye to our roommate, and before long we went to sleep. When we woke up, we both agreed that those were the most comfortable hotel beds we'd ever slept on (and I've stayed in a lot of hotels).
The next day was basically just more of the same, until about 11:15 pm when we both realized we hadn't eaten dinner and were starving. We went down to Friday's again, and found that they stop serving food at 11:30 (though bar service continues until 12:30), but they invited us in to eat anyway and informed us that if we sat in the bar area, we could get 1/2 price appetizers, which was great for us! I got the boneless buffalo wings, and my roommate ordered the pot stickers; both were fantastic.
Check-out the next day was a breeze. The previous night, they had slid the bill under our door, and everything looked exactly right; there were no surprises at check-out, so I just signed the bill and gave them the room keys, and we were on our way.
All in all, this was one of the absolute best hotel experiences I've ever had; I would return in a heartbeat if the rates were ever as low again as they were for our stay (or if I ever had the money to pay the normal full rates).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Crowne Plaza St. Louis Airport hotel offers a convenient lodging option, just one mile from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. Business and leisure travelers alike can take advantage of complimentary round-trip airport shuttle service, which runs from 4 a.M. To midnight, and midnight to 1 a.M. Daily. Meals are made easy with on-site dining. This modern hotel features three dining options, including a full-service TGI Friday's; Clouds Restaurant, featuring a deluxe breakfast buffet; and The Atrium Bar, serving wine, beer and cocktails daily. After a long day of work or play, guests can relax in spacious accommodations, featuring plush seven-layer bedding, a flat-panel cable TV, high-speed wired and wireless Internet, and added bonuses like a soothing sleep kit. Top-notch services complete any stay. Guests can also enjoy chic amenities like a newly renovated health and fitness center, an indoor heated swimming pool, a concierge lounge and business center, and more. Situated minutes from STL Airport, Crowne Plaza St. Louis Airport is an ideal option for sightseeing, business travel, special events and more. Reserve a guest room at an exceptional rate today. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Crowne Plaza St Louis Airport Hotel Bridgeton
- Crowne Plaza Bridgeton
- Crowne Plaza Hotel Bridgeton
- Crowne Plaza St Louis Airport Saint Louis, MO - Bridgeton