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“Gross, Rude and Disgusting...”

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Stratford Motor Lodge
Ranked #14 of 15 Hotels in Falls Church
Reviewed April 30, 2012

This place is utterly disgusting. No bed bugs but the staff was very nice. I did a little research about the corporation and it's basically one of those privately owned places that does the bare minimum to stay licensed and in business, which in turn translates to poor service and even poorer upkeep.. Do not expect any amenities or a smile from anyone here. I used to live in Garadawa, Keita, Niger when I was in the Peace Corps and I'd rather go back there than stay at this place.

Room Tip: Really. Don't stay here. I'm by no means a picky traveler, just some hot water and a bed...
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  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled solo
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4  Thank Michelle K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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8 - 13 of 13 reviews

Reviewed August 12, 2011

For $70 here, I got what $30 bought me last night in North Charlotte, NC. In other words, it's a basically clean room with a bed, running water, and a TV that works, wood paneled walls, home handyman walls that probably predate the use of sheetrock, and pipes that shriek when the water comes on. A couple of towels, some soap, and the A/C works.

Missing? Depends on what you consider normal. No shampoo, no coffee maker, no refrigerator, no microwave, no hair dryer, no wi-fi in the room. There is a closet with wood dowel rod and 5 regular wire hangers -- by God, I could STEAL them! In the room, if it's metal, it's tarnished; if it's fabric, it's dingy; if it's anything else, it was put here in 1972.

This is one funky throwback, but it is in an excellent location! Which is why I am here. Anything else nearby costs a lot more. I used to live a few blocks away, and while the motel may seem sketchy, the neighborhood is very safe. Starbucks is three steps away along with several restaurants. All the main highways are quite close, as are Metro stations.

Anyway, if you aren't the Queen of England and have a sense of humor (as the nice last at the front desk has), and want to save a buck, go for it.

  • Stayed: August 2011
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2  Thank jakeadler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2011

What do you expect - at 61 dollars per night ? The beds were clean - the bathroom was clean. Quite at night. And please - what else do you need.
We wanted a place to sleep, and got that at a reasonable price.
We were on a road trip in March / April 2011, and tried to find a reasonable (price) hotel in the Washington area. OMG - it was expensive (250-300 dollars a night).
So we drove to Falls Church. Found this motel, not quite sure what to expect.. But were positive surprised. Yes - the rooms are "old", yes - the interior could be more updated, but again - we were not planning on staying in our room the whole time - sleep and then sigthseeing in Washington. And as long there's no bedbugs or other bugs I have to fight with - fine by me
The bus to the station is right outside the motel - 20 minutes to Washington by train (orange line) - perfect.
The pizza-place opposite the motel was ok. Starbucks is your neighbor.
When checking in : You get a "free" bottle of water per person - never had that sevice before. But thanks
But BE AWARE : their cleaning lady has no respect for the "do not disturb" sign, and she turns up at 8:30 in the morning... Knocking on the door.
Otherwise - fine - we would stay there again.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Spunk99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2009

this motel looks old but the room that we stayed in was not bad. Everything was fine we got a single room backside bottom floor, it was quiet and customer service was good.
i suggest anybody to stay in the non smoking area they are renovated and look good.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled on business
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Thank richa1982
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2009

Friends: This is a shabby place, with no accoutrements and bearly inspires any confidence at all for sleeping. Most of all, it is very very far from a metro stop into DC. The walls are very thin, you can hear the next guest cough,.
I booked this place over the phone from California on the recommendation of another hotel I had called that was booked up, to attend the Obama Inauguration, and fearing not getting a hotel I grabbed this when it turned out to be available - once I stayed there I could see why it was so available.

My main question to them from California was whether it was going to be close to the Metro line into DC fo the festivities. They assured me that it was a mere "2 blocks" from the metro. Not True!! It was 2 Miles from the nearest metro stop, and this "untruth" caused me to get off at the designated East Falls Church metro stop from the airport and to have to walk 45 minutes like a fool block after block for those whole long two miles in the freezing cold dragging two heavy bags over broken sidewalk along a down and out highway where there was not a single other pedestrian and no cabs nor busses. I kept calling and asking where they were - had I missed it? But no, they kept assuring me I was " right near there". When I finally got there they told me that it was because I had got off at the wrong metro stop, that it was the Other stop that was 2 blocks away.
Then: I had asked for a quiet room, and found out the manager had wanted me to take an upstairs room on the traffic street- with two heavy bags and there's no elevator - really an unaccommodating attitude! I quickly declined and chose a better room myself.
Once I had installed my self, I called my friends - in front of the Manager who had just assured me to my face that the West Falls Church metro was onl y " Two blocks" away the other way, so I assured my friends I would be with them in short order. But,. Turns out this was more mistaken advice and those other "two blocks" to this other metro stop were actually another two miles away the the other way. I know it was two miles because a cabbie showed me the mileage on the receipt- which I still have. Eventualy I finally just took a cab and realized that the price of the room - $115 a night- was really going to be $135 a night because it was $10 each way to the subway. Oh well. At least it wasn't $ 300 as some places had asked for. The cabbies all told me that many other s who had stayed at the Straftford Motor Lodge have complained about the personnel misleading them about the subway distance also.

Treatment of Guests by personnel. Completely suspicious! They locked us out of our room the last night - when we came in cold and hungry from that subway. I had paid up front and the manager had my credit card number We discussed that I might be staying one more night and she told me I could pay then If I stayed,. So we did stay one extra day, and were running around experiencing this historic occasion, all our stuff was in the room, but since we hadn't actually paid yet--- This same manager locked the room up while we were away - didn't even call my cell which she had to ask if we were going to stay, or ask permission to run the credit card for the extra day, My daughter comes back exhausted and was told she was out on the street because management didn't have their money for the last night! Yikes!They wouldn't take my word nor let her in till she paid up !! Imagine if she hadn't had a credit card on her! That was really shabby treatment, I say.

Accommodations: Minimal. Walls so thin you can hear the next guest cough and hear their TV till late at night. The tiny reception area is so shabby it's scarey. The beds were ok, and the floors were vacuumed. We did wonder, at first though , if there would be bed bugs or something- it just looked so run down so we inspected the sheets. There was tobacco and a piece of cigar cellophane between the sheets on one of the beds when we inspected. The sheets were new, though.

No. I would never stay there again. And I would never recommend this place to anyone-- to stay there as a hotel. What a Pity- because it's really a gold mine of a place.If they cleaned up the appearance and provided shuttle service to and from the metro for their guests, they could make a fortune out of that property because it is right at the tip of a really gentrified area .

So my advice is - buy the property, fix it up, and you've got your retirement made. Just don't stay there til you own it.
Linda Krausen, Los Angeles, CA.

Stayed: January 2009
2  Thank lareporter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2008

When we found out that our favorite band, Dada, was going to be within driving distance, we knew we had to go.

The State Theatre in Falls Church, Virginia was originally a movie theatre back in the 50's and 60's, but its been renovated into a dinner club / party club place and bands play there quite often. We were planning on drinking so I wanted to find a hotel as close as possible to the theatre.

After checking on the internet, I found The Stratford Inn Motor Lodge. There are several old motor lodges in Falls Church still operating today. Falls Church was on a main highway artery back in the 50's and so there was a lot of business to be had. There were also several name brand hotels nearby but nothing was as close as this one.

But, there were no reviews, so how would we know what we were getting ourselves into?
We didn't! We took a chance!

This being a traditional motor lodge, there were two stories with rooms on both sides. Our rooms were around the back (luckily!) because the main street out front is rather noisy. We were also on the second floor.

Now, to be honest, this is not the nicest hotel you will stay at. While it was very convenient and kind of an adventure, there were some very troubling things about our accommodation.

It has not been renovated probably in the 50 years that it has been there. There was a big hole in the wall in back of my headboard that had been "fixed" by someone stuffing paper towels into it. My greatest fear was that something would come out of it!!!

So, I stuffed it with some more Kleenex and toilet paper!

There were some alarming marks on one of the electrical outlets. And the outlet next to my bed did not have a cover on it.

My bedside light would not turn on because the light bulb was missing...

The paneling that covered the wall next to my bed was bowed out and you could see behind it. My bed had a frame that featured a sharp piece of metal that stuck out from under the mattress. I took a pair of socks and covered it so it wouldn't cut my leg... again.

But, other things were OK. The furniture in the two rooms was different but functional. In my husband's and my room, we had authentic Ethan Allen hotel furniture from the 50's or 60's (in spite of the carnivorous bed frame). In my sons' room it was second hand 80's style hotel stuff.

Both rooms had TV's that worked just fine. The carpet was old and worn out but had been vacuumed. The room featured a separate vanity outside the bathroom and that whole area was floored with linoleum that had also seen better days.

Both bathrooms had been renovated to some extent sometime in the past 10 years or so with tileboard and new flooring and both were clean.

The AC unit under the window looked almost new and was in good condition--as did the outlet it was plugged into!

Except for generally being old and worn out, there were no bugs and everything was clean.

Once we had checked into our rooms, we noticed what looked like a dead body in the parking lot of the Starbuck's next door. The police and EMS showed up and low and behold, it was just a guy who got so drunk that he fell out of his chair! He shouldn't have been sitting out there in the first place of course. After reviving him, they called him a cab.

Now, at this point you might be wondering why I would think that this experience was above average.

We really decided to stay at this motor lodge for the nostalgic value and the fact that we could walk to and from the concert venue. There is no doubt that this place was a whole lot nicer in the 50's and 60's.

I even surfed pictures off of ebay of what the hotel looked like in its heyday. (People sell old postcards and I lucked out and found one of the Stratford!)

Not knowing anything about the place or what we might find, I came prepared with clean sheets from home, towels, air freshener and bug spray. I treated it a little more like a camping trip!

But, it really wasn't that bad. We paid about $70/room which for that area is a steal. I got to walk around and imagine what it would have been like staying there 50 years ago, walking over the empty parcel that once held the swimming pool. I think if someone renovated this old girl, she would make a wonderful little B&B.

Certainly, if you are going to a show at the State Theatre, and don't mind roughing it just a bit, it makes for an interesting experience that takes you out of the cookie cutter mid-range brand hotels where you always know just what to expect.

Should you stay at the Stratford? Only if you want a little bit of adventure. I got a good night's sleep and I took a bath with no worries. The closet was nice and big too. For something out of the ordinary, it's worth taking a chance on.

If we ever go to another show at the State, we will likely stay there again. We did have a good trip and this "old girl" was part of it.

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled with family
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5  Thank Ckimoo65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Stratford Motor Lodge

Address: 300 W Broad St, Falls Church, VA 22046-3319
Location: United States > Virginia > Falls Church
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 15 Hotels in Falls Church
Price Range: $87 - $90 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Stratford Motor Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 50
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Also Known As:
Stratford Motor Hotel Falls Church

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