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Reviews (267)
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Reviewed October 19, 2012

I stayed at the Clarion the night before I ran the 2012 Freedom's Run Marathon, and was disappointed to find the staff printed out the wrong directions to the marathon start (causing me to be late for the race start) despite their being very friendly.

After recovering from the marathon, we had time to assess the accommodations and found the cleanliness of the room to be questionable with a less-than-fragrant comforter and dingy room and bathroom amenities.

But you can't beat the location - the hotel is one of the few (2?) in Shepherdstown, and was a walk or 2 minute drive from the adorable downtown. There weren't many other options in town, but I think that if I ran the Freedom's Run again, I might try to stay at the quirky Bavarian Inn across town and try my chances there.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Bernie21NYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2012

Great service and a wonderful location makes a good setting for the active person. Lots of fun activities in the lounge including a trivia night and karaoke. Gym was perfect and the massage mid-week through the connected facility was outstanding at a very reasonable price.

Room Tip: The further out on the wing the better and on the 3rd or 4th floor.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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Thank C F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2012

We stayed at the Clarion Hotel in Shepherdstown for four nights in September 2012 for the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Antietam across the Potomac in Maryland. The hotel is an easy 10 minute drive to the battlefield. The exterior and lobby of the hotel are very inviting and the front desk staff is extremely cheerful and helpful. However, the attention to detail by maintenance and housekeeping leave a little to be desired.

Upon arriving we had to request a room change as our room had a strong smell of chemical, probably from excessive cleaning solution. Within minutes our noses began to become irritated. Even though the hotel was full during our stay the front desk honored our request. The exterior of our new room had what appeared to be mold/mildew on the wall near our door. The room itself was nice enough for what we expected. We knew we weren't staying in a Westin and only planned to be in the room at night.

As others have noted the bathroom could use updating. The wallpaper was peeling from the bottom up on two walls. The bathtub spigot was not attached to the wall and each evening, after housekeeping had been in the room, it was turned at different angles and needed to be turned so water didn't spay out of the tub. The room itself was nice, but the carpet could be changed as it had wear wrinkles. Housekeeping seemed to do the bare minimum in our room. One day we came back to the room to find our bed was "made" by simply throwing the covers back on the bed. The pillows were in the same position we left them in the morning.

The microwave and refrigerator were nice to have as we packed a cooler each morning for our day at the battlefield.

Even though there are plenty of negatives in this review, they are minor in nature and wouldn't prevent us from staying here again on our next visit to Antietam. As mentioned earlier, the hotel won't exceed all your expectations, but it's nice enough if you need a quiet place to stay.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank dadair6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 30, 2012

I stayed at the Clarion Hotel in Shepherdstown for five nights in August 2012. The staff seemed friendly and interested in promoting positive experiences for the guests.

As a facility, however, the Clarion was tired and just barely OK. Huge negative: the windows in the guest rooms did not open! How sad -- find the architect and fire him/her! As a result, I was stuck with noisy AC or fan options -- neither or which ever turned off. I thought the room was clean and comfortable enough, but the furnishings in it were neither stylish nor current. Moreover the room was dark and needed more lighting. Also, my room telephone did not work at all, despite my inquiring about it at the front desk. That said, wireless Internet worked fine and delivered good bandwidth -- thanks! Also, I was glad the room frig was unplugged -- this saved energy, as I didn't have a reason to use it.

The advertised "health club/spa" consisted of a smallish room of aerobic fitness machines, another room crowded with free weights and weight machines, and a outdoor pool/hot tub and indoors sauna. I used the fitness machines several times. They were small in number, worn out, and dated (compared to the equipment at my local YMCA). The equipment would have been state-of-the-art in ca. 1995. By no means did I depart thinking I had experienced a "health club". The weight machines also were barely average in terms of their quantity and currency. I did not try the pool, hot tub, or sauna; from what little I noticed, the kids in the pool seemed to be enjoying themselves.

IMHO -- the hotel's website claim to "beautiful landscaping" was extreme hyperbole. By no means was the Clarion property a dump; but neither was it pretty.

Bottom line: Sheperdstown's Clarion is a barely adequate facility. It is appropriate for housing federal government employees -- you definitely won't come away from it thinking, "how dare those feds -- they have it made!" In line with other reviewers' comments, I expect the Clarion's sweetheart deal with Uncle Sam is a major disincentive for investing seriously to improve the properly.

If you are a private citizen plunking down your own money, I expect you will find better nearby lodging choices at an equal tariff -- a Bavarian Inn is in town, for example, and perhaps you can do better there. In addition, Martinsburg WV is just down the road. And Virginia isn't far away.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled on business
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2  Thank Andrew1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2012

If you're planning on staying at the Clarion you should be aware; This is not a traveler's Hotel. The primary purpose of this Hotel is to serve the Government training facility (Eastern Management Development Center) that is directly attached to the Hotel. Because of this guaranteed business, the Hotel does little to no maintenance/updating of it's rooms.

The rooms are small and worn. Some smell like smoke (ours did), others smell like mold (other guests on floor). Some of our bathroom tiles were missing grout while a lot of the grout that was there was discoloured with mold. The furniture is showing serious signs of wear and tear and I'm fairly confident that it has not been replaced since the Hotel opened over a decade ago.

The staff was neither friendly nor helpful. When we walked into the lobby we were greeted with a sign saying the pool was closed (of course this was during the recent heat wave. Later on when exploring the hotel we saw the signs posted closer to the pool which stated that the pool was closed 'By order of the Health Department'). When we checked into our room we walked in to find our Air Conditioning cover laying on the floor. The AC was also non functional. The fan worked but it was not cooling. The beds were covered with some kind of dirt and hair. We went to the front desk and the person there literally just shrugged at me and said there was nothing she could do as they were fully booked that night. Here's a protip for the Clarion staff: when a guest who checks in at 4pm has a major problem with their room, you move them to another room and have your houseman clean/fix/repair the problem room and give it to someone who checks in hours later. You don't just shrug at the guest and blow them off.

Other hotels in the area were fully booked so we were stuck. Luckily I was able to get the AC partially working by unplugging the unit and restarting it several times. The final straw was when I attempted to take a shower in the morning. I turned on the water and was immediately hit by an odor. It literally smelled like swamp water.

Broken AC. Dirt, mold, odors... The Clarion of course charged us full price for our experience. They don't even offer the most basic continental breakfast which is pretty much an industry standard for hotels that charge $120+ per night like the Clarion does.

Room Tip: No breakfast offered.
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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10  Thank PhilG328
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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