Friday, September 12, 2014

Simmons Suites in Bentonville, AR

"It's a really clean hotel," comments the soaking wet man standing next to me. "Everything is really nice."

I've just spent about half an hour soaking in the Simmons Suites hot tub with the towel-wrapped older couple sharing the elevator with me, as well as a pair of college students from south Arkansas. We did the usual travel thing of swapping "What did you do today?" "Where are you going tomorrow?" stories that always helps distract from the concept that you're in a bubbling bowl of water with a bunch of strangers. Back on dry land, I had just remarked about how clean the elevator was - elevators being one of those spots that you often see neglected by hotel housekeepers. Not even dust or dirt in the very floor corners. Impressive.

With my background in the hospitality industry, I know how hard it can be to keep things in good repair, but this place does an impressive job. The furnishings are modern and comfortable, free from the dents or scuff marks that often come about from constant use by clumsy or careless guests. The glass shower door is so clean and streak-free that if I probably would have walked straight into it if it hadn't been open.

Blogger mirror selfie! Well, half of one! That door behind me is one of two closets in the suite! Clearly they understand how much I pack.

Oh, how I love when hotels provide makeup wipes! 

I spent the night here on the Bentonville part of my Labor Day weekend getaway to Arkansas. There are quite a few hotels in Bentonville, but the vast majority are of the fairly generic chain variety, so I spent some time exploring the independently owned options. I ended up settling on Simmons Suites because it had a super convenient location, complimentary hot breakfast, free wifi and got great reviews online. Turned out to be a great choice!

I used this as a desk for my laptop, but it would also work as a dining table.

The kitchen was fully equipped with coffee, dish soap, silverware and dishes, as well as a microwave that you can't see in this shot.

You will be proud to hear that I actually used the TV. I mean, it was to watch msnbc news shows at night, but still. Leisure! Also, that chair was super comfy. 

The view from my room reminded me of the opening of the Sims games where they pan over the city streets. Being on the 4th floor also meant I got a great view to watch a storm roll in!

Guess who remembered to pack their wide angle lens for this trip? Booyah! Almost the whole room in one shot.

I can't even express what a great location this is if you're exploring Bentonville and Rogers, Arkansas! It's so convenient to everything - it's literally 5 minutes from downtown Bentonville, 5 minutes from Crystal Bridges museum, 10 minutes from the Museum of Native American History, and about 10 minutes from the big Pinnacle Promenade shopping center in Rogers. (Watch for my upcoming posts about those!) It's near the intersection of Highway 49 and AR-72/Central Ave, which is one of the main streets through town, which made getting around super easy even though I'd never been to Bentonville before.

There's a little shop in the hotel lobby that has a pretty wide assortment of packaged snacks and frozen treats, as well as items like toiletries that you may have forgotten. (If you need something not available there, there's a Conoco gas station about a block's walk away.) There's also a coffee station so you can grab a cup on your way in or out. Yay, coffee!

hotel lobby coffee

Nothing gets me out of bed on vacation like the promise of breakfast, even though I rarely have more than coffee at home. I was definitely impressed with the selection. Let's be honest here - free food makes me happy!

continental breakfast waffle station
Hooray for waffles!

I wasn't comfortable taking a bunch of photos in the breakfast area since people were eating in there, and nobody wants a pic of themselves with a mouth full of bacon on the internet without knowing about it. In addition to the waffle iron above, there were several cereal choices, cups of Yoplait yogurt, milk cartons, a Minute Maid juice machine with several selections (go half cranberry, half apple! nom!), a selection of tea, oatmeal packets, muffins, bread for toast, English muffins, and a hot food area with breakfast taquitos and biscuits and gravy. (When I went back down about an hour later to grab more juice, the taquitos were replaced by bacon and eggs, so I suppose it changes!)

Yes, I totally got gravy on my banana nut muffin. Yes, I ate it anyway.

I'm hoping to go back to Northwest Arkansas in a couple of months when the weather has cooled off a bit so I can do some of the outdoorsy things that I missed due to the 90+ degree temps this time, so there's a good chance I'll be staying here again soon! Overall, it offered everything I need in this kind of hotel. They're not reinventing the wheel here, just doing the basics especially well. 

Disclosure: Simmons Suites provided me with a night's stay in exchange for sharing my honest opinions and experiences. No other compensation was received.


Fiona Naughton said...

Looks like a lovely suite. I think you can always tell how good a place is by the bathroom and that one looks lovely :)

Stephanie Cox said...

I love staying in a suite when traveling if possible. It makes getting ready easier and I like to be able to make my own food.