My First Stay at a SpringHill Suites Hotel Property — and The Verdict Is…
Located in Tennessee almost 20 miles northeast of Chattanooga, the SpringHill Suites Chattanooga North/Ooltewah is a hotel property with a surprisingly upscale ambiance at which to stay — which I needed during my escape from the electric power outage which was caused by Tropical Storm Zeta in the area where I am based.
My First Stay at a SpringHill Suites Hotel Property — and The Verdict Is…
SpringHill Suites is a select brand of Marriott International, Incorporated; and it is a hotel property which is “a little extra, a lot less ordinary: Style and space, beautifully priced.” You can earn Marriott Bonvoy points with every stay.
After parking the car in the parking lot, I checked in at the front desk in the rather stylish lobby.
The lobby is quite spacious and nicely furnished.
Transparent partitions were erected at the front desk to protect both guests and employees from the 2019 Novel Coronavirus; and a small table with liquid hand sanitizer was positioned in front of the front desk.
Off to the right of the front desk is an area called the 24-hour market…
…which is stocked with items which can be purchased — such as popcorn, cookies, chips, soup, candy bars, gum, assorted beverages, frozen items, and fabric softener.
Distancing is one of the measures being implemented at the hotel property to help thwart the spread of the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic.
The business center is equipped with two computers and monitors, a laser printer, and assorted office supplies.
A note inside the elevator requested that guests “Please only 2 people per elevator or 1 family at a time. If car is at that limit please wait for next car. -Thanks”…
…while a note outside the elevator again requests “Please only 2 people per elevator or 1 family at a time.” Signs and posters pertaining to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic were affixed to walls and other surfaces throughout the hotel property.
One of many examples is found near the ice machine and adjacent to the elevators: a note which was attached to a rack of brochures to places of interest displayed the words “To Protect Yourself & Others Please do not return brochures to rack once removed.” Then, “Learn More! Use QR codes to link to attraction websites.” I witnessed one person take a brochure to peruse it — only to dispose of it seconds later.
Once out of the elevator, I walked down the hallway and noticed stickers which were affixed to every door.
The stickers were strategically placed with one half on the door and the other half on the door jamb.
“Cleaned and sealed for your safety.” Those are the words which were printed on each sticker…
…which was quite easy to pull off. I thought that these stickers were placed on the doors a certain way so that when they were torn from the door being opened, the room could no longer be assuredly cleaned. This system seems flawed to me.
Regardless, I did not need a sticker to assure me that the room was clean — but it was not to the point of spotlessly clean…
…for example, of the couch and other furnishings in the room which are sold by West Elm…
…one of the isolated areas of the room which was not completely clean was on the cushions of the couch itself, which had spots and stains of unknown substances on it.
Otherwise, I could immediately tell that the room was beyond acceptably clean for the most part when I walked through the door to enter the room.
The bed was quite comfortable in which to sleep — and I slept well in it. I also liked the reading lights on each side of the bed, which reminded me of those found in hotel rooms outside of the United States.
One door hanger gave information pertaining to being rewarded with 250 Marriott Rewards points if you choose to skip housekeeping service — but this information was outdated for two reasons: first, the frequent guest loyalty program of Marriott International, Incorporated has been officially known as Marriott Bonvoy since Wednesday, February 13, 2019; and the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic has altered how housekeeping is handled in general, as you must request housekeeping if you want it at many hotel and resort properties.
The other door hanger was a do not disturb sign which had the words “Enjoying a little extra sleep” printed on it — as well as a disclaimer which stated “Generally, we will honor your request for privacy; however, we reserve the right to enter the guest room for safety, security, and maintenance.”
On one night stand next to the telephone was an alcohol wipe and a set of earplugs — as well as a laminated card which stated:
Welcome to the SpringHill Suites Chattanooga North/Ooltewah. We are so glad to have you staying with us! Our goal is to always for our guest to relax and get a good night’s sleep when staying at our property. Recently, we have been experiencing some noise issues from a nearby train track. Unfortunately, we can’t control the train, but we want to be proactive in making sure our guests are not disturbed. Here are some complimentary ear plugs if needed. We also have natural sound sleep machines available at our front desk upon request. Thank you again for choosing to stay with us and I hope you enjoy your stay!
I had never seen anything like that laminated card before in my years of traveling.
Note that two electrical outlets and two USB ports are located above the night stand and built into the wall, as they were prevalent around the room. Located in the drawer of the nightstand is both a Holy Bible which was placed by The Gideons and The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ.
On the surface of the night stand on the other side of the bed was an alarm clock — albeit dusty, which indicates another arguable exception to the cleanliness of the room; but that did not bother me.
I had never seen an alarm clock like this one before, with which the time could be viewed no matter what position the alarm clock was placed on the night stand, as three sides of the alarm clock displayed the time. I thought this was a nice feature which should be on more alarm clocks in hotel rooms in general.
The room was elegantly appointed with modern and stylish furnishings — but not at the expense of comfort.
This desk provided ample work space for my laptop computer; and it had a miniature shelf which held a placard — as well as a view of the bed…
…but frosted glass doors could be closed to separate someone who is working at the desk from disturbing the sleep of someone who is lying in the bed, which was a nice feature.
The desk also had two electrical outlets and two USB ports built into the wall.
A long bench was below the window and above the climate control unit, which was a convenient place to store items. In the ample space inside of the closet were several adjustable wire shelves, several hangers, an iron, and an ironing board.
On the television was the message “Welcome Brian Cohen. Thank you for staying at SpringHill Suites.” However, the remote control was not wrapped in plastic or otherwise protected as a precautionary measure to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic. Found here also were two electrical outlets and two USB ports which were built into the wall.
On the side on the room adjacent to the television was an area where a coffee machine, a microwave oven, and a small refrigerator were located.
An ice bucket with a small plastic bag liner and an electrical outlet were next to the coffee machine. Cups and everything else needed to enjoy a hot cup of coffee — such as sweetener and creamer — were in a small wire basket.
You must slide the controversial “barn” door with frosted glass to the right in order to enter the bathroom. The sliding door is designed to save space which a conventional door would need to open; and it can be locked for privacy.
Atop the right side of the square sink with a stylish faucet was an oval soap dish; and above the vanity was a lighted mirror. Each side of the sink had plenty of space to store personal items. Facial tissues were available; but the towels were not plentiful.
Amenities included small plastic bottles of Awapuhi shampoo and conditioner by Paul Mitchell; two small plastic bottles of energizing lemon sage body wash by teatree; and two packets of makeup remover wipes by Soapbox.
The shower stall was spacious but nothing particularly special; and the toilet is what you would generally expect to find in the bathroom of a guest room at a standard hotel property.
The View From the Room
The view from the room was essentially the parking lot of the hotel property…
…as well as a wooded area with plenty of trees, and hills off in the distance.
Mounted on the wall under a sign — on which the hours of operation of Creekside Breakfast was printed — was a liquid hand sanitizer machine.
Guests were permitted to help themselves to wrapped breakfast items — most of which were located in a small glass and wood cabinet — such as Kellogg’s Pop Tarts, two flavors of Nature Valley granola bars, muffins, and danishes…
…as well as napkins and condiments — such as individual packets of butter and assorted jellies…
…and ketchup, mustard, hot sauce, chocolate syrup, grits, oatmeal, straws, and plastic cutlery which was wrapped in plastic.
Otherwise, everything else — such as plates, assorted flavors of yogurt, dry cereal, beverages, and hot items — was handled by an attendant who wore a mask as a precautionary measure due to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic.
Hot menu items which were available on the morning I was there included scrambled eggs, bacon, and biscuits and gravy.
Guests could also help themselves to fresh apples, oranges, and bananas.
Coffee, tea, and hot water — as well as condiments, stirrers, and paper cups with plastic lids — are available at all hours near the front desk; and guests may help themselves to as much as they want.
The Fitness Center
The exercise room is open 24 hours. On a paper sign which was taped on the glass part of the door to the fitness center were the words “Please limit fitness center to 3 people max at a time. Stay 6ft apart while working out. Wipe down each piece of equipment when finished with it.”
One can easily fill a bottle with filtered water from the Brita water filtration machine in the fitness center. Unlike the bathroom in the guest room, plenty of towels were available.
The fitness center was equipped with a medicine ball, basketballs, dumbbells with benches for lifting weights, and a flat screen television in addition to treadmills and bicycle machines — and one can snag a set of complimentary wired earbuds which are sealed in a plastic bag, which are located in a basket near the aforementioned water filtration machine.
Creekside Bar and Grill
At 5:00 in the afternoon, Creekside Breakfast becomes the Creekside Bar & Grill, which is open until 10:00 in the evening.
Creekside Bar & Grill is located at the other end of the spacious lobby from the entrance to the hotel property.
Because I arrived at the hotel property after 10:00 in the evening, Creekside Bar & Grill was already closed.
The exit to outside from Creekside Bar & Grill is automatically locked at night for security reasons — but guests may use their key cards for access to the inside of the hotel property from that door.
Plenty of comfortable seating is available between Creekside Bar & Grill and the lobby of the hotel property itself.
Several flat screen televisions which displayed the content of different channels will keep guests — who “need glasses” — entertained.
Outdoor Fire Pit
Outside of the rear entrance to the hotel property where Creekside Bar & Grill is located is an outdoor area which includes a fire pit — along with plenty of chairs and tables.
Although the evening air was cool but not cold, the heat from the fire in the fire pit felt good — plus, I found the fire itself to be relaxing.
When a placard with the words “NOTICE DO NOT LEAVE CHILDREN UNATTENDED” in all capital letters is placed on the side of the fire pit, one has to wonder if an incident had happened to warrant the placement of that placard.
The fire pit was not ignited during the day — likely because the weather was too sunny and warm to warrant it.
Outdoor Swimming Pool
The swimming pool is located outdoors to the right of the area where the fire pit is located.
A bathroom is dedicated for users of the swimming pool, which no one used while I was a guest at this hotel property.
With very few exceptions, the SpringHill Suites Chattanooga North/Ooltewah was quite clean throughout the entire hotel property — both in the room and in the public spaces.
The hotel property — which has an outdoor pool — is located off of exit 11 of Interstate 75.
I absolutely recommend staying at this hotel property, at which I paid a room rate of $71.00 for the night — excluding taxes and fees — with a total cost of $83.25, which includes all taxes and fees.
SpringHill Suites Chattanooga North/Ooltewah
8876 Old Lee Highway
Ooltewah, Tennessee 37363
All photographs ©2020 by Brian Cohen.