Opened in July of 2019 and said by many to be the nicest hotel in Decatur, the sleek, attractive, new Residence Inn by Marriott is chocked full of amenities that are valuable to guests. From a full breakfast buffet to a credit card operated laundry room and plenty of electrical outlets placed conveniently within plain sight, travelers will find their needs satisfied for one night or many nights.
Residence Inn is designed for longer stays
Residence Inn by Marriott in Decatur, Alabama was created with the long-term traveler in mind. Many contract workers come to the city and need a place to stay for a week, a month or many months. They don’t want the hassle of finding a rental apartment or shopping for furniture. They just want a comfortable, convenient place to spend the night and get some much-needed down time.
Families may be moving to Decatur, but don’t have housing lined up yet. Others may be visiting family for the holidays or vacations where there are no spare bedrooms with the family. While travelers might prefer the amenities of Residence Inn for just an overnight stay, most who check into this hotel are planning to stay for a longer period.
The rate for a suite is highest for one night but decreases according to the length of your stay.
Pets are allowed at Residence Inn with a pet fee of 150 USD per stay. That fee is necessary to give the entire suite a deep cleaning with an ozone machine before it is occupied by the next guest.
Suites of several sizes
Residence Inn fully consists of suites configured in a variety of ways. A studio suite is in one large, open room with a king bed and a sofa bed. A one-bedroom suite has a king bed and a sofa bed in the living room. A two-bedroom suite has a king bed in one bedroom, a queen bed in the second bedroom and a sofa bed in the living room.
All have a work space with an ergonomic desk and chair, a table with seating for two or four, an alarm clock, iron, ironing board, a hairdryer and a coffee maker.
Full kitchens in each suite
Every suite has a complete kitchen, and each kitchen is equipped with a full-size refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, silverware, pots, pans, dishes and glassware. The two-bedroom suite has an oven. The other two types of suites have a cooktop.
A very useful service is free grocery shopping. A guest marks the items he/she needs from a printed list and hands it to the reception desk in the morning, and the groceries are waiting in the refrigerator and pantry when they return in the afternoon.
Hot breakfast buffet each morning
Even with a kitchen and a grocery service, it’s still nice to have breakfast hot and waiting before a day of work or play. The complimentary buffet choices rotate since guests that are here for extended periods don’t want to face the same items every morning. They will always find both egg whites and regular eggs, but sometimes there will be a choice of meats. Other times there might be breakfast sandwiches or wraps. Waffles, cereal, yogurt, fresh fruit and juice stations are constant, and the coffee is plentiful.
For other snacks and treats, a small market is near the reception desk with a selection of items for purchase.
Thoughtful and helpful amenities
Few travelers have enough clothes or suitcases to pack a month’s worth of clothes. That’s why washers and dryers are so important. The laundry appliances operate with credit and cash cards at Residence Inn, so there’s no need to round up a bag of coins.
Also, in each room, guests will find electrical outlets at eye level every few feet around the room, which are essential for keeping all electronics fully charged.
More guest amenities
An outdoor pool and a fitness center help guests stay in shape while they travel. An attractive meeting room which accommodates about 60 people can be reserved, and a printing center for those all-important airline boarding passes is near the reception desk.
A very popular treat at Residence Inn is THE MIX which occurs Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 6:00-7:30 p.m. for guests. During those hours, complimentary beer, wine, and appetizers are served. In addition, Tuesday nights are referred to as “Off the Grill” nights for THE MIX when the featured appetizer will be something the chef prepared on the outdoor grill. Any night, other than Tuesday, Residence Inn guests are welcome to use the outdoor grill to prepare their own meals.
Many will also enjoy the outdoor gas fire pit when the weather permits.
So many local attractions
Since the guests at Residence Inn are usually in Decatur for a number of days, perhaps they will have time to find the attractions that bring the locals the most pride.
Cook Museum of Natural Science recently opened and is already listed among the best new museums in the United States. In addition to live animals and a large aquarium, exhibits showcase what can be found in caves, forests, arctic regions and deserts.
The Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge is a 35,000 acre (14163.9 hectares) tract of land along the Tennessee River with nature trails, a visitors center, and a viewing house for watching migrating ducks, geese, whooping cranes and sandhill cranes. It is a treasure for photographers.
Bank Street and 2nd Avenue, in what is known as “Old Decatur”, are filled with antique stores, boutiques and unique shops of all kinds. While in the vicinity, look for restaurants such as Simp McGhee’s, The RailYard, Curry’s on Johnston Street and Josie’s. Be sure to check the calendar for the Princess Theater on 2nd Avenue. You might be lucky enough to be in town for a play, a concert, a film or a lecture. A couple of other Decatur treasures are Morgan Price Candy Company for the best English toffee you’ll ever eat and Big Bob Gibson’s Bar-B-Q, which put white barbecue sauce on the map. A couple of local favorites on the same road with the hotel are Alfonso’s Pizza and Italian Restaurant and Las Vias Mexican Restaurant.
Drive a few miles south of Decatur to Hartselle and take in the shops and eateries of Main Street. Notable options are The Freight House, Pizza Ed’s and Bentley’s at the Outhouse.