As a frequent traveler—and one who could match any style of travel at the drop of a hat—hotels and other accommodation options have become an increasingly important part of my travels. Over the years I’ve stayed in everything from cockroach infested guesthouses to 5-star luxury hotels. I’ve slept on the floor in airports, train stations—even on the porch of a riverside guest house in Cambodia.
I’ve also slept in hotels with king size beds, business suites with full-service kitchens and VIP rooms that celebrities once slept in. I don’t have a particular style of travel because I pretty much like it all. If I’m in a foreign city, chances are I’m going to enjoy my stay.
But as an online junkie, certain amenities have become a pre-requisite for just about any booking. During my upcoming trip around the USA I’ll be visiting six different cities in six weeks across three time zones. Time is going to be an issue. I’ll be spending a lot of time in and out of hotels, but also in and out of a lot of cafes & wifi-hotspots. That’s why I was glad to discover that Courtyard by Marriott has started to revamp many of their hotels to make them more accessible for business travelers. The revamped hotels now provide many of the amenities I want: everything from Starbucks coffee to plenty of outlets for charging my travel gear.
Hotel lobbies with useful amenities
Five hundred Courtyard by Marriott properties have already been updated with an innovative hotel program called Courtyard Refreshing Business lobby. The renovation includes new lobbies each with a Bistro—a casual food & beverage cafe which serves healthy cuisine and Starbucks coffee. The new lobbies also include laptop-friendly work stations with plenty of outlets and a giant touch screen TV monitor (the GoBoard) where guests can look up the weather, local news and local attractions to help plan their stay. GoBoard screens help leisure travelers enhance their stay in the destination and encourage business travelers to get out and explore new surroundings.
To promote these new lobbies, I’ve partnered with Courtyard by Marriott to provide a $300 gift card for the international hotel chain. To enter, simply leave a comment on this post telling me which state in the U.S. you’d like to travel to the most.
Win a $300 Courtyard Marriott gift card simply by commenting on this post!
Want to win a two-night stay at a renovated Courtyard by Marriott hotel?
Simply leave a comment on this post telling me which U.S. state you’re most interested in visiting.
This contest is open to US residents and will run until August, 15, 2012. The winner will be randomly selected from the comments below using random.org. The winner will receive a $300 gift card toward a two night stay at any renovated Courtyard property. Currently there are over 515 properties in the U.S. alone.
This contest will run until August 15, 2012 on which date I’ll use random.org to select a winner. Be sure to leave a comment below telling me which U.S. state you’re most interested in visiting!
If you’re looking for some wanderlust, be sure to check out my other hotel & accommodation reviews here.
Disclosure: This contest was sponsored by Courtyard by Marriott. The winner will receive a giftcard towards 2 free nights at a Courtyard by Marriott property within the Continental US. I will randomly select a winner on August 15, 2012 and reach out to him/her via email with further instructions. I will also be receiving a complimentary stay at a renovated Courtyard property.
Great article! I would like to travel to New York the most! I just graduated from college and could possibly want to move there to start my new chapter!
Hard to say – Minnesota! (in the summer!)
I would live to visit Georgia, particularly Savannah. I teach history and once I visit a location the History makes much more sense! I also would love to see San Antonio Texas- so much history there and so much to tell my students about. With today’s technology I could video and post so much! Thanks for this opportunity!
Help me finally make my way to Oregon :-)
We’d love to go down to Southern California.
Miami – it’s one of the only big U.S. cities I haven’t been to yet and would love to scuba dive with the manatees and/or wrecks they have!
The beaches around Jacksonville, FL would be mighty nice as it gets cold up here in Minnesota!
What a wonderful gift to give away! Wish I could take part.
Have a beautiful week ahead Adam :)
I have always wanted to check out Hawaii, not so much for the beaches but it is the furthest US state that I can possibly go to!
I would love to pay a return visit to Alaska and bring the kids. Minnesota would also be fun.
Adam, What a challenging choice! I would most like to visit MONTANA or WYOMING and see Yellowstone! I cannot believe I have not seen it yet. Hope your travels go well.
I would love to visit Florida as I never get enough beach!
Believe it or not, I have never been to New York. Every year I promise myself I will go but take a look at the prices and freak out! Lol! I would LOVE to see this city in summer or NYE! This card would TOTALLY help!!
If I’m American living in Australia right now, can I play? If so, I’d say Washington state!
would love to win as my husband and I are planning an annivarsery of 41 years on a cruise and would like a place nice to stay on the way down driving to florida port canaveral.that would be a nice annivarsey gift .
Fun giveaway! Tennessee is on my list.
I am most interested in visiting New Orleans in LA!
Hmm – I think I would most like to visit Hawaii because, well, why not?! Plus it’s where my parents went on their honeymoon (and where I was most likely conceived. ;)
It would be a tough decision between NY and DC. But they’re so close I would probably do both.
Would love to go to South Carolina!
I have always wanted to visit New York! Studying art at a college in the mountains of Virginia, I really want to see all that New York is doing for the art world to better direct my own artistic pursuits.
Florida! I want to take my boyfriend to Disney!
I would most like to visit Massachusetts. I am huge history buff and am dying to go to Boston.
Florida! I have to go there in October and would love to stay somewhere nice!
I’d like to go to California so I can reconnect with friends in the Bay area and go hiking!
I would love to visit Chicago Illinois. I have traveled to many places but somehow have never gotten to Chicago. A gift card to a Marriott would push me to get there.
I’ve stayed in a Courtyard Marriott in… San Frans I think! Very nice but they were still in the middle of refurbishing it so I can’t wait to see how they fix the rooms! :)
Would love to go somewhere new and stay in New Orleans. Culture, art, music, and a good drink – how can I say no?!
Love Courtyard Marriotts and all of their outlets! Great contest to have Adam as accommodations in the US are not always affordable. I have been dying to visit Chicago lately so I would love to go to Illinois oddly enough!
I would love to visit Colorado — put my National Park annual pass to good use!
I would like to visit Washington so I can visit my new niece.
Love this! San Francisco, here we come. :)
I never win anything but if I do I would go to Miami to visit family
Great contest Adam. I’d love to visit Alaska!
Texas! I’ve been dying to see what Austin is all about.
I never win anything but if I did win I would go to Miami to visit family
Alaska! Especially in the summer, when it isn’t freezing. ;)
Oregon — preferably Portland!
Definitely New York!! Particularly around NYC and its five boroughs. I come from an area that has SUCH a slow pace of life and want to experience the opposite. Especially considering that I am not able to travel much these days. :)
Alaska, on my bucket list!
Would love to visit the Grand Canyon in Arizona. The cantilevered skywalk looks amazing!
Great giveaway! I would use it to stay in a hotel on my cross-country road trip I’m planning for a honeymoon!
We’d love to get to California for our babymoon.
I’d like to go to Nevada (Las vegas–I’ve never been!)
Would love to visit South Carolina, but where I live – Massachusetts is terrific!
Top of the list at the moment, California!!! Never been to the west coast.
I will give it a shoot! Thanks for the great offer! ;)
I’d like to revisit the DC area, Virginia. Thanks for the contest!
I am so jealous of your lifestyle. I would love to be able to travel like you do. I have so many places in the US I would love to visit. I would have to say the one on the top of my list right now is colorado, TY for the chance to win
Without a doubt a trip to “The Big Easy” New Orleans, Louisiana would be epic! P.S – We are huge fans of the Courtyard Marriott brand, our preferd stay!
New York, without a doubt!
I have a bazillion weddings this summer and fall–as seems to be the case every summer/fall having grown up in the South!–and could definitely use this to offset all the hotel fees. I’d choose Nashville or Atlanta, as those are the places I’ll be having to book hotels in next!
I’m thinking New Orleans in December for an urban race championship!
I’ve always wanted to go to Boston!
I’d go to the downtown Seattle one in WA for my upcoming visit back home!
Maryland (Annapolis and Eastern Shore)
Marriott Courtyard Manhattan/Midtown
I would love to visit Maine! I’m from Los Angeles so it’s not exactly easy to reach from here, but I know it’d be worth it to go in the fall and see some beautiful foliage and eat tons of lobster! Sounds so relaxing & delicious. ;)
I want to visit Pennsylvania
I’m going to Columbus, Ohio and Pittsburgh, PA next month and this could come in handy. Thanks for the contest!
I’d love to win a gift card. We’be loved staying at Courtyard of Marriott throughout the U.S. Love your blog!
I’ll be passing through California soon. Thanks for the contest!
I would love to visit Vermont! Thank you!
Great contest idea! I love visiting NYC and I know there is a fabulous Marriott in Time Square that would be amazing to get to stay in! Looking forward to more posts from you!
I would love to visit California! Always dreamed of going there but the money situation is always the best! Hope I get this :)
I’ve been wanting to visit new york as I have never been there!
Alaska! I’ve never been, polar bears are my favorite animal and I’ve seen The Proposal many times ;)
I want to visit every state but maybe Alaska is at the top of my list.
I would so love to visit the beautiful state of Hawaii!
I would love to visit Florida.
I forgot my state. Definitely Alaska; Anchorage specifically. My best friend and roommate lives there… haven’t seen her in years! I’ve seen pictures; it’s gorgeous!
I would love to visit Los Angeles because I would love to visit my family that lives there and I’ve never been there before!
I would love to go to Memphis or Nashville TN!
I want to visit Illinois (Chicago!)
Northern California is (shockingly) still on my unexplored list.
But Texas deserves a longer visit as well. Not sure if passing through on a Greyhound really counts…
I would love to visit California, specifically Los Angeles.
I am fascinated by the West Coast in general and would love to finally visit Oregon. Great for biking, road trips, wine tasting.
Oooh. I was stay in (Reno) Nevada – right after Burning Man…..
I’m a youth speaker & the cities I will be traveling to in the U.S.this year are- Austin, Texas, Portland, Oregon, San Francisco, Calif, Seattle, Washington & Detroit Michigan. It would be so cool to have this gift card to help me out.
btw…love your blog- big fan here!
Your site is too “smart” — it won’t let me correct my typo! Sorry if this is coming in 14 times …
I’d use the hotel night to visit my best friend in San Francisco!
I would love to visit Oregon!
Florida here I come!
Wanted to visit Alaska ever since as a teenager I was told stories of heading north there in a railcar with a woodstove and stained glass windows.
I’m thinking downtown New Orleans is the place for me!
would love to visit Seatle wA Marriott is the Best!!
Massachussetts! I have always wanted to go to Boston (am originally from upstate NY) and have sadly never gone over there. While I’m home for Christmas with my boyfriend, I am hoping to be able to go for the first time :)
More hotels definitely need to make their lobbies more useful friendly. I was just traveling for two weeks and its suprising the number of hotels that don’t have enough outlets, or don’t have tables in their lobbies for people who need to sit down and do work. Adding in the option of coffee is perfect.
I would love to see Florida again and stay somewhere nice!
I can’t believe I’ve traveled around the world, but I still haven’t been to Hawaii! So that’s #1 on my list of must-see places in the United States.
Montana! It’s gorgeous and empty.
Just one fantastic state : Texas
I’d want to visit Alaska. 24 hours of sunlight and stunning landscapes sound pretty good, even if you have to deal with some crazy locals like the Palin family.
Definitely California, to visit my family and to trek through beautiful Yosemite!
CA! I love your website!!!!!!!!!!!!