I wanted to give a better review...
I found an unbeatable deal on airfare from Islip NY, to BWI so I booked the air and then hit the internet to start searching for places to stay, things to do etc. Admiral Fell Inn seemed to be just right.
My hubby and I tried to check in twice before our room was ready, and finally got to check in at about 4:45 PM on Saturday, September 23, 2006. We had booked a King room to celebrate hubby's 51st birthday (and a quick sneak away from the kids). The heart of Fell's Point was an easy crawl from any of the many pubs!
Our flight left early and by this time we were exhausted from walking around, etc. so we thought we'd take a quick nap. PROBLEM: When I turned down the bed I immediately noticed that the sheets had not been changed...my dilemma was to either admit this to my already exhausted hubby and wait for housekeeping or to make believe that I didn't notice (YUCK). I can't believe I chose the latter! Ewwww.
I had read a similar review from someone else here and thought that it must have been a fluke...but I think now that they do not have enough of a housekeeping staff to get the rooms properly prepared when they are at full capacity (there was wedding there at that time) and this is how they shave time off of housekeeping.
It is a shame, this should have been so charming and in most other ways it was! The decoration was beautiful, the room was tastefully arranged, the bathroom amenities were Aveda. When we walked in to the Inn it appeared that we were in a top notch establishment. We passed by the ghost story teller, tea, etc.
One other problem...you can hear everyhting in the adjacent rooms and hall! The heavy doors slamming were a constant annoyance. I got up to actually see if it was a ghost doing this because it was constant in and out for about 4 minutes with no voices whatsoever. It would stop and as soon as I almost was back to sleep it would start again! Turns out the "ghosts" would have been better neighbors. The wedding party had a "party" in the room next door! I called the front desk about the party and it was handled immediately.
Would I go back??? Yeah - but I'd make sure that I had clean sheets first!
When I told my wife that I needed a couple of points for my Southwest account by the middle of January she said "why don't you just go to Baltimore overnight". We've enjoyed the Inner Harbor the last few times we went, not to mention taking in a game at Camden Yards, but this was January. Since Southwest was having a sale, about $28 each way, I figured I'd go just to try a different restaurant. Having never tried Priceline before I gave it a shot and ended up with the Admiral Fell Inn for $75. And for $75 I might recommend it.
For those not familiar with the Fell's Point section of Baltimore it can best be described as a quaint, older red brick area directly adjacent to the Inner Harbor (and a block away from the police station featured in the TV show Homicide...Life On The Street). Cobblestone streets, small "shoppes", lots of nautical themed decorations. The main street, also the one on which the Inn is located, is South Broadway. At night the area becomes decidely more adult oriented, and I haven't seen this many bars on one street since Saigon (or Chicago's Rush Street). You are also a taxi ride away from most good restaurants, unlike the other side of the harbor.
The one thing about the Inn that was truly outstanding was the staff at the front desk. Each one that I met was genuinely nice, pleasant, and a gret help. Unfortunately, that's the end of the good news. My room was on the second floor, and the trek from the elevator to my room can only be compared to the kind of maze where they put a lump of cheese at the end. Opening the door was accomplished by doing so half-way and then really putting your shoulder into it, the floors aren't what you would call "level". The room was small with a thin carpet and one of the smallest bathrooms I had ever seen in a hotel. The only place to rest your toiletries was a small glass shelf above the sink. And the fact that there was only about 1/2" left on the roll of toilet paper didn't earn them any bonus points. The TV, as stated previously, was off to the side. The bed, while lumpy, was comfortable for me. One important point: I have no idea what is mandated by Maryland law as far as fire codes but be advised that the familiar "escape plan" diagram on the back of the door that no one ever looks at isn't there. No card, no holder, zilch. And with the winding corridors of this hotel you definitely need it. That's why I checked the view out the window, always nice to have a backup plan (even if it's your only plan).
Last note. If you do stay at the Inn and feel like grabbing a quick bite you might like Shucker's, just up the street and right on the harbor (half price burgers on Thursdays was my lucky find).
Sneaky extra charges and lumpy beds
I was not informed when I cehcked in that there would be a 5 dollar per day charge for connectivity (the internet and the telephone, both of which I had carefully avoided using). The desk clerk said they were supposed to have informed me of the charge when I checked in, but they hadn't, nor had they explained it to the couple who were ahead of me in line when I was checking in. For a hotel that is already overpriced for what it is (yes, the location is great, but the bed was one of the lumpiest and uncomfortable I have slept on in my life, and the toilet ran intermittently and loudly all night long) I was annoyed at being charged extra for something I didn't even use.
I went to the Admiral Fells in with my boyfriend and his family for the weekend, and was quite concerned after reading some of the other reviews. But upon arrival I was pleasantly surprised. Fell Point is absolutely adorable, the water taxi is across the street and that is a great way to get to the harbor and other b-more sites.
I agree parking that is an issue, meters are 1.00 an hour and you can only do 4 hours at a time. Garbage parking is kind of a hike but is 5.00 a da on week days and 3.00 on weekends (not bad). Valet is expense...
We were in room 481 and it was wonderful, nice size huge bathroom, and very clean. The BF and I are planning to go back with out his family very soon!
Less than honorable
My husband and I traveled to Baltimore for an appointment at Johns Hopkins Hospital and had a confirmed reservation at this Inn for 2 nights. We arrived at the hotel around 6:00 PM and were told they had "overbooked" and could not give us a room. We booked the room on their own website, had a copy of the confirmation emailed back to us, but still were told they had "overbooked." I have traveled extensively in the states and abroad, and have never been turned away from a property due to "overbooking." Ridiculous, and stay away from this hotel since they are unwilling to honor their own reservation confirmations.
I read some of the poor reviews that were given, and I thought...these must really be some who tend to find fault easily.This hotel can be summed up with one word "quaint". I think that the reviewer who was annoyed by the ghost and didn't think that he added anything to the hotel probably would not be happy staying anywhere and would always see negatives. The area that the hotel sits in is just as quaint as the hotel itself. Fells point is chalk full of history and wonderful shops, and the hotels decor was simply splended. I have stayed there twice and will stay there again soon. No hotel will ever be perfection, but this hotel and it's sister hotels come pretty close. Anyone reading these reviews have to check things out for themselves... because if you base it on the people who had problems the whole time, you will miss out on a great experience...
Ladies Escape Weekend!
I'm trying to plan an escape weekend for a bunch of gal-pals. We'd like to stay down by the harbor. Can you make some recommendations for a couple nice hotels and a yummy seafood restaurant or two? Thanks, sure do appreciate it!
RE: Ladies Escape Weekend!
You may want to think twice about staying down by the harbor--it's awfully touristy (over the top touristy) and instead consider a neighborhood like Federal Hill or Fells Point. There are good hotels in FP, the Admiral Fell Inn, which is in a great location...and there are some other b&bs. FP is a more fun neighborhood in general...it's more beautiful, and there are more unique shops & restaurants.
As far as eating, I would say the first place to begin is doing a search on old posts on the Balto/DC forum on chowhound. As far as a "yummy seafood restaurant" the folks there always recommend Mamma's on the Half Shell, a short distance away in a neighborhood called Canton.
I could give you more restaurant suggestions, but would need to know your price range...and, if you are thinking about eating steamed crabs somewhere, I would strongly suggest that you avoid the Inner Harbor area.
RE: Ladies Escape Weekend!
If it is still there.- Eat at Bertha's Mussels in FP.
Tio Pepe is a Spanish restuarant in midtown that serves great everything.
RE: RE: Ladies Escape Weekend!
Bertha's is still there...although I don't know any locals who eat there...it's all people from DC and other tourists. They do, however, have a good bar often with free live jazz.
I don't know many people who journey to Balto for Tio Pepe's...it was once one of the few good restaurants in town, but it's really just of another era and there are better options.
RE: Ladies Escape Weekend!
The best restaurant in town is not a seafood one, but an Afghani one. The Helmand at 806 North Charles - a straight run from the Inner Harbor - right at the Baltimre version of the Washington Monument.
Really worth the trip to Baltimore to go to the Helmand. Baby pumpkin for an appetizer and you are in heaven. Get a reservation as they are always booked. 410-753-0311. The cost is very low and the food is wonderful.
The owners are brothers of the current president of Afghanistan. Not that it makes it any more delicious, but an interesting detail.