Hyatt Regency Crystal City: Arlington - Fancy hotel for $80!
The hotel is conveniently located for visitors arriving to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) and for driving visitors, just off Jefferson Davis Hwy (US-1) at southern edge of Crystal City. But it's a little bit far from shopping, entertainment (pubs), the center of Crystal City and from its restaurants as well. The metro station is a little bit far, approx. 20 min. walk (in empty but safe sidewalks at late evening). They offer a free shuttle both to Crystal City metro station and to the airport (DCA).
EXTERIOR AND STAFF
The exterior of the hotel was rather ugly - just a huge, tall building although the entrance with blooming flowers looked nice. The glass external elevator looked nice exclusively at night. The service at the lobby was great: competetive, fast and helpful. But when I called to the reception for extra coffee to my room I had to wait an exceptionally long time.
Our room was spacious, sterile clean, nice designed with fancy bathroom and over-average equippment I didn't need (I need only clean, nice looking room with Weather Channel on TV, many wall plugs for my equipment, good light to read and a coffee-maker for morning coffee :-). I remember pure white wrapper lying on my bed when I entered the room. The only small incovenience was poor lighting made it hard to read small fonts in a bed but it worked well at the desk. I might expect poor lighting and no internet access in budget hotels (and I even had internet access in some of those). However, as much this room normally costs, you would think the lighting would be better and the internet access would be universal. At this hotel, the wireless access covered only the lower floors.
The impressive tall and nice designed lobby with external glass elevator to the top is nothing unique but, anyhow, is part of my foudest memories.
I had to tip a valet parking attendant and a guy who carried our luggage. To be honest I don't like to pay tips :-) for two reasons:
- surely because it eats into the money I set aside for sightseeing and eating at places better than, say, McDonald's
- I always feel confused and never know whether I paid too much or too little (exception: restaurants in the USA where I paid approx. 15% for common good service). In poorer countries, I visited, it worked better as I easily realized that my money was much needed to help those folks I tipped to earn a living, and they looked so happy when I tipped them. In the USA, a country where they tip a lot and on more occasions, I simply followed counsel of my friends and travel guides and hardly paid tips in restaurants.
In Hyatt Regency I asked Kathy how much to tip but she asked me the same. I paid both times $5 and I have no idea whether it was enough or not. Later on, at Dulles airport, I discretly asked Nat how much to tip a guy who carried our luggage and, he made me laugh. He immediately and simply asked the guy how much to tip him. He replied that it depends on me. And I gave him all my last notes and coins (one pound :-) The reason Nat didn't know is because he travels so lightly, he never has to depend on anyone else to carry his bags.
Before our trip to the USA Kathy (Kodi01) found and booked a room with two king size beds in this hotel on Priceline for only about $80 with a tax and without breakfast. Unbelievable! The regular price was over $200. Add tips and parking fee (I paid $8 per day). Now, I want to have instant internet access through my laptop during my next US trip or internet in a car, a dream haha.
Despite some inscoveniences I was very satisfied about this hotel but I would never, ever spent over $200 per one night there.