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Old Nov 27, 09, 10:28 pm   #1
 
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Residence Inn vs. Courtyard

Could someone explain the difference between these brands, from a guest's perspective?
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Old Nov 28, 09, 2:57 am   #2
 
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Residence Inn is an extended stay hotel, it includes a kitchen with full size appliances. The last time I checked with points, you earn less reward points at RI. The rooms are big and comfortable. Aside from the kitchen, there is also a living room area with a full size sofa, easy chair and most have fireplaces. There is a desk but in most of the ones I've been, the desk is in weird location, sort of makes you feel like you've been relegated to the corner of the room, although you do have a window. There is a free breakfast daily and manager's reception M-F.

Courtyard is a traditional hotel room. The rooms are average size rooms, no fridge or microwave; although I did find out at the courtyard I'm staying at now, they provide free fridges if you request one. Courtyard does not have the free breakfast, although status may get you breakfast tickets - not sure about that. There's no manager's reception.

If you're going to be there for a short term (as in weekly trips under 3 months), I'd probably go with a Courtyard. Longer than that, you might want to consider the RI and work a deal for staying checked in over the weekends.

The deciding factor though might be if you prefer to have the kitchen should you get tired of eating out and want to keep things in the room.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 6:13 am   #3
 
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Do not forget the points

The RI is 5 points per $ CY is 10. From this guest's prespective more points is an important consideration.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 7:34 am   #4
 
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From a family perspective, the RI may be more accommodating for kids, with suites or penthouse-style rooms available to separate the kids' vs parents' spaces, and the free breakfast.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 7:55 am   #5
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Don't count on the manager's reception. They scaled back to 3 nights, & the night can vary but are usually M-W or one of those nights missed & Th added. Anecdotal reports are that the receptions vary greatly in offerings, with 'eh' starting to be the norm.

Do agree that RI might be better for families, and CY rest of time especially w/ added points. Cheers.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 8:57 am   #6
 
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In my opinion Spring Hill provides the best of both works and is my preference when available. 10x bonus and free breakfast. SH hotels are usually new and in good shape. The rooms are a little larger than the standard hotel room although the layout can be a bit odd.

RI do provide the free breakfast but some are of an older design and I've had a few bad experiences being noisy. As hnewman said the bonus points combined with my previous experience points me towards SH or CY.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 10:08 am   #7
 
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Thanks.

The Residence and Courtyard are next door; I chose the Residence on the basis of the slightly larger (25%) room with us having 2 children, plus the fact that the Residence was newly renovated in May and has wireless and wired in-room internet, and free breakfast made it worth the extra $10 for me.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 6:15 pm   #8
 
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I think you made the right choice in this situation; convenience for the kids should override maximizing your point-earning.
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Old Nov 28, 09, 7:27 pm   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meester69 View Post
I chose the Residence on the basis of the slightly larger (25%) room with us having 2 children...
Are you Gold or Plat elite? If so, give MR a call and see if the agent can contact the hotel for you and request a free upgrade to a 2 bedroom suite.

While suites are not a guaranteed elite benefit, I have found that having the MR agent call the hotel for you to ask about a possible upgrade, the hotels have been surprisingly willing to give the upgrade if they aren't too booked.
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Old Dec 4, 09, 10:08 pm   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meester69 View Post
Could someone explain the difference between these brands, from a guest's perspective?
In addition to the what the other posters have already said, all Residence Inns include a hot buffet breakfast.
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Old Dec 4, 09, 10:27 pm   #11
 
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When I travel for business I prefer the CY but when travelling with the family (3YO) we prefer the RI primarily because of the separate bedroom and the free hot breakfast.
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Old Dec 5, 09, 1:59 am   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qlabdad View Post
In my opinion Spring Hill provides the best of both works and is my preference when available. 10x bonus and free breakfast. SH hotels are usually new and in good shape. The rooms are a little larger than the standard hotel room although the layout can be a bit odd.

.
I couldn't agree more, SpringHill is the best brand of Marriott outside of the normal Marriott & JW brands. SpringHill properties are newer and fresher and the brand was built to be an amalgamation of the best aspects of each brand, courtyard, Fairfield, etc...

Free B-Fast, Internet, great value on pts and mandatory overhaul for all Springs by 2011 is just right in my books.
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Old Dec 5, 09, 8:00 am   #13
 
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I usually find the RI to be quieter, although older ones involve outside entry.
I know someone working for our company that prefers CY because of the points, and begs at the front desk for a suite upgrade, which of course he would have gotten automatically with RI. I value the extra points at about $5 typically, and breakfast averages $10. When I suggested to the coworker that his economics were screwed up, he replied "the company pays for my breakfast anyway, and the company lets me keep my points".
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Old Dec 5, 09, 8:17 am   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue47 View Post
I know someone working for our company that prefers CY because of the points, and begs at the front desk for a suite upgrade, which of course he would have gotten automatically with RI.
I don't know about "begging", but I also will ask the check-in agent about a suite upgrade at a CY. And my suite upgrade % at CYs has been pretty good.

My personal preference is similar to what others have mentioned. If I'm traveling alone and for work, I will almost always choose a CY over a close by RI. But when traveling with the family, I'll go the RI route.
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Old Dec 5, 09, 12:08 pm   #15
 
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Add me to those who'd pick CY over RI when traveling alone on biz. I like the RI brand, but for a guy alone, it has more room and more stuff than I really need, the hot breakfast is usually so-so at best, and the "manager's reception"...when there is one...tends to be rather paltry these days. Give me full points, and I'll start showing up at RI more often, but keep the differential going and I'll almost always pick CY.

SHS. Again, I like them, but I'm not as big a cheerleader as some. They're a superb choice when travelling alone with a great price-value relationship.

What I'm particularly not fond of is the way the beds are often crammed into the sleeping area with very little room to spare. Not that big of a deal when traveling alone (I can even pretend I'm in Europe ). But when traveling with the family....especially if I want to use the pull out sofa....an SHS room can become quite cramped in a hurry. Mrs. Cyberdad pretty much refuses to stay in them for exactly that reason. They're not as good of a choice as RI when you're traveling with a larger party and want to spread out and be comfortable.
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