are HGI the better Hiltons?

Old Apr 21, 10, 5:39 pm
  #1  
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are HGI the better Hiltons?

Without doubt Hiltons in Europe/Asia are usually up-Market Hotels but having stayed in some (probably not as many as you are) US Hiltons I have the feeling the Garden Inns are the Best choice when it comes to stay in a Hilton (chain) property. You get free internet regardless of Status, they have a restaurant in case you don't want to get out and hot Breakfast (that deserves this name unlike the one in the Hampton Inns), the properties are generally new, clean and everything is working plus the Beds are really good and most of the time they are cheaper than the "real" Hiltons.

I was wondering: if you have the choice between the two where do you stay and why?

(I also tried a Homewood last weekend which was really good value for money as well)
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Old Apr 21, 10, 5:56 pm
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1. HGI
2. Homewood
3. Hampton Inn & Suites (I have found the breakfast varies hugely by property)
4. ES
5. DT
6. Hilton

Reasons: Most Homewoods and many HGIs are newer and fresher. I almost always get a suite upgrade at these (when the HGI in question has suites). You don't get nickel-and-dimed for things like coffee (free), internet (free), and refrigerators (often standard amenities)

Some exceptions might be the Hilton Hawaiian Village/Waikoloa but those are completely different animals.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 6:10 pm
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And, parking is more convenient to room and usually no charge. The made to order breakfast is great as the smaller hotels allows tremendous personal service. After three or four days, the breakfast server will usually recognize me and know my preference. I asked for grits in CA. They tried. They really tried. I do not think they knew what success should look like. I will get oatmeal the next time.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 6:52 pm
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Hampton Inn breakfast has gotten to be really bad here lately with the powerdery fake eggs, rubbery microwave bacon, and the hockey puck biscuits that practically break your teeth out.

Nothing beats the free breakfast that Diamonds get at HGI. Always have good fresh fruit, and when I'm in the mood for an omelette, I get a nice big fat omelette. Also love the restaurtant/bar option that Hampton Inn's don't offer.

I've become a huge fan of HGI as well!
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Old Apr 21, 10, 7:15 pm
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I agree with the consensus - HGIs have becom my favorite Hilton property. They offer great breakfasts - regular menu or special orders gets comped as a diamond, at least half the time I get a suite, especially at the ones I frequent regularly and prices are reasonable. It is a win, win situation.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 7:34 pm
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If one doesn't need a full-service property an HGI can be fine. Certainly I prefer a new HGI to an old, tired Hilton, if that's the choice a market offers. But some of the first HGIs are now - what, 12-14 years old ? - and they aren't always ageing gracefully.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 7:40 pm
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HGI > Hilton in downtown Atlanta. Love the downtown HGI!
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Old Apr 21, 10, 8:00 pm
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Yes, HGIs are better than Hiltons

My experiences with full services Hiltons have been disappointing, but HGIs are just perfect for me (the free cook-to-order breakfast for elites, bigger HDTVs with more HiDef channels, and the adjustable beds). When I get upgraded to a suite at a HGI, it's the best! The only thing I don't like is them charging $2 a load to wash and dry clothes.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 8:41 pm
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For me, it really depends on where, the reason and the properties available.

But for business stays, HGI is my choice, as well as for some leisure stays. The brand has the most consistent offerings, and they are quite decent - room and amenities, breakfasts, etc. Homewood Suites comes in a close second for these.

For leisure stays, I often use Embassy Suites - more room, the living room "buffer" between the bedroom and the busy hallways, etc.

For leisure or celebratory stays overseas, Conrad is often my choice.

Doubletree fills in OK most of the time, and some have very good Park 'n' Fly rates - and they often treat Diamonds right. Doubletree Club - some are decent, some are barely marginal, the worst have been dismantled (notably MIA!).

Hampton fills the bill in some places HGI is too far away, and I pick and choose to avoid eating plastic effigies of fried eggs etc. A lot of variability at some of these.

Hilton... hmmm. That varies property by property. I like some, some are tired, some are not customer oriented at all. So, the "anchor" name brand seems the most variable - especially in the UK, I think - and I do my research beforfe booking (thanks, FT!)

W=A - hardly ever stay in 'em. Too much glitz, not enough bang for the buck.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 8:45 pm
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In most cases, I prefer HGI to other Hilton brands. I frequently tell people that they are the gem of the brand.

I like Embassy's, but they are typically pricey relative to Hilton/HGI. DTs are normally pricey also in the areas I typically stay.

I typically stay away from Hampton and Homewood unless they are the last resort. The breakfast at both is barely passable, though Homewood gets points for free beer in the evening - just don't try the "dinner".
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Old Apr 21, 10, 8:51 pm
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Other than internet and breakfast for gold and above, HGI also has fridge and microwave. HS and ES have those, but HS doesn't have as many properties as HGI, and ES is substianlly more expensive.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 9:11 pm
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Originally Posted by justinc848 View Post
I typically stay away from Hampton and Homewood unless they are the last resort. The breakfast at both is barely passable, though Homewood gets points for free beer in the evening - just don't try the "dinner".
That's just waaaaay too general.

I've had some mediocre dinners (or dinners I passed on) at Homewood Suites, but I also had a very good Salisbury steak, very fresh salad, decent baked potato dinner at one of the Homewood Suites in Phoenix (and was grateful after a 10 hour drive). Another example: The breakfast at the Homewood Suites at DEN is better than some HGIs. The breakfast at the Homewood Suites SFO was worse than most Hamptons.

Certain Hampton Inns and Suites (which one of our HHonors employees has said really is a different brand for all intents and purposes) often have pretty decent breakfasts compared to Hampton Inns. But that's not universal; some of the best biscuits-and-gravy (both made from scratch! Yes, I know some of you are not fans ) I've had at a hotel was at the otherwise completely mediocre Hampton in Florissant MO.

I think the quality of the meal offerings at any property, including the low end ones, is way more dependent on the the property's management and staff than is sometimes recognized.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 9:24 pm
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If I'm traveling for work and have to choose between Hilton & a Garden Inn, I prefer the HGI because they're newer, have a fridge and usually cookies. However, if I'm traveling for pleasure, I prefer Hiltons because it's VERY rare I find a HGI with an upgrade available.

However, I usually find myself staying at Hampton (hopefully Suites) because I'm at out-of-the-way areas without any better choices.

Last edited by IAHtraveler; Oct 26, 10 at 7:10 pm
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Old Apr 21, 10, 9:30 pm
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Originally Posted by alxir View Post
The only thing I don't like is them charging $2 a load to wash and dry clothes.
Wow, $2? Sounds like a steal by general hotel standards to me. That's not much more than what I pay in my own apartment building to either wash or dry a load of clothes.
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Old Apr 21, 10, 10:35 pm
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HGIs are generally my first choice unless I know that a particular Hilton in the same area is good. HGI is the most consistent and reliable of all of the Hilton brands, and usually the best value. The mix of in-room and hotel amenities, the breakfast (free for Diamonds), and quality of service is a combination that really works for me for both business and pleasure. It does not feel like a discount hotel, but it is not unusual to find it cheaper than nearby Hamptons.
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