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Where to Stay in Columbus
Columbus, Ohio caters to all types of visitors, from business travelers to the young, college-age crowd. Where you choose to stay in the city will depend on what you wish to get out of your trip. If you're looking for a luxury hotel with a convenient location near the Greater Columbus Convention Center, search for accommodations in the Arena District. This neighborhood not only serves as the home to Columbus' largest arena spaces, but it also provides travelers with easy access to the city's commercial center. If cheap eats and drinks is what you're after, then look for discount hotels in the University District. Composed of the area surrounding the Ohio State University's campus, the University District claims many sports bars and pubs, many of which serve up tasty cuisine and offer daily drink specials. For a more intimate stay, compare rates at one of the handfuls of Columbus guesthouses and inns. Many of these cozy bed and breakfasts can be found outside of downtown near the Victorian Village district and around the expansive Scioto Audubon Metro Park, which sits along the beautiful Scioto riverfront. Families may want to consider booking reservations at a hotel near Dublin, Ohio. Situated only 20 minutes from downtown Columbus, this area is boasts the internationally renowned Columbus Zoo & Aquarium.
Columbus Hotel Tips
The summer season is the most popular time to vacation in Columbus. Hotel prices tend to rise during July and August as crowds flock to the city for its many festivals. In particular, the Ohio State Fair takes place in early August and attracts hundreds of thousands of out-of-towners every year. In June, the city hosts the Community Festival, also known as ComFest. Held in Goodale Park over three days, the celebration features a variety of musical and arts-oriented entertainment. If you plan on visiting during this peak period, book your reservations well in advance.
As summer tourism dies down and students return to school, major attractions become less crowded and hotels have more vacancies. This means that travelers can frequently find flight deals to Columbus and discount hotel rates during the fall season. Autumn in Columbus is usually comfortable, with temperatures ranging from the low 40s to the low 70s.
Columbus Hotel Recommendations
Conveniently located near central downtown and the Greater Columbus Convention Center, the Lofts Hotel & Suites offers business travelers and pleasure seekers and exclusive hotel experience. The boutique hotel is housed in the historic Carr Building. Built in the 19th century, the Carr Building originally served as the home of the Columbus Transfer Company and was converted for its present use in 1998. The luxury hotel features 44 rooms, each appointed with contemporary furnishings and state-of-the-art amenities. Guestrooms include floor-to-ceiling windows, fine Italian linens and terry robes. Ample meeting space is available at the hotel's adjacent sister property, the Crowne Plaza Hotel.
Or consider a more intimate stay at the charming Harrison House Bed and Breakfast. Located north of the city center between the University District and Victorian Village, the elegant inn provides guests with convenient access to the Ohio State University campus and Goodale Park. Built in the late 19th century, the elaborate mansion features six tastefully furnished guestrooms, each with its own private bath, a queen-sized bed and wireless Internet service. Room options include the extra spacious third-floor unit, which features a sleeper sofa to accommodate extra guests. In addition to the morning gourmet breakfast, the inn provides guests with complementary snacks and beverages.
Featuring such architectural touches as antique stained-glass windows and crystal chandeliers, the Westin Columbus is one of the most upscale hotels in the city. The facility dates back to 1897 when it was the Great Southern Hotel. Today, it's been updated to incorporate 21st-century amenities, such as a state-of-the-art fitness center. Guests can choose from a range of room types, including deluxe rooms, king suites and executive rooms. The hotel also has an on-site restaurant called the High Street Grill, which uses local ingredients to concoct classic American cuisine. For cocktails, check out the hotel's Thurber's Bar, which features comprehensive martini menu.
Although Columbus does not currently have passenger rail service, it does have a fairly robust network of buses. The Central Ohio Transit Authority, or COTA, operates buses throughout Columbus and beyond. In total, COTA covers about 562-square miles of central Ohio. Travelers who are planning to restrict their trips to the downtown Columbus area or the Ohio State University campus can rely on their feet. Both areas are easily walkable, with most destinations no more than a 20-minute stroll away. With its grid-like pattern, Columbus' layout is easily navigable by car. Travelers can rent a car at one of the many rental outlets located throughout the city.